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Josep J. Ruiz

Violin ID

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Dear members,

From 10 years ago I'm playing the violin you can see in the photos. I know is not a master work but I'm satisfacted with its powerful and good sound. The fact is I wanted to know some expanded information about my instrument. I guess is a first half of 19th century German specimen but I'm not sure. If is, would be nice to know more concretely its age and origin. If not, would be nice to know any info. It was restored at 1910 according to an unique repair label by Otto Windisch. Feel free to ask me more detailed photos, measures... By the way, the neck is not grafted. 

Many thanks in advance to all and sorry for my english. 

Best regards. 

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I know nothing, but most German instruments from that era have much more square shoulders, don’t they?  The pattern and the F holes look Italian to me, but I know nothing.

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6 hours ago, Josep J. Ruiz said:

By the way, the neck is not grafted. 

Many thanks in advance to all and sorry for my english. 

Thank you for your post and the nice photos. Don’t worry about your English it’s perfectly fine for this purpose. The neck does appear to be grafted.

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47 minutes ago, PhilipKT said:

I know nothing, but most German instruments from that era have much more square shoulders, don’t they?  The pattern and the F holes look Italian to me, but I know nothing.

While some German violins can, I would really question the idea that most have square shoulders.

Also as for patterns and F holes looking Italian, people have been trying to emulate those for 500 years or so....

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Thanks you all so much for your contributions. 

I said the neck is not grafted because I tought it is when I bought the violin on ebay. Once in my hands I saw clearly is just a good simulation. Also the wear of the volute seems simulated. In the other hand, the wear of varnish is original in my opinion.

My question now is: how to differenciate a violin from early or late XIX century when is done imitating older instruments? I know the famous case of 'Amati Pestini 1813', which are normally from ca. 1880. In my case I tought is older because the varnish, manufacture and a 1910 restoration but seems I'm wrong if the violin comes from ca. 1890. 

 

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17 hours ago, PhilipKT said:

  The pattern and the F holes look Italian to me, but I know nothing.

I see Italian too.  Upper shoulders and top view pegbox, possibly outer contour of scroll and box side profile?

  Not sure what to think of the ff hole notching and the corner work.  Then others saying late 1800's - I'm really not sure now.  Maybe let's get the time period first then decide what possible country where made or maybe a school of.  

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On 10/6/2018 at 6:40 PM, uncle duke said:

I see Italian too.  Upper shoulders and top view pegbox, possibly outer contour of scroll and box side profile?

  Not sure what to think of the ff hole notching and the corner work.  Then others saying late 1800's - I'm really not sure now.  Maybe let's get the time period first then decide what possible country where made or maybe a school of.  

I never thought the possibility of italian style. The sounding board is very bulky, perhaps following the Stainer pattern. The fact is that instrument is contradictory to me. Seems it is made with not to much accuracy (asymetric F holes and scroll, modest wood...) but its sound is spectacular. I had briefly (on loan) a Léon Bernardel years ago and I can say I prefer my violin, which I'm sure has a much more low value. 

Anyway tomorrow I send you the requested views tomorrow. Thanks again! 

Edited by Josep J. Ruiz

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So I have absolutely no idea about how Otto Windisch made his violins. I only know he was a mandolin luthier and one of the first electric guitar makers. I saw some pictures of Windisch violins and to me seems different. 

Anyway I don't think this violin is made by him because the label says 'Rep. Jan (?). 1910'. I interpret is a repair label using the standard label of the maker (with a 20th century typography). Most probably is from a repair of two craks in the cover, which were originally when I acquired the instrument in a old case with some early 20th century elements. As I told previously, I tought is from early 19th century and probably I was wrong but acording this facts I don't think the violin was made only 100 years ago or so. 

Seems is very hard to determine the age and origin of the violin :D

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54 minutes ago, Josep J. Ruiz said:

 

Seems is very hard to determine the age and origin of the violin :D

Of course not. It's a so called Dutzendware of the Markneukirchen trade, roughly late 19th century. We called it "screw-driver antiqued".

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Thanks for the info!

As you can see checking the messages I told seems hard to determine after several messages without nothing sure. Yes, the violin is antiqued and this is visible for example in fake grafting neck but I is quite different compared with typical trade antiqued violins like 'Amati-Pestini'. By this reason I tought is older than late 19th century. 

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On 10/12/2018 at 1:26 AM, Josep J. Ruiz said:

Any suggestions?
 

Now that I've been away for awhile I now see Austro/Hungary possibilities instead of Italy, sorry. 

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Oh, don't worry! My first tought was the violin is german so... :P I'm not really a good violin collector but as an acceptable violinist I can say the sound of my instrument is very good, and to me thats the most important. Thanks for your suggestion!!

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19 minutes ago, Josep J. Ruiz said:

Oh, don't worry! My first tought was the violin is german so... :P I'm not really a good violin collector but as an acceptable violinist I can say the sound of my instrument is very good, and to me thats the most important. Thanks for your suggestion!!

I'm afraid we have different opinions about good sound. These cheap violins does not have slightest possibility to sound good. They just sound louder or weaker. Sorry.

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48 minutes ago, mathieu valde said:

I'm afraid we have different opinions about good sound. These cheap violins does not have slightest possibility to sound good. They just sound louder or weaker. Sorry.

Harsh! 

And of course - doesn't account for personal taste.

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8 minutes ago, mathieu valde said:

Trade violins. not for very much refined taste. sorry.

Hmm.

What exactly is "refined" taste?

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On 10/25/2018 at 8:49 PM, Josep J. Ruiz said:

Thanks for the info!

As you can see checking the messages I told seems hard to determine after several messages without nothing sure. Yes, the violin is antiqued and this is visible for example in fake grafting neck but I is quite different compared with typical trade antiqued violins like 'Amati-Pestini'. By this reason I tought is older than late 19th century. 

The antiquing of the typical "Schweitzer Pestini" fake labelled Markneukirchen/Schönbachs is just one possible way of some different used roughly at the same period. They mustn't be confused with real Schweitzers or other Austro-Hungarian master made violins, so the only austrian here is that it could be made in Western Bohemia (Schönbach), which was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire till 1918.

It's very brave to judge the timbre of an instrument without ever hearing it, I won't dare, no matter how it looks or where it might originate from.-_-

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Thanks again for the replies! Well, so now seems clear I have a german-bohemian violin from late 19th century made imitating older instruments.

Matheu, of course my opinion about the good sound and yours are different: I listen the instrument before giving an opinion and you do not.  :D

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