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PhilipKT

“You can build a Stradivarius violin”

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5 minutes ago, David Beard said:

Let's be clear, the Reid book has the same relationship to violin making that a Readers Digest DIY particleboard bookshelf project has to furnisher making.

Mr. Beard, message received, loud and clear.

Thank you,

Pete

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2 hours ago, James Ansara said:

Hi Jackson.

Could you tell us a little bit about Brian Derber's book?

Thanks

James

Sure! Thought if you like you can reach out to him, he's a very approachable fellow. Here's a link to his page:

https://newworldschool.cc/the-manual-of-violin-making-book/

His book provides very detailed step-by-step instructions with excellent photos. It goes into great detail, and provides significant depth where necessary. It's also got a good sense of humor, and you can tell that the author is a very well read fellow. 

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As a beginner I can vouch for Derber's book too. It is incredibly detailed and clearly written for students of the craft. Compared to Courtnall & Johnson or Strobel, both of which I have as well, Derber's book is by far the better choice.

Having a few violin examples to measure from as mentioned earlier is also very sensible, I am using the fiddle kit from StewMac as my visual guide. Certainly not cheap, but better than some ebay junk. 

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I haven't seen the Derber book.  It seems like it must have more information about small details.  Those are the things people like me, who just grab a book and a poster will probably miss.  I used a very pragmatic, get in and do it book: Making Strings Instruments, by George Buchanan for my first; added a poster for my next, and then then bought a C & J book.  

The entire time I've been on Maestronet,  and that has helped immensely.  Most of the criticism I've had, showing instruments in person, has been about things that I didn't even know about, or think about, like overhangs, chamfers, that sort of thing.  I think I made the first neck short because I kept reading about a 130 mm long neck, and factored in 5 mm or so for the mortise, but forgot the nut.  Little details.

Of course now I do things completely wrong. I came up with my own method.  I have a lot of confidence, and no fear.  Delusional?  I think I would be a much better maker if I had access to a lot of different instruments.  But even that wouldn't help unless I took the time to study HOW the guy got the edge work that way, or HOW the arch rises at different places on the instrument.  Books don't seem to convey that.  

To copy an instrument right in front of you would be the easiest way.  See in 3D, copy in 3D.  Working from drawings is 2D to 3D.  I do that all the time as a machinist, but you have to see the instrument as a whole, not just a 1 mm chamfer here, and 40 mm between the eyes. 

If you are young, and could find a maker to take you on as an apprentice, that could be even better,  but you only get one point of view.  I would hope that he would let you try something different, but maybe not.  Yeah, I'm not much for following rules.

I think it is probably more of what YOU put into it, than what school, or what book you learn from.

 

 

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23 hours ago, Ken_N said:

  I think I would be a much better maker if I had access to a lot of different instruments.  But even that wouldn't help unless I took the time to study HOW the guy got the edge work that way, or HOW the arch rises at different places on the instrument.  Books don't seem to convey that.  

To copy an instrument right in front of you would be the easiest way..... but you have to see the instrument as a whole, not just a 1 mm chamfer here, and 40 mm between the eyes. 

  You wouldn't need a lot of different instruments, just one real good one.  I do study the one I have every once in a while but not for the reason of how a certain area is done, just to see what can be good enough for my own work, if I can get close.  I realize I probably don't have the tools needed to exactly emulate so why try - just get close.

 The only violin making book I own is Heron-Allen.  I'd be at a loss if I had to depend on that manual for making arches and necks.  Thankfully there is the web for sites like Murtov and others for templates and such.      

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