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Greeno9813

American 1937 violin - Repair & restring before selling?

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Greetings everyone! 

Let me start that I've found your Forum extremely helpful, but I'm not finding much info regarding my question, so I'm hoping to get some guidance. Thanks in advance!

I'm a picker, mostly buying high end art & antiques, but after buying quite a nice cielo at an estate sale, I've made the added effort to keep my eyes open for good quality instruments.

I have not listed any instruments on EBay yet, and in adherence to Forum rules, I'm not going to sell or advertise here, but I could use some advice for when I do begin listing.

Do you (serious collector/musicians) prefer to make your own restorations & repairs and buy instruments AS IS, or should I go to my local luthier?  The cost doesn't seem to be too high for the type of 'general upkeep' repairs such as restringing, restoring veneer, etc, but I'm wondering if you'd end up just redoing the work due to personal preference.

Secondly, If I make the repairs, I'd be able to record the instrument being played. Would hearing a sound track of the sound help buyers decide on whether to buy or not? I don't see other sellers doing this, but don't you want to hear how the instrument sounds before you buy it?

I believe I've found enough resources on measuring & weighing. But, what specific photos are the most helpful for making the decision to buy or not?

Finally, what is the interest in the market for American made violins of unknown makers? I have a violin with a hand written label inside stating it was made in May 1937, Daytona Beach Florida, and gives the name of the maker. Nothing comes up on Google for this person, but the violin conforms in every way to a 4/4, seems to quite light (380 grams without strings, missing 3 tuning pegs, and without headrest), and wood is of high quality with only some wear to the finish.

I'm told it Will cost about $300 or so to get it strung and playable, and a bit more if I want it polished up. Before I spend anything more, I'd really appreciate some help.

I can post pics if permissible under the rules of the Forum.

Thanks,

Tim

 

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, Greeno9813 said:

Finally, what is the interest in the market for American made violins of unknown makers? I have a violin with a hand written label inside stating it was made in May 1937, Daytona Beach Florida, and gives the name of the maker. Nothing comes up on Google for this person, but the violin conforms in every way to a 4/4, seems to quite light (380 grams without strings, missing 3 tuning pegs, and without headrest), and wood is of high quality with only some wear to the finish.

Prices are generally low for unknown American makers. Some violins from unknown American makers are quite nice while many are horrible. If it is a handsome well-made violin that is set-up properly and sounds nice, then you may be able to get your best price from a local sale, or consignment with a local shop.

A violin from a completely unknown American maker on eBay that needs work is likely not to sell for more than a few hundred dollars.

 

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GeorgeH,

That's my concern.  A violin that needs strings by an unknown maker might just a be too great a risk for anyone to consider buying it for more than $100 or so (not that I think it's gonna bring all that much higher).

I think I'd like to hear how it sounds at least once before selling it.

Thanks for all the response.

Tim

 

 

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10 hours ago, GeorgeH said:

 

A violin from a completely unknown American maker on eBay that needs work is likely not to sell for more than a few hundred dollars.

 

You could, of course, give it to the Japanese Emperor

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Not sure it's worthy of becoming a diplomatic gift, but my local violin shop thinks the sound will be quite good given what they see from the overall quality of the wood and craftsmanship, so I should have it playable by this coming Saturday.

At the very least, it will be an education for me without too high a price tag and I'll have a working violin around the house to play around with.

Edited by Greeno9813

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On 6/5/2019 at 5:06 AM, Greeno9813 said:

Not sure it's worthy of becoming a diplomatic gift, but my local violin shop thinks the sound will be quite good given what they see from the overall quality of the wood and craftsmanship, so I should have it playable by this coming Saturday.

At the very least, it will be an education for me without too high a price tag and I'll have a working violin around the house to play around with.

So how is it?

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