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Rue

Do you like an antiqued finish on a new instrument?

Do you like an antiqued finish on a new instrument?  

55 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you like an antiqued finish on a new instrument?

    • Yes. I love most antiqued finishes!
      11
    • Yes, but only a certain type.
      20
    • No. A new instrument should look new.
      24


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I think it just depends really.

Some antiquing is really bad, some is amazing. I've seen some new look instruments with horrible bright red varnishes and I've seen some that look incredible.

 

 

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The nicest looking new finish instrument I have seen so far in person was a Viateur Roy Violin. Absolutely stunning and incredibly well made.

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No. I believe a varnish should be extremely tough and hard enough  to resist fingernail scratches. And thin and flexible enough to allow the player to get the sounds they want.

It should also have an illusion of depth and enhance the natural chattoyance of the wood.

It should not have so much pigment that it detracts from any of the above features. And what pigment it  does have should appear to be floating in the varnish.

Trying to imitate a fragile varnish is not my cup of tea.

 

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No, of course not.  Heaven only knows what damage beating a violin with keys or stabbing it with a screwdriver does to all that careful graduation that they claim to do nowadays, and making it look funny might traumatize it.  :ph34r:

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34 minutes ago, rudall said:

Not with those questions. 

No? Why not?

So far we have 3:1 preferring antiqued finishes. If I were selling violins, I'd want to know that.

Once I know that - I can query further...

 

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I’m not sure.

Shelbow is right, it depends.

New looking is fine until it’s too orange, Old looking is fine until it’s all broken and wrong.

On a new instrument broken wouldn’t be an issue so, on balance, antique finishes are usually good because they aren’t orange.

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I’ve been told by the shops that sell violin family instruments that 90 percent of buyers prefer antiqued . I don’t know if that’s accurate but it’s  what they think that matters . I think antiquing can show off the wood better than straight varnished . Also having some wear already from new doesn’t hurt as bad when the inevitable ding happens . 

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30 minutes ago, martin swan said:

Antiqueing is far more popular in the US than in the UK ...

The problem with polls is that people can answer and yet be wrong - this is why democracy is in chaos.

People can be VERY wrong. Polls can lead to votes,  and influence the thinking of those who Are fence sitters, it happens. 

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Normally, I prefer natural.  In fact, when I was shopping for a "new" new instrument a while back, I wanted a mint-condition Strad model.  And, of course, the best thing that came my way was an antiqued del Gesu model.  That was an exception, though.  Most antiqued instruments really don't look good to me.  It's like antiqued Turkish rugs.  They seem fine until you get them home, then they just look a little cheesy.

One nice solution I saw was from a famous German maker.  His finish is designed to look old to the audience, but not to the player.  Ethically sound, and he has a good eye, so it isn't ugly.  Still, I'd still like to see what his best un-distressed varnish looks like.

 

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4 hours ago, Rue said:

Thought a poll might be informative! :)

...and interesting to see the comments. I'll take the real antique finish every time.

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1 hour ago, Edward Byler said:

I’ve been told by the shops that sell violin family instruments that 90 percent of buyers prefer antiqued .

That wouldn't be a surprise. Just about every time most people have encountered  a megabuck violin, the easiest feature to remember is that it looks old and rather beat up.

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I have commissioned a few instruments from different makers in the last little while. What I tell them is to finish it the way their artistic sense tells them to.  I want them to make the instrument as beautiful as they can make it and to follow their own esthetic. I want them to do it the way they feel it.

DLB

 

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Antiquing instruments is like buying pre-ripped jeans. My cello shows a bit of wear, but only a bit, and it’s honest. But seriously folks,  Don’t these look better completely pure without any antiquing?
I agree that some people like antiquing, and I agree with the posters who suggest that some people are wrong.

363060E6-48B0-4EB8-9B0D-33225F4567E2.jpeg

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1 hour ago, David Burgess said:

That wouldn't be a surprise. Just about every time most people have encountered  a megabuck violin, the easiest feature to remember is that it looks old and rather beat up.

I have seen one of your violas.

It had no antiquing.

It was gorgeous.

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I personally prefer antiqued so that I don't worry about dinging or denting it.  But I prefer new cars to look new.

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1 hour ago, PhilipKT said:

Antiquing instruments is like buying pre-ripped jeans. My cello shows a bit of wear, but only a bit, and it’s honest. But seriously folks,  Don’t these look better completely pure without any antiquing?
I agree that some people like antiquing, and I agree with the posters who suggest that some people are wrong.

363060E6-48B0-4EB8-9B0D-33225F4567E2.jpeg

All three of these cello look antiqued to me,. or is that natural wear?

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49 minutes ago, J.DiLisio said:

All three of these cello look antiqued to me,. or is that natural wear?

Nope. Not antiqued a bit. Just how the light catches the varnish.

Edited by PhilipKT

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I don't see many instruments these days, but I've hardly ever seen an antiqued instrument that looked good.  There's only one that I can remember.  I especially hate when they put dirt under the varnish.  And please, no screwdrivers.

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4 hours ago, Don Noon said:

I personally prefer antiqued so that I don't worry about dinging or denting it.  But I prefer new cars to look new.

The faster I work the more mistakes I make. I am trying to incorporate this into a new look , which is an instrument that looks 300 years old but is in very good condition.

 

 

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