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3 hours ago, Michael_Molnar said:

Not meaning to throw fuel on any fires, but I too have suggested that The Messiah is a shop reject. Not because it has a crack or some other mechanical issue, but that it’s colored varnish is not in the red color style of its siblings. Compared to its contemporary violins it stands out as being more orange than red.

The more a violin has been excessively polished, the redder it appears. Surface texture breaks up the light more into what is perceived as whites and yellows.

Been dinkin' with this stuff for about 50 years.

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18 hours ago, Bill Merkel said:

Most conspiracy theories eventually turn out to be true, it seems to me.

Well, in the case of JFK, the conspiracy theories along with FOIA requests have forced the release of previously classified documents that prove the assassination was a conspiracy.  But this is a violin forum so I guess conspiracy theories about violins could never be true.  God forbid!

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^Not a major interest of mine, but I think I remember the House Committee came to that official conclusion a long time ago.

12 hours ago, Ratcliffiddles said:

There are currently 11 Strads from the 1719/1722 period whose bellies are made from the same tree as the Lady Blunt, and also a c.1719 PG.Rogeri and a 1724 Guarneri del Gesù.  Of course, all made by Vuillaume:D

It would be great if the three had lived in opposite ends of Italy :)

 

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3 hours ago, David Burgess said:

The more a violin has been excessively polished, the redder it appears. Surface texture breaks up the light more into what is perceived as whites and yellows.

Been dinkin' with this stuff for about 50 years.

Thank you!  I always wondered about that too.

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17 hours ago, David Burgess said:

The more a violin has been excessively polished, the redder it appears. Surface texture breaks up the light more into what is perceived as whites and yellows.

Been dinkin' with this stuff for about 50 years.

Polished with what exactly? Red Shellac?

This doesn't apply to the Betts and the Lady Blunt though does it?

The Messiah is an orangey red is it not? Always has been, has it not?

It just turned out that way did it not? 

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When we see photos of the Kochanski del Gesu the varnish appears red or even something darker.

The varnish viewed in person is quite orange. The fine crackle on a lightly polished surface from long ago collects environmental dirt in a most delightful way. This is one of the more difficult aspects to replicate when antiquing.

--Chris Pedersen 

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15 hours ago, Bill Merkel said:

^Not a major interest of mine, but I think I remember the House Committee came to that official conclusion a long time ago.

It would be great if the three had lived in opposite ends of Italy :)

 

I do actually have some same-tree-matches at opposite end of Italy, so far not with Strads, but Del Gesu, Sanctus Serafin, Nicola Gagliano, Tecchler and e few others, therefore very probably same tonewood dealer

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1 hour ago, Ratcliffiddles said:

I do actually have some same-tree-matches at opposite end of Italy, so far not with Strads, but Del Gesu, Sanctus Serafin, Nicola Gagliano, Tecchler and e few others, therefore very probably same tonewood dealer

Seems they guy traveled a bit. Interesting.

The Messiah is interesting.  So much about it confirms it as an actually Strad.  Yet, it stills seems to stand out as somehow different.

I tend to think it is Strad, but with some sort of twist to the story.  It seems most of all as if the final steps of finishing work are a bit different. 

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4 hours ago, sospiri said:

Polished with what exactly? Red Shellac?

This doesn't apply to the Betts and the Lady Blunt though does it?

The Messiah is an orangey red is it not? Always has been, has it not?

It just turned out that way did it not? 

The over-polish wouldn't need to have color.

Here's an experiment for you: If you have a dark-colored car, (or a neighbor you don't like has one :lol:),  sand an area with 400 grit sandpaper. Afterward, that area will appear to be whiter and lighter, and have less depth, compared to the surrounding areas.

When someone wants to give the paint on their expensive new car more depth, color intensity and bling, they do a process called "paint correction", which basically consists of intensive smoothing of the surface. The process is not the same as "French polishing", but the outcomes are similar, as are the reasons they are similar.

More akin to "french polishing" are added surface coatings on cars.  In the past, these were called waxes, because that's what they were. More recently, they are called "ceramic coatings", because they are much more durable than wax, and often claim to contain a ceramic component.

 

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1 hour ago, David Burgess said:

The over-polish wouldn't need to have color.

Here's an experiment for you: If you have a dark-colored car, (or a neighbor you don't like has one :lol:),  sand an area with 400 grit sandpaper. Afterward, that area will appear to be whiter and lighter, and have less depth, compared to the surrounding areas.

When someone wants to give the paint on their expensive new car more depth, color intensity and bling, they do a process called "paint correction", which basically consists of intensive smoothing of the surface. The process is not the same as "French polishing", but the outcomes are similar, as are the reasons they are similar.

More akin to "french polishing" are added surface coatings on cars.  In the past, these were called waxes, because that's what they were. More recently, they are called "ceramic coatings", because they are much more durable than wax, and often claim to contain a ceramic component.

 

What has this got to do with violins?

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26 minutes ago, sospiri said:

What has this got to do with violins?

A lot, actually. It gives examples of how surface smoothness affects the perception of both color and depth. Now go try the experiment I suggested, and see see for yourself. :P

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6 minutes ago, David Burgess said:

A lot, actually. It gives examples of how surface smoothness affects the perception of both color and depth. Now go try the experiment I suggested. :P

No. I spend enough time investigating the effects of polishing on violins. If I could increase the apparent redness of an orangey/ red I would have discovered a way by now.

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10 hours ago, martin swan said:

Sospiri, you're such a scream ...

Umm yeah, thanks Martin, but this isn't a joke.

If you or David or anyone wants to suggest an actual polishing technique that alters the refractive index of the finish such that an orangey red turns to red in most daylight conditions, then I'm all ears.

But the last part of that question is the tough part.

Because a lot of what you perceive as colour depends on the light conditions. Of course you knew that already, I'm just reminding you to answer the question in a way that can be practical.

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2 hours ago, sospiri said:

If you or David or anyone wants to suggest an actual polishing technique that alters the refractive index of the finish such that an orangey red turns to red in most daylight conditions, then I'm all ears.

Most varnishes will eventually develop some porosity, (even if they didn't start out that way), which incorporates air voids. Applying almost anything with a refractive index close to that of the varnish can fill these voids, rendering the varnish more transparent and more intense in color, whether it be Hill polish or Lemon Pledge. French polishing can fill some of these voids too.

But I wouldn't recommend modifying the varnish on the Messiah Strad this way, even if some people thought that it would improve the appearance.

An extreme example of how this porosity alters the color perception is a "water ring" on a piece of furniture. All the color in the varnish and the wood underneath is still there, but is occluded by the multiple changes in the refractive index, making the color look much more pale, even white..

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