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Help identifying a cello, ? French, 20th C


Brumcello
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1 hour ago, Blank face said:

 

If there are repairs covered with the assumed later varnish it would be interesting to see them, too, because they aren't visible at the former photos; there could/should be some, even very small, residues of an original varnish either there, or in scratches, endgrain areas or the like.

The repairs to the edges are difficult to see even with the naked eye so I don't know if they will show on photographs. There are remnants of old varnish at the edges and where the neck meets the body.  If I can get good images I will post them

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"Looking from the pegbox" means to check if the rib joints are perfectly paralell and perpendicular to the plates, what would be typical for outside mould (though it can be done with inside mould, too, when the work was done very precisely). Also pressing in assymetrical blocks and insert the linings can be done (the "Vuillaume" method), but that's rarely seen at a trade instrument. Also the use of white glue could be consistent with a post war date. At least it confirms that inside mould isn't expected at a Mirecourt instrument.

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13 minutes ago, Blank face said:

Also the use of white glue could be consistent with a post war date. 

There is no white glue. That was a comment based on a badly lit photograph.  All the glue is transparent hard and light brown in colour.

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From the photos it's hard to tell if it's remains of original varnish, or dirt or colour accumulations nor if the added edge pieces are repairs or original additions, and the varnish there looks also different to the rest. Now I'm also wondering if the belly wasn't removed once and reglued, there seems to be a glue line, and wether Martin's theory has some probability. But that are the photos, maybe it's different to see it in person.

The small crack under the fingerboard needs some attention, but you surely have realized this.

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8 minutes ago, Blank face said:

The small crack under the fingerboard needs some attention

Will that continue to open and travel down the front ?

If so, what's the solution ?

Top off and cleats, ? or just or just clean the crack and get glue in there ?

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2 hours ago, Blank face said:

 Now I'm also wondering if the belly wasn't removed once and reglued, there seems to be a glue line, and wether Martin's theory has some probability. But that are the photos, maybe it's different to see it in person.

 

It's not really a theory - we have seen hundreds of these modified or gypsified or "trafiqués" instruments. Sadly even bought a couple in more innocent times ...

As with any kind of instrument identification, it's all to do with how many you have seen and had in your hands. I would say that modified Mirecourt instruments are quite a special subject, and the only people who can help would be a) French experts who are asked (and who refuse) to certify such instruments on a daily basis and b) dealers who hang out on the Rue de Rome or in Vichy.

I have a great deal of respect for Florian and regularly take instruments to him for appraisal, but I think he would be the first to admit that doctored C20 Mirecourt instruments are not his "special subject".

It seems to me that Brumcello (with whom I've had quite a bit of one-to-one communication) is trying to prove to himself and to you that he got a good deal at auction. From my point of view I have no doubt that he paid what the instrument was worth, not more not less, and that if he showed it to Rampal he wouldn't get a certificate.

I would also not be at all surprised if this cello made it appearance at Amati via some hapless soul who bought it from our famous Ebay friends in the south.

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12 hours ago, Delabo said:

Will that continue to open and travel down the front ?

If so, what's the solution ?

Top off and cleats, ? or just or just clean the crack and get glue in there ?

These cracks are similar to saddle cracks, they are caused by a too tight fit of belly mortice and neck heel. In the actual state it could be enough to fill some glue into the crack, given that it's not longer than the upper block. The long lasting solution would be to open the top in the upper block region and cut away a bit of wood to release it. The glue residues in this area are pointing towards that it was opened not long ago, too, and probably after the actual varnish was applied. Whoever did it missed to give this release.

 

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54 minutes ago, martin swan said:

 

It seems to me that Brumcello (with whom I've had quite a bit of one-to-one communication) is trying to prove to himself and to you that he got a good deal at auction. 

Please point to the post I made which suggests this. I dont recall ever thinking it was a paricularly good deal. The sum I paid is immaterial to me.

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8 minutes ago, Strad O Various Jr. said:

How rude! I think Mr Saunders is every bit as much of an expert as Mr Leonhard

I wasn't commenting on Mr Saunders undoubted expertise.  I was explaining my previous comment about the cost of the cello being immaterial. 

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