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Preemptive Cello edge protection


arglebargle
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Cello makers!

Does anybody do anything to protect the edges of your newly made instruments? As a cellist, I can testify to the bad habit of setting the instrument on its side on the floor of wherever you're playing. Not a big deal on carpets, not so great on wood or hard floors. I have started putting a couple of layers of spirit varnish over the last coat on the edges just to offer a little more protection, but I wonder if there is something to do to the raw wood, or a different method to protect the edges. I am specifically talking about the edges that rest on the floor, not necessarily all of the edges around the instrument.

Any suggestions, apart from discouraging players from setting the instruments on their sides?

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1 minute ago, arglebargle said:

Put it in the case? Get a stand? Obviously not during a performance, but simply walking it back stage to the case. As I said, I almost always rest it on its side. A bad habit, but habits of convenience often are.

Not easy in an orchestra. If all the cellists are taking their instruments back to the cases after the pre performance run through, then again at the interval there is a risk of damage by doing this. On a wood floor the edges are reasonably safe if the instrument is rolled into place rather than slid along the floor.

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6 minutes ago, Brumcello said:

Not easy in an orchestra. If all the cellists are taking their instruments back to the cases after the pre performance run through, then again at the interval there is a risk of damage by doing this. On a wood floor the edges are reasonably safe if the instrument is rolled into place rather than slid along the floor.

Well sure.

I don't agree about the wood floor though. No matter how careful you are, at some point the edge will be damaged. Maybe only slightly, but damaged all the same. 

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Yeah, I agree, it's not easy to 'put away' instruments during either rehearsal or intermission during a performance.

Pity the poor bassoon.

At least you CAN lay a cello on it's side and assume it will be relatively safe.

Bassoons, even on a stand, are not secure.  Taking stands with you is a PITA so no one does it.  So they will either lay a bassoon on the floor *OMG*, or over two chairs or...someone is designated the bassoon holder.

Being the bassoon holder is fine for short periods (like, as if someone has to run to go potty), but not so good when you miss an entire intermission or break because partner has disappeared...

***BTW...some cellists do bring a towel for the cello to rest on.  You could recommend that they get in the habit of doing that all the time.  It's easy enough to tuck away a towel while playing.

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Were one to compile a statistic of what & how things get broken, I would be far more keen to discourage cellists from leaving the cello with the scroll resting on their chair, or in a case left standing upright, just waiting for some viola player (or Bassoonist) to brush past and knock it over

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26 minutes ago, Brumcello said:

Not easy in an orchestra. If all the cellists are taking their instruments back to the cases after the pre performance run through, then again at the interval there is a risk of damage by doing this.

It's a lot safer than having someone kick it or trip over it on the floor.

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My cello is in my hand, or in my case.

never. Never. Leave your cello on the floor or leaning on the chair or anything. Ever. Eventually, as happened to me, your stand partner will step on your cello and do several hundred dollars worth of damage. Your stand partner will be desperately apologetic will happily pay for the damage, which will be very well done, and then you will learn your lesson. It’s much better to learn the lesson from somebody else. Your cello is in your hand or in your case, and if that means that your break is three minutes shorter so be it.

Also, carpet is actually more dangerous than wood,Because when you pick your cello up, you rarely pick it up 100% vertically, rather you slide it back a quarter of an inch while you pick it up, and tiny little irregularities in the wood can catch in the fabric of the carpet and rip off splinters, which has ALSO happened to me.

I was incredibly neglectful of my earlier cellos, but not this one.

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58 minutes ago, Rue said:

Yeah, I agree, it's not easy to 'put away' instruments during either rehearsal or intermission during a performance.

Pity the poor bassoon.

At least you CAN lay a cello on it's side and assume it will be relatively safe.

Bassoons, even on a stand, are not secure.  Taking stands with you is a PITA so no one does it.  So they will either lay a bassoon on the floor *OMG*, or over two chairs or...someone is designated the bassoon holder.

Being the bassoon holder is fine for short periods (like, as if someone has to run to go potty), but not so good when you miss an entire intermission or break because partner has disappeared...

***BTW...some cellists do bring a towel for the cello to rest on.  You could recommend that they get in the habit of doing that all the time.  It's easy enough to tuck away a towel while playing.

The bassoons are insulated by their location in the orchestra, the bassoon has Flute on one side clarinet and oboe on the other, and during intermission nobody goes into the wind section because the chairs are so close together and it’s so awkward to do so, so yes, the bassoons get to leave their instrument on their chair, the double basses, too. Most have leather or wooden bumpers attached to the ribs for protection, nobody wanders through the bass section anyway, But those who do find that the instruments are widely enough space to that we can get through them with out difficulty

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56 minutes ago, jacobsaunders said:

... I would be far more keen to discourage cellists from leaving the cello with the scroll resting on their chair, or in a case left standing upright, just waiting for some .... (or Bassoonist) to brush past and knock it over

Oh!  That was Doug...

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8 minutes ago, PhilipKT said:

The bassoons are insulated by their location in the orchestra, the bassoon has Flute on one side clarinet and oboe on the other, and during intermission nobody goes into the wind section because the chairs are so close together and it’s so awkward to do so, so yes, the bassoons get to leave their instrument on their chair, ...

Yes!  And that's why it's such a danger.  

Those clarinet players...always in such a rush to get to and from their inaccessible chairs...:lol::ph34r:

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7 minutes ago, Rue said:

Yes!  And that's why it's such a danger.  

Those clarinet players...always in such a rush to get to and from their inaccessible chairs...:lol::ph34r:

On the other hand, the bassoonists, being double reeds, usually have to spend the entire interval with cane and knife, shaping and reshaping.

So pleasing to play an instrument that doesn’t have to be remanufactured on a weekly basis.

:-)

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15 minutes ago, PhilipKT said:

On the other hand, the bassoonists, being double reeds, usually have to spend the entire interval with cane and knife, shaping and reshaping.

One needs to be very careful of those people. Once as a young “journeyman” vm in Munich, a customer came into the workshop with his oboe-playing girlfriend. She bitched on for ages about how difficult it was to scrape reeds. In an attempt to get her to shut up, I told her she should show me her knife. I thought blimey, and felt sorry for her, and sharpened her knife. The next Monday, there were queues of people with ridiculous knives.

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I remember, in the old days, that there were men that used to come around, door-door, to sharpen knives for people.

My Austrian! step-grandfather liked to sharpen knives, so we never paid one of the door-door guys, but I used to watch him all the time.  My Dad also sharpened a couple of the main kitchen knives.  Knife-sharpening was just a part of the routine. I'm not particularly good/dedicated at it, but I do sharpen certain of my kitchen knives, wood carving knives, hoof-knives and various garden shears.  You also don't have to do it 'the correct way' to get a sharp edge.  I wonder how much that played a role in discouraging people from trying?

But, honestly, most of the kitchen knives I use rarely need sharpening, so it's really not a big deal.  So I can see why people never think of, or learn how to, sharpen.  The sad thing is that people will toss a dull knife rather than spend a few minutes sharpening it.  So much waste.

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2 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

One needs to be very careful of those people. Once as a young “journeyman” vm in Munich, a customer came into the workshop with his oboe-playing girlfriend. She bitched on for ages about how difficult it was to scrape reeds. In an attempt to get her to shut up, I told her she should show me her knife. I thought blimey, and felt sorry for her, and sharpened her knife. The next Monday, there were queues of people with ridiculous knives.

That’s a great story, and, I have to say, it’s easy to love a girl who carries a bunch of knives around with her all the time.

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26 minutes ago, arglebargle said:

Anyway, anyone have any thoughts on the original question?

I did suggest that players can always put the cello on a towel (or soft cloth of some kind) while at rehearsals/in concert during breaks.

...you also could also just bubble wrap the cello so that nothing ever happens to it...:ph34r:

...or you can accept that some wear is inevitable and adds to the patina/character of the instrument.  For example, I don't think the Davidoff cello looks all that bad after 309 years of wear and tear...

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I am not in any way saying this is a good idea! I have seen double basses with four small ebony blocks on the high points of the ribs to act as feet when they are on there side. The situation with ‘cellos left on stage is always fraught with disaster!

DLB

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52 minutes ago, Dwight Brown said:

I am not in any way saying this is a good idea! I have seen double basses with four small ebony blocks on the high points of the ribs to act as feet when they are on there side. The situation with ‘cellos left on stage is always fraught with disaster!

DLB

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Metafranc Felt Gliders with screw - Effective Protection for Your Furniture & Chairs / Furniture Glider Set for Sensitive Floors / Chair Glides / Floor Gliders, 644266 : Amazon.de: DIY & Tools

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2 hours ago, arglebargle said:

Anyway, anyone have any thoughts on the original question?

What about coating the edges at the wide points of the bouts with a thick coat of Deft or some other sacrificial substance on top of the varnish?  Instruct the player to come back to have it renewed when it has worn down.

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