Update: Stainer 1679

After a quiet summer, I think an update on the 2nd Stainer 1679 is due.  Since last update I’ve assembled the corpus and attached the neck.

Stainer

I had planned not to setup the instrument ‘in the white’ but had a change of heart.  So I’ve cleaned up the nut and added a saddle.  As soon as the bridge has been cut I’ll put on some Evah Pirazzi stings and try out the sound.  I’ve been working on some new ground techniques which I’ll be trying out once I”m satisfied no other adjustments need to be made.

Stainer 1679 and Guarneri 1743 Update

An update on progress.  The 2nd Stainer 1679 is nearly complete with the back now glued to the ribs.  Next the top will be attached and the neck mortised into the body.

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Stainer 1679 #2

Its usually at this point that I start looking forward to the next project.  For the next instrument i’ll be following the ‘Il Cannone’ 1743 Violin by Giuseppe ‘del Jesu’ Guarneri.

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My mold and materials for a ‘Il Cannone’ 1743 inspired Violin

The neck, back and ribs are aged European maple, chosen for similar figure patterns to the original.  The belly will be made from Newfoundland black Spruce.  This wood has higher strength than other species, but tends to be smaller and twist as it grows, making it very difficult to source.  As a final touch the nut will be made from Tagua to simulate the ivory nut on the original ‘Il Cannone’.  Known as vegetable ivory, its actually the nut of a tropical palm tree.

My ‘Il Cannone’ will have an outline which is an approximation of the original.  This was a design choice.  I went with a symmetrical outline, whereas the original has large variations.

Cannone Back

Il Cannone back outline variation

Violin Maker Competition Notice – Violin Makers of Arizona Association

2017 Violin and Bow Competition – Tucson Arizona

October 10 – 13, 2017

Do you want to really know how good your violins sound ? Join us, at The VMAAI Violin Competition in Tucson. We sit together and listen to an open competition of our instruments being played by professional players. This lets us hear all the instruments made by all the other makers. It is a unique experience of all the other competitions in the US. Technical workshops are conducted after the daily competitions, and there is plenty of time to talk to other makers about techniques or ideas.

Competition categories:

  • Instruments: Cello, Viola,  Violin-steel strings, Violin-synthetic strings
  • Bows – Workmanship and Playability: Cello, Viola,  Violin

Visit our website,  or facebook, for more information and competition rules.

Please forward / share with other Violin and Bow Makers

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Stainer #1, Update

The first of the two Stainers is complete.  The final varnish color is a deep maroon red.  The strings chosen for the instrument are Pirastro Passion sheep gut wire wound stabilized strings.  The instrument is very easy to play and has a deep tonal color and these strings give it an extra kick in complexity.  I’m still in the process of photographing the one piece pillow maple back, but here’s what the front looks like.

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And if you’rCamera and lights, mid angle.jpge curious about the photography setup, here’s a peak at that too.  Look for an article in the near future on how I put together and use this inexpensive setup.

 

 

Jigs: Bridge Jack/Lift

A bridge lift or bridge jack can be very useful for lifting the stings momentarily for making adjustments to a bridge on an instrument that is already setup.

I was disappointed with the cost of commercially available jacks so I made this one on my own.  Two short pieces of coat hanger wire act as guides on each side.  The lifting screw sits on the head of a filled down screw in the lower portion to prevent it from sinking into the wood.  Make sure the tensioning knob is small enough to pass between the D & A strings when placing the bridge jack next to the bridge, otherwise you would have to remove the screw each time!

Note: obviously a bridge jack is not useful in setting  a sound post.  The setter and inspection mirror are sitting next to the bridge jack because they live in the same box 🙂

Hi Res Photos from Museo del Violino

In reviewing the Museo del Violino website I came across the Google Cultural Institute pages.  There are some fantastic high resolution images of some the artifacts from the Museum in Cremona, including some of the violins.  Check it out here.

Included are the images below:

  • Violin grand (G) mold
  • Contraldo viola (CV) mold
  • Francesco Rugeri “Per” violin  1675 – front
  • Nicolò Amati 1684 “Hammerle” violin – front
  • Antonio Stradivari 1679 “Hellier” violin – front
  • Giuseppe Guarneri filius Andreae 1689 “Quarestani” violin – front
  • Antonio Stradivari 1727c. “Vesuvio” violin – front
  • Andrea Amati 1566c. “Carlo IX” violin – front
  • Bartolomeo Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesù 1734 “Stauffer” violin – front
  • Antonio Stradivari 1679 “Sabionari” guitar – front
  • Girolamo Amati 1615 viola – front
  • Antonio Stradivari 1700 “Stauffer” cello – front
  • Antonio Stradivari 1669 “Clisbee” violin – front
  • Antonio Stradivari 1715 “Cremonese” violin – front

You can also virtually tour through the Museum.