Popular Post Woodman Posted March 23, 2022 Popular Post Report Share Posted March 23, 2022 As promised within the Use of an Angle & Taper Calculator in everyday woodworking thread, here's the amateur hobbyist play-by-play of restoring an old violin. This old fiddle came to me in its original or so coffin case and promptly fell apart as soon as I removed the chin rest. The first 20-some images chronicle its condition with attention to tool marks. August 14-15, 2018 Gut strings! Keystone-shaped dovetail-cut pegbox repair, likely c.1880s. Wow, lookie that patina! This violin is not a Kloz, not remotely built as a Kloz, certainly sounded nothing like a Kloz, I've reliably been told. Likely an authentic repair marking, this work failed, maybe around 1920; the glue I removed was oddly sticky with a sharp astringent odor. All of these images are used to date and identify the fiddle. It is thought to be mid-1800s, a build of the French Mirecourt region. Cannot fake this crackled spirit varnish with embedded dirt / rosin. August 23, 2018 Spent some time cleaning up the top, meaning glue edges and whatnot. Then reassembled the ribs to the back. Cleats ("jacks" to the Brits) being glued. I shave them flat and scribble a few notes on them which get sanded off. September 11, 2018 By mid-September 2018, a new end block is successfully crafted after eleven tries. Working backward, I glue the block to the heel neck. Most or all violin neck heels are cut squarely, a big tenon, the end block is a big mortise. This joint is dovetailed, so I keep it as-is - cleaned it up and sharpened the edges. Officially my first "neck reset". Wowwie, look at that neck angle! What about the projected height of the strings !?!?! The violin is back together about five weeks after I received it, strung up with used $80 strings. The old end block on display. A new bridge is on the violin. It is 40mm high, a good centimeter higher than specification. Way too high for a practiced violinist, but bringing the fiddle to a bluegrass circle, I note the higher string angle does produce a great tone. Even, dare I say, a fantastic tone. Mo' downward pressure. But it is not sellable at 40mm. 29.5mm - 31.0mm is the range. My projected height is all off. Image sequence was thrown off, but the top is removed, the end block pried off, and the neck reset. My second official neck reset. Thank the saints I am using my own hide glue through all of this. In this image, which I *think* is in correct sequence, one may see a slight difference in neck angle. Hard to tell, but I was off by a little under 2˚ And she's back together a second time. New pegs in newly-contoured peg holes of the modern** 1:30 taper. New fingerboard and nut all pictured here. ** modern since the early 1900s, replacing 1:20 taper or whatever was traditionally used in the shop. New strings this time. $40 D'Addario Helicores. The pegbox repair was undone, cleaned up, and reglued using the same piece of wood. I *may* have used Titebond on this one joint, as it represented something I never ever wanted to come undone again. All the other joints are hide glue; in theory, a violin may be taken apart and repaired indefinitely. Hope you enjoyed the tour. - jim Larry Buskirk, p_toad, aaronc and 9 others 9 3 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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