John Craft was a local maker, local being Nampa, Idaho. This instrument came in for a little repair and set-up work. Here's his 'label' seen through the f-hole.
In spite of some of their eccentricities, violins made back in out-of-the-way places before much information was readily available interest me. I never met John Craft, but I do hear stories of him.
The front of the instrument, showing the general outline. Black-white-black purfling, somewhat pinched corners.
The back was really astounding. A very dynamic finish, it changed readily with the view angle. Here are two shots at different light angles.
The pegbox was somewhat oversized, larger and bulkier than normal. Poorly fit pegs shown here were replaced and the nut was cleaned up. It was too high and had gobs of glue extending out all sides. I don't know whether this was the original set-up or if it had been redone at some time.
Curves of the scroll are a bit clunky. Considering that in 1975 Nampa he probably didn't have much to model it on -- no Internet, no Strad magazine posters -- you do what you do.
The fluting was quite shallow, particularly on the back, with the center ridge nearly disappearing at the heel of the pegbox.
The top seam appeared somewhat open from the outside, though solid. Looking in through the endpin, we could see many diamond-shaped cleats.