Sunday, February 19, 2012

1756 Stradiuarius!

This is one of three fiddles I bought Friday, three of 10 the fellow brought in. It is not a great fiddle, not in great shape, but maybe will turn into something playable. If I can get two of them to work out, I might come out on it.

The seller had done enough research to know that Antonio was dead for nearly 20 years by 1756, so suspected that this may have been built by one of his sons. Of course, it wasn't -- being a factory fiddle ca. 1900.

Note the numerous nut grooves, as well as the guitar strings for the G and D -- no sense wasting a good used guitar string! Obviously this nut will have to be replaced, and we might be able to get the e-string groove to fit a little better. :-)

Homemade bridge with generous string spacing.

Copper wire tail-loop holding...

... an ornate tailpiece.

Mechanical tuners.

One often sees these Roman numerals on bows, to keep the stick and frog together. Less common on fiddles, though I have seen them under fingerboards. This one is hidden by the tailpiece when the instrument is strung up. Note the wire grooves in the saddle.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Crac! French-Canadian Norman Rockwell

Crac is a wonderful animated short, made in 1981 by Frederic Back. You can see it here.

There are the obvious woodworking, fiddling, and dancing connections for me and, I suspect, readers of this blog. It also deals with the passage of time, the flow of life, and aging. Grab a mug of your favorite hot beverage and sit back for 15 minutes. I hope you'll enjoy it.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The back and scroll of "sweeping up."

Here's the back of the "1870 Albani Guarnerius", which I think is really nice. It is a little more amber-colored in real life than it is on my computer screen (here), but the flame is lively, something hard to see in a still photo.

Here's the scroll of the "1870 Albani Guarnerius", which shows fine blacking on the chamfer and charming character throughout. The peg-holes have been roughly treated before, and there is a crack off the e-peg-hole. Bushings to be fit! The fingerboard was also glued on off-set, so will have to be reglued or replaced.