Sap pockets in violin wood – no yolk

Sap pockets in violin wood – no yolk

Good luck, bad luck. Sap pockets in violin tops and how to fix them. This morning for breakfast I got a double yolked egg which is supposed to be rare and lucky,  an hour later I was carving into an apparently perfect piece of spruce for a  a cello top when I...
Cello Rib Doubling with a Vacuum Bag

Cello Rib Doubling with a Vacuum Bag

We have a cello in the shop with four very thin and multiply cracked ribs, the traditional fix is to repair the cracks and then  “double” the rib by laminating a second layer of  new wood to the inside of the original Structural and tonal considerations...
Reinforcing a cello rib with silk

Reinforcing a cello rib with silk

This was a quick test to look at the effectiveness of silk as a rib reinforcement rather than a more commonly used wood cleat. I used polyester in this test but later I did some simple tests and found that natural silk sticks better and doesn’t skid around and...
Violin varnish salvage and repair

Violin varnish salvage and repair

Varnish repair can be a challenge but with some experience it becomes less daunting, you need an awareness of what it is that “gives away” a varnish retouch job. Hue and tone are usually the first considerations but matching surface texture can be...
Beauty in violin repairs

Beauty in violin repairs

This post featured in Strings Magazine, May 2015 Opening up an old instrument you never know what you will find; players may know that their instrument has a lot of old cracks but they usually have little idea of what it looks like on the inside. While for a collector...
Violin corner block replacement

Violin corner block replacement

I’ve come across a couple of violins like this Storioni where the corner blocks had apparently been replaced. Signs of this are: none of the linings have been morticed into the blocks, and the linings ends have been cut on a line parallel with the line...