Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Violin Construction



I have always been fascinated by the violin although if I place one under my chin and take a bow to it, the sound can best be described as "a symphony for cat & chainsaw"! My fascination starts with the artisans that defined and refined it's dimensions and structure. Names from Cremona Italy such as Stratavari, Amati and Guarneri inspire today's builders with their creations, both beautiful and functional throughout the ages. France, England and The Netherlands also contributed with their own styles and exquisite builders.


My wife is the genealogist in the family however my interest in the violin became elevated when I discovered that my great grandfather made violins in the old country of Latvia. Naturally I had to try my hand at it.

A few photos are posted below, far to few for a true photo essay, however, for the time being they are all that I can offer.

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"Shooting Board" with Jointer Plane used to true up Maple Plates for Back


Variety of Wood Stock used in Violin Construction


Maple clamped for alternate truing of gluing surfaces


Plates glued and clamped in jig
(Wax Paper keeps glue from seeping)


Glued up Belly & Back with ribs, neck block and mold for assembly


Glued up Maple Back & Engleman Spruce Belly marked for cutting


View of Several molds - top one with corner blocks & ribs attached


Plate clamped to workbench for initial surface planing


Sawn out plates with some contouring


Planing of Surface of Plate


Further Planing & Contouring with Finger planes


(As Above)


WorkBox: Wood shavings support wooden plate as contoured with finger planes


Partially assembled body with Hot Hide Glue Pot in background


Assembled Back with f-holes cut into belly and purfling insertion


Purfling (Decorative & Strenghening Strip) inserted in channel at edge of violin plates


Back, Sides and Belly ready for assembly


Back and sides assembled with carved neck attached


Checking Ebony Fingerboard angle against neck and body


Belly glued and clamped to body


Assembled Violin "In White"


Assembled Violin


Various carved Backs and Bellies of Violins


Finished Stained and Varnished Violin


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