You might not realize this, but all musical instruments occasionally need maintenance. Brass instruments may need a new spring in the valves, pianos might need new felt on the hammers, or a woodwind may need new cork on the stops covering the holes. For the string instruments probably the most frequent maintenance is rehairing of the bow. The horsehair actually wears out from use and an unused bow, kept in its case may succumb to an infection of bow bugs that break the hairs off. Part ...
It stands to reason that if I need bridge jigs for a cello, [link 1] [link 2] I’ll need bridge jigs for a violin as well. I made these out of some scrap wood. The bridge fitting jig (on the right above) was made from oak. The string jack/lifter is from poplar. I made the blank for it at the time I made the blank for the cello string lifter. Brass hardware gives a tiny touch of class to jigs which are very utilitarian. I finished the string lifter with golden oak stain and th...
won’t make this a regular thing, but I wanted to post this first one. This is a 3/4 size violin with a beak in the tuning peg box. The break was clean and simple to fix with glue. Epoxy was used because the break line went Right through a tuning peg hole. One clamp held everything perfectly in place while the glue cured. Just reiterating that these are student rental instruments. The idea is o keep them playable. In this case the repair is nearly invisible, but this will not al...
See more photos on my project page [link] A bow vise is used to hold a violin bow while replacing the horse hair that vibrates the strings. I started by looking up such a thing and finding photos of (mostly) the commercially available models. Then I printed out a few screen shots for the details. I didn’t absolutely duplicate the commercial model, but I got something that will work. The wood is oak throughout. A few bibs and bobs of the hardware will be replaced with brass once I ge...
A Special Guitar Those of you who have read my past blog entries know that my family heritage and the tradition of woodworking passed down to me by my ancestors are very important to me. Some of my relatives came from the great tool making city of Sheffield, England, and many of those who found their way to America worked as carpenters, operated sawmills, or were fine craftsmen. My father, Seth Milton Summerfield, Jr., was not only the most recent of this line of woodworkers, but he was al...
Took me a little while to do the steel work on the jig. Have to make the somewhat C-clamp with push block. Cutting threaded bars and looking for the nuts. Shaping the push blocks (made from ebony) become tiresome after making 16 pieces. These are made from scraps. Here are some self explanatory photos… I give notes on some important aspects and ideas that you can grab suited for your project and availability of materials: Notes: 1) The piece that was bended was narra ripped by ...
Here is the progress of the violin restoration as the continuation of this blog. In the process, the need for making the ribs of this violin is a must. After several try of bending the wood, there is no way but to make a jig that will hold the steamed wood while it is hot. So here are some of the photos: I made this using a two boards cut into shape of 3/4 inch plywood and laminated together. That was too thick. I realized later that the correct thickness is just one and 1/4 inch so ...
My father being an all-around musician, bought 3 violins for us. Of the 3, mine was totally destroyed, My brother’s was already restored (I have already done it.) but the last one which was my father’s is now in my possession. This is so much special as this was loved by my father and been played much older than me. The only problem that I have seen is the glue which had given up due to time. Here is the situation after I had disassembled it. Regret that I was not ab...
I have have all the ribs formed, and glued onto the blocks. Wife’s old curling iron (shhh) makes a fine bending iron. The linings were more difficult than I anticipated. I ended up using a small branch from a goofy tree in my backyard. I think it’s some sort of cultivated form of birch, but it has pendulous branches like a willow. Whatever it is it worked alright. Still not thrilled with the how they came out so might take them out and try again. Practice makes,,,,,wel...
With some great advice from some LJ members I cooked up some Knox gelatin glue to put the back together. I mixed up one packet of gelatine with some water in a little glass jar and stuck that jar in the crock pot with a few inches of water in the bottom. Then I brushed in onto the to the two halves and rubbed them against each other while sitting on a flat surface, in this case the bed of my jointer. (My bench isn’t very flat, and I don’t think the glue will stick to the ...
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