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fiddlewallop

Purfling on King of Spain Strad

13 posts in this topic

I was wondering if anyone knows how the purfling on the King of Spain Strads was made?

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/stradivarius-photo-04

 

http://blog.feinviolins.com/2012/05/strad-disaster-spanish-cello-damaged.html

Not sure how the circles and diamonds were suspended within the wood.

I'm not sure how Strad did it but the Chinese do it regularly on their copies of the Hellier

 

www.ebay.com/itm/Beautiful-Hellier-Strad-Style-4-4-Violin-Open-Clear-Tone-Excellent-Workshop-Made-/140914321301?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item20cf25e795

 

Glenn

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I was wondering if anyone knows how the purfling on the King of Spain Strads was made?

Not sure how the circles and diamonds were suspended within the wood.

The two rows of purfling, black-white-black are inlaid first. Then the spruce in between the two rows is removed. The round dots are from a round cylinder of ivory or bone turned on a lathe and then nipped off one by one so the the cylinder stands just proud of the purfling when set in the channel. The diameter of the dot is a snug but not tight fit against the purfling walls. The lozenges (parallelogram) can easily be made with a strip of ivory as wide as two parallel surfaces of the finished lozenge. Make a little wooden jig with a guide for the strip and an angle set (like a mitre-box for a woodworker) so that you can cut the lozenges off one at a time with a fine jewellers back-saw. If you make your saw guide with a stop for the exact cutting position it goes faster.

 

The bits are located and glued in place one by one at the bottom of the channel and the remaining space is filled with a black mastic of ebony and hide glue. Once the glue is dry the mastic and dots and lozenges are smoothed down together with a fine riffler file etc. etc.

 

Bruce

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How is it done on the cheap Chinese copies?  For decorated clothing woven ribbons are used instead of embroidery.  Maybe the Chinese machine-make thin veneers that superficially look like inlaid decorations. 

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Thanks Bruce! That makes me appreciate that type of purfling a lot more. When I saw the King of Spain violin for the first time, I was surprised that AS would have made purfling like that. Now I understand the challenge.

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'' How is it done on the cheap Chinese copies?  ''

Cheap labour, and modern printing techniques.

 

No, I have one of these Chinese Helliers and it is beautiful. The side and scroll decoration is actually carved and filled. Instead of bone for the inlays it has mother of pearl. The one piece maple back is so beautifully flamed it looks like a Strad. Plus the instrument sounds great at least to my untrained ears. I've had this instrument 7 years and it is a work of art regardless of where it was made. I probably paid about $350 for it and there is no doubt it is a fine instrument full of quality. There is nothing printed on this fiddle.

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'' probably paid about $350 for it ''

You think it's a fair price for a handmade instrument ?
Cheap labour will not help anyone.

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'' probably paid about $350 for it ''

You think it's a fair price for a handmade instrument ?

Cheap labour will not help anyone.

I thought it was a bargain actually, I don't say that to be offensive but if you could buy a Van Gogh for $400 would you not? I've always loved the detail of the Hellier so when I found this facsimile I purchased it. I'm sure most homes have Chinese made items in them. I also have an American fiddle made in 1935 and 2 German Hofners.

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