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Winston-Salem Violins • The work we do

Tonal Adjustments Half of how well any violin sounds is dependent upon it's set up. With a poor set up the finest instrument will be difficult to play and not sound well. Violins, being subject to changes in temperature and humidity, need to be adjusted on an annual basis. For this reason I recommend a tonal adjustment at the beginning of summer and another at the start of winter. This necessary adjustment to the sound post of the violin ensures the proper tension between the top and back thereby allowing for a quick response and a full sound.

Winston-Salem Violins provides expertise in the evaluation and appraisal of all bowed string instruments. Verbal and insurance appraisals are available for a small fee. With the sale of any fine instrument a certificate of authenticity, will be issued upon request

Appraising rare violins It seems not a day goes by that I'm not asked to appraise a violin bearing the label of an old Italian master. Almost without exception violins bearing facsimile labels are presented to me for evaluation. The most common fictitious label is that of Antonius Stradivarius, but labels of Stainer, Amati, Guarneri, and Schweitzer are common as well. Originally these labels were put into these instrument, not to mislead, but for decorative purposes. Unfortunately, with the passing of time these instruments look old and therefore are thought by their owners to be original. In fact there are very few real Stradivari's in the world, almost all of which are carefully catalogued, and literally hundreds of thousands of cheap trade violins which bear labels that, to the untrained eye, look genuine. The same holds true for makers less esteemed as well. It's also unfortunate that in order to determine whether the violin in question is genuine or not a trained eye is neccesary. With that in mind, the next time you see a violin bearing a label that sounds too good to be true be aware that the odds are that your looking at an inexpensive trade violin and the only way you'll know otherwise is to have it appraised by an expert in violin identification.

Restoration Violins suffer many indignities during their centuries of use. In order to make them play at their full capacity it is occasionally neccesary to restore them. What this entails is difficult to describe in words so I've shown some examples of work I've done. The most common problem a violin can have is cracks to the top. These can occur from either an accident or extremes of weather. Below you can see the before and after shots of a violin that was damaged by a blow to the top that resulted in ten cracks along with crushing of the fibers of the spruce at the point of impact.

More on Restoration… Page 2



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