December 17, 2010 at 6:26 PM
As many of you might know, a precious 1696 Stradivari worth 1.4 million Euros was recently stolen from a sandwich bar in London, quite possibly the most costly snack stop of all time. At the time of this writing, it has not yet been recovered.
Cheers and Happy Holidays!
Have you seen "Study in Pink", the BBC's marvelous new adaptation of Sherlock Holmes set in 2010?
A victim plants a mobile phone in her murderer's car, and Holmes is able to trace the whereabouts of the murderer after he deduces the victim's password.
A clever solution!
If these become commonly used, then thieves will probably carry an extra violin case with them, switch the cases and ditch the one with the tracker device in it.
Perhaps. Until then...
Dmitri - maybe you could design a case which has the equivalent of the phone you describe built-in and "hidden" into the construction, all that would be visible to naked eye would be a tiny socket so the user could recharge it every week or so with a standard recharger, perhaps an unlabelled LED "low charge" light indicator inside one of the compartments to remind them to do so...
Sure, it would cost a bit - but if I was the owner of that stolen Strad, or insurance company - the outlay of maybe a few thousand would currently appear a more than worthwhile investment. Of course the other benefit is that even if the violin does get removed from the case before it is tracked down, there might be forensic detail left behind which can be lifted when the case is found.
Oh and of course, case manufacturers wouldn't actually mention this stuff in detail on their website, just something discreet like "Tracking security available for £xxxx extra"
Thanks Rosalind - actually, I have already come up with a solution, I just didn't want to blare it out on this site because I don't think it's good taste on my part.
Simply stated, I will be offering some case models with a hidden compartment where one can stash a cellphone. Any cellphone. Especially here in Europe, people buy new ones all the time, meaning that their drawers are full of old ones. All those people who now have iPhones certainly have an oldPhone somewhere. I personally have two brand-new Nokias that I've never used, because they came with a telecommunications package deal my wife signed up for. Perfect candidates for the violin case!
That way the cost of this kind of protection would be just that of paying for the hidden compartment option, and eventually a new SIM card, no need to spend thousands! I like to keep it simple.
That's cool Dmitri!!
I can see the newspaper story already: "Prize winning young violinist with borrowed Strad forgot to recharge secret tracker phone in case..."
Maybe musicians simply shouldn't be allowed outside without supervision!?
P.S. I LOVE my case!
A bigger robbery is the way instrument prices have spiralled so high for whatever reason. Know what I mean? Say no more.
That's a great idea. Too bad it wouldn't work in Kenya! I had my violin stolen (and recovered, after a long, harrowing, exciting story I won't tell here) but I can tell you the first thing those thieves did was clean out the case. They took out over $100 worth of music and burned it! Thankfully they were not musicians and didn't know what the violin was (they thought it was a guitar for a baby). They left the rosin, shoulder rest and humidifier but took everything else. If I had a cell phone hidden in there they would have found it and that would have been the first thing they would have sold! The police aren't very handy here, either, so unless you know someone who works for the phone networks and is willing to risk their job to do a little illegal phone tracking, you would be out of luck!
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