No chin rest(but with shoulder rest)

October 9, 2016 at 08:49 PM · Hello, since my viola arrived with some deficiencies, one of the deficiencies I am yet to address is the chinrest.

I have been playing the viola with a shoulder rest, but without a chinrest. It is in fact just a perfect set-up for the time being with the viola.

I may end up adopting this over to my violin also, but there are few things that concern me, and I would like some opinions on.

1. I leave sweat stain, and man-grease on the top.

2. The viola is less than a year old, my violin is over 5 decades old. Not to mention that the violin probably has MUCH MUCH finer top and less durable possibly.

3. The violin has underwent some major surgeries, the whole bottom came off at some point, the soundpost has been patched, and neck seems to have been reset, with the joints around the neck clearly repaired and filled with non-original wood.

4. I am starting to feel lately that my current chinrest isn't up to the task. It's restricting me in some sense, and I am constantly adjusting myself while performing(There's this "barrier" from going from bass strings to treble strings, and another "barrier" to go from 3rd to 5th position, it's almost as if there are quadrant division to my playing position).

5. On another words, I am afraid of even experimenting with no chinerest on my violin.

Any suggestions if/how I should approach with taking the chinrest off of my violin?

Replies (7)

October 9, 2016 at 08:54 PM · Just use a cloth or chamois leather on the fiddle to keep it from being spoilt - or hold the instrument up and don't put the chin on at all. In other words, keep your chin up!!

October 9, 2016 at 08:58 PM · On the issue of sweat you could try a cloth/one of those gel pads over your violin. Same as what is put on top of chinrests for this reason

October 9, 2016 at 10:40 PM · You can also look at it as the process of antiquing your viola in a natural way. When you remove the vanish on the left part, move on the right. Then re-varnish it and sell as antique Chinese viola!

October 10, 2016 at 12:25 AM · Rocky, the problem is applying this to my violin playing. I don't care much for my viola, but my violin. I know I won't be able to afford another one of these in about a decade at this rate.

I think I am more worried about stress/strain damage from pressing down on the top with my chin, rather than the varnish coming off from contact with my skin.

October 10, 2016 at 02:49 AM · If you will be pushing down, I would take that as a sign that you should use a chinrest. Don't you think?

October 10, 2016 at 03:26 AM · Handkerchief a day keeps problem away.

October 10, 2016 at 04:07 AM · Craig, what happens most of the time is that my ear essentially gets as close to bass side f hole as possible. At high positions, I am looking at the bridge to make sure I am bowing on the right spot(which I hope to grow out of someday). So, essentially I will be pressing down on the top, no questions about that. I guess, I'll look for another chinrest for the violin then?

Rocky, I actually had few leather/silk pads tailored for violin playing, for the short time I played without shoulder rest. I stopped using it because it just adds one more thing that can slip in between me and the instrument, and I don't like dropping things.


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