From Tom Eccstein
Posted June 21, 2004 at 03:06 AM
IMHO, I don't suppose there would be any effect on the overall sound of your instrument if you decide to cover up small nicks and scratches. However, the same can't be said of a full overhaul.
If you're a handyman kind of guy, you could probably redo the entire finish yourself but you would really need to get expert advice from a veteran luthier. Again, IMHO, you might as well have the luthier do the whole job for you and save yourself a lot of trouble if not a lot of money. :-)
If it turns out to be a bad violin, then take all finish off and then paint it a metallic color, add a piezo pick up on it (Barcus Berry or Fishman) and amplify the darn thing. You'll be rockin' and rollin' in no time.
"As long as you're okay with taking your skin off and putting on a new skin, go right ahead."
Tom, I wouldn't recommend that you refinish your violin on your own. You say that it is a "horrible" violin. If you're convinced of that, paint it any way you want and use it as a decoration. If you're not really sure, take it to a good luthier, let him check the setup and the varnish and get an estimate.
It is almost unbelievable what a correct setup/overhaul by a qualified craftsman can do. Of course, that will not come cheap.
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