How to tell the difference between a plastic tailpiece and a wooden one? (chinrest as well!)
I recently got a violin and even though the description said ebony tailpiece and chinrest, I feel like they're both plastic. Is there a way to tell how plastic should feel and how wood should feel. The fingerboard is definitely ebony and I get a feel of rosewood from the frog but why do the tailpiece and chinrest feel like they're made from neither material?
Post photos, Ms. !
You might be able to tell by the texture or the look. As a beginner, I wouldn't worry so much.
Both chinrest and tailpiece are replaceable; chinrest - easily, tailpiece - you have to know what your are doing! But unless they have negative effects on your sound they are not something to worry about. Even a non-ebony fingerboard will not be a problem in early years. I recall having at least one plastic chinrest during my early years (~1940s) probably before most people knew what plastic was. And there were some quite credible plastic tailpieces in use (even professionally) in recent years; Akusticus is the one that comes to mind
You can sometimes tap them and they will feel very light and click like plastic. Ebony should feel like it vibrates more/better and it makes a better sound. It shouldn't matter to the sound of the violin more than barely noticeable.
Plastic chin rests are still common today e.g Wittoer.
Honestly, even as a beginner my violin resonates beautifully and the sound is better than most student grade violin. (i have a hofner) the chinrest doesn't click but the tail piece does. But I guess I shouldn't worry because it doesn't make the sound terrible. It all depends on how I now and how nervously or relaxingly I hold my violin. So I guess I shouldn't even if it is plastic. I'll try to post pictures.
wood burns, plastics melts....
Plastic hardware probably wouldn't float, whereas most woods will. Kidding aside, I would examine any perforation very carefully for evidence of plastic bits.
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