Electric Violin part design reasons
The other day a question came into my mind: what parts of the violin are perfectly designed? Are some things just like that because of tradition?
Pretty much, my questions are: Why does the bridge have to be so tall; Why is the bridge not secured; and is there a reason why the tailpiece isn't more like a guitar bridge? These questions are intended to be about electric violins. Thank you!
The violin bridge, being an acoustically vibrating structure, has a fundamental effect on the tone, which explains its particular shape that has taken a long time to mature. The bridge is freestanding, in part so that its position can be easily adjusted to meet particular playing and tonal requirements. If the body of an electric violin is not a resonant chamber then there is a lot more scope for redesigning the instrument, including parts like the tailpiece arrangement.
Pegs, on the other hand are a real PITA. I'm trying pluck up courage to ask my luthier to fit mechanical pegs to the viola he made, but I'm wary oh is possible reaction.
Trevor- you got to give a guy credit for being able to get a nail into the soundpost without splitting anything wide open. But it is sad what people do.
It took me a minute to figure out PITA Adrian. I too have been thinking about having mechanical tuning pegs for a while now with many good reasons for and only a few disadvantages against.
I long ago had mechanical pegs fitted to my violin. They look exactly like normal pegs so nobody needs to know except your luthier :)
Gear pegs are brilliant. I have wittners on my viola, pegheds on my violin, and knillings on my daughter's violin. I like the pegheds the best.
Electric violin is no different from electric guitar, or any other amplified instrument. You can get creative with design and change whatever you like, as long as the vibrating string length (nut<--->bridge) is about 325-327mm and neck_stop:body_stop ratio is 2:3 (130:195mm).
Well, you certainly get things like the traditional violin outline - the older Yamahas come to mind. Some also have a traditional scroll. These things have nothing to do with an electric violin's performance and have no function other than to appeal to a conservative market. I would suggest to makers that it's time to move on from that one!
Good questions Connor. Some basic background..... An electric guitar and electric violin generally work much differently. An electric guitar uses electro magnetic pickups with with metal strings. As the metal strings vibrate, it causes changes to the magnetic field, which creates electric current which become amplified. Most electric violins use a piezo electric device, which converts the physical vibrations to a voltage. as for the tailpiece, if the electric violin is essentially an acoustic with a piezo electric bridge then the plate vibrations are a central component to the sound. Attaching the strings to the top plate would completely change the ability of the plates to vibrate. A solid body electric violin I assume doesn't care how the strings are attached to the body, as long as a proper after length is acheived.
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