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Mendy Smith

Viol...a shopping part 1

January 27, 2006 at 3:44 AM

I took my 15" into Kamimoto Strings today to get the bridge and tailpiece changed out, along with a bit of varnish work - aka facelift. Total price is about $200, which also includes a bow rehair (going a bit bald, looks like it has a small moustache at the frog).

They gave me a 16" loaner - a Peter Tzvetanov, tailpiece and pegs look to be rosewood, ebony chin rest (the kind that laps over the tailpiece)and a bow - about a $3-4K setup. I don't know what kind of strings, but I suspect steel, definiely not Dominants. Sounds good in the lower register, but not so great in the higher register - more raspy. Could be the strings, my playing style on a larger instrument - whatever. But there is definitley much more sound.

OW! I played it for about an hour tonight - and Niel I see what you're talking about, my shoulder is hurting a bit. Found out that my chinrest doesn't need to be as high on this baby! Predictably, I'm playing everything a bit flat, 1 inch is a huge jump afterall! My bow bouncing problem does seem to have disappeared - interesting.... Maybe I'll ask to borrow the bow for a few extra days to play on the old man.

I get the old man back on Monday, so I'll see if his voice comes out better. If not, serious shopping time! Note to self: ask for Dominants when trying out an instrument; it's what I would normally use anyway. I will keep the old man around and take him out for occasional walks even if I do end up buying a new instrument. I couldn't just put him out to pasture and forget about him afterall! Too many fond and funny memories.

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