From Laurie’s “What size does my child need?” and an earlier Blog about larger violins for taller people, is there a point where the rigidly maintained 14 inch standard (nearly mandated violin body length) becomes uncomfortable?
From research done by the Catgut Acoustical Society it is now possible for makers to create great sounding violins in sizes with larger than 14 inch bodies.
Since the golden age of violin making, people have grown taller, some to the point of getting to be too tall to be comfortable with a 14” body violin. There are many who do not want to be relegated to a viola. Carleen Hutchins’ created the gen. I 16” mezzo and Gen. II 15” mezzo violins that would fit nicely into the 6/4 and 5/4 violin sizes. Bob Spear has settled on 14 3/8" for his current mezzos because the largest percentage of people are comfortable playing that size instrument.
It is a dilemma. A small number of customers are afraid to spend money for a hand made special size instrument with an unknown outcome. And manufacturers of high grade instruments unwilling to provide larger instruments because they would move very slowly from dealers inventories.
ABL (aka the Mezzofiddler)
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