Do you use your accessories/case differently?

April 21, 2017 at 03:51 PM · Hi everyone.

Do you have violin accessories that you're using for a different purpose than what it's originally for? Or maybe you have a completely general item where you're now using as a violin accessory.

A few things I've read about in the internet are:

- drilling holes in the string tube and putting dampits in it.

- using a cork as a string cleaner

- modifying a cork to use as a mute

And if it's just an idea in your head and you have not really done it please feel free to share. Wacky ideas welcome. Let's be creative! :)

Replies (23)

April 21, 2017 at 04:32 PM · Does using my viola to play music count as wacky?

April 21, 2017 at 10:19 PM · For starters I have a set of needle-nose pliers in my case, primarily for the wire-cutter to adjust the length of strings for small violins, but they are useful to un-stick a slammed fine-tuner (particularly on very small instruments) as well as holding the end of the string to guide it into the peg hole on small instruments where my fingers are just too big. I also us the corkscrew of my Swiss Army Knife to tighten/loosen the clamps for chin rests. I've also used a tuning fork as a lever to move a sticky peg. Are those weird enough?

April 21, 2017 at 10:39 PM · I use a towel in addition to a chin rest and a shoulder rest as a padding on the collarbone when there's no clothing there because I hate it when the chin rest clamp cuts into my collarbone. I also use rosin as peg dope.

April 21, 2017 at 10:56 PM · Doesn't rosin do the exact opposite thing that peg dope is intended for? Peg dope is a lubricant, rosin makes things stickier.

April 22, 2017 at 12:38 AM · I use rosin to treat slipping pegs only.

April 22, 2017 at 12:41 AM · I have three corks as finger-stretching exercise, you push them between the joints and clench to separate the fingers.

I cut off the upper bulge because it got in the way, and cut slits into them and stuck all 3 on the bridge as (not too effective) mutes for a short time.

I still have them, 3-4 needs work. :)

April 23, 2017 at 02:13 AM · Not wacky, but simple: a rag to clean strings, and a nail to loosen and tighten my chin rest.

Cork as a string cleaner!? How? Did I hear somewhere that you can use steel wool to clean the strings?

April 23, 2017 at 11:15 AM · Yep, also that, but I woldn't risk damaging the string with that.

April 23, 2017 at 02:53 PM · How often do you guys find yourselves taking off your chinrests when you're on the go???

April 23, 2017 at 05:39 PM · Adrian - you are way off the reservation, as we say.

April 24, 2017 at 07:54 PM · Bailey, et al.,

I haven't had to do anything with my personal chin rest in a very long time. However, the young musicians in the Youth Orchestra seem to have a knack for getting them so loose that they fall off mid-rehearsal. Hence, having a handy tool (in my case a corkscrew) to tighten them is essential.

Of course that isn't as bad as the non-musician fathers who decide that the bridge needs to be glued in place and usually in the wrong place at that.

April 25, 2017 at 12:15 AM · @Adrian That's the wackiest thing ever! Lol.

Tnx for letting me know the cork mutes are not good at all A.O.

Do people normally adjust their chinrest? Woudn't you want it to remain at one height? And if it keeps getting loose (How does it get loose in the first place?) wouldn't you just get it replaced? But yeah I've seen people saying they carry that screw thingy for the chinrest. I'm curious why they'd need it for the day to day playing though. Hmmm.

April 25, 2017 at 02:44 AM · I mentioned it since I recently switched chin rests a few times, so I found the nail helpful. But you're right - it's not something I use daily; it's sitting on my shelf now (not in my case) :)

April 25, 2017 at 07:44 PM · I keep a nail clipper in my case so I can cleanly cut off broken hairs. As a bonus, I can use it to trim my nails if I've forgotten to do so at home.

April 27, 2017 at 03:56 PM · I use a violin hard case as a travel case for my 15.75" viola (my 18" just doesn't fit...).

I had to modify it a bit to accommodate the extra size. But without needing a shoulder rest compartment, things fit just fine.

April 28, 2017 at 09:26 AM · The front music compartment filled with some mom stuff. A hot wheel helicopter, a harmonica, a small foldable yellow transformer toy,a clean diaper (I have a toddler). I also have a garbage bag (in case of heavy rain). my violin case is an older version of a bobelock 1002, so it doesn't have a suspension. I don't know if suspensions are a must have feature. I'm hoping that my violin is protected enough without them. I was thinking of adding a DIY suspensions, but never get around to it.

April 28, 2017 at 02:11 PM · Tom: "Adrian - you are way off the reservation, as we say."

Dunno if 'we' should be saying that. Pejorative, no?

April 28, 2017 at 02:22 PM · Before buying my new Negri case I had a selfmade suspension in an old but very good case. It worked well (testet with an cheap violon thats still ok xD) and was easy to build, so go for it Jess.

April 28, 2017 at 02:54 PM · I've also used old wine cork "slices" to repair damaged chinrests where they touch the violin surface. A good excuse for continuing to drink wine with dinner now - before all vintners adopt metal caps or box wines!

April 28, 2017 at 03:02 PM · Frankly, I never heard of or saw a violin case with "suspension" before I bought my first Bobelock in the late 1990s. My far more expensive Jaeger cases, bought in the 1970s did not have any suspension protections, nor did any cases I ever saw in the 35 years before that.

That said, suspension design is a good thing, like auto insurance - when you need it, you better have it.

April 28, 2017 at 03:58 PM · Andrew that makes me wonder whether the new artificial cork material might be even better for your chin-rest-shimming operations, just as it is better for wine bottles!

April 28, 2017 at 05:05 PM · Not really, they are bad if the humidity changes to quickly.

April 28, 2017 at 08:16 PM · N.A.Mohr, I take no offence at all at beng compared to an Amerindian!

After all, I am a violist!!

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