pochettes/pocket violins/kit violins
I vaguely thought of getting one for fun/completism.
Maybe they're junk. Maybe they're rare, expensive junk? Haven't looked on ebay yet.
There you go, a Chinese one, lol.
That's very sweet. An early 19th c. one by Charles Harris was recently sold at Bromptons for £960.
A history of the pochette/kit violin in this link:
Yes, Trevor, or if tone quality is a worry, maybe an electric silent pochette for travel and hotel practice. However, I was mainly curious about antiques. £950 isn't so bad if you are used to spending tens of thousands on violins and thousands on bows. The Chinese one is nicely finished, but who knows what it sounds like.
Not sure about how useful it would be for practising. Even if the vibrating string length is close to a full-size, the arm position will be more like playing in the higher positions. I'm inclined to feel £950 is actually rather a lot to pay for an instrument with such limited capabilities and correspondingly small market. I expect an anonymous one would be knocked down for considerably less
I don't believe that sound should matter too much in this case. They weren't made to have a strong sound anyway, and weren't used on any kind of public performance - they were invented for teaching the ballroom dances of that time, but not in large groups the way dancing schools are organized nowadays. The master of dance would come to the private homes of the privileged to teach their children what they would need for their initiation to the salon society. An ordinary sized room, maybe two or a handful of young people - and a small piece of stringed hollow wood to show the rhythms. Don't expect too much, any factory 1/16 instrument will do at least as good, tone wise. Nowadays it's just a gag. A nice antique one might be nice for collectors, but a new Chinese one?? Maybe as an electric, for some cross over folk rock fiddling, but an acoustic?!? Stop kidding...
I saw a pochette for the first time this year art Australia's national folk festival. An American woman had brought it with her (Sorry, didn't think to ago her where she got it as I've seen them occasionally in in early music or specialist folk shops) because it's easy to deal with in planes (fits into a wide poster tube).
Has anyone here looked into the "Cricket" series of compact/travel violins marketed by the Magic Fluke ukulele folks?