We work by appointment.

Appointments are available Tuesday-Saturday
contact us by
phone: 858-909-0319
email: paula@theviolinshopsandiego.com

10505 Sorrento Valley Rd., Suite 385,
San Diego, CA 92121

Articles

Articles

Inside-the-Shop are informative articles written by Kevin Smith, Luthier of The Violin Shop

 

Sound

A FOUNDATION FOR UNDERSTANDING SOUND

I'm not sure who asked the question. I think it's some esoteric Buddhist riddle young grasshoppers are asked. The answer "If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it, does it make a sound?" The answer is...

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Instruments

INSTRUMENT MAINTENANCE

The phone was ringing. If it had rung a minute earlier I would have let the answering machine pick it up like the last call…I’d been making sure the crack in the cello top lined up right from end to end before the glue set... I was wiping glue when it rang...

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History

MYTHS

A breeze moved the heavy air and gave it a little relief. Thick clouds threatened rain, but the roads were still dry. I pulled into my parking stall, unlocked the front door of my shop, and turned off the security. I love mornings. Everything is possible. Everything is new.

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A MORE ADVANCED EVALUATION OF SOUND

In the first issue of Inside the Shop I outlined the three basic principles I use to evaluate sound. In this issue I’d like to go into a bit more depth, but before I do lets briefly review the fundamentals. They are: 1-Response 2-Evenness 3-Voice

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SET UP: THE SOUNDPOST AND BRIDGE

"There is only one power that determines the course of history, just as it determines the course of every individual life: the power of man’s rational faculty—the power of ideas. If you know a man’s convictions, you can predict his actions.

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A 5-SEAM MAP TO A SMALL CORNER OF VIOLIN HISTORY

John F. Kennedy once said: "Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future."

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ROOM ACOUSTICS

About 25 years ago I stood in the middle of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. Dwarfed under its 365 ft. high dome set on a colonnaded drum, I looked up. The enormity altered my spatial awareness, taking my breath away like the first plunge of a long freefall.

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MATCHING YOUR BOW TO YOUR INSTRUMENT

Last year I heard the San Diego Symphony perform a terrific program, compliments of one of my customers. The heart of the program was the 21st piano concerto by Mozart and the 1st symphony by Mahler. I was so exited by the end of the concert that I couldn’t help standing up to cheer...

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YOUR INSTRUMENT'S GRAIN: QUARTER CUT OR SLAB CUT?

Standing on a mountainside near Klamath Falls in Southern Oregon, I looked up from the base of an Englman Spruce tree and almost fell over backward: 130 feet of standing spruce that took 3 of us fingertip to fingertip to reach around. There were cellos in that tree.

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STRINGS

Strings are expensive, no getting around it.

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NECK SHAPES PART 1

The neck of your instrument is the most intimate contact point you have with your violin. And it can make enormous differences in the way you experience it.

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INFLUENCE BETWEEN SCHOOLS OF VIOLIN MAKING

Cupping your hands against the large pane of glass, the world fades behind you. The hot sidewalk, dark business suits, office buildings and traffic exhaust drop away as though you’re traveling through a wormhole in time. Squinting, you’re pulled through the glass, into a less hectic time that hasn’t changed much in 300 years.

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NECK SHAPES PART 2

In the last issue we discussed the actual shape of your instruments’ neck. I threw a lot of dimensional information your way, and today I’m going to throw a little bit more.

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