Double Bass corner restoration

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by kiwigeo » Mon Aug 17, 2015 7:51 am

Stradivari?
Martin

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by matthew » Mon Aug 17, 2015 8:36 am

it's not a derail markus, it's a good topic.

Consider the old black cello that was brought in, seriously cracked, unplayable, painted purfling, worm damage, sunken top, dodgy neck and scroll. Rather ugly in fact. No label. Owner wanted a quick setup and cracks glued. First reaction was that it would have been lovely once, but perhaps not special, because no evidence of "quality" work except maybe the scroll. And that the owner may had paid far too much for it (over $5k). And that repairs would be expensive. So I gave an estimate and recommended the owner take it to another shop who I recommended for a second opinion. Not that I didn't want the work. But as I wasn't sure of the provenance of the instrument, and as it was $5k worth of customers investment already I didn't want the customer to throw good money after bad.

The other luthier with more old cello experience now claims it is by a certain famous maker and worth, in a properly restored condition, twice or three times the purchase price. Yes it is an opinion, but their opinion in this case is probably worth more than mine or that of the client.

Ok so I missed out on the work - which I could have done perfectly well - but at least I did the client a favor by not simply agreeing to simply do what they asked.

And the client I hope will be back another time.

If I had just done the repair asked for - and maybe filled the worm holes with big, sanded off the black paint/varnish because I thought I could do a better finish to "improve" the instrument, the instrument would have lost its value entirely.
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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by matthew » Mon Aug 17, 2015 8:45 am

I should add that the client was rather shocked when I gave them my initial estimate of repair costsbecause it would've added well over a thousand dollars to their new purchase and they were already maxed out.

But with an appraisal of the instrument worth far more than they thought, suddenly that cost is not such an issue.

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Mon Aug 17, 2015 9:57 am

charangohabsburg wrote:Steve, what's the name of the luthier who built this guitar?
Well almost impossible to say without having it in front of me and even then I could not tell you for sure,just an assumption, without view of the headstock, its similiar to a strad.

To this end, I see at least 30 ""supposedly strads"" a year, and every one of them a fake. I even know a repairer here who 60 plus years ago worked in a music store and there job was to take the backs of violins and put strad decals inside.

Still, you advised the customer and then did what the customer wanted, how is that in any way different to what I do. I offer advice, but in the end I still do the job, I do not say, dude that is 200 yrs old I am not going to modify it the way ""you want""

In the end the job gets done the way the customer wants it done, if you dont want to do it, then step aside, and someone else will, I guarantee the customer will get it done by someone.

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:02 am

matthew wrote:iSo I gave an estimate and recommended the owner take it to another shop who I recommended for a second opinion. Not that I didn't want the work. But as I wasn't sure of the provenance of the instrument, and as it was $5k worth of customers investment already I didn't want the customer to throw good money after bad.
And what is wrong with that, you gave an estimate a recommendation and let the customer decide, you even advised taking it to another place for a second opinion.

The other place assumes it may be "XCDFS model", but I am guessing to find out would require a few thousand dollars of investment to get a certificate of authenticity and maybe even then not possible, so the customer ends up spending more on the belief that it may be worth more, again, the customer made the final decision.

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by kiwigeo » Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:27 am

kiwigeo wrote:Stradivari?
Could even be a really old Martin...
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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by matthew » Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:42 am

simso wrote: I even know a repairer here who 60 plus years ago worked in a music store and there job was to take the backs of violins and put strad decals inside.
you don't need to take the back off a violin to put a decal inside LOL! He must have been doing a bit of "busywork" there ...

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by charangohabsburg » Mon Aug 17, 2015 12:39 pm

simso wrote:Well almost impossible to say without having it in front of me and even then I could not tell you for sure,just an assumption, without view of the headstock, its similiar to a strad.
Well Steve, as someone who claims to be able to do repairs on old guitars you really ought to know that in Stradivari's epoch guitars never ever had six single strings. No need to have the guitar in front of you to count the strings. Also the body shape of baroque guitars was quite a bit different. Martin got with his Martin-guess much closer.
simso wrote:Still, you advised the customer and then did what the customer wanted, how is that in any way different to what I do.
No, I did not do what the customer wanted. He wanted me to repair the remains of his lousy looking attic find, and it took me quite an effort to convince him to get some first class expertise.
More often than not the owners of attic finds or bargain acquirements are a bit tight-arsed to say the least. They see a lot of cracked wood and don't give a second thought about what the instrument might have been or even spend money to find out. In this case the owner did not even want to believe what the remains of the label said, which is maybe less typical for this class of owners.

I suspect that if this guitar would have fallen into your hands you simply would have cut out this nice rosette to embellish a new guitar or whatever next came across your bench, because the guitar in question was in really poor conditions.
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simso wrote:In the end the job gets done the way the customer wants it done, if you dont want to do it, then step aside, and someone else will, I guarantee the customer will get it done by someone.
It's not a matter of wanting it to do or not, but rather one of responsibility, professionalism and reputation.

As Matthew already pointed out earlier in a quite diplomatic way, delegating the expertise to the customer is highly unprofessional and can get you into knee deep problems.
Markus

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It's only the others who suffer.

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Mon Aug 17, 2015 2:10 pm

charangohabsburg wrote:[It's not a matter of wanting it to do or not, but rather one of responsibility, professionalism and reputation.
As Matthew already pointed out earlier in a quite diplomatic way, delegating the expertise to the customer is highly unprofessional and can get you into knee deep problems.
charangohabsburg wrote:Well Steve, as someone who claims to be able to do repairs on old guitars you really ought to know that in Stradivari's epoch guitars never ever had six single strings. No need to have the guitar in front of you to count the strings. Also the body shape of baroque guitars was quite a bit different..
charangohabsburg wrote:I suspect that if this guitar would have fallen into your hands you simply would have cut out this nice rosette to embellish a new guitar or whatever next came across your bench, because the guitar in question was in really poor conditions..
Wow, I am finding your reply very hostile/arrogant in its approach,

You do what you do, I do what I do, its that simple, as far as professional approach, wow, you have no idea what work I do, never seen some of the restoration work I have done for Museums or anything like that, but you make an assumption based on ""what"". Or you assume because I state I would not hesitate to paint a strat pink if the customer requested it I am "unprofessional".

If your incapable of doing the repair, that is fine, on refer it to someone else, know your limitations, thats the key to most business's working and getting a good reputation.

For info, I am not a one man band wagon running a business out of my shed claiming to be an expert in everything after doing an internet search, but I do have close to 3 million dollars invested in tools and machinery and premises, I have employees who I pay wages of 60,000 dollars a year each, so clearly I am doing something right, even though I am ""unprofessional"" according to some guy in switzerland. - Really???

Your assumptions make huge statements. As far as I should be an expert on what type of guitar you posted,again, really!!, should I.

Some of us are not experts in knowledge at everything that was ever made since the existance of time itself (some of us are internet experts)

Matts, response and view has been honest and his work shows quality, just becuase I have a different view to him in regards to an owners rights to do what they want to there instrument, does not make me ""unprofessional"", and I take offence to that remark.

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Mon Aug 17, 2015 9:19 pm

kiwigeo wrote:
kiwigeo wrote:Stradivari?
Could even be a really old Martin...
Okay, unhappy pants off, hit reset and resume :wink:

Never come across a Martin that looked like that, certainly would be a new one on me.

It's strad shaped, or " romantic guitar", but the vagueness of the photo, lack of headstock, could mean it's anything, the bridge does not seem to be consistent with what Martin used.

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by kiwigeo » Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:19 pm

simso wrote:
Never come across a Martin that looked like that, certainly would be a new one on me.

It's strad shaped, or " romantic guitar", but the vagueness of the photo, lack of headstock, could mean it's anything, the bridge does not seem to be consistent with what Martin used.

Steve
Check out Washburn and Johnston's book "Martin Guitars" or Philip Gura's "CF Martin and His Guitars"....they contain pics of some of the earliest Martins from the early 1800's. Some of them had wooden pegs and bridges with a definite influence from guitars of the Baroque.

Note that Im not saying its Martin for sure but it's one possibility.

If it was a Stradivari it would most likely have double course strings, tied on gut frets and the bridge wouldn't have a saddle like the instrument in Markus's picture.
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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by RobDyball » Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:21 pm

I'd be tempted to say a Mirecourt guitar c. 1850.

But it's an Antonio de Torres, isn't it?
charangohabsburg wrote: Now I'm letting you have a guess if you like

Steve, what's the name of the luthier who built this guitar?
[/i]

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by kiwigeo » Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:26 pm

While the rosette looks like something off a Torres the bridge doesnt look like anything Ive seen on a Torres instrument.
RobDyball wrote:I'd be tempted to say a Mirecourt guitar c. 1850.

But it's an Antonio de Torres, isn't it?
charangohabsburg wrote: Now I'm letting you have a guess if you like

Steve, what's the name of the luthier who built this guitar?
[/i]
Martin

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by kiwigeo » Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:30 pm

The bridge looks french so Mirecourt might be a good stab.
RobDyball wrote:I'd be tempted to say a Mirecourt guitar c. 1850.

But it's an Antonio de Torres, isn't it?
charangohabsburg wrote: Now I'm letting you have a guess if you like

Steve, what's the name of the luthier who built this guitar?
[/i]
Martin

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Tue Aug 18, 2015 2:16 pm

I am happy to provide an educated ""guess"", but its not something I knew of hand via a picture on a computer screen with only part of the instrument being shown, and only after doing research of that era can I come up with a guess, as there were close to 1000 plus builders of that period.

As I have said numerous times its shaped like a strad, that does not mean I am saying its a strad, its got the strad guitar shape, - I would have guessed petitjean,

But according to google its an ANTONIO DE TORRES, and linked is the story surrounding it.

Curious that according to you markus, you identified this particular instrument via a personal email, from the owner in saville, ex an attic through a forum who just wanted you a non repairer to repair some cracks for him.

https://reformasyobras.wordpress.com/20 ... e-leyenda/


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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by ozwood » Tue Aug 18, 2015 4:10 pm

Yeah See .......... I only ever did one Restoration post, similar result...... this has become more tedious than the marriage equality debate.

:roll: :roll:

I'm going back to up the shed to do some building.

Cheers,
Paul .

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by auscab » Tue Aug 18, 2015 5:38 pm

My Guess ,

Is it a Stauffer Guitar ?

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by kiwigeo » Tue Aug 18, 2015 5:57 pm

auscab wrote:My Guess ,

Is it a Stauffer Guitar ?
CF Martin spent his early days in Stauffer's workshop....that's why I made a stab and guessed it might be an early Martin.

I'm still not 100% convinced its a Torres.....I can't find any other instruments attributed to him that have a French style moustache bridge.
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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by matthew » Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:18 pm

so what if a french repairer at some point in that guitars life decided to replace the original bridge with a French bridge!! Possible!!

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:30 pm

kiwigeo wrote:I'm still not 100% convinced its a Torres.....I can't find any other instruments attributed to him that have a French style moustache bridge.
Did you click on my link, its the exact guitar in question

https://reformasyobras.wordpress.com/20 ... e-leyenda/
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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by matthew » Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:54 pm

I'm sure martin clicked the link. but just cos it's on the internet doesn't mean it's a Torres ... the article explains a bit about how it was found and ID but that is not necessarily conclusive ...

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:01 pm

matthew wrote:I'm sure martin clicked the link. but just cos it's on the internet doesn't mean it's a Torres ... the article explains a bit about how it was found and ID but that is not necessarily conclusive ...
Oh I so agree. :D ,
I do not believe in anything written on the net. Unless by a very reputable source of the thing in question.
ozwood wrote:Yeah See .......... I only ever did one Restoration post, similar result...... this has become more tedious than the marriage equality debate. :roll: :roll: I'm going back to up the shed to do some building.Cheers,
Its been very interesting

But back on track, nice job Matthew

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by kiwigeo » Wed Aug 19, 2015 7:38 pm

simso wrote:
kiwigeo wrote:I'm still not 100% convinced its a Torres.....I can't find any other instruments attributed to him that have a French style moustache bridge.
Did you click on my link, its the exact guitar in question

https://reformasyobras.wordpress.com/20 ... e-leyenda/
Yes I clicked on the link but unfortunately my language skills only extend to English and Japanese.

The rosette looks like a Torres job but again that bridge just looks totally unlike anything on any Torres guitar I've seen pics of. Strange that there are no pics showing the label in side the instrument.

If this guitar was indeed made in 1853 then it would be the oldest known Torres instrument in existance at present. I cant find it mentioned in Romanillos's book or on any of the online listings of his guitars.
Martin

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Re: Double Bass corner restoration

Post by simso » Wed Aug 19, 2015 8:17 pm

Then your one up on me, I can only speak English, and, not really that good at it either,

To read the page, I cheated and used the translate page button.

Got another Gibson resto job in today, offered them repair, rebuild or restore, really hoping they go resto with full respray, last week one went rebuild option

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