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Wack or Fact? Sound Post geographicly grown?

Posted by artcarnie on Sunday, March 14, 2010

I've heard that the best sound post come from trees that have about the same amount of the four seasons?  The trees with the best sound can be mapped out around the world according to latitude and altitude.   What do you think? 

 

Thanks John



8 comments on “Wack or Fact? Sound Post geographicly grown?”

bj Says:
Sunday, March 14, 2010 @8:16:15 PM

It sounds just weird enough to be true, but I have no clue.

A fiddle of a different color? LOL!

KCFiddles Says:
Monday, March 15, 2010 @11:52:35 AM

Any data to support that?

Sounds like absolute, utter nonsense to me. IME, the sound post fit and position make a lot of difference, but as long as the post is made of good spruce, there's no discernible difference in how individual posts sound.

artcarnie Says:
Monday, March 15, 2010 @2:04:13 PM

The idea is that the rings in the wood changes by how many there are in a small area. Mine for example is may two rings. One of the people that told me about this has "special wood" which contain alot more rings or grow per year marks is a same area. So with this in mine different types of pine and ciders can act differently, but can you hear the differences or does it make the attack on the note more pronouced? or is it like Mr Woodwiz sayes no discermible difference. I don't know?

KCFiddles Says:
Monday, March 15, 2010 @2:46:43 PM

Sound posts are typically made from the same kind of Spruce that tops are made of. They don't come from around the world, but only a few select places, primarily high altitude Alpine forests in Europe, also the Himalayas in the case of Chinese violins. Some from the US and Canada.

Most luthiers (I am one) tend to like fine grained wood for sound posts because it gives more uniform bearing on the plates. We also like material that cuts cleanly so that it's easy to fit. Some prefer denser, some lighter, I think most don't care a whole lot. If it's good top material, it's good sound post material.

I've been working with violins since the 80's, read whatever I can get my hands on, and talk to lots of people in the trade, including some of the best in the world, and I've never heard an opinion like that advanced until now.

If somebody who does the work for a living tells you something, you can at least be pretty sure that there is a reason based on reality that they think so. If four or five makers agree on something, you can pretty much believe it. We tend to be a little contentious, so if we agree on something, it's pretty well cut and dried.

People who don't work on instruments have all sorts of misinformation. I'd say among the general public there is much more bad information than good. It might be a good idea to never believe anything you hear, and only half of what you read, especially when it comes to violins.

carlb Says:
Monday, March 15, 2010 @2:48:43 PM

Woodwiz, do you know any spruce that doesn't live in a four seasons area. No spruce are in the tropics that I know of.

artcarnie Says:
Monday, March 15, 2010 @2:59:47 PM

Woodwiz, I read it in a well know book about history of the violin and from a well know luthier in North West Indiana who rehairs bows for the chicago Symphony.

In this book I read that some bows take the hairs 188 to 2?? in a bow and divide it in half having 50% go up and 50 the other way. Is this bunk as well?

KCFiddles Says:
Monday, March 15, 2010 @3:35:53 PM

What book is that?

As far as the hair goes, the hair is thicker at one end. Some archetiers will reverse the hairs to even out the band. Most of the ones I know of don't see the need for it, and prefer the thinner end at the head of the bow. Bow hair grips the same in both directions; since new bows don't make a sound without rosin it's pretty obvious that the growth scales don't contribute to the sound.

carlb - Tropical Spruce? Hmmmmm ;-D

Why go anywhere else for wood when there is way more than enough scrap top wood to make all the posts one would ever need?

artcarnie Says:
Wednesday, March 24, 2010 @12:34:33 PM

I can't remember the name of the book but I read all of them that the Valparaiso, In Public librairy had. So it's a good idea to have wood that is fine grained for a uniforn top? Is fine grained denser or heavier than coarse gain? Again I am sorry I can't remember the name or the book. I do remember the person who told me the story. I don't want to make him look bad. After all he's not preforming unreversible Lobotomies or anything like that. Thanks for your input.

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