Cutting Corners...:

Thursday, February 29th, 2024

Leap Day

Well, shit.
I did not mean to have so much time pass between these updates. I fully intended on doing this, like, biweekly, or at least monthly. I blame ADHD.
SO here's the deal: expect 2 more posts soon after this. In this one, I'll show you just some pictures of everything I did last trimester at school; the next one will have stuff I did unrelated to CSVM; the last one will be just pictures of where I'm at now on the violin. Cool? Cool. K bye see you in the next one if I have to type another word I might spontaneously combust.
E Sharp Logo

Setting Up

My workbench at school, with my then not yet painted toolbox.My totally not bandaged and totally not cut thumb.

This was my first day at CSVM. I definitely did not show up 15 minutes late and definitely did not cut my thumb on the first day.

Getting Started

aluminum template on top of walnut slab

The first couple of weeks or so were pretty uneventful, what with all the sharpening and tool making/preparing and tracing my outline (which, btw, is a 1709 Viotti Strad). Here's a picture of the template I made as I'm about to transfer that over to a piece of walnut to create a reusable form to bend my ribs on.


i'm so sorry...
corner, top and bottom blocks on formcorner, top and bottom blocks on formcorner, top and bottom blocks on formthe four bottom blocks I had to cut and recut and recut and recut

Blocks. At long last, something I know how to do: making something flat and square... Well, I could not get the shape right on the bottom block; it kept getting too flat. (Must've been the tools, unlevel surface, weather, time of day, alignment of the stars, etc.) So, here are also the 4 attempts at making that one stupid block.

Cutting Corners


Ribs? Glued, Linings? In place. Corners? Cut.

Preparing the Plate

maple tone wood with outlinespruce tone wood with outline

Now that the rib structure is close to finished, I can begin working on the fun part. You'll see shortly why the word fun was italicized. (feat. Guest appearance by The Scrapers)

Making the Cut(s)

maple cut outbeginning the rough arching

Took both pieces of wood that will become the top and back of the violin to the bandsaw, cut them out, and began the rough arching. Smooth sailing from here on ou—


small yet mildly concerning split in the sprucegluing said split

While working on the spruce, a small yet mildly concerning split formed in the spruce. A quick glue job put it right back together again. Surely, nothing else could go wro—


maple split in halfgluing said split...again

I split the back. I guess it wasn't a completely flat glue job, or I didn't use enough glue, but it slowly started to come apart while working on the rough arching. I had some help putting it back together again as quickly as possible and removing the least amount of material. (Insert obligatory "that's not quite what we mean when we say "two-piece back" joke.)

End of First Trimester

the maple back in one piecefinishing rough arching

And here's how it looked before leaving school for Christmas Break. Now, a lot of stuff happened in between the making: live shows, the VSA Convention in Baltimore, the Midwest Clinic, concerts, Stradivari Society recitals, etc. I'll talk a little bit about those in the next update. See you again in 4-5 months?

Nah, just kidding. Gimme like a week or two. For realsies this time.

☮︎ ♡ ♫

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