Saturday, February 28, 2009

Violin Troubles

I ordered new synthetic strings for my grandfather's violin and a snake humidifier.  I bought the humidifier as an afterthought, since I've noticed a crack develop in the back which has to be caused by extremely dry winter weather we've had.  That crack and the seams were also starting to widen, so for the past couple of days I've been frantically pumping moisture into the room where the violin is stored to get the humidity level up to 60%.  I was hoping the wood would swell back to normal, the crack would close, and the seams would tighten.  No such luck.  With a humidifier running for 11 hours out of the day, the moisture never got about 30%.

This rainy weather's been a godsend.  Right now, it's the right humidity for the violin, so I've had it out all day in attempts for the wood to absorb some of the water vapor.

When I was practicing, I realized just how much work the violin needs.  It needs a new bridge to be cut and reset, new strings, new tuning pegs, the crack repaired, possibly the seams repaired, the top needs to be refinished, and the nut maybe replaced.  So I started grumbling about it, and then I picked up my bow and noticed that it didn't have much bite to it.  Which means the hair needs to be replaced.  I'm just waiting for the other shoe to drop, like picking up the instrument and having the strings pull the neck off the body and cause the top to splinter into wood fragments.
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