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Help resurrecting a 1/10 zuzuki violin
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Vizth
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June 5, 2015 - 2:33 am
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I'm attempting to bring this violin back to life in time for our anniversary. She fell in love with it in a antique shop, and we decided to get it. She intends it use it to learn to play, I'm hoping it will be adequate for this. The main reason she likes it is for it's size, due to her having tiny hands.

It's a Suzuki 101rr, 1/10 which I'm guessing in a scale reference.

No clue what the 4/4 means. Year is 1971 if that helps at all.

It's in good repair for the most part baring some nicks / dents in the body and the finish is worn through to the wood where the tail piece rests. A good buffing with linseed oil will take care of the majority of this I think.

Also there is some thin strips of electrical tape on the wrapped around the neck / fingerboard. Whats the safest way to get this off?

The main issue is I need to track down an appropriately sized bridge , bow, and strings.

In this I have no experience at all. Help please?

Edit:

On further in further inspection I have noticed the back has separated near the end button leaving a small gap for about 3in. What is the best way to reattach this?

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Fiddlestix
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June 5, 2015 - 7:30 am
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@Vizth: If I'm thinking correctly, the 1/10 = scale or body size,(9") long. If that's the case your wife must be extremely tiny, that size violin would be fit for a 3 or 4 year old child. 

Just pull the tape of and if there's any residue left it can be removed with rubbing alcohol, it won't damage the fingerboard, be very careful you don't get it on the body finish.

As far as the body and rib separation, if you have no experience in luthiery I would take it to a violin shop and have a luthier fix the separation along with fitting a new bridge and strings.

I hope she enjoys it and a happy anniversary to you both. cheers

 

Ken..

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
June 5, 2015 - 8:04 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
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It's easy enough to order strings and a bridge online and just use that reference 1/10 size violin.
For the tape, try to get as much off as possible using your fingernails and remove the glue with alcohol being careful not to get the alcohol on any varnish. You can also use #0000 grade fine steel wool.
Get some hide glue to glue the open seams. Thin the heated hide glue with a bit of water and work it in the cracks, wipe the excess glue and clamp. Use cork or something protective between the clamps and the wood on the violin.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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DanielB
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June 5, 2015 - 8:58 am
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Vizth, you mention 4/4, but not where you got or saw those numbers.

I'd measure it, to make sure you don't end up ordering bridge and strings for a 1/10 and then find out it is a 4/4 and the 1/10 refers to something else.  As Fiddlestix mentioned already, a 1/10th violin is about a 9 inch long body, 15 inches total length.  Those are made for very young children.

If it is more like 23 inches, then it would be a 4/4 violin. 

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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Vizth
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June 5, 2015 - 3:53 pm
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Body is 13.5 in. total length is around 23.5. It says 4/4 next to the model number, but every search I've had to this day claims it to be a 1/10. This in including an old repair quote we found in the case.

She's not particularly small, she just has tiny little hands. As it is this one fits them perfectly.

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Fiddlerman
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June 5, 2015 - 3:59 pm
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That is a full size violin (4/4) for sure. A 1/10 size violin is a baby violin 16" total length 🙂

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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DanielB
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June 5, 2015 - 5:13 pm
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Well, big hands aren't usually considered as much of an advantage on violin as they are with say, piano.  Small hands can be better/easier for some parts of playing violin.  It is a very small instrument, compared to many.

But yeah, being 13.5 inches long, you'll need 4/4 strings and bridge.  But that is kinda cool, since not all vendors would always carry 1/10th size parts and strings, and it might have needed a special order from some. 

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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Vizth
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June 6, 2015 - 1:12 am
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Would Tightbond liquid hide glue be an acceptable alternative to traditional hide glue?

As it is right now my location means the nearest place I was able to find a luthier 2 hrs away, and I'm not in a position to be melting glue in my mother inlaw's kitchen.

I have modest experience as a carpenter so I know how to treat wood, I am just unfamiliar with the appropriate glues for this kind of job.

I recently found out my neighbor plays and she offered to fit a bridge and strings so I'm good there.

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DanielB
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June 6, 2015 - 2:53 am
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Just to let you know, any question on best glue or finishes and etc for violins will usually result in some debates.  Which is cool, that is one of the things forums are good for.  But you just probably won't get one simple answer to any such question. 

 

You know wood, so I'll offer a couple points that hopefully won't be so obvious as to be annoying.  You are going to be joining two thin pieces of maple there.  Not a lot of surface area at that join, so the glue has to be strong but also something you can remove later and hopefully would pop loose if there's a problem (like it did) rather than holding so well that the wood gets splintered badly.  You also want the glue to be something you can get loose later, if you need to do some other repairs in the future.

From what I gather from the product description, the Titebond liquid hide glue at least sounds like an option.  If I recall correctly, there are some members here that use it for such repairs.

I don't know it, personally.  I've always used the sort of hide glue you need to cook.  I've used it for years, I stick with what I know.  Something that *you* know how to handle is usually better than what somebody else thinks might be "the best", I think.

Now to give you an example of something at least a lot of people I know would not recommend, there's epoxy.  Not easy to get the seam open later if for some reason you need to, you have to cut and hope you don't lose too much wood in the process.  With epoxy, if the area does come under enough stress later to break again, what will probably break will be the wood rather than the glue.  That is why I personally wouldn't use that.  Just giving an example of the sort of things you want to think through.

In your situation, yeah, I'd probably use the Titebond.  But that's going to be your call.  This instrument is not some centuries old antique with a huge investment value, and the Titebond is at least going to be similar to types of glue you already know from other woodworking.  My thought would be to use what you can get, do a tidy job, and get that instrument into your lady's hands so she can start learning how to make it sing.

Congrats on the anniversary, btw!

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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Vizth
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June 6, 2015 - 3:34 am
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Epoxy is wonderful for something you never want to move...ever, I had a small accident with it some time ago and that cap is still glued to my car bumper. I'd never use it on something like this.

I want to thank everyone for the advice if all goes well I'll see about posting some pics.

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mischa91
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June 6, 2015 - 8:48 am
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Sounds like a fun project.  You should post photos of the journey, it's interesting to see what they once were and see where they are once you've worked in them.  

My violin needed  work when I bought it and it's fun looking back to how bad it looked when it first arrived.  

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
June 6, 2015 - 4:45 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 11717

Vizth said
Would Tightbond liquid hide glue be an acceptable alternative to traditional hide glue?

As it is right now my location means the nearest place I was able to find a luthier 2 hrs away, and I'm not in a position to be melting glue in my mother inlaw's kitchen.

I have modest experience as a carpenter so I know how to treat wood, I am just unfamiliar with the appropriate glues for this kind of job.

I recently found out my neighbor plays and she offered to fit a bridge and strings so I'm good there.

Yes liquid hide glue is fine. Heat it using a real small glass in a hot pot of water and mix in some hot water to thin it out, work into the seams, wipe with damp cloth, clamp and wipe again and you will be good to go. 🙂

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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