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Fingerboard - major difference depending on the wood/surface?
A question.
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NoneOfTheAbove
Stockholm, Sweden
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November 24, 2012 - 11:46 pm
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Hello.

So I visited a violin store in which I got to test many violins and violas (just for the second of the fun/entertainment while I was already there buying some accessories for my violin). So when I tried these violins and violas, I, who then barely could do vibrato noticed that it was a lot easier to do it on the violins which had more matte finished fingerboards. Because when I tried the vibrato later at home, I found it more hard to manage it due to the fact that my fingerboard is blank and very slippy compared to the fingerboards in the store. So my questions in essence is:

Is there a way somehow to make your fingerboard more "jagged"?
I tried to solve the problem with adding some rosin on my fingers but then, on the other side of the spectrum, it became harder to move around with my fingers from note to note. Since I'm a beginner, I haven't memorized all the notes and I use to glide my finger up (or down) in case I put my finger up too high or too low to correct the specific note in question. So this leads to another question: Should I try to add some rosin on the fingerboard itself or is it totally useless to try since it will end up on my fingers anyway?

Or is there any other way to solve this, other than buying a new violin?

Thank you in advance :)
Alexander.

It doesn't mean anything unless it's real

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Fiddlestix
Michigan, USA
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November 25, 2012 - 12:21 am
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Ok, to start with, Alex, you should be doing your vibrato on the string's, not on the fingerboard. If your fingerboard is like glass and you want to rough it up a bit to take the sheen off it, try using some  "000" steel wool or some 420 grit sand paper. Of course you'll need to remove the string's for this, being carefull not to dislodge the sound post when you release the pressure on the bridge.

I'm not quite sure why you want a rough surface anyway, it add's to sore finger's. Your vibrato will come in time with practice. I think somewhere you said you are just beginning, just stay with it, it will come eventually. The problem with many beginner's is that they want to put the cart in front of the horse. Learning to play violin isn't something you learn over night. So many people want to be able to play concerto's in the first month. There's a learing process to playing any instrument, take your time and learn gradual.

When you read a book, you start on the first page, not the last page.

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NoneOfTheAbove
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November 25, 2012 - 1:50 am
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Fiddlestix said

Ok, to start with, Alex, you should be doing your vibrato on the string's, not on the fingerboard.

I think I might have described the adversity a little bit wrong, since you misunderstood. I am doing it on the strings, but when I vibrate it's really hard to keep my finger on the same note, and I think the fingerboard is responsible for causing this since it was easier to maintain the finger position on the violins in the store which had more matte finished fingerboards.

If your fingerboard is like glass and you want to rough it up a bit to take the sheen off it, try using some  "000" steel wool or some 420 grit sand paper. Of course you'll need to remove the string's for this, being carefull not to dislodge the sound post when you release the pressure on the bridge.

Thank you for the tip, I'll try it :)

Your vibrato will come in time with practice.

 

Well I can manage the finger technique with my first finger, but it's easier to do it on, as I mentioned in my post, on more matte fingerboards. At least for me. So the question wasn't really about my impatience for learning or having anything to do with my vibrato, just that it was easier on different types of fingerboards, from my experience at the violin shop. That's why I wondered.

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Mad_Wed
Russia, Tatarstan rep. Kazan city
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November 25, 2012 - 1:12 pm
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If your fingers slip on the blank fingerboard it might mean that You use a way more efforts to bend the finger in joint than it's necessary. It couses fingertip's moving. That's how i see it. Not enough joint flexibility (which causes those efforts) is common.

I would suggest You to develop fingers flexibility and go on with your blank fingerboard. The more one have demonstration of the problem in one's actions the sooner will come the correction, if one will work on it. Since we are learning, i think that we shouldn't make it easier for ourselves. Hard ways lead to improvement.

I started with blank fingerboard and had similar problem. My left hand is still very stiff, but no more slipping-vibrato-fingers, no matter what fingerboard i play on. =)

If i'm wrong with the reasons of all this, then figure out why it happens and fix it =) If You want to be good, You have to be able to play on any fingerboard =)

Good luck! blink

cheerleadercheerleadercheerleader

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NoneOfTheAbove
Stockholm, Sweden
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November 25, 2012 - 1:43 pm
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Thank you for your answer :)

Alex.

It doesn't mean anything unless it's real

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
November 25, 2012 - 4:51 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
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Just a guess that you may be referring to the neck of the violin being slippery. I have never really experienced a fingerboard that was too slippery. The strings are felt first. :-)

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

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RosinedUp
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November 25, 2012 - 5:52 pm
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This is the same kind of thing I was trying to get at in my thread some weeks ago: http://fiddlerman.com/forum/le.....brating/  The general question has to do with the finger staying in one place on the string during vibrato.  I asked about increasing the downward pressure to make the finger stay, and now Alexander is asking about friction between the finger and the fingerboard to make it stay.

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NoneOfTheAbove
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November 25, 2012 - 7:00 pm
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Fiddlerman said
Just a guess that you may be referring to the neck of the violin being slippery. I have never really experienced a fingerboard that was too slippery. The strings are felt first. :-)

I'm after all a noob so I may be totally wrong about the fingerboard or neck thing, maybe it's because of the strings then? All I know 100 % for sure is that I could, as RosinedUp mentioned, maintain my finger at the same spot a lot easier on some of the violins in the store. But later when I came home it was more slippery and harder to keep the finger on the same spot vibrating. Maybe I have some special powers which gives me the ability to play better in front of people in stores, lol I dunno.

RosinedUp said
This is the same kind of thing I was trying to get at in my thread some weeks ago: http://fiddlerman.com/forum/le.....brating/  The general question has to do with the finger staying in one place on the string during vibrato.  I asked about increasing the downward pressure to make the finger stay, and now Alexander is asking about friction between the finger and the fingerboard to make it stay.

Phew! Someone gets my point. I was starting to believe I was going nuts :D yeah I thought if it might have been because of the fingerboard being too slippery/blank that you couldn't maintain the finger at the right position, when I after all experienced it a lot easier on the violins in the store which had more matte finished fingerboards.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
November 26, 2012 - 4:49 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
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Well, there are times, with my violin (same instrument) that it feels like the surface is more slippery than others. The reason is actually because of the dryness, or not, of my fingertips at that moment. If my fingers are real dry they slide around and if they are more moist the stay in place easier.

As an experiment you should try to find a non-greasy moisturizer that you can apply to your left hand fingertips to see if this helps. Make sure to wipe away excess moisturizer and not to overdo it. I don't have this problem often but some people have extremely dry fingertips.

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

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NoneOfTheAbove
Stockholm, Sweden
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November 26, 2012 - 1:09 pm
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Fiddlerman said
Well, there are times, with my violin (same instrument) that it feels like the surface is more slippery than others. The reason is actually because of the dryness, or not, of my fingertips at that moment. If my fingers are real dry they slide around and if they are more moist the stay in place easier.

As an experiment you should try to find a non-greasy moisturizer that you can apply to your left hand fingertips to see if this helps. Make sure to wipe away excess moisturizer and not to overdo it. I don't have this problem often but some people have extremely dry fingertips.

Thank you fiddlerman. And yeah I think I belong to those people who have extremely dry fingertips. At least most of the time.

Peace and regards, Alex.

It doesn't mean anything unless it's real

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Fiddlerman
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November 27, 2012 - 8:16 am
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Then you should try to find a real suitable lotion just for your finger tips. It will make life so much easier.

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

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