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New shoulder rest design
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ftufc
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May 3, 2012 - 4:43 pm
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This is the new shoulder rest that FM had mentioned in another thread which he suggested I share.

I recently designed this support after trying 6 different rests by different manufacturers because none of them provided me with the stability and comfort that I wanted while practicing for hours.  So I decided to make my own.  This is a semi-custom fit rest, hand-carved from rock maple.

It's currently in its trial stages with the help of pros like FM and several local violinists/fiddlers and I expect to make it available shortly to those who have the same issues that I did and want a better solution.  I'd very much welcome your thoughts/comments/suggestions; please be as candid as you can be.

This is a pic of the first prototype I made; there have since been several improvements to make it lighter & less bulky, more universally attachable to instruments of different sizes and shapes, even more stable and comfortable and more kinesthetically correct.

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NoirVelours
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May 3, 2012 - 4:51 pm
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It sure looks beautiful! Is it heavy?

"It can sing like a bird, it can cry like a human being, it can be very angry, it can be all that humans are" Maxim Vengerov

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Oliver
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May 3, 2012 - 4:54 pm
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It looks hard.  Do you plan to pad it ?

Do you think it will be OK for one -size -fits -all without any adjustment ?

coffee2

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

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ftufc
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May 3, 2012 - 5:11 pm
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yes, has a 1/8" thick black ensolite pad (great quality of ensolite is firm padding and noticeable grip)

one of the design improvements is more adjustability (3 leg/foot holes on each end)

Thanks Oliver

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ftufc
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May 3, 2012 - 5:12 pm
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Thanks NV, in that photo it weighs 9 oz.; final product will weigh 6 oz.

How sensitive do you think players will be to the difference between 6oz - 10oz.?

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TerryT
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May 3, 2012 - 5:32 pm
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Looks like the dogs bollocks to me, pardon my french!
Would it be possible/have you considered to curve the vertical edges ( radius the corners to match a violin) and still have an adjustment mech! But the again, are there any patents on existing adjustment methods that you would to check?
Looks damn good, better than my bit of bent black steel, and with an ensolite pad to keep it soft on a violinists delicate skin........
Would the weight be a problem? The fulcrum would be on the shoulder and not on the wrist.
(but then I have never been forced to sit with a violin on my shoulder for ages like an orchestra person maybe would have to)

(Ps the dogs bollocks is a good thing in case it loses something in the translation, lol)

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eoj02
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May 3, 2012 - 9:00 pm
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won't go into the dog parts.  but it looks great.. it does look like it might have some sharp edges though

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Fiddlerman
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May 3, 2012 - 10:00 pm
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I have already given Fred my opinions and it is being tested by a colleague of mine now.

It's a very beautiful shoulder rest. Resembles a ladies shoe.

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

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cdennyb
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May 3, 2012 - 10:36 pm
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I'm guessing that it's installed on a 4/4 violin in that pic... so

 

the only question I have is:

Does it comes in a 7E?roflol

 

beautiful work man, you are a craftsman... I'd like to see if you could put some high tech lightening holes thru it and maybe get that 220 sandpaper out and soften ALL the sharp edges. Maple is so beautiful... good choice on wood grain. thumbs-up

"If you practice with your hands you must practice all day. Practice with your mind and you can accomplish the same amount in minutes." Nathan Milstein

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Joe
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May 3, 2012 - 11:25 pm
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It looks like the mother of all shoulder rests.....how well will it fit into a violin case....my case would be much too small.

BTW...Im designing a shouldrest that keeps sleep girfriends from drooling on your sports coat...:)

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ftufc
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Terry you crack my arse,,, that's a good ole American expression,,, but it's good; lmao!  I thought you were saying that the rest was a dog's genitalia, haaa, but then I looked it up in the Urban Dict and saw that it was a good thing; thank you.

Terry & eojo2 - "Would it be possible/have you considered to curve the vertical edges ( radius the corners to match a violin)" - I wish I knew what you meant by that; but here are a couple of important points - the pad raises the wood off the player's shoulder so that no hard surface touches the "delicate skin", lol; and in addition to that, the surface that contacts the shoulder is slanted downward from the neck toward the shoulder to closely match the contour of the player's shoulder, so that there are no 90 degree edges meeting the slope of the shoulder.

No patents on adjustment method because there's no mechanism, it's adjusted by simply moving the foot peg between the six holes; very simple and affective.

Regarding the weight, yeah, I don't know how critical it is either; I'm a weak and decrepit old man and the weight of the original model feels no heavier to me than the weight of a bulky scarf, even after a couple of hours of practice.

Thank you for the thoughts and your comments Terry.thumbs-up

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ftufc
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May 4, 2012 - 1:34 am
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Denny, it is installed on a 4/4 in the pic; it will fit a 4/4, 7/8, 3/4, & 1/2; I will make two other sizes, one for viola (14" - 16.5"), and may make one for smaller violins for kids.

Haaaa, don't want to see the woman who wears a 7E [hope that didn't offend you, lmao]

Thank you for the kind words; I paid special attention to the aesthetics of the piece; because putting something on an instrument as beautiful as the violin that detracted from its beauty would be very unfortunate.... and I know that there are very few beautiful rests on the market. 

Yeah, the rock maple is very difficult to work with because it's so hard, and it's kinda of expensive, but it has such a nice tight grain and it finishes so beautifully that I had to use it.

I can make a version especially for you that has recessed diodes with it's own battery pack built into the leg; the lights can be frequency sensitive and strobe and flash in sync with your playing! What color scheme, maybe Christmas colors! roflol

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ftufc
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May 4, 2012 - 1:36 am
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Joe, good point; even the larger prototype fits into my case, which is a standard sized 4/4 case; and the slimmer version will fit even more easily.

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dionysia
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Fiddlerman said
It's a very beautiful shoulder rest. Resembles a ladies shoe.

I can see it now - a whole new genre of "shoe"lder- rests for the fiddle gag market!!tongue

 

It is a really nice looking product, Fred. You should be proud.

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ftufc
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May 4, 2012 - 10:39 am
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Haaaaa, Dionysia!  YES!  That's the new name, "The Shoe'lder Rest", lmao!  It doesn't come in a "flat" only "pump"!  Btw, ARE there violin gag gifts out there,,, like the nepharious "jackaloupe", haaaa.

Thank you for the kind words; I'm not sure I'm so proud, but just VERY happy that I now have something that makes my playing/practice so much more enjoyable.

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TerryT
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May 4, 2012 - 10:51 am
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Ya mean like......

How do you tell the difference between a violinist and a dog?
The dog knows when to stop scratching.

I was born with nothing,
and to my surprise I still have most of it left!

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TerryT
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May 4, 2012 - 11:19 am
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Or......

"Haven't I seen your face before?" a judge demanded, looking down at the defendant.

"You have, Your Honor," the man answered hopefully. "I gave your son violin lessons last winter."

"Ah, yes," recalled the judge. "Twenty years!"

I was born with nothing,
and to my surprise I still have most of it left!

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NoirVelours
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May 4, 2012 - 12:33 pm
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LOL love those jokes you guys are too much! cheerleader

"It can sing like a bird, it can cry like a human being, it can be very angry, it can be all that humans are" Maxim Vengerov

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Dee Major
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May 4, 2012 - 5:32 pm
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Nice work, ftufe.  I have also tried many shoulder rests, and if I found one that was comfortable, I would not be concerned that it fit in my case, though I understand why many would prefer that it does. Good luck working out all the details. It looks promising! thumbs-up

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ftufc
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May 4, 2012 - 6:27 pm
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NV, yeah, Terry is a very funny man,,, I think Benny Hill was his uncle, lmao!  Actually, some pretty funny stuff Terry cheers

 

Hey Carole, thank you so much... you know exactly what I mean; I don't know why it's been so difficult to find a comfortable rest that kept the instrument in place & was a stable base without the use of a harness (which I've seen btw,,, interesting, but very expensive concept, and not that attractive).  I'll let you know when it's available.

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