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Having Trouble Seeing the Strings
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MoonShadows
Stroudsburg, PA
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February 5, 2019 - 6:07 am
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I find as I look at the strings, they are quite blurry. I wear progressive glasses, but the strings are too close for me to focus. I imagine in time, I won't have to look at the strings, but as a complete beginner, I am finding this difficult. I was thinking of picking up a pair of those drug store cheapy magnifying glasses that will help me see more closely. Has anyone else experienced this problem? What did you do to compensate? Thanks.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks

There are only two things keeping me from becoming a great fiddler...My right hand and my left hand. 

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cid
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February 5, 2019 - 7:07 am
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@MoonShadows Tell me abkut it! I use bifocals, need in between for when I am play. I tried using some old reading glasses I bought at Walmart. None of them were exactly right.

Last Summer I measured what distance I needed to cover. I brought my music book in to my eye appt snd got a pair of glasses for when aimdo music. They work for my strings and my being able to actually see if a note is an “F” or “G”, pesky little staff line! 

If buying the reading glasses does not work, and you can see the music fine, bring the violin to your appointment next. Have your optometrist figure out a pair of music glasses for you. If you also need them to read the music, bring in a stand a sheet music. I let my optometrist know I was doing this, worked out beautifully.

They call me, “Mellow Cello” 

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MoonShadows
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February 5, 2019 - 7:12 am
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Not a bad idea. Thanks @cid. I'm more interested in seeing the strings right now. Just so happens I have my annual eye exam next week! That would probably be the best place to start.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks

There are only two things keeping me from becoming a great fiddler...My right hand and my left hand. 

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bocaholly
Boca Raton, Florida
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February 5, 2019 - 7:13 am
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Sounds like a solution worth a try. I use off-the-shelf 2.75 - 3.00 readers for "real reading" and step it down to 2.00 - 2.50 for playing since the sheet music is further from me than a book I would hold. At 2.00 I can't exactly delineate every crease in my knuckles, LOL, but it's good enough to see where my fingers are going 🙂

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Irv
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February 5, 2019 - 7:17 am
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Hi @MoonShadows and others.  Two options.

If you currently have a valid eye prescription, get a set of computer distance (24 inch focal length) glasses.  I have an inexpensive pair that I got on line and they are great.

If you lack a prescription, get a set of Adlens John Lennon Varible Focus Lens.  No longer made but I found them on eBay.  The seller will instantly discount to $25 with free shipping (I just purchased a pair).BA49D035-8E3B-4C6A-8301-426BF4EC9977.jpeg

Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.  —Werner von Braun

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

Experience is a difficult teacher, it gives the test first and the lesson after.

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Gordon Shumway
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February 5, 2019 - 7:20 am
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Bifocals and +1.5 clip-ons for reading music or looking at the fiddle.

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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MoonShadows
Stroudsburg, PA
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February 5, 2019 - 7:22 am
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Thanks for those tips @bocaholly and @Irv. I guess this must be a common problem for us older folks and those who already wear glasses. 

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks

There are only two things keeping me from becoming a great fiddler...My right hand and my left hand. 

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Gordon Shumway
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February 5, 2019 - 7:35 am
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Try wearing bifocals and using a mirror compass, lol!

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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Irv
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February 5, 2019 - 7:35 am
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Hi @MoonShadows and others.  I divorced myself from progressive lenses years ago.  I took pity on my brain for having to live with a blurry confusion.  Stairs and the like are a hazard enough without that foolishness.

Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.  —Werner von Braun

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

Experience is a difficult teacher, it gives the test first and the lesson after.

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Gordon Shumway
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February 5, 2019 - 7:36 am
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If by progressive lenses you mean what we call varifocals in the UK, I wore some for 2 years and gave up because I hated them so much.

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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MoonShadows
Stroudsburg, PA
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February 5, 2019 - 7:48 am
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By progressives, I mean bifocals, but there is no distinct line on the lenses. They just "blend" between the closeup and far away. It took me a few weeks to get used to them when I first got them, but I have been wearing them for 10 years now with no problem...unless something is ultra-close like the strings when I look down at my fiddle.

Never thought of clip-ons for my glasses. Thanks, @GordonShumway.

Gone for most of the day, now. I have jury duty. Yuck.

Jim

Fiddling for Older Folks

There are only two things keeping me from becoming a great fiddler...My right hand and my left hand. 

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cid
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February 5, 2019 - 7:50 am
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@Irv I did the same thing. I felt like I was always a fish looking through the bowl. I was always banging them and getting them out of alignment.

Switched to bifocals. Fell down the stairs, the bifocal line was too high. Right where I needed to see. I noticed that in a few other instances but ignored it. Got new bifocals with the line lowered. Fit nice now.

Moved out of the raised ranch with all those steps to a single floor ranch, No more steps!

Started cello, couldn’t read the music. Struggled throuh it. Finally have a pair of glasses for music, they work for my strings and the reading of the music. The music, being such short pieces right now, is memorized fairly quickly, but I like to site read a piece every day, and I have to get it memorized, so being able to actualkh see if a note is on a line or in a space is kind of important.

One day I forgot to pack my music glasses in my bag for my lesson. My instructor told me the notes. LOL I could not heg the stand close enough and not bang it.

I wanted to get a pair of funky red ones because red is my favorite color. Didn’t have that color in a frame I was willing to spend money on. The one red frame was a lot of money, better spent on good strings or good bows. Settled on a modest shade of blue pair. 

They call me, “Mellow Cello” 

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Irv
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February 5, 2019 - 7:51 am
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The Adlens glasses are a trip.  The interior of the lens is filled with an optical gell that gets added or removed with a rotating plunger.  The plungers can be snapped off once sharp focus at a set distance is obtained, or kept available to focus at various distances.

Technology was funded by NASA to meet space travel requirements, and is extensively used to meet health care requirements in developing countries.

Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.  —Werner von Braun

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

Experience is a difficult teacher, it gives the test first and the lesson after.

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Gordon Shumway
London, England
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February 5, 2019 - 7:52 am
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MoonShadows said
By progressives, I mean bifocals, but there is no distinct line on the lenses. They just "blend" between the closeup and far away

Yes, we call them varifocals in the UK. In theory they are for middle distances too, but I suspect that your prescription needs to be very specific indeed for them to work three-way like that. Also I found that they gave me eye-strain reading, as their reading section isn't well defined enough.

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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cid
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February 5, 2019 - 7:58 am
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@MoonShadows @Gordon Shumway We call them “progressives” in my area of the US. Not sure if they are referred to in another way in other areas. I know “soda” and “pop” are not the same throughout the states. When we took road teips with the kids we always ordered soda pop so we were coverd! First place we ran into it was in Pennsylvania, we were confused that they did not know what we were talkimg about, LOL

They call me, “Mellow Cello” 

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
February 10, 2019 - 8:55 pm
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One alternative is not having to look at the strings. Fortunately, I still have great reading vision but I don't think I look at the strings when I play.

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

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