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First Violin
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Kevin M.
Nicholson, Pa

October 16, 2011 - 9:31 pm
Member Since: September 10, 2011
Forum Posts: 1969
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My nephew's children came here about a month ago and his daughter, who is going to be 6 in February, showed great interest in my violins while she was here. She convinced me to let her try it and I was very surprissed at how well she treated it and was able to play the open strings.  Everyday she was here she would ask if she could play it so I want to get her a violin, probably a 1/4.  I'm not sure about which one to get.  Do I get her a painted one or a more tradition finish.  Do I spend a lot on it or buy a cheap one and set it up properly myself.  I want it to sound good because I feel that a child with a bad sounding instrument will be less likely to play it because they can't make it sound good.  I am hesitant about a $55.00 Cecilio from KK.  I have opened small violins before and found them to be just garbage.  One had a belly that was close to a quarter inch thick.

Your thoughts are welcome.

Sofia Leo
Springfield, Oregon
Honorary advisor

October 16, 2011 - 11:01 pm
Member Since: April 6, 2011
Forum Posts: 466
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Little girls love the painted fiddles! Pink, sparkly, and add a fairy and it will be a hit smile

She's 6, so it's not likely that she'll be playing such a small instrument for very long - save the big bucks for later and get one that you would be willing to tune up.

I'm sure you could return a fiddle that you didn't like to KK for a refund if it was garbage, but somehow I think it will sound just fine - they've got a good reputation...

Mary in Springfield, Oregon

Fort Lauderdale
October 16, 2011 - 11:32 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 13281

I don't know much about small violins and feel like they all sound bad. I am sure that there are differences but I have yet to hear one that actually sounded good.

As far as which one to buy maybe a cheap violin that you adjust or change the sound post and bridge if necessary and possibly even get new synthetic core strings to match.

Also many shops accept used small violins as trade-ins and I would imagine they are easier to get at good prices. How about Ebay and Craigslist?

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


October 16, 2011 - 11:34 pm
Member Since: July 6, 2011
Forum Posts: 969
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Hi, your nephew's daughter is a month younger than my daughter, whose favorite color is pink and i almost bought her a pink violin. If you check under topics:

what should I get eight year old daughter and should i get my daughter a cheap violin to start with (something like that) and other topics like colored violin, you could find some information about getting cheap violin for young children.

i almost bought a pink violin for my daughter but ended up getting a CVN 500 1/4 size. Fractional violin are small and thus its sound is teeny tiny. i'm afraid the paint may even muffle the sound more.


i don't know about a $55 violin from KK, but I did ordered a CVN 100 natural color, it looks okay and playable (of course in someone who don't think much about cheap violin would not think much about it:P). The CVN 500 1/4 is pretty good, still sounds tiny, but it looks great! If I didn't get the CVN 500 I could have got the MV 500 1/4 that looks almost identical to CVN 500.


My suggestion is: since you have been restoring violins, may be you could get a 1/4 size kit and make her one, it would be even more special! if the kit is not perfect, you could perfect it. and you could make the color any color you like or she likes (you could always check with her to see what color she likes).

Central Valley CA
October 20, 2011 - 12:49 am
Member Since: October 14, 2011
Forum Posts: 11
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In the last group I was in our celloist loved lavender.  She removed the black off of her fingerboard, pegs, and tail piece.  Then used some high gloss lavender paint to cover said parts.  We practiced twice a week for a little over a year after she had performed the modification and the paint job remained unblemished.  I concur with pky.  Since you have experience with the delicate work of refinishing a violin I would recommend getting a 1/4 you like and accenting the parts of the violin that will not affect the sound overtly.

"The circumstances of ones birth are irrelevant, it is what you do with the gift of life that determines who you are." (Mewtwo, Pokemon the First Movie)

Wisdom can come from anywhere, make sure you use both ears to listen for it.

November 3, 2011 - 10:58 pm
Member Since: November 1, 2011
Forum Posts: 3
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I realize this thread is afew weeks old and you've probably decided by now, but through I'd throw in my experience with a cheap KK music 4/4 violin shaped object.  A few years ago I bought one (I was going for the $55 one but there was some backorder snafu and they agreed to ship me the next grade up $70? one in place of it). My sole reason for buying was a way to just spend time with my daughter as she learned (on her much better) violin, so we could practice & learn together.


I was actually surprised at how good it worked out as an absolute beginner instrument. There were however 2 big items I fixed. 1) The pegs slipped like crazy. Sandpapering the tapers and some peg drops largely solved (good enoguh for me, but wouldn't be for a child who needs someone to tune every day). 2) The strings were absolutely brutal on my fingers. They were essentially sharp wires. I bought some cheap strings and it completely solved that near-bleeding finger problem.  Suprisingly the bridge & soundpost setup was good. Overall sounded a little harsh.  


So just one persons experience with a cheap KK. Peg slip fix & new strings were mandatory. Other than that, certainly worked for me as my focus was on hitting the notes as opposed to worrying about harshness. I'd think your great niece would outgrow the 1/4 (and a 2/4 and a 3/4...) long before she could even comprehend her instrument is harsher sounding than someone elses.

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