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Old 07-07-2011, 09:31 PM
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Default Scallopini...

This Bass of mine is just coming out of restoration. It was nick named Scallopini after the 8 external scalloped corner blocks attached to the Guitar-type Ribs and joined to Top and Back Corners that overlap the Ribs. Next week I will pick up the Bass and bring it home, finally. Here are some shop pics I got thru email earlier.
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:47 AM
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Cool

The repair skills needed here were extensive. The Bass was un-playable when I acquired it and only played it for about 30 seconds before de-tuning it and putting it in the rack for repair. I have had this bass for about 3 1/2 years now. A good part of the restoration was un-doing the previous bad work done and re-repairing the Top which was in need of some serious surgery. The job took about 3 years to complete working on the slow side at first and then continuously after all things settled. The main problem was the Top which is usually the most fragile part of the bass.

The String length was longer before with the previous neck in the bass. It is now reduced to about 41" mensur with a D-neck heel. The back had some minor repairs done as well near the angle break and I also had a quasi small center 'sound-post' brace installed like on a Flatback bass. I prefer having this done on all roundbacks whenever possible. The Ribs needed some work as well. What ever work that was good was left intact but there wasn't much of that so most everything was re-done.

The Bass is now beautifully restored and I will be breaking it in daily over the Summer. I hope to play it in Orchestra next season. For now, without a C-Extension. That might be added in the future but if this looks to be ideal for a soloist, I might just leave it as-is.
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:51 AM
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what do you think about that old "bononiensis" label?
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anselm Hauke View Post
what do you think about that old "bononiensis" label?
The Label is old but that was a Lute maker. I don't know if the label is real or not but doubtful. Maybe the Label was faked when the bass was made about 200 years ago but not 420 years ago. That maker however DID produce Viola d'Gambas in Guitar Form as introduced a century earlier by Spain known as the Leg Viol. Perhaps he made this bass in the style of Brensio, his Italian name. He worked in Bologna.

On this Bass, one dealer said years ago that it looked similar to two other basses he had seen by the name of Lod Parisini. When I recently inquired about his assumption he told me about the two basses and who owned them. One of them is not far from me and when Arnold last visited me with the Storioni copy last December, he brought the Bass and owners husband with THAT very same bass to compare. The Bass has stamped on the tuner plates, Lod Parisini, Bologna 1813. It has the same body, shape, angled sloped shouldered roundback but more refined as far as the Violin shape.

About the writing on the label; http://dolcecano.blogspot.com/
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Old 07-08-2011, 12:17 PM
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thanks for the info ken, very interesting!
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:55 PM
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Lightbulb also..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anselm Hauke View Post
thanks for the info ken, very interesting!
I just found this as well;

ANTONIO OF BOLOGNA (Antonius Bononiensis). There is a Viol da Gamba by this maker at the Academy of Music, Bologna.

BRENSIO, Girolamo (BRENSIUS, Hieronymus), Bologna. Reference has been made to the Viols of this maker in the first section of this work.


The second I think is related as well.

I also found these;

Viole rinascimentali soprano e tenore, copie di Fabrizio Reginato.
Dal modello originale della viola di Antonius Bononiensis (XVI–XVII secolo) conservata presso il Museo Internazionale e Biblioteca della Musica di Bologna.


Viole rinascimentali basso e contrabbasso, copie di Fabrizio Reginato.
Dal modello originale della viola di Antonius Bononiensis (XVI–XVII secolo) conservata presso il Museo Internazionale e Biblioteca della Musica di Bologna.


These are copies of instruments by the above named maker. I show this so you can see the primitive difference and the similarities between the old Guitar model Gambas and the cornerless Double Bass which came a bit later in time.
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Old 07-09-2011, 10:02 AM
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Default Beautiful!

Beautiful bass you have there.

Did you do the restoration work Ken?
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Old 07-09-2011, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken McKay View Post
Beautiful bass you have there.

Did you do the restoration work Ken?
No, it was Robert McIntosh. I will have more pictures when we put a page up. I will do my personal set-up tweaks as usual but only as necessary. I know Robbie's work is good as I have seen it on the J.B. Allen bass Arnold used to have for sale and also on one of Robbie's own basses as well. This is the first full restoration he has done for me and at the recommendation of Arnold as he was busy with my other cornerless bass around the same time.

Ken, I said in the first post;
"Next week I will pick up the Bass and bring it home, finally. Here are some shop pics I got thru email earlier."

I thought I made it clear that it was being done at someone else's shop, as usual. If I had the time and if I hadn't given up all my tools back in 1991 I might have been doing some of my own work from time to time. Projects like these that require Top re-shaping and major breast patches should be left to the surgically inclined Luthiers rather than the general practitioners of the bass world. I have seen only pictures of work in progress on this bass but both the Hart and Storioni went thru similar surgeries as well. This bass had less done on the Back than the other two but the Top needed some serious t.l.c.. I look forward to playing it in a few days.

Also, speaking of repairing sunken Tops, Robbie knows about stress and support from another unrelated/related subject. Have a look; http://coveredbridgebook.blogspot.com/
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Old 07-09-2011, 04:40 PM
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Oh...Robbie, I met him in Kalamazoo and saw a fine bass he made.
Yes it takes a great restoration specialist to do the work right.
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Old 07-14-2011, 09:06 AM
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So, I assume you guys have been speculating WHY a bass would be built like this?? I mean, why add corners to a cornerless rib garland? What's your best guess?
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Old 07-14-2011, 09:16 AM
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Solves the picking up and carrying problem with cornerless basses.
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Old 07-14-2011, 02:44 PM
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Default why?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew Tucker View Post
So, I assume you guys have been speculating WHY a bass would be built like this?? I mean, why add corners to a cornerless rib garland? What's your best guess?
I guess so it looks like a normal bass from the front. Short of digging up a few graves and asking them, I think we just have to speculate. I have seen quite a few of these and that's my assumption. This is the only one I have seen with Scalloped blocks. All the others had full blocks added externally.

On the carrying comment, this one is not quite as easy to pick up but grabbing it under the Scalloped corner works fine as compared to no corners at all.
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Old 07-14-2011, 10:35 PM
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Lightbulb

Update, the 'E' string is pushing some air now and I have only played it for about 2 hours combined now. I would play it more but this is a busy week and have been busy every evening after work. Next week looks better for some serious break-in practicing on the Scallopini.
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Old 07-14-2011, 10:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Smith View Post
I would play it more but this is a busy week and have been busy every evening after work. Next week looks better for some serious break-in practicing on the Scallopini Parisini.
Well, we don't want you cutting any corners, do we?
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:02 AM
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Cool lol..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew Tucker View Post
Well, we don't want you cutting any corners, do we?
You made a joke.. lol..

I am thinking of a design for a new bass with some kind of rail/handle, decorative of course on the outside upper bout going across from scallop to scallop so you can lift the bass. One on either side. This Bass has already had its upper bass side corner broken off in the past most likely from being lifted with it. Now it's re-repaired with the half edging under it to keep it stronger than before. I have to lift it with the Scallop in hand to take the load partially off the actual corner. Maybe I can have this added to the bass at some future point. I have to get used to the bass first before I think seriously about any kind of modifications to this beauty.

Here's a Cornerless bass with an added handle that's pictured on the forum.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:17 AM
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Funnily enough I've never really had a problem moving/lifting my cornerless bass. I guess I hold it by the neck a bit more than I would a standard bass, that's all.

is there any evidence how Scallopini was made? Like, is it nice and symmetrical, indicating ribs formed on a mould, or is it a bit all over the place, indicating a more freeform construction? does the front outline match the back?
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Old 07-15-2011, 11:34 AM
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Cool how?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew Tucker View Post
Funnily enough I've never really had a problem moving/lifting my cornerless bass. I guess I hold it by the neck a bit more than I would a standard bass, that's all.

is there any evidence how Scallopini was made? Like, is it nice and symmetrical, indicating ribs formed on a mold, or is it a bit all over the place, indicating a more freeform construction? does the front outline match the back?
Well, one thing we can see and take a guess at is the rib and lining bends. They are scored/kerfed inside in several places with the cuts going over the rib and lining together. Meaning, he glued the linings in first and then bent the ribs with the linings already glued in place. The bass is a match 100% all around and no 2 corners or scallops are 100% exact to one another. Totally a handmade bass. I would doubt a mold was used but some jigs perhaps to hold things in place along the way. This guy made guitars as well as violins. You can see his hand/eye matching when comparing the scroll button to the scallops. Same tools as well. Definitely an interesting bass to study.

The Top is 3 pc spruce with the pith down the center of the middle piece at the ends. The Tailblock area was deemed not worthy of repairing due to several voids in the original wood so a thru patch was made in a triangle shape. The point is about 12" above the saddle and the bottom about 5 inches across, slightly askew from the center line favoring the treble side of the bass. Looking close you can see it on the right side but the joint is well disguised on the left side under the tailpiece. In this case, we went for repairing that section rather then restoring it. Restoring it might have looked more original but structurally, it would still be weaker than a fresh solid piece in that less visible area. I have the piece that was cut out and it would need several repairs in itself as well as doubling it inside. The new piece was the cleaner and stronger way to go overall. The outer flank pieces join just inside the center curve/bout and along with the center piece has some very fine grain lines in spots. Definitely a cold time in history with all the tight winter growth lines. I would also guess this bass was made buy a younger rather than older person. This because of the mix of guitar work on a violin family instrument. Not quite a refined maker yet but extremely artistic. The Ffs are beautifully curved around the eyes. One of my favorite parts of this bass in its workmanship. The most favorite is the ease of playing with the small neck block angled in from the roundback tapered to just 4 5/8" (117mm) with the ebony caps touching the neck. A joy to hold and play.

The back is old Italian Walnut with nice broad flames. The center seam was repaired a long time ago, maybe more than once. It wasn't touched this time around other then some replaced studs along the center seam. The Ribs appear to be maple, fairly thick and with some slight flame in spots. Possibly Oppio, Italian maple.
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Old 08-17-2011, 05:50 PM
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Lightbulb attribution moved to Bologna..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Smith View Post
The Label is old but that was a Lute maker. I don't know if the label is real or not but doubtful. Maybe the Label was faked when the bass was made about 200 years ago but not 420 years ago. That maker however DID produce Viola d'Gambas in Guitar Form as introduced a century earlier by Spain known as the Leg Viol. Perhaps he made this bass in the style of Brensio, his Italian name. He worked in Bologna.

On this Bass, one dealer said years ago that it looked similar to two other basses he had seen by the name of Lod Parisini. When I recently inquired about his assumption he told me about the two basses and who owned them. One of them is not far from me and when Arnold last visited me with the Storioni copy last December, he brought the Bass and owners husband with THAT very same bass to compare. The Bass has stamped on the tuner plates, Lod Parisini, Bologna 1813. It has the same body, shape, angled sloped shouldered roundback but more refined as far as the Violin shape.

About the writing on the label; http://dolcecano.blogspot.com/
I recently sent pictures of this bass to a very experienced and knowledgeable Bass maker/Dealer in Italy and he thinks it's from Bologna. So like the Parisini I examined from Bologna(1813) and the old label in the bass as well from Bologna (dated 1590) I think it is at least as possible that the Bass is from *Bologna so I will go with that for now. I still believe the bass is from 1790-1800 at the latest.
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Old 08-20-2011, 06:22 PM
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Question Calling all "Eagle Eyes"

Ok guys, look at these pics for comparison and tell me if the heads or bodies look at all similar. These are 3 different basses shown, 'borrowed' from 2 other websites on-line.



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Old 08-23-2011, 11:05 AM
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Well ... I'll stick my neck out and say no, I don't see enough similarities between the photo pairs to think the basses are from the same model or form or maker's hand. Yes there are some similarities but enough differences as well to cancel them out, in my mind.

That long head is interesting; its length and line doesn't seem to match the body it is attached to! (and no I realise it's not attached to the cornerless below it!)
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