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  #1  
Old 10-04-2009, 12:30 AM
Cliff Brennan Cliff Brennan is offline
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Default Lowendahl Basses

Anyone ever hear of Lowendahl basses? I have Googled for information and it is very hard to find anything on these.

I have run into one lately and wondering what the worth would be (restored) - anyone ever play these? Thanks in advance!
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  #2  
Old 10-04-2009, 01:26 AM
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Cool Labeled?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff Brennan View Post
Anyone ever hear of Lowendahl basses? I have Googled for information and it is very hard to find anything on these.

I have run into one lately and wondering what the worth would be (restored) - anyone ever play these? Thanks in advance!
What does the label say or how is it marked?

Commercial firm from the latter half of the 19th century into the early 20th, Berlin, Germany.

Louis L. I believe is a real maker and founder of the firm. The ones marked Hermann L. are just labels using a once known name. The 19th century name was the Lowendahl (Lowendall) Star Works.

I am writing this from home by memory. I can look it up later and give some better dates.

As far as values go I can't say. Depends on the actual bass, wood, model and sound. Also, the economy when sold or the area in the world at that time. This is not a top notch handmade product from what I have seen and read but not low end either. Mid priced factory German I would say. What ever that is.

I can tell more with pictures if you can post them.
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Old 10-04-2009, 11:45 AM
Joel Larsson Joel Larsson is offline
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Star Works!! I like the bass already.
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  #4  
Old 10-22-2009, 03:11 PM
Martin Sheridan Martin Sheridan is offline
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Default big guy

I had one once, but I don't remember now where it was made. As I recall, research showed that he had shops at various times in Berlin, Paris and London. The one I had was a cello shaped 7/8; a rather large and cumbersome bass, but it had a nice sound although difficult to play in the upper register; a good orchestra bass.
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Old 11-20-2009, 11:40 AM
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I saw and played one a few years ago in London....a dealer friend of mine had one. It was labeled 1890 Luis Lowendall - Berlin, and also fire stamped on the back button. It was a gorgeous cello model full size. It sounded great ! I was about to buy it but then I passed on it because of the cello shoulders...Recently I've found photos of that same bass being altered (shoulders reduced)...here we go : great job !
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  #6  
Old 11-20-2009, 12:38 PM
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Question full sized?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefano Senni View Post
I saw and played one a few years ago in London....a dealer friend of mine had one. It was labeled 1890 Luis Lowendall - Berlin, and also fire stamped on the back button. It was a gorgeous cello model full size. It sounded great ! I was about to buy it but then I passed on it because of the cello shoulders...Recently I've found photos of that same bass being altered (shoulders reduced)...here we go : great job !
What was the String length? That dealer sent me pictures about 4 years ago or so on this after the Cut. A Luthier in Hungary did the cut on this bass.
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Old 11-20-2009, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Smith View Post
A Luthier in Hungary did the cut on this bass.
now i remember where i´ve seen the bass before
i think he does many restaurations for tom martin and both grünerts
http://www.barnabass.hu/references_eng.html

Last edited by Anselm Hauke; 11-20-2009 at 03:28 PM. Reason: i added an "n"
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Old 11-21-2009, 01:22 PM
Eric Hochberg Eric Hochberg is offline
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I considered buying a Herman Lowendahl bass a few years ago. I think it was dated 193?. It needed work, neck brought out, fingerboard, etc. but had a really nice sound as it was. The bass was a bit too big shouldered for me so I passed on that alone. I never got it evaluated. Sometime later I saw it restored at a Chicago luthier's shop and for sale by him at $25k. I'm not sure if he found a buyer at that price.
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  #9  
Old 11-21-2009, 02:35 PM
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Lightbulb Herman?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Hochberg View Post
I considered buying a Herman Lowendahl bass a few years ago. I think it was dated 193?. It needed work, neck brought out, fingerboard, etc. but had a really nice sound as it was. The bass was a bit too big shouldered for me so I passed on that alone. I never got it evaluated. Sometime later I saw it restored at a Chicago luthier's shop and for sale by him at $25k. I'm not sure if he found a buyer at that price.
This is NO Hermann. That was a tradename bass using the old Lowendall name.
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Old 11-21-2009, 11:51 PM
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What was the String length? That dealer sent me pictures about 4 years ago or so on this after the Cut. A Luthier in Hungary did the cut on this bass.
I think the string length was a standard 104 cm when I played it before the cut down. And I believe the cut was done after the bass was sold (maybe to another dealer?) and left London.
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  #11  
Old 11-22-2009, 12:19 AM
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Lightbulb Another Dealer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefano Senni View Post
I think the string length was a standard 104 cm when I played it before the cut down. And I believe the cut was done after the bass was sold (maybe to another dealer?) and left London.
It was Tom Martin that sent me the pictures after the Cut. I don't know who had it before him.
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  #12  
Old 11-23-2009, 04:36 PM
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when I played it it was uncut and it wasn't Tom Martin to own it.
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Old 10-07-2015, 08:36 PM
Tyler Bolles Tyler Bolles is offline
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Is this the same one in Chicago for $25k? http://caravanguitars.com/product/lo...late-1800s-34/
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Old 10-07-2015, 11:19 PM
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Lightbulb Read this, from Henley.

LOWENTHAL, LOUIS (LOWENDALL OR LOWENDAHL)
Established as a musical instrument manufacturer in Berlin, 1866. Born 1836, son of a draper in a small provincial town of Northern Prussia. When about seven years of age, displayed considerable talent for music and even at that early age he constructed a violin according to his own ideas namely, from an unplaned wooden board making the neck, pegs, etc., from similar material. The strings he made from strong cotton thread, the bow as best he could, securing a supply of hair from the tails of horses in the street. His father discovering his son’s love for the violin bought him a real fiddle, an instrument of reddish tint, sounding very harsh. Commenced his musical studies in earnest in 13th year at Königsberg High School, and in 19th year was an efficient performer on the ’cello. At Leipzig, he became acquainted with the renowned instrument maker Bansch and, later, at Berlin he connected the well-known violin bow maker Heinrich Knopf, under both of whom he took the opportunity of studying violin and bow making. Opened a retail music shop in Berlin in 1855, and from that time the business expanded. Manufactured a large number of the musical instruments he sold and the business grew and prospered. In 1867 he went to the United States and set up in business. His very valuable stock of old violin wood and musical instruments, especially a fine collection of about 60 genuine old violins, soon became known among musical circles and created a sensation as many of the instruments were very costly. One of his friends and customers was George Gemunder the violin maker, who bought some of his most beautiful wood and many valuable instruments. He soon became aware that his German-spelled name was pronounced by his new American friends differently from the original and accustomed sound, so he changed it to the English version, Lowendall. After six years he returned to Europe and devoted himself to collecting on a large scale, old Italian violins which he sold very profitably in America which he visited at regular intervals. In 1873 he lived in Dresden for a short spell and in the following year visited England for the first time, and stayed for about six weeks doing very good business. For the next five years he went annually to America and in 1878 made the acquaintance of ‘Ole Bull in St. Louis who permitted him to take a copy of his famous grand concert violin which he was playing there at the time. The copy of this instrument became known as “Lowendall’s ’Ole Bull”. He thereafter divided his time between America and England, having enormous success in both countries. Awarded a silver medal at the London Inventions Exhibition and a similar one at Bologna, Italy, for a fine display of his excellent violins. In 1889 he bought a spacious four-storey building at 121 Reichenbergerstrasse, Berlin, and employed many skilled workmen.
------------------
L. Lowendahl
1880
Dresden
------------------
(branded on wood where label usually lies)
Strad modelling, finely shaped sound-holes, nice golden red varnish. Scroll of rather weak appearance because of rather deeper cutting towards throat. Tone loud, sometimes even harsh. Patented a “resonator bar for stringed instruments” in 1900. £45, 1960.

The bass above looks VERY Commercial. How is that bass marked as far as labels or brands? It looks like most other German basses of the late 19th and early 20th century. Several other Lowendall's I have seen were much finer looking. More individual in style. $25k for a Lowendall would be a nicer and older model, finer wood and violin corners.

My Uebel is this style and fully restored, selling in the upper teens. http://www.kensmithbasses.com/doublebasses/uebel/
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Old 11-08-2015, 10:52 AM
Eric Hochberg Eric Hochberg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyler Bolles View Post
Is this the same one in Chicago for $25k? http://caravanguitars.com/product/lo...late-1800s-34/
Could be, the upper rib on the one I checked out has a rectangular patch inlay. I also remember it being more yellow/blond in color.
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  #16  
Old 11-09-2015, 05:54 AM
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Question ??

25K for a plane-jane Gamba Bohemian style German bass? I don't think even the better looking Violin models have brought that much money.
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Old 11-09-2015, 09:37 PM
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Cool a Bass by Louis Lowendall (1842-1918)

I have a beautiful violin shaped model here now made in 1910. Stamped in the back of the Peg box;
-----------------------
Lowendall's

Grand
Concert
---.----
(design there)

Stradivarius
-----------------------
This is a 7/8ths (or 4/4 size of its time), 'BERLIN' stamped in the upper back button. Beautiful reddish brown varnish (the red well faded), 41 7/8" string length with a grafted neck, original scroll and gears with slight scars from a previous mechanical C-Extension. Wide lower bouts (28"), deep ribs (8 5/8") w/outer linings, slightly sloped shoulders and easy to play. Well arched round back tapered in the upper bout towards the neck, ribs are 6 1/4" wide at neck. Well flamed maple throughout with fine-medium grained spruce top. Deep warm tone with good projecting power.

This looks to be the real deal from its period, a professional orchestra bass. For more information on L. Lowendall and his son Louis Jr., read this article from the 1893 exhibit in Chicago.
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  #18  
Old 11-28-2015, 12:45 AM
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Thumbs up after the test on a few gigs..

The Lowendall impressed me so much and in many ways, that I have decided to put it thru a full restoration. I dropped it off at AES in NY last Saturday. It will then likely become my main personal bass. In the mean time (4-6 months), I am using my Pollmann.
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