Hi folks! Bill J wrote:
>I remember Wittmayer with a Grimaldi copy that went out of tune when
>you picked it up. While it is normal - or should be - that picking
>up the front right corner causes the pitch to drop, it should go
>back up when the thing is put down again. This one didn't and it
>didn't like having the tail lifted, either.
This brings me to a very intersting point. How closely should one
copy an old instrument? As far as I am concerned, if the resulting
instrument is unstable to the point of being unusable, the original
maker will not be blamed, but _I_ will be!!!! Look at the Handel
House instrument! I am quite sure that had I made such an
instrument, I would have framed it in a manner that I KNOW will
behave itself (without my departing from the norm of early 18th
century English framing). After all, what tonal difference will the
inclusion of a couple of upper-level braces make? Very little if any
- and the resultant instrument will be far more stable and usable.
Some years ago I encountered an instrument made in the early 70s by a
Well Known Maker, which was a disaster. It had to be placed on the
stage exactly where it would be used. If, after tuning it were picked
up, you could hear the strings go "chink, chink, chink" over the
bridge pins, and the tuning was kaput, muerte, deceased - totally
unplayable. Such an instrument does no good to the maker, or
harpsichords in general.
A guy who has one of my instruments after the 1720 brass-strung
Hancock tells me that he can move it in his van to a location - and
not have to tune it at all other than touching up a few notes in the
extreme treble when he gets there - and he's pretty fussy about his
tuning too! I shudder to think what would happen to my reputation if
it were otherwise, for I'm sure he wouldn't hesitate to place the
blame for its instability if it couldn't be trusted.
My rant for today!