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Breaking in a new violin


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#1 jovy

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 01:58

Hi! I just bought a new violin which I was told that I need to break in. I am not an advanced violinist in any way and I have yet to learn how to produce a good tone. I am wondering if the tone quality of my violin will become worse when I keep playing it since I cannot produce a good tone yet? Should I practice with my old violin until such time I can improve my tone and use the new violin?
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#2 tulip21

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 03:41

Hi, No, the violin should not become worse as you play it over time unless it is a poorly made instrument. Violins may even sound better as they're played over time, but this varies from violin to violin. As your technique gets better, so will your sound.
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#3 jovy

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 03:47

So even if I play badly, that will not erode the sound quality of the violin?
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#4 tulip21

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 04:32

So even if I play badly, that will not erode the sound quality of the violin?


No, I don't think so. Your playing ability will not affect a violin's breaking-in process. What's most important is that you take good care of your violin.
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#5 JimD

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 08:16

As I understand it, playing a new violin 'loosens up' the stiffness in the new wood so that it can vibrate more freely, which both improves the sound and makes it play more easily (less effort required to get sound from it). I can't see how good or bad playing can affect this process.


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#6 Violin Hero

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 10:14

As I understand it, playing a new violin 'loosens up' the stiffness in the new wood so that it can vibrate more freely, which both improves the sound and makes it play more easily (less effort required to get sound from it). I can't see how good or bad playing can affect this process.

This is correct. A new, decent quality violin should improve over time. The ability of the player does not affect this. 

 

This probably won't be the case with extremely cheap instruments a.k.a violin shaped objects, but otherwise an instrument should improve over time so long as it is looked after properly.


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#7 jovy

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 12:15

Thank you so much for your inputs! I'm so relieved to know that my violin won't be jeopardized due to bad playing!
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#8 Violin Hero

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 14:30

The most important thing is that you maintain the instrument well. Wipe rosin off after each session, change strings when they get worn out, learn how to sort out slipping or stiff pegs, check the bridge is straight etc..


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#9 chris13

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 16:04

I am trying to keep my daughter's long neglected violin in serviceable order. How do I stop the pegs from slipping ?


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#10 tulip21

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 17:07

I am trying to keep my daughter's long neglected violin in serviceable order. How do I stop the pegs from slipping ?


Add some rosin or peg compound to the pegs.
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#11 chris13

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 17:29

Thank you.


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#12 LoneM

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 10:58

Something else you can do to "break in" your violin is hang it on the wall or put it on a shelf near a hi-fi speaker - it will vibrate in sympathy with the different frequencies.  When I first started playing in an orchestra I was amazed at how much my violin responded to the music when I had in on my lap while counting rests.


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#13 Misterioso

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 12:26

 

I am trying to keep my daughter's long neglected violin in serviceable order. How do I stop the pegs from slipping ?


Add some rosin or peg compound to the pegs.

 

 

Hidersine Hiderpaste is good for this.


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#14 chris13

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 12:52

Thanks, will buy a little tin when I visit our local music shop next week  to pick up my latest order.


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#15 Gordon Shumway

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Posted 27 February 2019 - 17:03

I've got some Hidersine pegdope - recommended to me by an ex cellist - but my teacher says graphite pencils are just as good. She uses Wittner geared pegs, however. I assume the idea is just to push the pegs in harder if they slip, and the dope makes turning them smoother, but I'll try to remember to ask that question explicitly.

 

I asked it. She said good pegs don't slip. Pushing them in harder may be second best to buying a good violin, otoh she'd never seen a pegbox fail as a result of pushing pegs in. Good pegs don't slip? Presumably, though, you still have to push them in hard enough first, however hard that is!


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