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“Elegant geometric construction” of the violin

November 4, 2010


In Strobel’s book called, “Art and Method of the Violin Maker”, he presents a method for arriving at the shape of a violin.  I thought I’d try it out (on a smaller scale, because I didn’t have paper big enough for a full-sized drawing) to figure out what he was talking about.  In this picture, I’m about 3/4 done.

I thought, at first, that it would only produce points that you had to join together free-hand, but instead it generates ALL of the curves!  It’s really neat how it works out.  You only need a compass and a straight-edge (besides pencil and paper, obviously.)  No math necessary.  (Yay!)

I’ve been pondering what violin pattern or template to model my violin after.  I’ll try to compare this version to other patterns I come across.

Strobel presents a different pattern to use in his “Violin Making” book, which is based off of a real instrument.  So I might use that (because it would be convenient because it has all sorts of other measurements besides just the outline shape).

Or I ordered a Strad poster of Stradivari’s 1715 “Titian” violin, because I heard that you could make violins by taking measurements from them, as well.  So maybe I’ll go that route.  (Although I have no idea how practical that is… especially for a beginner.  At any rate, I’m still waiting for it to come in the mail from the U.K.)

Or maybe I’ll go from scratch using this geometric method –which could be a lot more work!  But I might learn more along the way.  I’ve already learned several new things tonight!  I’m also a “recovering perfectionist”, but I relapse sometims ;) and the geometrical beauty of this method really appeals to me.

We’ll see… I’ll have to think about it more…  In the meantime, though, this drawing is keeping me well entertained.  :)

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