Idea trading post for bowed instruments. Share photos and tips of fiddles and whatnot that you've built, acquired or seen.

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  • thinking of a two string, tuned 1? octave like a one string, can use bow to give it a dual string sound more in keeping with regular fiddle.  Sound reasonable?

  • What I meant about the fingering is that most people struggle with the half step on a single string, being so close as the feeling like full size fingers almost need to overlap a little to hit the right notes. Especially as you move away from the first position.

    I cant offer much on the tuning question, I usually trend the other way if I use alternative tunings tuning a concert uke to fifths like a mando etc....  

    I cant imagine trying to play a fiddle with re-entrant tuning, but hey..... People have done stranger things.

  • Thanks, planning on a 2 string anyway, so not worried about standard "fingering." Wondering how gCEA tuning would work, have it on my mando, tenor banjo, and of course my ukes.

  • Thanks Mark.

  • I'd suggest a full sized neck/scale length.For one thing, half step fingerings will be near impossible for adult hands on any shorter scale length. Its alrady difficult enough!.......

    What you will find is that with most "box style" builds, a shorter tail piece may be desired. 

    I strongly recommend a scale drawing/layout/plan for figuring out what is needed here. Guessing isnt gonna have a great result without a heap of luck.

  • If I use a regular unfinished violin neck, what size works best, full size? 3/4?

  • Yes got it. Thanks again!
  • @Dave Steingart: I didn't glue the fingerboard in place until I got the action pretty close to what I wanted. I think I used a straightedge to measure the string action before actually stringing it up as I usually do that when making a guitar. I taped the bridge in place temporarily when checking just to keep it from moving around. If you look at the side view of my build, you can see the shims.
  • Thank Mark, great advice and very helpful.
  • Thanks James. I thought the fingerboard is glues down. How do you shim it if it is fastened to the neck?

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Bow for cigar box fiddle

Hi everyone. Help please. Mostly I make diddley bows but recently I acquired a box that lends itself to a fiddle so I built a one-string cigar box fiddle. So far so good. However, I want to make a small bow to play the instrument (I would prefer not to use a store-bought bow if at all possible). Does anyone have experience of doing this or suggestions for what I can do? I think i can manage the wooden part but what can I use as an alternative to horsehair? Any suggestions welcome. Thanks Phil

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First cigar box fiddle

I'm planning out my first fiddle build. My son started playing violin and it's inspired me. I'm using purpleheart laminated with maple for the neck. I already have my accessories, tail, pegs, chin rest, strings, bridge, even fine tuners. I'm hoping to be able carve out a scroll and pocket out of my laminate. I was going to use Mexican Ebony for the fingerboard but I think I want to show off the neck more. That should make the radius easier to deal with. I'm planning to use the layout method…

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First "cello" build

Hi Everyone! Greetings from St. Louis. This is my first attempt at a cello. Basically are large version of the violin plans that I have but a little more challenging! Basswood body with Spruce top. A lot of lessons were learned with this one. Sorry about the headless photo, it's pretty much a bass guitar head.image.jpg

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