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Making a bass Viola da gamba strings set up/fitting

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Making a bass Viola da gamba strings set up/fitting

Postby Carl Curi » Sat Feb 21, 2015 12:40 pm

I'm making a bass viola da gamba and the information for the set up/ fitting of the strings (gut strings) is not listed anywhere on the internet and also i do not know of any book that list this info.
The information I need is very easy to measure from a division or bass viola da gamba but I do not have one or know anybody that has one. There are four important measurements and the info suppose to be
1) hight or distance in mm from the strings (at the nut) in relation to the top of the fingerboard, for both the #1 string (treble side ) and the #6 string (bass side) at the nut.
2) the hight of the strings at the end of the fingerboard in relation to the end of the fingerboard for both the bass and treble side.
3) the distance between a point at the bridge that intersects the extension of an straight imaginary line of the fingerboard and the hight of the strings at the apex of the bridge for both the bass and treble side.
4) total hight of the bridge.
I read that these 4 measurements should correlate with each other on a well set up viola da gamba.
I would really appreciate if any body could give me these measurements from their bass or division viola da gamba or if anybody could let me know where to find the info on set/up and fitting of viola da gambas.
ill try to post a diagram below about the the question of these measurements.
Thanks
Attachments
IMG_0676 copy gamba .jpg
IMG_0676 copy gamba .jpg (30.17 KiB) Viewed 3231 times
Carl Curi
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:21 am

Re: Making a bass Viola da gamba strings set up/fitting

Postby Carl Curi » Sat Feb 21, 2015 1:32 pm

Just wanted to post pics of my first viola da gamba (treble) that Im in the process of making (no purflings or ornaments because I'm still learning the basics.
It is not a copy but is based on the treble viol plans by Fred LaBarre.
I think it is a generic gamba design put together with the help of experts from the Boston Museum of fine arts and Fred collected and disseminated the info.
it does not have the finish yet because I have been waiting for the gut strings to arrive in the mail (its taking forever).
It has been such a great adventure that now I'm making a bass viola da gamba. That is why I need the answers to the questions listed above.
Hope somebody in this forums can at least give some advise on setting up and fitting of a bass viola da gamba.
Thanks
Attachments
IMG_0680 copy treble v..jpg
IMG_0680 copy treble v..jpg (38.25 KiB) Viewed 3227 times
IMG_0679 treble v..jpg
IMG_0679 treble v..jpg (32.7 KiB) Viewed 3227 times
IMG_0678 treble v..jpg
IMG_0678 treble v..jpg (28.58 KiB) Viewed 3227 times
IMG_0677.JPG treble v..JPG
IMG_0677.JPG treble v..JPG (26.05 KiB) Viewed 3227 times
Carl Curi
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:21 am

Re: Making a bass Viola da gamba strings set up/fitting

Postby Douglas Ingram » Mon Mar 02, 2015 12:02 pm

Hi Carl,

I am just about finished making a bass viol as well. I am at the point of getting all of the frets tied on, and then that's it. I know all too well that absence of information for builder of viols! I am happy to share whatever I can because we vio makers have to support one another!

One place that I have been able to access information that I needed was on a viola da gamba Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/violadagamba/

As the viol is fretted, the set up for the nut is much the same as for guitar making. You need to have at least the first fret tied on before you finalize the nut slots. Thus, the string height at the nut is, essentially, lone fret thickness, maybe a little more, as long as it clear the first fret while vibrating.

The string height at the end of the fingerboard is whatever it needs to be for the strings to not buzz, and this has a lot to do with string selection and the player preference. My suggestion would be to make up a simple bridge to work this out on, one that can be shaped to your heart's content, added to if needed, or easily scrapped and replaced before you commit to your "good" bridge, t hen copy your shape over. You may be able to set the action as low as 7-9mm, or it may be as high as 15-18mm.

The bridge location should be about 1/3 of the way up from the tail end of the sound holes for a bass viol.

What plans are you working from? Have you started yet?
I may be crazy...but I'm not insane.
Douglas Ingram
 
Posts: 120
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 3:05 pm
Location: Lorette, Manitoba, Canada

Re: Making a bass Viola da gamba strings set up/fitting

Postby Stephen Faulk » Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:15 pm

Douglass, Douglass Douglass, That first gamba was not enough for you?

Shou'nt you be out scraping cargo canoes?
Stephen Faulk
 
Posts: 27
Joined: Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:12 am

Re: Making a bass Viola da gamba strings set up/fitting

Postby Douglas Ingram » Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:21 am

Stephen Faulk wrote:Douglass, Douglass Douglass, That first gamba was not enough for you?

Shou'nt you be out scraping cargo canoes?


Pretty much, pretty much...
I may be crazy...but I'm not insane.
Douglas Ingram
 
Posts: 120
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 3:05 pm
Location: Lorette, Manitoba, Canada

Re: Making a bass Viola da gamba strings set up/fitting

Postby Frederick Battershell » Wed Apr 08, 2015 4:58 pm

Carl,that's a great looking viol! I'm in the process of building a treble also. I'm using the GAL plans.
Fred

.
Frederick Battershell
 
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Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2015 6:23 pm


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