specs for 14" viola

Please put any questions about repairing your instrument or the finish on it in our Repairs section.

specs for 14" viola

Postby Justin Tugaoen » Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:02 pm

Hello. My wife has been taking viola lessons now for the past 4 months, using my violin #2 strung up as a viola, with the low C string. Well, she wants a viola now, but since smaller violas of decent quality are difficult to come by, are expensive, and there's a luthier in the house, she's asking if I could build her one. Her teacher highly recommends against anything larger than violin size (which she's using) because of her small hands, so I'm planning on building a 14" or mayber 14.5" viola. A quick search for viola dimensions were fruitless as expected, so I'm asking if anyone has advice to give for me to build this smaller viola. I've got the violin plans, of course, which I'll follow but I was thinking of maybe making the ribs higher, and the lower bouts a tad larger, with the goal of increasing the body's volume, to improve the low tones. What do you think? And doing this, I really don't know what will happen to the tap tones, but my guess is I'll still aim for a semitone difference, as in the violin, with the back higher than the belly. Any other thoughts? Thanks for your help.
Justin Tugaoen
 
Posts: 35
Joined: Thu Feb 02, 2012 3:44 pm

Re: specs for 14" viola

Postby Tim Southon » Sat Oct 20, 2012 3:26 pm

Helen Michetschläger and Juliet Barker both specialise in making small violas and I suspect a direct request to either of them would elicit some useful information. Juliet Barker's book, 'Violin-Making - a practical guide' has viola measurements for models with body length 420, 409 and 398 mm. You could use this series to make some sensible guesses about where to go with a smaller instrument. And I should also acknowledge that I have been learning to make violins at Juliet's workshop (now run by her son, Christopher Beament) for the last 6 years. Among the instruments I have made are a 16 1/4 inch viola (inspired by the A Guarneri Conte Vitali) and a 15 inch Barker viola.
Tim Southon
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 5:09 pm

Re: specs for 14" viola

Postby Justin Tugaoen » Sun Oct 21, 2012 5:06 am

Thanks for the info, Tim. I'll definitely try to contact them and/or get the book.
Justin Tugaoen
 
Posts: 35
Joined: Thu Feb 02, 2012 3:44 pm

Re: specs for 14" viola

Postby Douglas Ingram » Thu Dec 27, 2012 2:55 pm

Its exactly issues such as this that enable the viola to have such a wide range of construction. Far more so than for a violin. Keep looking and your search will pay off.
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: specs for 14" viola

Postby Barry Guest » Wed Feb 06, 2013 3:42 am

viola.jpg

Justin,
I recently made a violin size viola for a small person and used the exact specs of a normal size violin. It is a smart sized viola for those challenged by small hands etc because a change of strings and a slight bridge adjustment will reinstate its violin credential. Two instruments for the price of one, if you know what I mean.
Alumnus of Wood and Strings
User avatar
Barry Guest
 
Posts: 115
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 10:40 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: specs for 14" viola

Postby Barry Guest » Wed Feb 06, 2013 3:52 am

........and 14" viola strings are readily available from most good music stores.
Alumnus of Wood and Strings
User avatar
Barry Guest
 
Posts: 115
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 10:40 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: specs for 14" viola

Postby John Mueller » Wed Mar 06, 2013 2:04 pm

There is more than one way to skin a cat. Be sure to check out the Riviola and the Pellagrina.

http://www.rivinus-instruments.com/Instruments.htm

http://www.rivinus-instruments.com/DesignConcepts.htm

I teach 5th grade through 8th grade orchestra and I really dislike the sound of a 14" C string.
John Mueller
 
Posts: 72
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 12:29 am


Return to Bowed Stringed Instruments and Bows

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

Your purchase from these sites helps support the MIMForum, but only if you start at the links below!!!
Amazon music     Amazon books     Amazon tools     Rockler tools     Office Depot    

The MIMF is a member-supported forum, please consider supporting us with a donation, thanks!
 • Book store • Tool store • Links • 
cron