(Correspondence) [475] Varnish and Stain for Violins.

Manufacturer and builder 10, 1872

The receipt for violin varnish as used by German violin-makers is 4 parts sandarac resin, 2 parts shellac, 1 part mastic, 2 parts benzoes resin, 2 parts Venetian turpentine, and 32 parts of alcohol. The solid ingredients are first dissolved in the alcohol and the Venetian turpentine added afterward, and finally the whole carefully filtered to get rid of all dust. Brushes to be kept scrupulously clean. For staining, Campeachy-wood is used, mixed with about one quarter yellow dyewood, and boiled for two hours in five times its weight of water in a copper or earthenware vessel; no iron should come in contact with it, as this makes the solution black. The violins are colored with this siolution when well cleaned, and afterward varnished. Plans for making violins are, as far as we are aware, only published in German works; they are so elaborate that we could not possibly devote space to them in our paper, while extract would do no good; if you want to learn violin-making, we can recommend you to some ood German violin-makers in New-York, who have great reputation among our musicians, and of whom the intruments are paid by hundreds of dollars. A few days spent in their work-shops would teach you more than you possibly could learn in books and lonely experimenting in as many months, provided you have some genius of your own, so that you are able to learn easily.

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