1920s Unmarked Inlaid 4/4 Violin

This old bruiser definitely shows its age. My friend Art (who works both at The Wild Fern and doing stage-hand stuff with Mr. Rick Redington) owns this instrument and it's been in his family for ages as the story is told.

It's unmarked but probably German-made around 1915-1925. I suppose it could be a little older, though. It has lots of playwear and usewear throughout, including plenty of intentional (at the factory) "aging" and unintentional banging-about. While the front is fairly nondescript, the back has a bunch of inlaid pearl bits to give it an upscale-folksy look.

Its sound is even and clear with good separation between each string.

Repairs included: seam repairs and minor crack repairs, a neck reset, soundpost set, much cleaning, restring, setup, and new pegs for the headstock. I made those up from a set of screw-set vintage friction uke pegs to make life a little easier on Art, who's planning to play it a bit. It would be super-easy to go right back to wood pegs, however, as no reaming was involved.

Setup notes: it plays quick and fast and has string height set for easy fiddling. A taller bridge with a steeper radius to its top would be more useful for classical playing. Strings are new John Pearse perlon-cored ("Mezzo") types -- very much like Dominants in tone and feel.

It's interesting how clunky the pearl-cutting is. It almost makes me wonder if these were made-up using the scraps from cutting other pearl inlays.