Tuesday, 29. March 2011 11:12
You may remember Tim Black a long time Silverton Colorado resident and violin maker from an earlier post “Silverton Music Magic Maker“, about “Baby” the child sized violin that he built for a young girl who is growing up in our town. Well Tim has not been slacking this winter, instead he’s been chasing a dream and a vision for Silverton’s school children. He wanted to donate one of his creations so that children attending school here would have opportunity to experience a classical journey through music. He conceived an idea to build a cello. He had never built one before, and began the journey with little financial support in the beginning, but little by little the town rallied and thus a dream was born.
CREATING A FIRST CELLO
By: Tim Black (Guest Author)
I made a mold from the cello I restored back in 2008.
Some modification was required to make the mold conform with standard measurements.
The construction of this cello was a community effort. My labor and skill was a gift. It was also a gift to me: an opportunity to build a first cello.
As contributions arrived I collected materials. Venture Snowboards (another artisan presence in Silverton, Colorado) donated a piece of poplar laminate for the back of the cello. The hardwood set that goes into a cello is the biggest investment. Ventures gift freed funds for other purchases.
Completing the form work was the first step. I had thinned some poplar for the sides and created some new tools as I went. Once the form work was complete, I could trace the outline to the plates. I had to get creative in marking the plates for carving because of the limits of my tools. The profiles were marked in the plate halves before they were joined. I had also learned that clamping the glued halves was unnecessary. The glue drew the halves tightly together as it dried.
This was the first instrument on which I got to use my new luthiers planes. The edge work and coving was more detailed than previous instruments I had finished with only scrapers.
Assembly required bigger clamps. I was working with larger glueing surfaces and big pieces to clamp. I had several “clamping rehearsals” to be sure I could place the clamps fast enough within the working time of the glue.
(Fitting The Neck)
I was following several currents of thought on finishing when I decided to add oil colors to varnish. The wood was thoroughly sealed and I applied a glaze of yellow ocher. A couple coats of a pumpkin colored glaze muted the bright yellow creating this handsome blonde finish. The result is this fine copy with a number of improvements over the original with a big mellow sound. This cello a gift to Silverton School, should give generations of Silverton children a great start learning to play.
(Dreams Do Come True)
Tim Black and the Silverton School Cello A giant contribution to our youth. You make us proud Tim!
I’ve heard this instrument sing. I’ve heard it compared to others even its 2008 restored forefather and there is no comparison. This cello sings deep soulful tunes that carries you away to times and places long forgotten. An amazing gift to our youth.
Popularity: 2% [?]