Sunday, March 21, 2010

Tour of the Aquila Strings Factory

My best selling oud strings are Aquila, made my Mimmo Peruffo and company at Aquila Corde Armoniche in Vicenza in Northern Italy. The Italians know a thing or two about making strings for musical instruments. As you'll hear in the video, most of the strings you buy, whether they be LaBella, D'Adarrio, Pirastro, originated in the same town in Italy. Also note the historical string engravings and plates from past centuries. Neat!

Mimmo also makes gut strings. I do not sell these, since they are quite expensive. But they are, without question, the best-sounding strings I've ever used. If you've never tried gut strings before, I suggest you try out a set.

In this video Mimmo shows the process for making Nylgut, the synthetic gut strings that Aquila is famous for.

Here Mimmo shows the beginning steps of how real gut strings are made.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Oh, You Speak French? Oui.

Well, actually I don't speak French. But I really like French woodworking. I work on a couple French workbenches almost daily. I stumbled on these videos today. These videos remind me of the great period of 18th c. woodworking in France. Andres Roubo, Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin. I bet things have changed very little with some of these techniques since these folks were tooling around Paris.

Note: Blogger doesn't scale the videos properly. Double click them to see the entire frame.

Marquetry and Veneer work.

Straw Marquetry

Gunstock work

Wood clogs. This man's family has been making them continuously since 1734.

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