Making Matters: A Major Sticking Point

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Instead of discussing the right way to secure a crack with reinforcements, shouldn’t we try to achieve the strongest possible joint in the first place? Christian Schabbon presents the results of his investigation into different types of glue

One of the most essential materials for violin makers is animal-derived (reversible) glue. I have asked many luthiers and restorers what they considered to be the qualities they look for in good glue, but I never had any definitive answers. So, having battled for many years with glues that were difficult to use and possibly not as strong as I hoped, I embarked on a voyage of discovery within the mysterious world of glue.

I have tested brands of commercially available glue from five of the leading companies, using various glue:water ratios, gluing and breaking lots of samples of spruce and maple, and recording the results on spreadsheets. From the outset I should say that my sample size was too small to give definitive results, and I would not claim my research has any scientific value…

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