Making Matters: Seeing in a different light

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Andreas Hudelmayer and Andreas Hampel conclude their two-part investigation into the use of UV light by examining its use in varnish drying – and offer tips on using it effectively

Our first article on the uses of ultraviolet light in violin making (October 2021) focused on the differences in radiation strength of the three different types – UVA, UVB and UVC – and their effectiveness in tanning wood. In this second article we examine how the various methods can be used in varnish drying – even though it is much more difficult to give a definitive scientific statement on the matter. As well as the type of UV radiation, other factors will affect the drying process such as the ground, layer thickness, oil-to-resin ratio, or the presence of pigments and siccatives. Many violin makers have found their personal solutions, and we can only share our own long-term experiences with the various UV sources…

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