Saturday, March 19, 2016

How to Reset a Violin Neck

Resetting a violin neck is a difficult procedure that takes a certain level of expertise and experience. There are several reasons you might replace the neck. If you wish to use a thicker fingerboard or the neck is incorrectly mounted or slightly askew, you should consider undertaking this task. Make sure to weigh the pros and cons to determine that the risk to the instrument is worth this invasive operation. Changing the neck will change the sound of the violin.

Step 1 Secure the ribs and the upper block of the violin to ensure they are securely glued to the back and top of the violin. This should already be the case, but sometimes the violin top becomes loose.

Step 2 Make sure there are no nails or screws connecting the neck to the bottom from the inside. This is usually only the case with cheaper violins.

Step 3 Saw the heel of the violin neck around the heel to the bottom of the neck. Make sure you saw the entire neck off.

Step 4 Ensure that the heel of the neck doesn’t connect to the button of the violin. If it is connected, you will tear off the top when you try to remove the neck.

Step 5 Hold the violin against the bench and gently hit the top of the neck at the nut with a free hand until the neck comes loose.

Step 6 Apply an 8- to 10-millimeter piece of wood onto the back of the heel. A thinner piece of wood will create a nominally brighter sound than a thicker piece of wood. The thickness on this part of the violin does not contribute majorly to the sound.

Step 7 Glue the wood to the back of the heel using a small amount of wood glue. With the heel placed back in position, you can now trim any excess wood that peeks out from the sides of the neck with a fine razor.

Step 8 Replace the neck on the instrument using glue or replacing the original screw that held the neck to the instrument.

Take your time working on the violin since mistakes are very difficult to correct. When resetting a neck, there is always the possibility of destroying your instrument. Do not try this yourself if you do not have experience in repairing instruments. Hire a qualified repair man or take a course at a college to learn to repair properly.