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3/4 size Five String Fiddle

Q: Is there any hope for an individual who needs to play a 3⁄4 violin, who is interested in the 5-string viola/violin concept? (Isn’t a 13” viola the same size as a 3⁄4 violin, yet plays the low C?) Is it possible to adjust the bridge at an angle or something, to help accommodate the string lengths needed for the different pitches?
Thanks for your insights,

A: It would be worth a try. You know that your 3/4 violin does not sound as rich and full as the same model violin in 4/4. The same would be true with a 3/4 5 string. The best thing to do would be to convert a 4 string 13" viola. The top and back of a 13" viola are the same size as a 3/4 violin but the ribs are taller, making the body thicker. This extra air space in the body improves the bass response. I would fill the four peg holes and drill five, fit a new bridge and tailpiece, and put on new strings. It might be fun to experiment with tuning the violin up a whole step. That would improve the tone and make it easy to play in A E and B.
        Angling the bridge would make it very confusing to play.  The finger spacing would be wider on the lower strings. And, if you could handle the wider spacing on the low strings why not on the upper strings also, hence, a longer scale. It would be possible to put a full sized neck on a smaller body. You can raise the pitch of a string by shortening it or by tightening it. The longer strings would have more tension on them and would move the top better.
Steve Mason

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