Is the Dutch Violin Building School accessible by public transport?
In theory yes, but in practice it turns out that this is not feasible for most participants because Makkum does not have a train station. In case of transportion problems, please contact us. We can always check if we can arrange for carpooling with other students.
What tools do I need before I can start as a maker?
Initially, tools from the school can be used. During the process it will automatically become clear which tools are useful to purchase yourself. You will also learn about tool quality during the courses. Much depends on how much work you want to do at home, and whether you want to build a violin once, or whether you make a carreer out of it.
How many students are at work simultaneously during a lesson?
The maximum group size is normally 12 people, divided over 2 classrooms and 2 teachers. In Corona time the number of students is limited to 10.
Where can I buy the wood for the instrument I want to build?
The wood can be purchased through the school. Once a year Dirk Jacob and Rob go on a “wood trip” to Stefan Gleissner, our royal supplier in Bubenreuth, to buy wood for the school. That way you are always assured of suitable wood for your instrument.
Pupils of the Violin Making School are of course welcome to come along, to become acquainted with the selection process and to find out something special for themselves. And it is always fun.
How long does it take to make an instrument?
That's a tricky question.
A lot depends on your style and options
- do you work very precisely or more smoothly
- do you make a lot of mistakes and therefore something has to be repaired more often
- and how much can you do at home. The latter again depends on what tools you have and whether you can keep them sharp.
However, the order of magnitude is around 350 to 400 hours for a first violin. This of course becomes much less as you get more experience and routine.
A professional violin maker should be able to make a violin in 200 to 250 hours, so about 12 a year. It can be even faster, but then you start with partially or completely prepared parts. Prefabricated wreaths, milled necks and curls and pre-milled blades, they all exist, usually of good quality, save a lot of time, and relatively inexpensive.
But that is not exactly what we mean by violin making at the NVS. There we actually make everything ourselves as much as possible.
Can I cancel a course week if I unexpectedly cannot come?
Of course you can cancel, but in case of cancellations we adhere to the following rules
- ultimately 6 weken for beginning of the course, we refund the total fee minus €25,00 administration costs;
- later reservation are not eligable for refunds unless there is somebody on the waiting list to fill the gap, or if you find someone yourself