It is interesting how, over the 10 years Sandarac has been in business, the focus of the business has changed from mostly classical to mostly specialist guitars.
That said, we still have a good collection of reasonably priced violins, violas, cellos, and double basses; all of which are hand-made in the traditional manner in Europe.
A recent piece in The Strad looked at the way the classical world views instruments not made in the usual regions, and by the big recognisable names, and how good traditionally-made mid-priced ones can sound.
Having two instruments in the Trinity Conservatoire and one in the Royal Philharmonic, not to mention numerous ones on tour with various professional musicians, we can only agree wholeheartedly with their sentiment.
You can check out our instruments, made in the Orpheus Valley (where Stradivarius himself harvested his spruce and the same forests from which the woods for our instruments are taken), by following the links: Violin, Viola, Cello, Double Bass.
Our #WednesdayWisdom today is about time and timing.
However, we’re not talking about music timing and time signatures but the time you can expect to wait for an instrument.
If you take an instrument from stock then you can have it pretty much immediately. In fact, if you call into The Old Dairy to buy it you can walk out with it there and then.
If it is something we don’t currently have in stock we can contact our luthiers and see whether they have one in their showroom. In which case you need to allow a week or so for us to receive it, check it over to ensure it hasn’t been damaged in transit, and then get it to you.
However, because we work closely with our wonderful luthiers you have the option of having pretty much whatever you want hand-crafted to order. Should you decide to take this route then you’ll need to be patient as it’ll take a minimum of three months to lovingly create your instrument.
This means if you are thinking of getting an instrument for Christmas it is too late to have one made to order and you will need to take one from stock. The good news is that, as with previous years, we will hold it for you at The Old Dairy up to Friday December 23rd (24th by prior arrangement only).
We often get asked about the strings on our instruments and why we only use certain ones. The answer is very simple; the luthier selects the strings he believes is best suited for the instrument. If we need to restring, we use the same strings.
We don’t sell D’addario strings or any of the ‘usual’ brands because you can often get them cheaper on the internet than we could buy them. Instead we sell the specialist guitar strings as recommended by our luthiers. In addition we seek out the scarcer quality, European-made, strings that are unlikely to be found on Ebay such as the lovely hand-wound jazz strings that were made in Venice we discovered whilst at MusikMesse. They’re a little more expensive but superb quality. We have very limited quantities of them so contact us directly if you’d like to try them.