I have a Jacobus Stainer violin left from my grandfather and was wondering the value. Label does not say copy. I will include as many images as you allow. Thanks. The chin rest is broken and when we moved a scratch developed. Label says 16 at the end, but I can't read any numbers after the 16
Answer Hi Scott,
Thanks for your question. You have a student-level, factory instrument. I'm afraid that it is not a genuine Stainer. Many thousands of factory instrument have been produced around the world bearing his name, and this is one of them. I can't tell you much about the quality just from the pictures, but from what I see, I think it unlikely to be of great value. The quality of both the wood and the craftsmanship speak to a lower-end instrument. However, some nice, older, factory instruments fetch as much as $2,000.00 to $2,500.00 at auction. And, if this is from your Grandfather, I'm guessing that it's been around for a few years and the wood is at least well-aged. Other factory instruments are not even worth the cost of new strings. But, I'd recommend taking it to a reputable shop for a proper appraisal and estimate for repairs. If nothing else, it will at least be a nice family heirloom.
Please Note: For an accurate appraisal of your instrument's value or history, I must advise you to take it to a local luthier or string shop for an evaluation. It's really not possible to do this with any accuracy via email.
However, I am happy to answer other questions about violins, bows, violin playing, and violin/bow repair. I can also talk with you about what bows, rosin, strings, cases, shoulder rests, etc. might work best for you and your particular instrument. (There are some great new products on the market.) I've taught violin and fiddle playing for the past 18 years and will answer questions about playing and technique.
I've been studying the violin for over thirty years. I started teaching in 1996. In addition to my training at Lebanon Valley College and at the Violin Institute, I handle violins, bows, and customer questions of all sorts on a daily basis in my shop - J.S. Fisher Violins, www.fisherviolins.com.
Organizations NAAM, ASTA
Education/Credentials I hold a Bachelor of Music degree from Lebanon Valley College, as well as certificates in violin repair, violin maintenance, and bow rehairing from the Violin Institute at the University of New Hampshire.