Jump to content
Gibson Brands Forums
Sign in to follow this  
tvguit

Virzi?

Recommended Posts

Just curious, what are everyone's thoughts on the Virzi's used in some of the Loar F5s? Can you still get a new Gibson mandolin with a Virzi?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Didn't know if you knew about this but luthier Roger Siminoff has some info on Virzi products of the past on his site. He owns some of Loars personal instruments and I would think Roger is the authority on the subject. I don't know if they are being reproduced by anyone . Rogers sells parts on his web site also. http://www.siminoff.net/pages/virzi.htm

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That is a great site. Thanks for sharing it with me. I have never played a mandolin with a Virzi but I would sure like to come across one sometime. It doesn't seem like the greatest thing to put in a mandolin but it is interesting and a cool part of the Loar "mystique" I think. Thanks again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As you may know, the Virzi tone producers were licensed from the Virzi Brothers, who were violin makers, during the Loar era (more or less). Loar was a big fan of the Virzi plates, which tend to give an instrument a warmer, more complex tone but at the expense of some volume and projection. Lloyd Loar, of course, was a concert-style mandolinist, so his tastes didn't necessarily run toward the sound Bill Monroe eventually cultivated that now more or less defines the F-5 style of mandolin. Volume and projection win out over warmth and complexity in the eyes (and ears) of most modern bluegrass mandolinists. And, in fairness, even without a Virzi, a good Loar has a lot of warmth and complexity to it.

 

Loar-era F-5s without the Virzi often are more valuable than ones with a Virzi, and there have been lots of Virzi-ectomies performed on those instruments over the years by players who want a more cutting bluegrass chop from a vintage Loar. Many mandolinists find them especially appealing on oval hole instruments and F-4's in particular can sound exceptionally sweet with a Virzi.

 

I've never heard of a factory-installed Virzi on a recent Gibson mandolin, although now as in the past, nothing's impossible with Gibson. There are custom builders who will make you an instrument with a Virzi-style of plate under the top. You'll find a ton more information if you search the Mandolin Cafe'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...