Okay, it actually arrived last month, but I haven’t had the time or inclination to do much about it until now.

I knew it wouldn’t be as complete as the Stewart MacDonald fiddle kit, but it also cost less than 1/3 as much! Downloading the “instructions” from Stew-Mac gave me an idea of what to expect from this kit. I’ll get into the issues that many most all luthiers seem to have with partially assembled kits in another post. Sigh. It’s a slippery slope.

So, what was in the box?

Front and back plates (back plate mounted to ribs with reinforcing trim already done) carved neck with fingerboard, black pegs, soundpost, bass bar, purfling and endpin –

Judging by this Flickr photostream, which shows a Stew-Mac kit right out of the box, my kit is of much higher quality, although the Stew-Mac kit does come with more pieces (which many online sources say are not good parts.)

The scroll is nicely carved with not much finish sanding to do, but the fingerboard is coated with some black gook that will have to be scraped off. The purfling grooves are nicely inlaid with the corners complete which should save a lot of time and the purchase of a dog-leg chisel. The wood on both front and back is not fancy, but I didn’t want it to be, so that’s just fine. The endpiece is plastic which is disappointing, but I ordered a set boxwood fittings as I want this fiddle to be very pale when finished –

The fittings will need to be sanded to get rid of whatever finish is there, but I expected that to be the case.

From the same eBay seller that I bought the kit from I also purchased a soundpost setter (which came with a couple of nice soundpost blanks) a fancy bridge with ebony inlay at the E string, a chinrest tool, nylon gut replacements and a bag of hide glue. Might as well go all the way with the Crazy, eh?

I won’t likely get to this project before the first of the year and will document what happens with each part as I go, so stay tuned!