The color is developing nicely on the Red Fiddle, a soft, honey blond with accents on the darker grain lines. The picture shows the results of three coats of shellac applied over the sugar seal.

The belly texture is everything that I hoped it would be, grain lines slightly raised in what is called a”corduroy” finish, very unlike the sprayed factory finish seen on the usual mass-produced fiddles you can find everywhere for $100 or less. I couldn’t be happier!

This project has been having problems with contamination on the finish – hair, dust, grit, small bugs – everything you don’t want to see on the finished fiddle, and progress has been slow, which is irritating in itself. The weather has not been helpful, either, with plenty of rain and temperatures hovering just under 50*F – not ideal for curing varnish. The color will be applied soon, weather be damned! I hope I don’t live to regret those words…