Baroque and Modern Stringed Instruments

Wendy's Viols, Charlie Ogle Viols, Chinese Viols, Vielles

Drop-Down MenusTop of Page

New Items


All Recorders, by Size/Price Contact


Used Instruments


Upcoming Workshop Venues


Lazar's Early Music

Martin Shelton

761 N. Cherokee Rd, Suite C

Social Circle, GA 30025

(770) 366-8596

(866) 511-2981



Violas da Gamba

The largest stock of viols in the country!

Charlie Ogle Chinese Viols


Soft Cases

Instrument Stands

Pirastro Strings



I normally have a few dozen viols in stock at any one time.



Wendy's Viols

Lu-Mi Chinese Viols


6 string bass, Richard Meares,
1660 (3 sizes)

7 string bass, Nicolas Bertrand,
1704 (3 sizes)

Tenor, Henry Jaye (2 sizes)

Treble, Henry Jaye,
1620 (2 sizes)

Pardessus, 6-string in g

Violone in A/Bass in D (all gut)

Violone in G, Busch

Details and prices below

Pirastro Strings

Instrument Stands


Wendy 7-string viol


(small price)

Wendy's Viols (Lu-Mi Strings) are offered in North America exclusively by Bill Lazar of Lazar's Early Music. Commissioned by Finnish gambist Markku Luolajan-Mikkola, these instruments are hand-made in Beijing, China by master Wang Zhi Ming, who learned violin-making from his father, who studied classic German methods. 

These viols are made from very high quality wood using methods faithful to the authentic early string light construction techniques, giving them a good timbre and a beautiful appearance.  The ribs, backs, and necks are made of figured sycamore, the tops and soundpost plate of spruce, and the pegs of ebony.  The fingerboards are made in four parts, spruce in the middle, thin plates of sycamore on both sides and a thin ebony or bird eye maple veneer on top, and tailpieces of sycamore with ebony or birds-eye maple veneer.  Intricate purfling adorns the tops and backs. All wood is fully kiln-dried for stability in extreme climates.

The smaller viols are modeled after instruments by Jaye and Meares; the 7-string bass (similar to the one shown above) is after Bertrand.  While these are not exact copies of historical instruments (for instance, the belly is not bent), these are real instruments--an excellent value--beautifully built with a sweet, bright sound. You may find less expensive viols, but not with this degree of resonance and craftsmanship. Wendy has played concerts worldwide on these instruments.

And now it may be a lot harder to find cheaper, high quality viols.  Master Wang now offers several new bass models, and a less expensive line of viols to complement these superlative instruments.  The less expensive instruments are made with the same care; the differences are as follows:

Feature Decorated viols (1,2,3,4,5,6) Plain viols  (1,2,3,4)
Wood Highest quality, finest grain aged woods Plainer, aged woods, although tonally almost as responsive
Varnish Thick and glossy Simpler, matte finish
Fingerboard/tailpiece Ebony veneer (1,2), ebony veneer w/burled maple veneer border (1,2), or burled maple veneer (1,2) Solid plain maple (1,2)
Purfling Ornate with decoration, top and back Single line, top and back
Pegs Ebony Rosewood


Lu-Mi bass viola da gamba


Lu-Mi bass viola da gamba

A carved dragon head on the peg box.

Lu-Mi bass viola da gamba

Decorated 6-string bass with carved pegbox and 'rose'

carved scroll

Carved pegbox (1,2,3,4,5)

A lovely specimen -- a 6-string bass viol after Barak Norman with carved pegbox (1,2,3,4,5), belly decoration, and ornate purfling on the back.

Decorated instruments in stock will have various combinations of belly decoration, ornate purfling, fingerboard/tailpiece woods and wood figure.

All instruments are sold with a 14-day, full-money-back guarantee from the date you receive it if you're not satisfied for ANY reason.

All sizes are available now; I often have them all in stock. For the latest information, contact Martin at

January, 2019

(For orders outside North America, contact Markku Luolajan-Mikkola.)

Important Deadline: Special Orders for Wendy's Lu-Mi Viols must be placed by February 28th in order for manufacturing and shipping to be completed before their summer break.

length, mm
length, mm

Upper/middle/lower, mm

Picture Price with case*
Decorated Plain
6-string pardessus de viol in g, w/soft case 310-315 320 155/113/195 1,2,3,4,5 $2775  
Treble viol in style of Henry Jaye 366 362 173/120/211 Treble $2875 $2150
Large Treble viol after John Hoskins '1609 400 384 190/156/211.5 1,2,3



Tenor viol in style of Henry Jaye 560 535 250/177/308 1,2 $3800  $3050
Larger tenor viol in style of Jaye 577.5 553 258/183/315   $3800 $3100
6-string bass viol after Barak Norman '1692 658 633 279/204/332 1,2,3,4,5,6 $4400


6-string bass viol after Richard Meares 693 664 304/220/365 Bass (6-string) $4400




6-string consort bass viol after Bertrand-Meares, in padded soft case. Ideal for Jenkins and Lawes 6-part music.** (picture shows dragon head, not included in listed price) 745 715 340/236/413 1 $4500  
7-string bass viol after Nicolas Bertrand '1701 680 or 700 693 323/233/394 1,2,3,4 $4800 $3750
7-string bass viol after Bertrand, larger model '1720, in soft case 725 715 340/246/413   $4550  
Violone in A could be used also as all gut bass viol in D., in soft case 800 783 365/263/433 1,2,3 $5250  
Violone in G after Busch, 890 mm string length, soft case 890     1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 $12175  
Carved pegbox and scroll (1,2,3,4,5) for any decorated viol $650
Carved dragon head & pegbox for any decorated viol $650
Figured snakewood bows from Master Wang's shop for all sizes of viols $450
See more bows on my bow page  
Padded soft case   1,2,3,4               treble/tenor/bass $150/$175/$190

Fiberglass cases bought without a viol (limited supply) Tr/ Ten/ Bass/ 7-StrBass


     * Prices include hard case, except where indicated; shipping extra

** Works emphasizing the low register, and works with fast passage work in the low register, do well on larger basses like the 74.5 cm string length consort bass.  Fretwork has used such large viols for years for such repertoire.

        Viols are available with a soft case, or no case at a reduced price.

        We also have Chinese Baroque cellos, violas and violins.

About Lu-Mi Strings

by Markku Luolajan-Mikkola

As a teacher of viol at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, and when conducting workshops and master classes elsewhere in Europe and in the U.S., I have noticed too often that students don't have a proper viol. And some who would like to play don't have a viol at all. Ten thousand dollars or more for a custom-made viol is often too much for a beginner, and the viols that have been for sale for $2000 or $3000 have been of too low quality. Many who are preparing to be professional musicians and would like to play viol as a second instrument often develop their skills so rapidly that they will need a better viol after some months. The waiting lists of the best makers was too long, sometimes eight to ten years.

I have always been interested in instrument making, and I have asked numerous makers to build cellos, baroque cellos and all kinds of models of viols for me and my students and friends. I had noticed that Chinese modern makers and workshops produce really good-quality modern cellos and violins, and I began searching for a workshop that could produce viols and other baroque stringed instruments.

I found luthier Wang Zhi Ming in Beijing. He is also an excellent violinist and use to play in one of the Beijing Symphony Orchestras His father learned violin-making after the best German tradition, but naturally he had to stop working during the Cultural Revolution. He began again in the late 80s, but he has now retired. Wang and his father have trained and employed more than 10 makers in a workshop. German tradition misunderstood or didn't care about some Italian traditions of violin making such as cross arching of the belly and back. Wang has visited Cremona a couple of times to to update his skills.

I gave Mr. Wang all the information I could about viol making: I sent numerous drawings and more than 100 emails. Later, as the viols began to take shape, I spent time in Beijing to help solve some problems. This process is still going on. I have visited Beijing to check new models which have been built, and to plan with Wang how to make some more new models. We also discuss almost weekly details on how to make Lu-Mi instruments even better.

We don't make exact copies of old models, but all our instruments are certainly real viols. The 6-string viols are made after the English makers Jaye, Meares and others, but, for example, the belly is not bent. The 7-string bass is made after Bertrand. The Chinese makers use a drying room before the parts are glued together, so all of their viols should endure humidity going down to 30 percent.

I have been very pleased with the results. In fact, these viols don't feel and look at all like "student" viols. I have even given a couple of concerts with one of their 6-string basses. But I must say my Jane Julier 7-string bass is more than worth the price, as well as my old 17th Century 6-string bass viol.

The bows are made in another workshop by Mr. Zang. I have never met him and Wang helped me to communicate with him to get 4-5 different models of baroque bows. I sent some of my own bows as samples, but Lu-Mi bows are not exact copies of them. My bows are fluted but the Chinese refuse to make fluting after trying it for some bows. I personally think snakewood is better when it is not bent at all or has very little bend, whereas pernambuco needs some bend to make the bow firm enough. The first set of Lu-Mi bows were bent but nowadays they are not bent at all. I bought the first 150 kg of snakewood in half logs for Zang but now he has his own stock of it. I bought my snakewood from Germany but it grows only in South America (I think).

Wang is also making violin family baroque instruments. At the moment there are several models available and more to come: Violins after Amati, Guarnerius, Stainer or Stradivarius; four sizes of violas, corpus 387-444 mm by Gasparo da Salo and Stradivarius; cellos after Amati, Montagnana or Stradivarius and a large cello which could be tuned in B flat.

Bill & Wang

visit to Lazar's shop, August 2009

Fiona, Bill, Wang, Liling

visit to Lazar's shop, August 2009

Top of Page

Detail from Ely Cathedral Stained Glass Museum

Musicians, Dutch, 1700s


Charlie Ogle's Chinese Violas da Gamba



6 string bass, Richard Meares

6 string bass, Barak Norman

6 string bass, Collichon

7 string bass, Bertrand

Tenor, Barak Norman

Treble, Barak Norman

Pardessus, Guersan

Violone, 89 or 95 cm string length,
G or D tuning

Details and prices below

Pirastro Strings

Instrument Stands



Charlie Ogle's


Violas da Gamba

Ogle Chinese Viol Back

I offer these viols and bows made in China by highly skilled instrument makers under the direction of Charlie Ogle, using high quality materials. The soundboards are hand carved spruce, the backs and sides are figured maple.

These are good instruments, at great prices. They are well designed, well made, and properly set up by Charlie Ogle. Both students and advanced players will find them suitable for all uses.

Charlie Ogle's Chinese viols are sold with a two-week return policy. If you do not like an instrument you may return it (in its original condition) for a full refund, for any reason, within two weeks of receiving it.

All instruments come with a padded soft case, with external compartments for a bow and music: Pictures: 1,2,3,4

Bass viol complete package. Richard Meares model bass viol (69 cm string length) with case, snakewood bow. Everything you need! $2500




Measurements (mm)



String, mm






Pardessus   Guersan, 5 string         $1600
Pardessus   Deluxe Guersan, 5 string         $1xxx




360 or 380



Treble   Deluxe 360 or 380       $1950
Alto   for A tuning, deluxe 480       $1950







Tenor   Deluxe 520       $2200
Tenor   Standard large 600       $2000
Tenor   Deluxe large 600       $2400

Bass, 6-string


Richard Meares




    w/ebony fingerboard, tailpiece         $2200
    w/decorative purfling, ebony fingerboard, tailpiece         $2800

Bass, 6-string


Barak Norman






w/ebony fingerboard, tailpiece




  1 w/decorative purfling, ebony fingerboard, tailpiece         $2800

Bass, 6 string






Bass, 6-string  

John Rose Model Victoria and Albert Bass Viola da Gamba

730       $2600
Bass, 6- or 7-string 1  Festooned John Rose Ashmolean model (available soon) 730       $3200

Bass, 7 string






Bass, 7 string








Bass, 7-string   Small 670       $2200
Bass, 7-string   Small, deluxe 670       $2850



G or D

890 or 950

890 480  







We also have Chinese Baroque cellos and violins.                                    Top of Page


Soft Cases





Treble or Alto






Bass, 6-string



Bass, 7-string



D or G Violone   $265


Charlie Ogle's

Chinese Viola da Gamba Bows

bow frog
bow tip

Bass viol bow, Snakewood, 73 cm long, approximately 85 grams, $425

Ogle Chinese Snakewood Tenor viola da gamba bow frog
bow tip

Tenor viol bow, Snakewood, 71 cm long, approximately 65 grams, $425

Treble viol bow, Snakewood, $425 (in stock)

Please ask for additional information.

Top of Page


All instruments are sold on approval.  If you don't like the instrument for ANY reason, you may return it in new condition for a full refund within two weeks, less shipping costs.

Although I try to keep instruments in stock, I don't always have all models.  Instruments not in stock can be ordered.  The customer will be notified of any delays.

Violones are currently only available by order.  Unless one happens to be in stock, expect a 3-4 month wait for the instrument.


The instrument is warranted against any defects in material or workmanship for a period of one year.  Adjustments to setup are covered for the same period.  The customer is responsible for shipping costs for any adjustments after the first 90 days.

Chris English Viol Bows

Chris English is a Port Townsend, WA highly skilled bowmaker.  His bows are finely crafted using the highest quality materials, personally chosen from such places as Brazil, Spain and France.  His acquisition and study of materials to learn their characteristics, his interaction with musicians, and his study of bows in collections and museums are all integral factors in his personalized and successful approach to bow making.  His bows are highly regarded in the viola da gamba community.

Bows may be tried on approval.

Pictures Model Decorative Options Price
  Blackwood Mastodon Ivory, Ebony Frog $1500
  Ironwood Mastodon Ivory, Ebony Frog $1500
  Figured Snakewood Mastodon Ivory, Ebony Frog $1500
1, 2 Highly Figured Snakewood Mastodon Ivory, Ebony Frog $1500

Approximate Specifications (Examples)

Size Weight Range Weight (grams) / Bow Length (cm) / Free Hair Length (cm)
    Example #1 Example #2 Example #3
Treble 50-55 53 / 71 / 58    
Tenor 58-65 59.5 / 70.5 / 57.7 62 / 71.1 / 58.2  
Bass 78-86 82 / 75.5 / 61.2 79.5 / 76 / 61.5 82.5 / 76.3 / 62

All sizes are the same price.  Other decorative options are available

Top of Page


This is the very first viola da gamba to appear on a painting in history. The painting was made around 1475-85 for the Hermitage of St. Feliu (St. F�lix) in X�tiva (Valencia, Spain).  From Jose Vasquez

Instrument Stands

Top of Page



Picture Gamba/Cello/Guitar Stand--Heli A very unique instrument stand designed especially for acoustic guitars. Works very well for viols, cellos, etc. 5-way width adjustment. Compact folding design makes it easy to transport and store. Exclusive non-marring material to protect instrument finishes is molded onto stand during the manufacturing process. Available in 4 colors, as well as cork.  Works well for treble, tenor and most 6-string bass viols. Blue $26.99
Wt: 1.0 kg, H: 340 mm.; fits body depth of about 5"


Picture Gamba/Cello/Guitar Stand--Heli Same as above Black $26.99


Picture Gamba/Cello/Guitar Stand--Heli Same as above Red $26.99


Picture Gamba/Cello/Guitar Stand--Heli Same as above Green $26.99
K&M 17580-000-95 Picture

Gamba/Cello/Guitar Stand--Heli

Same as above Cork $26.99


Picture Gamba/Cello/Guitar Stand--Wave10 Easy-to-use stand with an exceptionally light construction. The use of high quality corrugated plastic material ensures a very stable stand that is genuinely lightweight. The special mechanism allows a setup and folding with one flick of the hand. The support arms are lined with a soft plastic material to protect the instrument finish. The stand can be adjusted to fit various instrument sizes. 5.3"/135 mm depth; 1 lbs. 4 oz. Black $20.00
Peak ST-10 Picture 6- or 7-string bass gamba stand Very stable a-frame style guitar stand that folds up easily into a compact form. Adjustable arms allow you to size the stand to fit almost any instrument, with a little extra depth (~5-3/8"/136 mm) to fit some 7-string viols. 1 lbs. Black $26.99

Pirastro Strings

Top of Page

Catalog Number String Description Price
267020 SET   $
Pirastro TREBLE-GAMBA Strings
1531 D1 GUT $18.82
1532 A2 GUT $20.26
1533 E3 GUT $23.65
2534 C4 GUT/ALU $38.07
2535 G5 GUT/SIL-PLATED $39.04
2536 D6 GUT/SIL-PLATED $41.90
253020 SET of 6   $181.74
2543 E3 GUT/ALU $
2544 C4 GUT/COP-ALU $
2545 G5 GUT/SILVER  $
2548 G5 GUT/COPPER  $
2546 D6 GUT/SILVER  $
2549 D6 GUT/COPPER $
Pirastro TENOR-GAMBA Strings
1551 G1 GUT $27.11
1552 D2 GUT $29.34
1553 A3 GUT $33.48
2554 F4 GUT/ALU $50.76
2555 C5 GUT/SIL-PLATED $46.17
2556 G6 GUT/SIL-PLATED $54.30
255020 SET of 6   $241.16
2563 A3 GUT/ALU $
2564 F4 GUT/COP-ALU $
2565 C5 GUT/SILVER $
2568 C5 GUT/COPPER $
2566 G6 GUT/SILVER $
2569 G6 GUT/COPPER $
Pirastro BASS-GAMBA Strings
1571 D1 GUT $30.04
1572 A2 GUT $34.62
1573 E3 GUT $42.02
2574 C4 GUT/ALU $56.36
2575 G5 GUT/SIL-PLATED $59.06
2576 D6 GUT/SIL-PLATED $60.86
2577 A7 GUT/SIL-PLATED $72.13


SET of 6 257030 heavy/stark also available; 257010 light/weich no longer made $282.96
  SET of 7   $355.09
2583 E3 GUT/ALU $
1574 C4 GUT $
2584 C4 GUT/COP-ALU $
2585 G5 GUT/SILVER $
2578 G5 GUT/COPPER $51.44
2586 D6 GUT/SILVER $
2579 D6 GUT/COPPER $57.38
2587 A7 GUT/SILVER $
2589 A7 GUT/COPPER $
259020 SET    $
Pirastro VIOLA D'AMORE Strings
1511 D1 GUT  
1512 A2 GUT  
1513 FIS3 GUT  
2514 D4 GUT/ALU  
251020 SET    
2525 A5 GUT/SILVER  
2526 D6 GUT/SILVER  
2527 A7 GUT/SILVER  



Korg Chromatic Tuners

Top of Page

    Description Price

AdjustRite Musician's Chair--adjustable height in one inch increments

Regular model: -06MC 15" - 20"

Tall model: A-10MC 21" - 26"

Sturdy, comfortable, foldable

  • The "ADJUSTRITE" Musician's Chair just may be the greatest musician's chair ever!

  • The padded back gives you enough support to help you sit correctly, making it very comfortable for those long gigs or practice sessions.

  • You can easily adjust the height of the chair, so it will fit both children and adults equally well.

  • Folds up neatly and easily for convenient transport and storage

  • This well-designed, comfortable, sturdy, easy-to-use, adjustable folding chair will be a great addition to your music room or studio

  • Buttons on the legs adjust the leg height in 1" increments, so you can adjust the chair to suit yourself

  • Adjustable so seat is level, tilting backward or tilting forward for best playing ergonomics for your instrument

  • It's great for the viola da gamba to get just the right height for optimal thigh slant



Regular $179

Tall $209


  Adjust-Rite Cello Stool Adjustrite Musician's Stool for Juniors-adjustable height in one inch increments

A-09MS 12.5' - 14.5"

  • Adjust the cello stool using the peg-in-hole leg adjusters, or make fine adjustments using the screw-in foot caps (up to 1/2 inch additional height).

  • Seat is upholstered in high-quality, durable black fabric.

  • Stool frame is very sturdy with strong legs and a wide base.


K&M 17591-000-55

Big Picture

K&M Stand Wave is an easy-to-use guitar stand with an exceptionally light construction. The use of high quality corrugated plastic material ensures a very stable stand that is genuinely lightweight. The special mechanism allows a setup and folding with one flick of the hand. The support arms are lined with a soft plastic material to protect the instrument finish. The stand can be adjusted to fit various gamba sizes from treble to 6-string bass. $14.99

K&M 17580

A very unique viol stand.  5-way width adjustment. Compact, folding design makes it easy to transport and store. Exclusive non-marring material to protect instrument finishes is molded onto stand during the manufacturing process. Available in 4 colors. Set includes 3 black, 1 blue, 1 red and 1 green stand. $26.99
Korg CA-30
  • Chromatic pocket-sized auto tuner

  • Adjustable calibration range (410-480 Hz)

  • Built-in reference tone (12 notes/A4, Bb4 switchable.)

  • Auto power off and memory backup

  • LCD needle meter w/manual and auto modes

  • Input receptacle for pickup (not included)

  • Batteries included!

Korg OT-120 Tune string and wind instruments in a flash with the OT-120, a new tuner that combines the accuracy of needle-type meters with superior functionality, wide tuning range and a new, sleek vertical design. $99
Korg OT-120


Chromatic tuner with a wide 8-octave detection range that supports band and orchestra instruments

Dual display provides both a needle-type meter and an LCD for excellent visibility

Sound Back (Patented: Patent pending) mode plays a reference pitch for the note that's closest to the input pitch. The meter indicates the discrepancy between the input and the correct pitch

Multiple Temperaments: supports historical tunings

Transpose mode is convenient for wind instruments

Choose from 3 levels of needle response speed (slow, medium and fast)

Both auto and manual tuning modes are provided

Built-in reference tone plays in a 5-octave range

Broad range of calibration (349 Hz--499 Hz)

Built-in mic supports acoustic instruments

Use with an optional clip-on pickup for accurate tuning in noisy environments

Energy-saving design for long battery life (approximately 100 hours)

Durable soft case and batteries (2-AAA) included


More information

Tuner Pickup    SignalFlex universal tuner pickup.  Clip on to bridge of stringed instrument to tune without interference from outside noise or other instruments. Usable on all tuners I sell $19.50
Korg TM-40 Korg TM-40

Korg TM40 Chromatic Tuner and Metronome

Both tuner and metronome functions operate simultaneously or independently.

More information


Instrument Care

Top of Page

Quick Care Summary

  • When you are not playing your instrument, keep it in its closed and latched case.
  • In the winter, use a humidifier.
  • Don't cook it.
  • Don't freeze it.
  • Keep it clean.
  • Don't drop it; hold it by the neck only.
  • Use the shoulder rest properly.
  • Keep the bridge straight.
  • Lube the pegs.
  • Take care of the bow. Loosen the hair when you are not playing and have it rehaired once a year.
  • Only allow qualified technicians work on your instrument.

Best Care Practices

  1. When not in use the instrument should be kept in its closed and latched case, and this means during rehearsal breaks too! If small children have access to the case it should be locked; however no lock will keep a determined thief or vandal from opening your case. If the case cover has a zipper, remember to unzip it all the way, otherwise the zipper will fail prematurely.
  2. Extremes of temperature or humidity are not good for instruments. Rapid changes in humidity can cause open seams, cracks in the finish, and cracks in the wood itself. During dry humidity periods a tubular instrument humidifier should be used. Please refer to instructions for its use, at right. Excessive humidity is also a problem, but it is more difficult to control, keep your instrument out of the basement in the summer.
  3. Never leave your instrument in a hot car or you will get a big surprise! The temperature inside a car directly in sunlight can exceed 150 F. This is also why you should never store any musical instrument in the attic. The varnish can be damaged and instruments assembled with improper glue can literally melt apart. Conversely, a cold violin can be problematic as well. If your instrument gets below 40 F, allow it to warm up gradually in its case before you remove it. If an instrument warms up too fast the result is similar to the above humidity problems.
  4. Always wipe the rosin off of your instrument after you have finished playing. Accumulated rosin can damage the finish. Use a soft 100% cotton cloth like an old non-terry dishtowel or part of an old sweatshirt. If rosin cannot be removed, take your instrument to a qualified repair person where the rosin will be chemically removed. I no longer will sell or give formulas for violin cleaner because cleaners that actually work can often cause problems in inexperienced hands. If your instrument looks dull or covered with fingerprints you may use a commercial violin polish; however, be aware that these products contain wax and many of them do not dry thoroughly. Always apply sparingly and remove as much polish as possible with a soft cotton cloth. If the finish prints easily, then there is still too much polish on the surface.
  5. Hold your instrument by the neck only. If you have a fine instrument the acids and oils in your perspiration can quickly wear away the varnish. Touch the top as little as possible. If you use a shoulder rest (most players use one today) be sure to attach it and remove it safely, placing the body of the violin against your torso and holding the neck in your left hand. Attach the rest with your right hand. That way no one can knock the violin out of your hand in the typical frenzy of a rehearsal. If the shoulder rest has latex covered feet, replace the latex when it becomes cracked and dry.
  6. Be sure to keep your bridge straight. The best bridge will warp if it is not maintained. Your teacher or repair person will show you how to do this.
  7. If your pegs stick during high humidity and you cannot move them do not force them or attack them with pliers! You could crack or break off the peg box. Take the instrument to your repair person, as he or she knows how to loosen them safely. Use lava soap or commercial peg dope to lubricate sticky pegs.
  8. Always loosen your bow hair when you are finished playing. Be aware that humidity has an effect on the length of the hair. Sometimes during the dry season you will not be able to loosen the hair all the way. If it is a little too tight do not worry, but if the hair is tight enough to play, take it to a repair person and have the bow rehaired. When not actually playing always hold your bow at the frog with the tip pointing up; do not use it as a pointer, a cane, or a sword; and certainly do not bang it on a music stand to applaud a soloist! Also, do not over rosin. If you had enough rosin on your bow yesterday when you finished practicing, there is no reason to add any today. Have your bow rehaired at least once a year.
  9. If you have a problem with your instrument, take it to a competent repair person. Be advised that the vast majority of music stores do not have a qualified repair person even though they advertise repairs. Before you entrust your instrument to anyone, be sure to inquire about his or her qualifications. Be sure to examine your instrument frequently for any problem like warped bridge, open seams, cracks, etc. Small problems do not become big ones unless they are neglected

Instructions for using humidifiers: Dampits and Humitrons

  1. The indoor relative humidity in Central New York often falls far below safe levels for string instruments during the winter months (Nov. to April) The use of a tubular humidifier greatly reduces the detrimental effects of dryness (open seams, cracks, low string height, etc.).
  2. Start with cold water. Place the humidifier in the stream and squeeze water through the holes into the sponge inside. Remove it from the stream and squeeze out the excess water. Dry off the outside. Water should not drip from the humidifier, it should feel like a piece of limp spaghetti. Over-filled Humitrons and Dampits can cause major water damage inside your instrument. Provided instructions seldom warn against this problem.
  3. Place the humidifier in the lower left f-hole. Be careful of the point on the f-hole when removing the humidifier. The instrument must be in its case for the humidifier to function.
  4. The humidifier should be filled every day, since you are not putting that much water in it in the first place.
  5. If tap water has a high mineral content you will need to replace the humidifier once a year. Use of distilled water will greatly increase its life.

From The Violin Shop of Santa Fe


Ordering Information                                                                                                                                                Top of PageSubcontrabass recorder in Bb, by Adriana Breukink

Email, call or write me to order or discuss your needs.  You can't order from my web site--I like to discuss your order with you first.

Many people have told me how much they enjoy my bringing my store of instruments to workshops so that they can try many different ones over the course of a few days.  This makes their decision-making process much easier. 

Obviously, when ordering by mail, I can't send you my whole store of instruments to try, but I do try to come as close as is reasonably possible.  All instruments can be ordered on approval.  I am happy to send out two or more instruments for you to compare.  For instance, I could send out two or three rosewood altos, or rosewood, pearwood, grenadilla and  boxwood altos for you to sample.  Then you can play them (please, no more than 15 minutes per day, just as if you were starting the breaking-in process), let your friends try or listen to them, and let a teacher try them.  This gives you some feedback on your choice, and gives you more confidence in your decision. 

I want you to be satisfied with your instrument, and feel under no obligation to buy it if you don't like it.  A normal time for deciding is approximately one week.  I, of course, expect any returned instruments to be in like-new condition (see below).  Whether you decide to buy an instrument or not, all I ask is that you pay for shipping costs both ways.

Once you have decided on a purchase, I will bill you. 

Email, call or write me to order or discuss your needs.  You can't order from my web site--I like to discuss your order with you first.


I had an instrument returned that smelled of cigarette smoke.  The customer did not smoke, but a visitor did.  I haven't yet succeeded in removing the smell.  I can't sell a smoky instrument, so I do not want to send instruments on approval to households where people are allowed to smoke.  If a smoky-smelling (or mildew-smelling) instrument is returned to me, I will not accept it, and you will have bought it, since it is no longer in like-new condition.  In my experience, hardly any recorder players smoke, so this should be a rare occurrence.  So please, no smoke, mildew or lipstick, and brush your teeth before playing--all things you should do if the instrument were yours.  I hope you understand this policy.


I don't give out customer contact information to other companies.


I accept personal checks, money orders or cashiers checks, all in US denominations only.  
I accept Visa, MasterCard, and Discover. VisaMasterCard  


Martin Shelton

761 N. Cherokee Rd, Suite C

Social Circle, GA 30025

(770) 366-8596

(866) 511-2981


OPEN BY APPOINTMENT-Call--I'm here most of the time, 6-7 days a week


To order, email, phone or write me your request.


I don't give out customer contact information to other companies.

Warranty                                                                                                                                                                                Top of Page