If a violin is structurally sound but has been stored for many years, how would you know if it is worth buying and restoring. I’m told it needs cleaning and new strings, I imagine bridge reset or replaced. Currently has only d and g strings. Stamped 1842 on the side. Stead copy. Any thoughts?
It depends on how much you want to spend on a set of strings ($100 synthetic core set for me) and a new bridge fit specifically for your violin ($100 from a luthier.) You could get it appraised and see if it is worth restoring or if it has sentimental value. I paid a luthier $1400 to overhaul mine. It’s a hand-made German instrument that has a deep warm tone. When my parents bought it from Rolland Feller-Violin Makers, the luthier said I could play it until I became a professional. I would need a better violin at that point. Looking back, I could have bought a better violin for the price of the overhaul, but I love my violin and have been playing it for thirty something years. I could afford it and can play it another 30 years. If you’re not sure, try going to a music store and playing a few and compare sounds of cheap $200 instruments and $500 instruments. I prefer the higher quality instruments because the violin has over 70 pieces of wood, and the sound is better if the instrument is well made. If you can’t tell the difference between a cheap violin and an expensive one, go with the best one you can afford until you can tell the difference. If you want to rent an instrument, they usually go for around $25 a month and you could get used to the sound and what you do or don’t like about the sound. Hope this helps!