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Thread: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

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    Default Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Where do you get that piece of rubber or fabric that the bowlback players use to keep their instrument in place while sitting or standing? What is it called and what is it made of?
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    Unfamous String Buster Beanzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Some people use chamois cloth others are using those non-slip tray mats which I think you can get in kitchenware or hardware shops.

    I don't use anything but the shape of the mandolin design which sits perfectly if held in a typical old style Italian position.
    Eoin



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  3. #3

    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Grip-It Rug Pads... enough for several lifetimes.
    http://www.amazon.com/Ultra-Stop-Non...ywords=rug+pad

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    Troglodyte Michael Weaver's Avatar
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    Be careful with the non-slip tray mats. Some of them contain plasticizers that will leach out onto your finish. Read the cautions stated on the product. They will state "may damage finished wood products." Using a rug mat is probably the best option considering they are made for treated wood floors. Also the chamois is a good idea.
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    "Where do you get that piece of rubber or fabric that the bowlback players use to keep their instrument in place while sitting or standing? What is it called and what is it made of?"

    http://trekel.de/de/zubehor/9473-zup...th35x35cm.html

    Standard equipment for German classical mandolinists, and far superior (in my experience) to the hardware store alternative.
    Robert A. Margo

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    This Kid Needs Practice Bill Clements's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Here's Trekel's email address to order zupfertuch:
    info@trekel.de
    Maren Trekel will assist you, and you can use PayPal for your purchase.
    Wrap the cloth around the back of your mandolin for best results, instead of laying it across your lap.
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    Registered User avaldes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Quote Originally Posted by Marty Jacobson View Post
    Grip-It Rug Pads... enough for several lifetimes.
    http://www.amazon.com/Ultra-Stop-Non...ywords=rug+pad
    I saw a lute recital by Hopkinson Smith and he had pieces that looked exactly like the rug pads. A lute is just a big bowl-back, right?

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    Troglodyte Michael Weaver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by avaldes View Post
    I saw a lute recital by Hopkinson Smith and he had pieces that looked exactly like the rug pads. A lute is just a big bowl-back, right?
    No, you're thinking of a flute.....
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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    I used to use the rubber shelf liner and alternatively the chamois. I would also advise not leaving any of the rubber or plastic stuff in your case with your instrument. I stopped using them because it was just one more thing to remember to bring and figured out a stable way to hold the bowlback.

    What is it about the German cloth that is so superior and would make it worth it to order at added expense and trouble for those of us here in North America? I found the rubber shelf liner is plenty non-slip when I needed that. You can buy one roll for pretty cheap and get multiple pieces to share with your friends. And it comes in various pleasing colors.
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    I cut a piece of the liners that my husband put inside his tools drawers in his garage
    http://www.homedepot.com/p/Con-Tact-...stomer_reviews
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Quote Originally Posted by josie View Post
    I cut a piece of the liners that my husband put inside his tools drawers in his garage
    http://www.homedepot.com/p/Con-Tact-...stomer_reviews
    The drawer liners such as in your link are deadly to lacquer and modern urethane finishes. The urethane category may include some modern "oil varnish" finishes. Note Michael Weaver's first post in this thread. I wrote an article on finish damage from plasticizers for Mandolin Journal a few issues back. It may be archived on the CMSA website, dunno for sure.

    A few years back, one person who plays a mandocello which I built showed me a "mysterious" mesh pattern on part of the body finish, assuming that it was due to some deficiency in my finishing process or materials. At that time, I had no clue about the origin of the problem, but the mesh pattern sent off alarm bells. Later in the same convention, some people showed me the mesh drawer liner, touted as the best thing since sliced bread for stabilizing Neapolitan mandolins in one's lap. I did notice the similarity of the mesh pattern. When I returned home, I went to the Home Despot to check out the stuff myself. Reading the label (always a good thing to do) put the pieces together for me. There was a clear warning that the mesh "may damage lacquer and/or urethane finishes." Another player said that he had been using the drawer liner mesh on a Calace and a Vinaccia Neapolitan mandolin with no apparent harm. Both of those early 20th century instruments have French polished shellac finishes. I would say that the drawer liner mesh may be OK for those, though I am not sure for the longer term.

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    Registered User sgrexa's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Good info Dave. If these "drawer liners" are similar to the rubber mats you place under an area rug to keep them from slipping on hardwood floors I have first hand experience with them damaging the urethane finish on my floors. There is a very clear mesh pattern which luckily, is hidden by the rug for now. Why they would make something designed to be used on finished wood floors harmful to them is a bit puzzling.

    Sean

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    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    FWIW, I got to see & meet Caterina Lichtenberg, w/ husband Mike Marshall, at a house concert last week. She mostly played a blonde bowl-back. w/ a cloth or chamois to give it some lap traction. Funny thing is that it was blue, matching her dress, and I really only noticed it at the beginning, when it had been sitting on her empty chair. After that, it pretty much melted into the background, regardless of her standing, talking, etc.
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  18. #14

    Default Re: Pieces of Rubber or Fabric?

    Chamois work great! I also use one when I play treble viola da gamba. Never ever harm!
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