Please consider registering

sp_LogInOut Log In sp_Registration Register

Register | Lost password?
Advanced Search

— Forum Scope —

— Match —

— Forum Options —

Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

sp_Feed Topic RSS sp_TopicIcon
What to watch out for in used instruments?
What to avoid buying a used viola? Where's a good place to look?
Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 (0 votes) 
March 7, 2015 - 7:34 pm
Member Since: January 17, 2015
Forum Posts: 10
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Someday, not anytime soon - for now I'm very happy playing my 'silent' electric viola while I learn how to play the damned thing! - but eventually I would like to get a decent acoustic viola. A used student model would be fine, or better still, a nice instrument that is cosmetically beat up but still playable. I don't ever expect to perform in public, so it would be strictly for my own enjoyment and obviously I will never need an expensive viola. Anyone have any tips on buying second hand instruments in this category? What are the things to look for and what things to avoid?


FWIW, I live over a hundred miles from the nearest music store, and while there are some pawn shops closer I don't think I've ever seen a viola come up for sale. You see fiddles now and then, and even stand-up basses, but not violas. Chances are I would have to buy online.


March 8, 2015 - 1:06 pm
Member Since: July 7, 2013
Forum Posts: 97
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Have you checked out the student models over at Fiddlershop? Mike is great helping with any question and Fiddlerman have a bunch of videos of the instrument. I recently purchased an intermediate level instrument and so far love it... 

March 8, 2015 - 2:27 pm
Member Since: January 17, 2015
Forum Posts: 10
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

That's certainly a thought. When I finally do buy one it will probably be in the $150-200 range, so a student model if it's decent would certainly fit the bill. And I would much rather give Fiddlershop the business than Fleabay!

March 20, 2015 - 4:07 pm
Member Since: October 2, 2011
Forum Posts: 520
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

We would love to find a viola at that price range that we feel is consistent and adequate but for now, your best bet, and it's a c--p shot, would be something like a Cecilio.

We don't test and adjust them because our profit margins are so low that basically the extra shipping costs would reduce the chance for us to be competitive. As is now, all dealers seem to only dropship the Cecilio violas.

Cecilio Handmade Rosewood Viola CVA-400

Cecilio Handmade Ebony Viola CVA-500 

Forum Timezone: America/New_York

Most Users Ever Online: 50

Currently Online:
2 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)

Top Posters:

HeadCheese: 355

Ferret: 119

Ripton: 97

Manny: 66

VinceKnight: 60

coolpinkone: 55

Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 0

Members: 527

Moderators: 0

Admins: 3

Forum Stats:

Groups: 1

Forums: 19

Topics: 360

Posts: 2016

Newest Members:

DrongHam, kristlyn, victoriatz60, Brianbob, maplevini, carrie cox

Administrators: Violaman: 520, Barry Nelson: 299, BillyG: 80