For each set of animations, there is an overview tab explaining the animations, then actual animations. Although greatly exaggerated, one can see how the plates are moving to create sound.
1741 Vieuxtemps Guarneri del Gesu
The following animations are of the ex "Vieuxtemps" Guarneri del Gesu 1741 and present integrated data from quantitative CT analysis and modal analysis. The violin plates are the actual thickness maps of this instrument (the lighter color denotes thicker wood) as derived from over 200,000 thickness measurements. For the actual thickness maps with scale see this month's (January, 2011) Strad Magazine. The plates are situated to highlight the bassbar movement at each of the vibrational modes up to 1500 hz. The movement has been greatly exaggerated and the Z scale (the up/down plane) is not identical mode to mode. Rather, it has been adjusted to show an approximately similar amount of movement between the modes.
The viola top and back plate tab is a modal animation of an instrument that I made roughly 20 years ago and was in the shop recently for varnish touch up. The violin animation (the tab to the right) is of a recently completed violin. These animations are of one of the primary modes of vibration, i.e. a large contributor to the sound of the instruments.
1714 Stradivarius Belly
These images show vibrational characteristics of a 1714 Stradivarius belly plate at various frequencies.
1715 Stradivarius Belly and Back Plates
These images show vibrational characteristics of a 1715 Stradivarius belly and back plates at various frequencies.
1743 Guarneri and 1715 Stradivarius
These animations show the movement of the violin at its primary air mode, A0 which accounts for much of the resonance and fullness of sound the musician experiences. This quality does not necessarily project to the audience but nonetheless enhances the musician's aural feedback.
Although many people aren't aware of this, the fingerboard also vibrates with the instrument. This may or may not contribute to the overall sound characteristics. However, by tuning a fingerboard to a specific frequency that matches/couples with one of the primary body frequencies, it is possible to greatly enhance the "feedback" that the musician receives from the instrument.
The images shown span from the top of the scroll to the end of the fingerboard. So, in the images, at approximately 1/4 the length you will see a small black line which denotes the beginning of the fingergboard and with that in mind, it's fairly easy to estimate the point at which the fingerboard leaves the neck and extends over the belly of the instrument.
These animations also help us to understand why an instrument may feel quite different after having the fingerboard dressed.
The role of the tailpiece is often underestimated and yet, it too is vibrating and either enhancing or detracting from the musician's experience. The following animations show the tailpiece vibrating at various frequencies.
The black line seen on the screen denotes the location of the tailpiece saddle. Changing the tailpiece will obviously change the vibrational feel of an instrument.
The animations on this page are made possible by the work of instrument maker George Stoppani who has put untold hours into creating and developing software specifically targeted towards furthering the violin maker's art. Testing is done in my shop but would be impossible without his work. His website is: http://www.stoppani.co.uk/index.htm
If you want to learn more about modal analysisWikipedia - Modal Analysis