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Italo – one of our previously unsung heroes – returns as Player of the Month.  Amazingly, in the very same week, I received incredible new photos and information from two different sources - more long lost family members.  If I haven’t said it in awhile, I just love this site!

Gregg Miner, editor,

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I finally got around to reading the updates to the Italo Meschi great!

A couple of thoughts about his first chitarpa:

The cutaway, which is odd, indeed, intersects the outer band of the soundhole rosette. Makes me wonder if the cutaway was an afterthought, not in the initial design. Perhaps even added after the instrument had been constructed?

It's interesting to note the rope binding, after our lovely tutorial on one way of making rope binding (by Ron, in the Makers sub-forum). The rope binding on Meschi's instrument is almost certainly set in piece by piece, as the sizing of the pieces varies considerably, and especially in the cutaway area you can see how pieces have each been custom fit to their particular spot.

Also curious is the very noticeable vertical line extending from bottom of lower bout to bridge, perhaps 2/5 of the total width in from the right side. Is this a crack that was repaired? It looks more like it is glue joint, where two pieces of the top meet. But it's not in the usual place for a bookmatched top joint, which would be in line with the center of the neck. Possibly it's a multi-piece (more than 2)top; I imagine I can almost see another similar line further toward the bass side.

The body strikes me as rather long, with a great expanse of top below the bridge.

And in remarkably good shape. Judging from this instrument and the Aquila, Meschi took good care of his instruments.

Thanks Gregg! What fun!


Having an open mind doesn't necessarily mean your brain has fallen out.
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