A few month ago we've found a perfect violin case for our gangster drinking experience. It was in a bit of a state and needed a bit of TLC. The budget I had to work with was rather small so there has been some pondering on affordable and appropriate materials and fasteners to be used. With a little bit of research and testing it has been decided that the violin case will be relined with green felt and tan leather straps and copper/brass fittings.
Stripping the violin case turned out to be easier then I initially thought. The old glue allowed the fabric to come away easily, leaving a little bit of a residue on the wood which was easy enough to sand down. Removing the hinges was a lot fussier as I was trying to make sure that I could re-use as much of the original parts as possible.
I used original lining as a pattern guide. It needed a little bit of adjustment as the original fabric was stretched so the new insert had a lot of excess, creating a lot of bulging in the curvy sections of the case.
The felt fabric was glued. I've played around with various glues to see what would work best. Photomount M3 was great. I had to allow glue to sit on the fabric for a little while so that it could soak in slightly but still remain tacky on the surface. I didn't spray the case itself as I didn't wan to end up with a lot of glue residue everywhere, but also I needed to be able to reposition the fabric if I don't get it right the first time. Applying the fabric still needed to be quick and accurate as I didn't want to have to peel it back and adjust it as such causing the felt to stretch and deform.
With everything getting relined the case started to look rather nice. It was time for the fun part of installing the leather straps. I initially did a test on a piece of scrap to see how the poppers can be fitted to the case and how well the popper will function with the screw sitting at the the base. It worked well. The only difficulty was fitting the popper onto the leather strap. I foudn the tools that came with the popper kit were of a poor quality. I had so many loose elements in my hand, with everything sliding around, I found it very difficult to keep the popper in a precise spot. So I gave up and used my vice instead, it provided me with control and squeeze power.
Initially there was going to be a single strap across the glasses, but upon fitting into the case there was a gap between the glasses and the strap, causing the glasses to roll slightly. The glasses were not going to fall out, but the clinging wasn't a nice noise. So I've added an additional strap of leather to allow the straps to hug the glasses better. The extra strap also provided a bit more material depth for a screw to bite into.
You could either split the straps and wrap them around a glass or place them both on top of a glass for extra tension. Either way worked well, but I also think it gave the case a nice quality look.
That completed one side of the violin. On to the other side.