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The Pink Violin

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New material could affect how instruments are built and the sounds we hear.

Natural fibre composites are especially well-suited to producing musical instruments, a craft potentially worth millions to eastern Finland.

The development of new natural fibre composite materials is seen by some as having the potential to reinvigorate the long-dormant instrument manufacturing industry in Finland.

It is estimated that the new material could be used to produce instruments and sound-related products to the tune of around 65 million euros worth of annual turnover by 2025. These figures are based on a report issued by Joensuu Science Park which investigated the instrument manufacturing industry in North Karelia and in Finland generally.

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Natural fibre composite, or “moulded wood”, has a number of advantages when used as a material to craft instruments. For example, it never absorbs water. Nevertheless, the material's chief advantage is that it means that the heavier, industrial parts of the manufacturing process can be substituted with injection moulding. This is significant, since a large part of crafting instruments is still carried out by hand.

“This will allow us to increase productivity tenfold in comparison to current manufacturing techniques,” explains Jyrki Peltomaa from the Joensuu Regional Development Company JOSEK Oy.

http://www.helsinkitimes.fi/htimes/index.p...&Itemid=162

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