This is my replica of a medieval vielle, an ancestor of the modern violin. It was played by troubadours from the 13th to the 15th centuries.
This is not meant to be a complete guide to making a vielle, nor is my vielle particularly authentic. I made it because I wanted to see if I could and because I thought it would be easier than a violin (yes on both counts).
Tools used were:
scrollsaw (for the c-holes)
curved planes (for shaping the arched belly)
As stated, my vielle is not exactly authentic.
I made it quite small so it was more comfortable for a violin player. A traditional vielle is closer to a viola in size.
The main differences between the vielle and the modern violin (apart from the body shape) are that the fretboard and bridge are at a much lower angle, the fretboard is almost flat, and the vielle has tied frets, made of catgut (or nylon in my case).
I followed basic lutherie technique making the body. The ribs were steam bent around a mold and reinforced with thin strips of wood along the edges where they are glued to the body and back. The same mold was used as a template for cutting out the belly and back, with an overlap of about 2mm all around. The ribs are very thin, about 2mm.
My vielle has a soundpost, which is not traditional. Mostly I just wanted to see if I could do it. I set it in place with a bent length of stiff wire, sharpened at one end.