Showing posts from March, 2015

Hourly rate for Torah repair

I was asked to check all the seams in a sefer Torah, and to fix any tsuras ha'os issues that I saw in passing, for a Torah with a number of damaged seams.  If anyone in the New York area could give me an idea of the going hourly rate for this in our area, either by commenting here or by e-mail to sofrus AT, I'd be most appreciative. A zisn Pesach!

project -Making Klaf from animal skins

Hello everyone, I want to prepare my own Klaf. I have been offered to take skins from freshly slaughtered animals. Fro a farm in Maryland. Does anyone want to get involved in this project? Kol Tuv, Yitzchock

Song of Songs

Hello, I recently had a gentile ask me to write him a Song of Songs scroll. He wants it for himself to keep since this is his favorite book. I know we are allowed to teach Torah to a goy that wants to learn it for the sake of Heaven and so forth, but this seems like a grey area. If there is someone who has experience with this sort of thing please enlighten me. Thanks

Kosher b'dieved as is? If not, fixable?

I would greatly appreciate if sources can be indicated. Thank you.

psucha / stumah shailo

This question is a bit random, but someone asked me (I guess in my capacity as a sofer) why a) by the Aseres Hadibros in parshas Yisro, all are stumos except the commandment of Shabbos (which is a psucha), and b) in the 2nd Aseres Hadibros in partshas Veschanan, all ten are stumos without exception. If anyone has seen an explanation for this, I'd be grateful if they could kindly share it...

Jewish Marriage part 14

An old friend of mine, (and former employer) owns a Tefillin store in Jerusalem. When he was a child, he contracted a very invasive form of cancer. It was already stage four by the time it was diagnosed. Doctors held out little hope. There was, however, a slight chance. An experimental treatment was to be tested. His parents agreed to have him take part in the first human trial. It didn't work. Of the 400 children treated, 399 died. Only my friend survived. The doctors called it a miracle. They cautioned, however, that he would never be able to have children. He s now the proud father and grandfather of many! When I worked in his store, frequently people with advanced cancers would come to him for counseling. He would put his work aside, and give these people his full attention, He gave them the feeling that there is always hope; not because he had READ it, but because he had BEEN there. As I have written before, divorce is sometimes necessary. But media make it seem almost tren

Follow-up to R' Eli's Post

The tinok read this as a tav.

negiya vov nun


Insurance for borrowing sefer Torah

An acquaintance is borrowing a Torah from a day school for his daughter's bas mitsve, and the day school is unclear whether their insurance covers the Torah while it's offsite; he asked me what sort of insurance one would need to get to cover the Torah while it's at his house.  (Apparently, Google suggested that he ask a sofer, and I'm the sofer he knows.)  Does anyone have any thoughts on the issue? Thanks in advance for any thoughts on the matter.

Shinui Tzura

A clear shinui tzura - a mistake leading a Ayin look like a Tzadik. I will erase most of it

Condition of batim/retzuos in many balabatish communities

I recently returned from a 6 week tefillin and mezuzah checking campaign. In dealing with mostly balabatim, many seniors with minimal yeshiva education, the number of batim and retzuos that lack paint is staggering. (The number of people wearing their shel rosh too low is also a very serious issue and not easy to tackle when they've been doing it for years without anyone telling them otherwise. I'm glad I've been able to made a dent over the course of a number of visits.) I'm attaching a picture of a shel rosh that blew me away. The side of the retzuah that you see is the front!! Fortunately he now has properly painted batim and all black retzuos.

The shape of the letter פ

Rabbi Greenfeld from Vaad Mishmereth Stam published an article showing that the letter  פ   can be written in the "right shape" and can be written in a "wrong shape" which was invented by a Sofer from Minsk. The title of the article is pretty harsh: זיופי הסופר רא"ח שמאלעוויצער ממינסק Here is the link: And here is the article in larger format (easier to read): There is reference to  משיכה לאחור   which is valid with ancient sources, and reference to a "broken פ "  which is invalid.  I could not understand the difference. Can somebody please explain? Is this            the  "right" shape or the "wrong" shape?

Computer checking via the internet

Does anyone know of a way to do computer checking via the internet, either via a website or emailing scans to someone?

why magihim need kabollah and shimush

I have now received unanimous psak from a number of noteworthy rabbonim on the negiya between the beis and the shin posted some weeks ago on this forum. As I feared, the negiya is unable to be scraped and the parsha needs gnizah. While the outcome of many of these tricky shailos are toloi leinei hamoreh, It reinforces to me how important proper training for a magiha really is. As mentioned in the first post, I first encountered this particular shailo when doing shimush years ago. The shailo only came up once (out of  thousands I saw and recorded) and I have rarely encountered it since. Please don't take this the wrong way, my intention is not to show off or put anyone down who made light of the shailo. Rather, my intention is just to marvel at the fact that had this shailo not come up that one time during my shimush 15 years ago, I probably would have just scraped the negiya of last week and not thought twice about it. For me, that's a scary thought and reinforces, in my mind