Carbon fibre violin bows

October 30, 2017, 10:14 PM · Can someone tell me a comparison of the 302
and 304 Eastman Cadenza carbon fibre violin bows, in playability. Are the sticks pretty much the same re weight balance, stiffness.

Replies (2)

October 31, 2017, 6:22 AM · I have no idea
Edited: October 31, 2017, 7:21 AM · Like Kiddu, I do not know the Eastman Cadenza bows, but from what I read, the 304 is a "hybrid" bow with a pernambuco covering over the CF core. My experience with CF-pernambuco hybrids was 15 years ago with the Finkel workshop bows
( ).

The pernambuco covering did seem to improve the tone of the bows compared to uncased CF bows - but those Finkel bows were much more expensive than the Eastman bows, as are those that are still being sold.

My experience with a wide range of CF bows is that their stiffness and playability covers a reasonably good range (even the cheap ones) - the only one I ever tried that was slightly* weak (in comparison) was a $4,100 Berg Deluxe (which I have since been informed is actually not a CF composite, but some other). (* But that weakness is not necessarily a bad thing since it is in the range of decent Voirin and Lamy bows.)

The balance of a bow can be changed by adding a weight in the tip or frog - or by changing the mass of winding near the frog. In my experience this does not change the tone the bow produces on the instrument but it definitely changes handling and off-string strokes.

Finally - CF bows of the same model are not all the same, there may be weight differences and possibly even balance differences. One pro violinist/violist of my acquaintance liked the CODA Classic violin bows, but only those with a mass of 59 grams, not 60 grams. But I have no idea whether that had to do with weight, balance, or her technique.

Finally, there is the critical feature of how well a particular bow mates with your instrument. A music colleague of mine has a petty expensive 100 year old Italian violin ( a $150,000 Enrico Rocca). His bows of choice are a CODA Classic CF and a Rolland Spiccato CF - even in preference to his pernambuco Lamy. He has friends who don't like his Coda on their violins but like it on his Rocca.

When you buy one of these things on the internet you take a chance - if you can try before you buy you are likely to make a better choice.

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