Printer-friendly version weekend vote: Do you have more than one bow?

The Weekend Vote

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Published: March 28, 2014 at 8:56 PM [UTC]

In light of some new travel restrictions involving ivory, we polled readers a few weeks ago about whether or not their bow had any ivory. More than 50 percent said, "yes," so that would mean quite a lot of us traveling without our bows.

So here is my question for this week: Do you have more than one bow? Of course, there are many reasons to have more than one, beyond the ivory issue. Some are: having a nearly-unbreakable carbon fiber bow for playing in a classroom or playing outside; wanting a Baroque bow for that style of music; having bows that have different strengths for different pieces and techniques; or even just needing a spare for when one is being rehaired. I have a few bows, one being a carbon fiber bow. I'd like to get a Baroque bow, that's been on the wish list for a while!

How about you, do you have more than one bow?

From Kevin Keating
Posted on March 28, 2014 at 9:19 PM
I have a French style pernambucco bow and an inexpensive Baroque bow. I switch back n forth depending on what I'm playing.

I also have a cheap modern bow with NO rosin that I use instead of a mute for quiet practice. I call it my "hotel" bow. :)

From Patrick Tinney
Posted on March 28, 2014 at 10:08 PM
To be honest I put I had 5 or more. Its five, but three are almost not qualified to count. I should throw two away and consider one a bow of last resort.

So really only two decent bows.

From Trevor Jennings
Posted on March 28, 2014 at 10:47 PM
1 late-Baroque replica in snakewood. Patterned after a 1750 French bow. I use it a lot for orchestral music up to the end of the Classical period.
1 old bow that has been in the family for about 100 yrs; of unknown provenance but ideal for almost everything; light and well-balanced, it produces little noise and a lovely tone and projection. The only bow with ivory at the tip.
1 modern German bow for general playing and practice.
2 inexpensive CF bows, mainly for folk music. One of them is basically a reserve bow; produces a big sound, but that's about it. The other is a viola bow but with a balance, playability and tone that belies the very low three figures I paid for it several years ago; I find myself using it a lot more for all sorts of playing, including orchestra.
From Mark Roberts
Posted on March 28, 2014 at 11:43 PM
1 good violin bow, 1 ok violin bow, 1 ok viola bow, 2 pub bows, they all need rehair but costs....
From elise stanley
Posted on March 29, 2014 at 1:49 AM
just being a bit dense...
From kypros christoudoulides
Posted on March 29, 2014 at 6:18 AM
I currently have four bows.
A Sartory, a Viorin, a German 1st generation Penzel and another no name German. All without ebony mounted on silver.
I have a fifth bow Wichold which is a fine stick to play but a little light at 57grams and I gave it to my luthier to sell a couple of years ago.
I might be buying another expensive bow in a couple of years. Maybe an other Sartory or from someone who worked in the Vuillaume workshop but not one with the rounded ferrule.
From Paul Deck
Posted on March 29, 2014 at 8:49 PM
Elise, just extrapolate the curve back to bows=1 and you get a number around 55%.

I have two identical CF bows because I like to have a backup. They are "indistinguishable particles."

From Laurie Niles
Posted on March 29, 2014 at 10:50 PM
? I figure that the people who answer that they have "one bow," have one bow. All the others have more than one bow.
From elise stanley
Posted on March 29, 2014 at 10:59 PM
Silly me - I missed the one bow option in there! gotta read more carefully...
From Paul Deck
Posted on March 30, 2014 at 2:30 AM
Yep, I missed it too. Guess I didn't expect one to be between five and four.
From Charles Henry577
Posted on March 30, 2014 at 3:23 AM
I have two violin bows. One is a low end pernambuco bought on eBay. The other is a much better pernumbuco made in Brazil.
Three viola bows. A very nice Otto Wunderlich bow about 100 years old, a rather nice contemporary Brazilian bow and a back up CF one.
The old bow gives a very rich sound. The contemporary bow projects better. The CF bow sonds harsh by comparison to either of the others.
Playing in a chamber orchestra I am usually the only viola and I use the modern bow that projects better although I don't prefer the tone.
From Karen Allendoerfer
Posted on March 30, 2014 at 6:56 PM
I only have one, and I could really use a spare. After my old bow broke last year, I bought a new one to use every day, but the old one is not reparable and I haven't been out to get a new one.
From Francesca Rizzardi
Posted on March 30, 2014 at 11:51 PM
To Paul Deck: Are your CF bows really indisginguishable? I tested five CodaBow Diamond GX bows a few years ago and one of them really stood out from the others. I would have bought it except it wasn't that much less expensive than the permanbuco bow I was comparing them to. I wouldn't mind having a backup CF bow but after that experience I realized that unless I play more in "dangerous" places, it isn't worth it to me.
From Laurie Niles
Posted on March 31, 2014 at 3:04 AM
It is a little confusing! The poll always stacks it with the answer that is getting the most votes on top!
From Paul Deck
Posted on March 31, 2014 at 4:01 AM
Francesca, my 2 CF bows are the same make and model, and they play and sound the same...

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