Recomendations to find a nice old french bow

January 26, 2008 at 10:20 PM · Hello to everybody,

I have been following your discussion board for a long time and learning a lot about many things discussed here, also about bows.

Now that we have decided to buy a new bow to our son, (starting next year Bachelor studies), I would like to get worthy recommendations from you about what and where to look for it.

He has been trying new bows (included from Le Canu) and old bows, and he didn´t feel anything special till he tried a bow from Atelier of Maline, which liked him A LOT. He could not feel the same (easy to play, confort……) with the new bows. His teacher told him that it is better to look for an old bow from a luthier better that from an Atelier’s, thinking in selling it in the future. But those Vigneron, Thomassin.....were too light …or too expensive....and he has not yet found a old bow that one says: it is what I want. I have followed the discussion about workshops bows…but would like some more opinions about if it is really the best way to find a good stick.

So we are planning a trip to Paris to see the new and old bows in Raffin’s Atelier. Do you have any other suggestion about other ateliers in Paris with PLENTY of old bows? A problem is that the Ateliers and Shops where he has looked in Zurich do not have so many bows to try, hope it will not be the same in Raffin’s atelier.

We are looking for a bow below 10.000 euro, but if we find something really nice we could spend up to 12.000 euros. So what are your suggestions????

Replies (23)

January 26, 2008 at 11:13 PM · Snr Cruz,

Raffin will have many bows, but also try the new shop run by the family of LeCannu, who took over from Millant. Vatelot's shop must also have some things you can try.

January 27, 2008 at 08:49 AM · Thank you Pieter, You can just call me Cruz.

I would like to get the adress of your recomendations. I have found two for Millant's, is it Rue di Rome 56 or rue Pierre Demours 39?? but don't have that of Vatelot

And something else, as you have been speaking about Sartory bows: My son tryed 1 that he really liked but too expensive (near 20.000 euros) what is a normal price for Sartory bows?

January 27, 2008 at 08:59 AM · That sounds like it was a very good Sartory. You can definately get Sartory for less than that, maybe 12,000euros.

January 27, 2008 at 04:29 PM · Hummm... the Euro worths 45% more than the dollar. And in Paris even the air you breathe is expensive.

Our local Orchestra travelled in Europe last year and a friend found a nice old French viola bow in Paris for... ... 50k dollars...

In this price range I would go for a top contemporary bow made by a living maker.

January 27, 2008 at 05:52 PM · Yes, but with contemporary bow makers is not neither easy. May be my son has not tried enough modern bows, but hasn’t find a super comfortable one yet ….and it also looks that one has to wait two years to get one of a top luthier’s bows!!!! I think it is crazy. Students that decide to buy a bow for development reasons can not wait two years. …and maybe two years later student’s development can be such that need something different from what they decided before…so it is not an easy way. Don’t you think so???

January 27, 2008 at 06:24 PM · Yes, but you can look for a contemporary bow with top dealers, they will be ready for playing and there will be a wide choice of bows.

And more: the market in the USA is much bigger than in Europe, that means that you will have a wider choice in America than in Paris.

January 27, 2008 at 07:49 PM · Maybe it is easier in USA, also from economic poin of view, but in this moment I can not think about a travel to somewhere in USA just to buy a bow. Also, because we have to show the bow to my son's teacher before taking any decision, to be sure we are wright.......Thank you any way for your sugestions.

January 27, 2008 at 08:20 PM · Perhaps a dealer can send you some bows to you by mail. Do you live too far away from a "violin center"?

January 27, 2008 at 09:05 PM · The problem is that I live in a place that Romans called FINISTERRAE, what meaned the end of the land (discovered at that time in Europe). It is called A Coruña, near Santiago de Compostela in Spain. And here there is no place where to look. One has to go to Madrid or Barcelona....or maybe it is better to Paris. My son studies in Zürich, Switzerland, and there he has visited some dealers and luthiers but maybe have only 2-3 bows each in this price range...and most of them have been too light.... or too expensive.

I would also like to avoid to travel to much, as it is also expensive, and find a place with enough amount of diferent bows from diferent luthiers at right price (not over priced), in order to choose.......

January 27, 2008 at 09:08 PM · Well, dealers in Europe will send you no bow by mail, they really don't do that, I think. Europeans will not do that in general.

But your son's teacher will not be in Paris so aprove the bow so... it's better buying it in Switzerland.

Another alternative would be music fairs, there is one in Cremona (Mondomusica), Paris and Germany also.

January 27, 2008 at 09:17 PM · Yes dealers in Europe dont sent bows, but they let you have the bow for one week.

I have to search when is this Mondomusica but I think is in april ¿?

It is not easy. Really nothing is easy speaking about violin!!!!!!

January 27, 2008 at 09:48 PM · There are many bow makers in Cremona, it's quite a nice city also. I have four bow (a quartet of bows) by French maker Jean Narros, he works in Cremona.

January 28, 2008 at 03:06 AM · Did you try Leuthold? Tell him what you are looking for and perhaps he can find it.

Geigenbau J.G. Leuthold

Seefeldstrasse 9

CH-8008 Zürich

Tel: ++41 44 261 99 16

Fax: ++41 44 261 99 18

January 28, 2008 at 03:23 AM · I tried two fantastic bows at Gennady's by T. Lucke (in G/T) and a gold with ebony by Joseph Gabriel.

I also tried some great old bows by F.N. Voirin, Nicholas Maline and a Dominique Peccatte.

Have you tried those?

January 28, 2008 at 04:03 AM · Yes he was at Leuthold’s Shop, there he has found a VERY NICE Sartory, but too expensive for us……….

Lucke is in Berlin, isn’t it? I also thought about going there, but also think is better to save money from too much travelling and spend it in the bow, and thought that maybe Paris could be the solution

Josep Gabriel? Where does he works? I think I didn’t hear from him before.

He tried a bow from the workshop of Maline and he LOVED it. It costed euro but according to what our theacher told we didn’t think on it too much……but as it is difficult to find something as nice as that in that price range…..and after reading about what it has been said hear about: that it can be a good option for a good bow, we are considering workshops bows…..also Tout or Maline bows without the original frog

What do you think if we find a nice one, from the point of view of selling it in the future???

Than you to all of you!!!

January 28, 2008 at 05:04 AM · For 12000 a Tourte would have to be missing everything except for the original button.

January 28, 2008 at 11:39 AM · Ok a problem is where to look for the bow, the other is to find the best option in this price mentioned. What do you think?

January 28, 2008 at 12:03 PM · If you are looking just for playability and sound a fine bow with a replacement frog is a good idea, I think. Since fine bows and instruments are getting more and more rare, in the future the market will have to "bear" instruments with replacement scrolls and bows with frogs that are not original.

As far as resale price, what's is the current resale price of all those cameras, computers, videos, sound equipaments, printers we've got in the last 20 years?

January 29, 2008 at 05:48 PM · One more thing, as it may be difficult to find a nice bow in this price, what do you think it could be better in terms of easear to sell it in future: a bow of a cetain luthier without the original frog or a bow from a known workshop like Maline, C. Peccatte.......What would you prefer?

January 29, 2008 at 05:53 PM · And what do you think of a bow of Charles Peccatte's workshop??

January 29, 2008 at 06:33 PM · I think Maline workshop would be more attractive, but it depends on the bow.

January 29, 2008 at 07:06 PM · Cruz,I have a Charles Peccatte without the original frog and adjuster so I got a great deal when I bought it.Its a beautiful bow and now Im searchng for an original frog and adjuster but Im in no rush whatsoever.

January 29, 2008 at 07:48 PM · It is dificult to find information about Charles Peccatte Workshop. Does Sartory worked for him? Who else? There is little information about the influence in C. Peccatte bow's, what do you know about?

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