Bow varnish and - you guessed it - sweat!
On all my bows, there's a dark splotch under the place where my hand sits above the frog. How they got there isn't exactly a mystery.
Regardless, my sweat seems to mature the varnish on my bows without making it look crusty. Keeps the chatoyance but made my favourite bow go from slightly-old-orange-peel to vintage chestnut, and I quite like the colour. I just wish the entire bow was the same.
This got me thinking about darkening varnishes without glazes. Perhaps a dilute solution of lemon juice and saltwater? But it would surely go all splotchy. And it may not even work on other types of varnish.
(I'm not about to try this on my main bow. It took me a month to pay it off...)
Cotton, are you related to Darlene Roth? Just wondering.
A month of stapling shingles, actually.
Maybe you can mix some urea in too ;)
Are there three types of finishes? Oil and spirit varnish and French polish?
If there is a finish on the bow, usually just shellac, nothing will really have an effect or look splotchy where it has worn away. Bow makers use various chemicals and UV to alter the color of the stick, we stay away from violin type varnishes. What is happening is a natural part of the bows wear and on fine bows is cleaned, sealed, and restored to original appearance. But like a violin, if you wear out some varnish by naturally handling it, and say you like the way it looks underneath, doesn't' mean you should purposefully deface and devalue the rest of the instrument. Doesn't matter the value of the bow, its generally not recommend and isn't looked kindly on.
Ok sorry if I said you're a beginner. Its just that your profile doesnt offer any description, and I've not known intermediate or advanced players to ask about salting their bows.
Just get a carbon fiber bow. Problem solved. :)
I have had a leather put on my valuable bows that goes over the brand and protects it from wear and perspiration.
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