Bow rehair - what should I watch out for

August 19, 2018, 8:54 PM · I located my good wooden bow, but it's had a lot of the hair eaten off.

It's tone is much better than my other bows I've haphazardly collected.

I can hear my intonation much better with it, but I'm hoping that's not because it has less hair.

Never having had a bow rehaired, what should I look out for? My immediate options are Jeff Sahs in Sacramento (whom I got a good feeling from the other day when I was there) or Ifshin Violins, who are closer to where I live, though I've had problems in the past with them not taking seriously a less expensive instrument when brought in for repairs. This is a $300-400 bow I think.

Any pointers?

Replies (9)

August 19, 2018, 10:55 PM · Your $400 bow is not a Peccatte. Take it to a reputable luthier for a rehair and you'll be fine.
August 19, 2018, 11:00 PM · What are the possibilities that a rehair will change the sound? Even if well done.
August 19, 2018, 11:09 PM · My experience with the bows I have owned longest, about 65 years, is that they have retained the sound the make on respective violins through all the rehairs - in Maryland, in DC, in Oklahoma, in LA and in Berkeley (and environs).

What can change things is not having the right amount of hair for the stiffness of the stick. And some bow techs use a standard "hank of hair" regardless. I think that is something to watch out for. Too much hair can really louse up a soft stick. But too much hair - you can always give it a "haircut" - well a "trim" is more like it.

August 19, 2018, 11:27 PM · Right now it's sounding pretty good (compared to my Coda) with between half and a third its original hair. It rings much more. Surprised me. I just couldn't remember which of my bows were good for what, after a break of a couple of years. I bought the Coda because it sounded better with my electric.
August 20, 2018, 12:30 AM · With bow rehairs costing over $100 where I live, I would just save up for a new bow.
August 20, 2018, 5:27 AM · Ifshin quoted me $60. I'll get another quote today.
August 20, 2018, 8:15 AM · A rehair won’t change its sound. But it will keep it from warping. You’re missing a lot of horse hair.
August 20, 2018, 9:05 AM · Good point.
August 20, 2018, 11:22 AM · A good rehair can range from $55 to $100 depending where in the country you live. There are a lot of things to check for in a rehair. My blog covers a lot of that information, this post in particular:
But there is other info about crossed hairs and finding a good luthier that you mind find useful as well.

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