Bow Rehairing/Instrument Maintenance

May 3, 2019, 8:10 PM · I purchased a violin built by a small shop in the Washington DC area about 40 years ago for around $1500, I think. It came with a bow that has “Albert Nürnberger” written on the side.

I tried out a couple of new bows recently and purchased a Coda Bow Prodigy which I liked. But I am thinking about getting the old bow rehaired. I played with it for 10 years between the mid 70s and 80s (junior high through college) so I am kind of used to it even though it seems a bit heavy now that I have used the Coda Bow Prodigy for a few days. Is the bow worth anything?

Also, based on some reviews/ideas I heard here I ordered some Warchal Amber Violin Strings. My violin has fairly loud projection and kind of an aggressive sound. I had selected it at age 14 and at that time my dream was to be a soloist out in front of the orchestra, but now I am seeking a bit more mellow sound. Probably, I’ll need to experiment to find what I like.

Finally, after not looking at the violin for 20 years I tuned it and played and it seems fine. The bridge seem to slightly lean. Should I take it to a Luthier to be “Set Up” after not being used so many years?

Replies (18)

May 3, 2019, 8:31 PM · if your Nurenberger bow is genuine it should be a very good bow are the fittings tarnishing black or green, black is silver, green is nickel, take the frog off and look at the slide if its turning black you have a good bow, well worth rehairing, should be much better than the Coda
Edited: May 3, 2019, 8:32 PM · the bridge needs to stand up straight, usually the back edge forms a right angle with the side, get a luthier to look at it
May 3, 2019, 9:59 PM · Some of my bows have been only sightly used over the past 30 to 40 years and they still do fine.

When faced with the decision to rehair or not I have been cleaning my bow hair with alcohol wipes. I use 4 alcohol wipes down and up the hair squeezed between a folded wipe and immediately wiped on a white cotton cloth to remove the dissolved rosin then fold the pad ther other way and wipe again, etc. So that is 8 wipings of the hair. I allow the hair to dry until it is no longer cool touching the back of my hand. Then I rosin it normally - check by wiping on my dark trousers to be sure there is sufficient rosin on the hair.

If it plays well - great, if not no harm done, I can get it rehaired.

Of course, if I've broken a lot of hairs, I rehair and don't bother to clean.

May 3, 2019, 10:14 PM · Not sure how to tell it’s autheintic of course but a genuine nurenberger would be a very fine bow one of the finest workshops in German history
May 3, 2019, 10:43 PM · The reason I brought up silver fittings is that most fakes would not go to the trouble of using silver and most genuine would be silver.
Edited: May 4, 2019, 11:32 AM · Oh my. An average Nurnberger is worth around $5K (depending on who made it and when); and you prefer the Coda? Surprising!!
Did you see this discussion on Nurnberger bows?
May 4, 2019, 11:38 AM · Wasn't he playing the Coda because the Nurenberger needed rehairing, and there is no shortage of fake Nurenbergers, far outnumbering the real ones, I would guess.
Edited: May 4, 2019, 12:52 PM · Correction if he paid $1500 40 years ago it probably is a Nurenberger, assuming the shop wasn't crooked. edit I now see that was the price for the violin and the bow, still a large sum 40 years ago about 10,000$ today??
May 4, 2019, 12:38 PM · Thanks so much for all of the replies. Was just chatting with an old high school buddy and he reminded me we both bought our violins from this place in the DC area called weavers violins. They have been around over 100 years, I think, so they should be pretty reputable.

It does look like there is some black tarnishing of the fittings. The hairs on the bow have “exploded” so I will definitely need to get it rehaired. Maybe I will keep the Prodigy as my extra “backup” bow.

Is it possible to upload a photo to this discussion thread? I could show what it looks like up close.

Edited: May 4, 2019, 12:50 PM · With such a potentially valuable violin, make sure you use only the top professional to do the rehair, so much can go wrong in a rehair, including cracking the head and taking 80% off the value. If you don't have someone local you might be better to use mail order, ask here who is recommended for that.
May 4, 2019, 12:54 PM · you could post pictures on, they have some experts that might be able to determine if it looks genuine.
May 4, 2019, 1:21 PM · I posted a picture here if anyone wants to take a glance...ürnberger-bow/

May 4, 2019, 1:32 PM · new posters have to wait for moderator approval on maestronet, it hasn't posted yet, may take a while
May 4, 2019, 2:28 PM · I've preferred the $100 Diddlerman CF to some x0'000 contemporary bows. Beautiful wood, divine craftsmanship, wonderful sterling silver fittings... And alas—they're garbage.

When you buy a bow, a good 70-95% of the cost comes from the name, depending on the price range. Not at all surprising someone might prefer a Coda to a Nurenburger.

May 4, 2019, 2:31 PM · you'd have to be tone deaf to prefer a Coda to a Nurenberger!!
May 4, 2019, 3:47 PM · And vice versa xD
May 4, 2019, 4:50 PM · I seem to have provoked a war of the bows, eh? Well, the Nürnberger is unusable at the moment. After I get it rehaired I’ll have to have a bake off and see what I think.

Whenever the moderator at maestronet approves my ability to post I will repost the link to the picture of the bow here.

The shop I bought the violin and bow from is only open Tuesday - Friday. So it will likely take awhile before I can drop off the violin and bow and get them back to compare.

Edited: May 5, 2019, 7:33 PM · your thread posted on the second page of maestronet, no ones going to notice it unless someone comments on it which is unlikely, you need to provide detail pictures of the head, and the frog removed, of the underslide, the back of the frog, the bottom of the frog, does it have pins in the metal of the button etc

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