Best French Bow for Student
Am looking for a new bow and any help or recommendations would be appreciated. I am about to complete my last violin exams and am starting to realize now I am needing a new bow, especially since I have such a good instrument. My current carbon fiber bow feels fairly unbalanced and too light at the frog, the contact point isn't quite firm and I could be getting a higher quality sound. I know that France is well known for their bows and having a French instrument, also having French bow would be nice. I already have a carbon fiber bow and I am not a big fan, so looking for a classical timber bow. Also it would be good if it was not a mass produced bow maker and made by hand, I don't want its value to dramatically reduce. I am only 14, so only having savings for a bow up to around $500 AUD (it if is a good bow, I may be able to spend a bit more). Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Good + French > $500. Always.
What Stephen said.
It doesn’t have to be french to be good or to match your violin.
I've read that Fritz Kreisler favored German bows, namely Nürnberger. But really good pernambuco (wood) bows are now made in many places, although the fine makers grumble that decent pernambuco is more scarce than ever before. You might find an OK pernambuco (workshop) bow for $500 but you cannot depend on "brand" recommendations - (and definitely not a "fine" bow, which is what people are thinking of when they talk about "French" bows).
So AUD $500 is about USD $300, and US-based readers should probably be thinking of a bow that costs $250 or less (USD) because of shipping and import duties and taxes and whatnot.
Thanks everyone. Looks like I may need to keep options open or expand d my budget. I have a bernadel late 1800s violin by the way for those that asked.
From a technical point of view, most CF bows (even the cheapos <200 USD) will definitely do the trick. If you do not like them because they're not a good tonal fit for your violin, you're in the same situation like me.
There are some good Chinese pernambuco bows that start in your price range.
the Chinese bows are not Pernambuco, but rather some mystery wood, maybe Chinese, a lot of people get suckered by this, Brazil has stopped the exportation of Pernambuco, so there isn't any new wood to supply the market.
Lyndon, I'd be interested to know where your information comes from since I can't find anything more specific than rumour on the web.
Its not a rumour, all you have to do is look at the wood, it doesn't look anything like genuine Pernambuco.
"Good + French > $500."
I mean the information that Brazil isn't exporting any Pernambuco. The sites I've read say that it is still harvesting and exporting a small quantity. I've also read that it isn't allowed to export unworked Pernambuco from the US but finished bows are OK.
Exporting TO the US, you mean. Yes-- Brazil sees Pernambuco wood as a major source of wealth, and if they can use it to encourage local industry, they shall.
Lyndon, have you looked at Shar’s Guy Laurent bows before?
I agree with previous posters that it will be impossible to find a French pernambuco bow for this price point and hard to buy any good pernambuco bows. Maybe a Brazilian maker and certain a Chinese maker would be around this price. Some Chinese bow makers do use real pernambuco and Brazil does export it legally to China; in fact the state of Pernambuco has a trade office in China just for this. A good Ipe wood bow may work for you also. I have a Yita Ipe bow that was less than $100 and it’s great.
If you only have $500, I would recommend waiting if you insist on a nice pernambuco.
Has any one heard of dorfler bows? They sell them at many music stores around Sydney and claim to be German genuine pernambuco bows.
I tried a gold grade 3 star tortoiseshell model before, I ended up not liking the thin sound of that overpriced bow that’s not even made by a master maker. I went with a Rodney instead.
There are "French Bows" and then there are "french bows."
... on the other side, while the whole world is urgently after any bow with a french stamp, I enjoy my german high enders which are - comparably - almost cheap...
Hugo, Dorfler is a well-know name in German bowss. Google the Dorfler website to see the range of bows they sell. Google "Tarisio Dorfler" to see the range of auction prices of previously owned Dorfler bows.
Thanks for your help everyone. I feel like now I have somewhere to go from here
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