A violin bow will lose stiffness over time?

Edited: November 16, 2021, 6:23 AM · I was trying some nice bows made from a good maker from Brussels. The bow has a nice balance but feels a tad stiff. Playing Bazzini gives very crisp and stark spiccato, but fast cross strings is a bit of a struggle.

The shop staff assure me that as the bow plays in, it will soften up to be more flexible.

Is that true? If so, is such stiffness lost reversible, like by recambering?

Replies (75)

November 16, 2021, 5:51 AM · Archetiers will have stronger opinions about short and medium term. As an outsider, I know there are some pretty soggy-sounding 19c bows out there.

They might have started that way and sounded much better on the lower-tension gut strings of their time, but somehow I doubt that.

November 16, 2021, 6:43 AM · Don't count on it. If it is true (and that is a big "if") it might not happen in your lifetime.

Buying a string instrument on a seller's promise that it will sound or play better in the future is never a good bet for a buyer.

Edited: November 16, 2021, 6:56 AM · In my experience (4 new pernambuco bows, made by the same person) i saw that in at least 3 of them the stiffness has increased over time.......

The 2 oldest are about 12-13 years old. Now they're stiffer and more usable than when they were made. I used all of them a lot, i have to say.

Regarding losing stiffness in the range of decades or centuries i'm not able to say, in this moment.......
I'll surely wrote in 30-40 years and will express my personal observations, if i'll still own a pair of hands.... :)

Edited: November 16, 2021, 7:59 AM · So bows have to be "played in" too? Good grief. I have not noticed any change in the playing characteristics of my bows over the ca. 10 years that I have owned them, but then they are of the carbon-fiber variety.

As far as fine bows, my Peccatte seems better for coming off the string in the Bach Minuets in Suzuki Book 2 but my Voirin has the balance I need for detache bowing in the first volume of Wohlfahrt.

November 16, 2021, 7:59 AM · The wood vs carbonfiber is a good issue.
I didn't mention that i've played a lot a NOS Arcus bow for at least 8 years, and it didn't change a little bit.
Edited: November 16, 2021, 8:17 AM · Unless subjected to extreme environmental conditions, the stiffness of wood changes very little over hundreds of years.

The stiffness feel of a bow is also related to its curve and the strings.

Under normal use and storage, the shape of the curve should not change. But high humidity and constant tension over long periods can cause a type of creep that will lessen the curve and make the bow action feel softer.

Strings will undergo permanent stretching over time which can make the bow action feel softer.

November 16, 2021, 10:52 AM · "unless subjected to extreme environmental conditions, the stiffness of wood changes very little over hundreds of years."

I'm not sure how you can prove that. Unless you were around 100 years ago and measured those bows.

Edited: November 17, 2021, 11:12 PM · My Richard Weichold violin bow must be at least 120 years old, which makes it at possibly ~20 or more years newer than my F.N. Vorin. The Weichold is 50% stiffer than the Voirin, but then Vorin bows are known to be flexible. Judging by the condicion of the Vorin when it came into my family almost 90 years ago it has been played a A LOT but I have no idea if that changed the condition of the stick.

I have a Paul Martin Siefried bow that is only 10 or 20 years old and was new when I bought it from the maker and it is about the same stiffness as the Weichold. I have not quantitatively measured the stiffness of the Siefried as I have the other two.

I would say that although a bow may change its stiffness during its lifetime, it most likely will not during yours. You can modify the effective (playing) stiffness of a bow by changing the amount of hair. Less hair will make a bow play "stiffer" and vice versa.

My ARCUS CONCERTO bow is 50% stiffer than the Weichold and 210% stiffer than the Voirin.

November 16, 2021, 11:33 AM · @Paul: Regit plays Bazzini, which is not exactly Wohlfahrt :-)

@Regit: was it Pierre Guillaume who told you that? He has a very trustworthy reputation.

November 16, 2021, 3:36 PM · @Scott: There have been many technical studies of how the mechanical properties of wood change over time. Since this is not a material science forum, I will leave the interested reader to research it on their own. I am simply sharing my experience as a former materials engineer, long since retired.

Some mechanical properties CAN undergo relevant change over time. Vibration/sound damping is one and partially accounts for tonal changes in a violin. But even that can take decades.

November 16, 2021, 6:55 PM · @jean, bow is Guillaume, but it was a shop staff selling Guillaume bows that told me about bow losing stiffness.
November 16, 2021, 7:10 PM · I think it is possible for the stiffness of a bow stick to change over time. But what stress factors, how much time, and what degree of change is all variable.
November 16, 2021, 10:45 PM · My bow was awesome from the moment the bow maker handed it to me. He had been giving me bows to try for a few weeks and I had picked one that I liked. A lot. He said, "You can have that one if you like it, but (handing me the bow) this is the one I made over the last few weeks, having watched and heard you play." It was sublime. In ten years it has certainly gotten no worse.
November 17, 2021, 4:12 AM · Fascinating how that works.

Benoit Rolland does that for all of his bows. Essentially, you go to his shop for an interview/audition, and play a bunch of sticks that you comment on. When he gets a sense of your taste and ability, he comes up with a solution.


November 17, 2021, 6:01 AM · You meant like a bespoke bow?
November 17, 2021, 6:04 AM · Effectively. Although I certainly wasn't going in with a list of requirements for mine.
November 17, 2021, 1:22 PM · bow guy I use will ask a lot of questions before making a bow for anyone, and knows how to tailor it to customer's playing style. I'd never buy anything on the hope that it will get better, unless it was heavily discounted. If a violin or bow doesn't sound great for the time of sale, when they're trying to put its best foot forward, what hope do you have for it sounding good later?
November 17, 2021, 10:18 PM · Greetings,
lots of things lose stiffness over time. The bow is the least of our worries.
November 18, 2021, 4:03 AM · Damn you, I was avoiding that joke!
November 18, 2021, 7:05 AM · Mostly a problem when you’re talking about 30”.
Edited: November 18, 2021, 8:13 AM · So the bow-maker knows how to cut and carve and shape the wood so that it matches your "taste and ability" that will optimize more finely than having the buyer choose among dozens of existing bows? No. I'm calling that out as total rubbish. This is an "emperor has no clothes" moment if ever there was one. Pure marketing. Hook, line, sinker.
November 18, 2021, 10:13 AM · There is an easy remedy for that.
November 18, 2021, 11:07 AM · Paul, you just don't know a good bow guy. They work magic with pernambuco!
Edited: November 18, 2021, 11:14 AM · Does he get his customers to lie on a couch for their consultation?
Edited: November 18, 2021, 1:06 PM · A magic bow requires magic pernambuco wood to start with and a "bow magician" to do the work. Not all pernambuco is equal.

Actually, Michael Duff has been doing a pretty good job of it (Berg Bows) for over 25 yearws with composite materials.

Bernd Müsing at ARCUS has some very interesting results with carbon fiber as well.

November 18, 2021, 1:32 PM · Tom Bop wrote:
"Paul, you just don't know a good bow guy. They work magic with pernambuco!"

Maybe, maybe not. How heavily are you influenced by BS marketing claims? Do blondes really have more fun? Do things really go better with coke?

November 18, 2021, 3:41 PM · the guy I'm talking about does not market at all...has been hors concours at shows for decades, and doesn't need to go on internet forums.

If anyone is influenced by marketing claims, that's their problem. Not one of mine..not even sure how they got into discussion, but people like to make stuff up. Also, not my problem.

Edited: November 18, 2021, 5:05 PM · Paul, Rolland gets the better part of $20K for that. Buri, lol :-).
November 18, 2021, 5:10 PM · I am very interested in ARCUS bows. It would be really great to give my 14 year old a new bow. With his repertoire his $80 (used fiberglass) bow is not ideal. Does anybody look into ARCUS bows? Which one do you think is the best value for a virtuoso with limited financial means :)
November 18, 2021, 5:42 PM · I own 2 Arcus bows and tried really a bunch of other models also (with my violin).

In my opinion, some of them (not all) are very manageable and have a good resilience and a good bounce. Very useful for getting the idea of the way a bow should be, mechanically.

Often their sound is not really deep and really shiny. And when sound is better than their average, the volume you get is never the one that a good pernambuco would pull out. I find they are very dependent by the strings' tension that are being used, more that wooden bows.

And, however, i believe they are too much overpriced. Really too much.

Edited: November 18, 2021, 5:56 PM · Thank you so much Marco! We are waiting for kid's teacher to find him a great bow but it is a bit tricky nowadays. I guess we'll have to wait a bit more. Son's violin is really a "bazooka" in terms of sound and the most important thing is the colors that can be extracted out of it.
November 18, 2021, 9:21 PM · "Paul, Rolland gets the better part of $20K for that." Not from me. If you want to commission a violin bow (or a violin), fine. Just you better get an escape clause on the contract because either you're going to like the bow (or violin) or you're not. Sure, chances are better that the bow will be a good bow if it's made by someone who's got hors d'oeuvres or whatever, but the idea that the maker is going to match the stick to your individual strengths and weaknesses as a violinist -- better than you can do just by playing through a couple of dozen existing bows -- is total abject malarkey.

"It was Bazzini all along."

Edited: November 20, 2021, 6:23 AM · I have a cellist friend who believes that anything over £150 for a bow is emperor's new clothes syndrome. I think he takes it too far, but it's why I have set myself an upper limit of £1000.
Pity the poor fool who pays 20k for a bow, then can't regain the magic after it is rehaired!
I rely on my pegs' Tasmanian abalone buttons for my tone. But it has to be from a female abalone - males don't sound as good.
November 19, 2021, 6:00 AM · Most makers will allow you to return a bow that doesn't meet your expectation.

In Rolland's case, he made one which had some real glitches (to me, anyway). I brought it back, and after some discussion and more demonstrations, he made another in a few weeks that is now one of my best.

It is a problem with guys like this-- you would love to have a dozen to sample, but they all go out the door to clients on the wait list. Very occasionally, you find top makers like Morgan Andersen or Noel Burke who make a bunch for a dealer. But there are others for whom you just have to get in the queue. Some are worth it, some not. And if an indeterminate wait period and uncertain end result present too much risk, then go elsewhere. You will probably find what you missed at an auction, after the first owner dies.

November 19, 2021, 9:49 AM · "It is a problem with guys like this-- you would love to have a dozen to sample, but they all go out the door to clients on the wait list."

Sure, but why limit yourself to one maker? A few years ago I met Joshua Henry -- a bow-maker and bow-restorer, and he had an large inventory of bows for me to try including 2-3 that he had made, and all the rest antique bows that he had restored. There's no way I could have tried them all -- there were too many. I asked him to pick half a dozen in the vicinity of $4000 and I tried those. I also tried two of his, which I believe were more expensive. Honestly I could not feel or hear any improvement over my CF bow. But I've improved as a violinist (however incrementally) and would relish the chance to try again. On the other hand my daughter tried one of Josh's cello bows and she was in love with it immediately, but at the time we were not bow-shopping for her; we were cello-shopping.

November 19, 2021, 10:49 AM · it doesn't say much for your credibility if you think your CF is better than a Josh Henry bow!!
November 19, 2021, 12:50 PM · Paul i am a bit of a skeptic too. I refuse to believe that folks aren't making bows as good today as famous French bows 150+ years ago. (But I don't play a stringed instrument, I just buy for the kids. :-)
November 20, 2021, 9:25 AM · I've been playing my violin and immersing myself into the world of violins for over 40 years. Only recently have I come across the term "Recambering." The violinist who will become the guardian of my instrument when I stop playing asked me if my bows had been "recambered."

I have the original bow from the late 1800s when my wife's great grandfather bought it, and a Reinhold Schnabel *** that I acquired a few decades ago. Both are strong with minimal lateral flex and a nice curve when tightened. Each one has it's own characteristics. FWIW: the Schnabel will not move with the old instrument that will be for sale when I stop playing. (hopefully many years in the future)

I got a lecture on the process being essential. I really have to wonder if this is real of just another scam.

November 20, 2021, 10:44 AM · George, this archived 10 year old thread might be of interest:
November 20, 2021, 10:44 AM · I have a nice bow made by the late Randy Steenburgen. It has a beautiful tone. But the stick is too weak and will not draw the hair taught enough. I am hoping recambering will fix it.
November 20, 2021, 11:26 AM · Two less drastic things that might help:
1. less hair
2. shorter hair

If hair was installed in a different climate than it now inhabits there cam be a length mismatch. That happened to my bows when they had been haired in more humid climes than the desert they then inhabited.

November 20, 2021, 3:53 PM · Yup. Have the basics looked at. And be aware that there is some controversy in the profession about who is really good at re-cambering. It is something of a black art, it seems. So if a re-hair fixes the problem, go with that.
November 20, 2021, 4:55 PM · Thanks for the guidance gents. I will try the re-hair.
November 21, 2021, 1:24 AM · Be very careful about recambering bows! It is indeed a very controversial thing and has to be done properly. Bows that have been poorly recambered are easy to spot visually and by feel, and they tend to lose some value, let alone performing terribly.

The process involves heating the stick all the way through without burning it and then carefully adjusting the curvature at key points to allow the best response. The resulting curve has to be smooth, free of any kinks. If the stick is insufficiency heated, it will revert to its previous camber.

November 21, 2021, 8:29 AM · I had my Jean Joseph Martin bow recambered using a Villaume template, so I was told.It is less " noodlie" and bounces with less difficulty.I heard there was a risk of the stick being scorched and this was discussed.
November 21, 2021, 9:07 AM · John,

Of course I cannot see your bow. However if it were mine and had the symptoms you describe I might first trim a few hairs (maybe 5 at a time) to see if that improves things. The worst thing that can happen is that I might have to have it rehaired - which you are talking about doing anyway.

I have done this with good results - did not need to have the bows rehaired! I use a triangle-bladed X-Acto knife and cut the hairs flat from thee inside forst at the frog and next at the tip.

November 21, 2021, 9:28 AM · I had a Bazin bow successfully recambered a couple of times, and this is why I don’t buy the argument that bows don’t change.

The other issue is sound. I’ve tried many, many bows both old and new. I have generally found new bows to have a “green” sound. It’s hard to describe—maybe muted, or one-dimensional. So in my opinion, the wood and the flexibility can both change over time. It seems strange to think something made of wood wouldn’t change over decades or centuries. There are some modern alloys, like the nivarox springs that power modern automatic watch movements, that might retain their shape and flexibility forever. But that’s not wood…

November 21, 2021, 2:49 PM · Perhaps gradual moisture loss is a factor in this.
November 21, 2021, 4:53 PM · Mr. Victor,
Are you cutting the hairs from a particular side or a couple from each side for balance?
November 21, 2021, 6:35 PM · Regarding the original question of this thread, my best guess is that wood becomes stiffer over the first several decades as the softer components of the wood polymerize, and then there is a much slower general degradation and loss of stiffness. These would not be huge changes, at least over one lifetime.

I'm not a bow person, but perhaps the change in damping, which can be much larger, would produce a more noticeable effect for the player.

November 21, 2021, 6:48 PM · John - I cut them more spread across the center than either side. I want to keep the width of the hair ribbon the same so I used the knife blade to lift a few hairs and then cut them toward the ferrule and then the tip.
November 21, 2021, 8:28 PM · I removed 10 hairs from the edges and the middle. Amazing result. The bow is more responsive and sounds even better! The stick is still on the soft side. But there is no changing that. I am pleased with the outcome. I wasn’t expecting such an improvement. Thank you Mr. Victor!
November 21, 2021, 8:53 PM · Lyndon, I'm not any more worried about my credibility than your credulity. I'm sure a better player can appreciate Josh's bows -- as I explained above, my daughter really loves his cello bows. But -- if *I* cannot feel or hear the difference in my violin-playing, then *I* am not spending 10X for a bow.
November 22, 2021, 12:07 AM · maybe you should introduce yourself as an amateur before dispensing advice like a professional??
Edited: November 22, 2021, 10:10 AM · Just for the heck of it I have searched the Maestronet.com archives for a post I wrote almost about pernambuco almost 20 years ago (April 11, 2002:

" There are certainly lots of people who say they don't "make" pernambuco wood the way the used to. But, some mighty fine bows are being made anyway.

I found an intersting juxtaposition of related stories in an issue of The STRAD Magazine a few years ago. An article about J. B. Vuillaume (1798 - 1875) quoted him as complaining that good pernambuco wood was hard to find. In the same issue, an article described the bow-making activities of the Madrid, Spain shop of Fernando Solar (Gonzales), who claimed he had found boards of marvelous old pernambuco that had been used as shelves in the old Vuillaume workshop. I wrote to the expatriate (British) author of the Solar article, who assured me that the bows being made there in Madrid were wonderful - and he had one.

Of course, this left me wondering why Vuillaume complained about the quality of wood for his bows if he was using such great wood for his shelves. But then I remembered (actually I never forgot) the story Solar had told me in 1990, when I visited his shop, that he had bought an ancient "nunnery" the get the main vertical support in the basement, by which the whole structure was supported, a massive spruce log that had been, in its previous life, the main mast of a Spanish galleon (which would make it at least 300 years old). Solar claimed he had used that as the source for the tops of all the instruments he had made (even mine).

I think these are both "world-class" wood stories!"

Just because a bow or instrument was newly made does not mean it was made from new wood:
When i visited Frank Passa in 2000 he showed me stacks of pre-cut (violin, viola and cello) pernambuco wood blanks stored in his (5-car) basement garage. When I talked to Jay Ifshin (owner of Ifshin Violins) about them a few years later (after Passa had died) about those blanks as potential for his friend and fellow classmate of the American Violin Making School (maker of fine bows) Morgan Andersen Jay told me he had looked at those stacks and they were not of sufficient quality.

If you were to obtain a bow made from one of those sticks it might well be over 50 years old on the date of it's "birth."

The California maker of one of my violins (Henry Meissner) used to make bi-annual trips to Europe looking for old wood to import to the US for making his instruments - so the nearly new violin I purchased from him in 1970 could have come form 200 year old wood.

November 22, 2021, 10:11 AM · A viola bow I purchased from maker John Fennessy in the mid-1980s has, in my opinion, lost a bit of it's stiffness. I looked into having it re-cambered but was talked out of it as risky. I recently had it re-haired and asked for less hair, for the reasons described above. It came out great and I'm enjoying playing on it again. It definitely feels more responsive. Then, I have a James Tubbs viola bow from ~1870 that is stiff and responsive as can be. Perhaps it has lost stiffness since it was made but that's difficult to imagine. It certainly does not appear to have lost any of its camber.
November 22, 2021, 10:28 AM · Great post Andrew!
November 22, 2021, 11:52 AM · Yes, great wood story. My takeaway is that even among master makers grading wood quality is quite subjective.
Edited: November 22, 2021, 3:54 PM · John I think they do their best what with the materials they are able to acquire.

I recall a Sunday Morning TV show many years ago - I think it was CBS Sunday Morning. It was a short segment about bow maker Donald Cohen in the Washington D.C. area. His bow making was explored in the interview and I recalled him saying that if a bow he made did not meet his standards he destroyed it rather than selling it for less (and I presume risking spoiling his reputation).

November 22, 2021, 3:29 PM · Too bad he doesn't offer a Stentor line to sell to schools...
November 22, 2021, 5:00 PM · Mr. Cohen is a fine maker and gentleman. I was bidding on one of his early-work bows (c. 1984) last week at Tarisio. Unfortunately, I was out bid. But I did end up getting a beautiful Peccatte copy by Michael Taylor from his days at Ealing Strings.
November 22, 2021, 10:25 PM · Paul Deck, I've been away, so I missed your dismissal of my experience, but I had five bows by my maker to try, and he did indeed listen to me play. ("I'm calling that out as total rubbish. This is an "emperor has no clothes" moment if ever there was one. Pure marketing. Hook, line, sinker.") The bow from that original set of five that I most liked, I had picked out within about twenty minutes, but he insisted that I play all of them for a couple weeks, then I picked the one I most liked (that I had preferred all along) and my second choice. When I finally met with him the last time, I had the one in mind that I had liked from the beginning. You didn't figure into your assessment that I had the choice of going with that first bow I liked, but I preferred the bow he had made for me, hands-down. It was better in all ways.
November 23, 2021, 5:36 AM · Next, I suppose you'll be having us believe that you're a decent violinist with some useful experience. Rubbish, and marketing!
November 23, 2021, 6:00 AM · Much like a fine instrument maker, a bow maker may craft form, material, and design to achieve a specific feel and sound. Perhaps the final result is not spot on every time. But good makers will get it just right most of the time. IMHO.
Edited: November 23, 2021, 6:29 AM · As a lifetime bow sceptic I like to hear some similar views! One of the things I find hard to accept is that in the past certain bowmakers (mostly French) seem to have had a knack that was denied to everyone else who had access to all the same forms, materials and designs. Today it seems some are able to control not just the properties of a bow, but how it will perform in the hands of a particular player who they've heard play for how long and in what repertoire?
November 23, 2021, 8:05 AM · Steve, I wonder if bow makers in places such as 19th century Mirecourt had artisan guilds and workshops that passed along specialized trade practices developed over generations. Perhaps it was not a knack but actual expertise, skill, and knowledge. The trade was not necessarily denied to others. But a bow maker working in Bazin’s workshop for example and learning from the many experienced makers of the time would have an advantage over an individual working alone in Brussels let’s say.

I’ve never had a bow custom tailored and built specially for me. My playing is not worthy of such an endeavor. But I would not be so quick to judge it as quackery. I think the artisans who devote their careers to the crafts of instrument and bow making are admirable and deserve thanks and respect. But that’s just me.

Edited: November 23, 2021, 1:14 PM · An Italian bow maker, Giovanni Lucci had a "Eureka moment" when he thought that it might be possible to evaluate the quality of wood for bow sticks in relation the the velocity of sound therein. Thus the invention of the "LUCCI METER."


As I understand it, the use of the device is now very common by bowmakers (and perhaps violin makers in general) in evaluating their raw material purchases.

I do know that the ARCUS bow design is strongly related to the speed of sound in their products. I think this has some relationship to the overtone spectrum their bows draw from instruments they are used on.

Another important characteristic of bows is (what I call) their "playability." This is the way they handle the physical instructions they get from players' hands. For example, some bows can seem to have an internal motor when directed to produce staccato bowing and sutille - others not so much. I have played over 100 cello bows and only 5% have had that "internal; motor" for me and none of them was available for purchase.

At one point in my search for a bow that could handle rather strange sonic behavior of the G string on one of my cellos I tested 66 bows at Ifshin Violins in one day. Only two of those bows eliminated that cello's problem for me. Both had been made by Paul Martin Siefried, one (with gold "trim") priced at $5,300 and one (silver) for $2,000. I bought the less expensive one and sent it to its maker for rehair and new silk winding and thumb leather. Siefried and I got to talking and I asked him about that "internal motor" and how a maker achieved that. He was aware of it and said it just happens with some bows he was not able to tell me if it was something a maker achieved by design. So far I have only found it in one violin bow I have had in my hand, a Hill "Malcom Taylor" owned be a friend of mine. I need a bow like that, but not all players do.

Edited: November 23, 2021, 1:51 PM · Andrew Victor wrote:
" An Italian bow maker, Giovanni Lucci had a "Eureka moment" when he thought that it might be possible to evaluate the quality of wood for bow sticks in relation the the velocity of sound therein. Thus the invention of the "LUCCI METER." purchases."

The Lucci meter was all the rage, when it first came out, like so many other things which have had their initial splashes and their later ups and downs.

November 24, 2021, 6:19 AM · I've tried fine bows by Don Cohen and Josh Henry both -- they're local to me. (Don has since retired.) Indeed nice, although none were right for me.

Josh recambered a fine French bow for me and did a great job; it plays much better now.

November 24, 2021, 6:50 AM · I met Josh once-- great guy, with some interesting inventory. (He has a fondness for underpriced German bows.) None of his own sticks, though, so I couldn't say how much I'd have liked them.
November 24, 2021, 11:12 AM · Just an aside: I've visited the workshops of many bow makers.

It's always amazed me that they can make any kind of credible bow, given that none of them had any playing skills whatsoever.

November 24, 2021, 11:39 AM · Varies a lot. I think Rolland studied violin. Tom Dignan studies double bass. David Hawthorne still plays fiddle in public, although he doesn’t cross-market that at all.
November 24, 2021, 12:33 PM · I don't think that a violin or bow maker needs to be a consummate player to have a pretty good idea of what's going on.

While I was once a pretty good violinist, I haven't practiced for 40 years, and also have some nerve damage affecting my hands.
I can still assess the capabilities of a violin pretty quickly (not that I would want an audience), and I also know an exceptional adjuster who was never a good player, who gets all the information he needs mostly by using the bow on the string to make "scratching noises".

November 24, 2021, 1:25 PM · Don Cohen is the premier bow maker in the DC area. He has stopped doing repair work and rehairing for customers in order to devote all his time to his new making. We’ve had a lot of his bows come through the shop and are always happy to see them.
November 25, 2021, 7:24 AM · Anne-Sophie Mutter has allegedly sworn off collecting REALLY expensive bows, and instead rotates between two of Cohen's and two from Rolland.

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