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Author Topic: Rosin choice yet again  (Read 2461 times)

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Offline beeswing

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Rosin choice yet again
« on: Nov 21, 2005, 02:37:28 PM »
For you who focus on rosin choice, there's an interesting article in the November 2005 American String Teacher magazine, by Jonathan Sellon, who has also done some work with the neurological effects of music training on ADD kids, it seems.

Short and sweet, it's a presentation of oscillogram amplitude envelopes of bow strokes with different rosins: Pirastro Goldflex, Hill dark and light, and Bernardel. It seems the Bernardel and Hill light emphasize the difference in loudness between tip and frog, while the Goldflex and Hill dark keep a more constant amplitude, making for a fatter sound. Innn-teresting... you want to vary your palette, or have "a thicker, broader tone?"

The article also says that mixing rosins on the hair can lead to undesirable or unpredictable results, and that hair should see only one type of rosin throughout its service life. OK...  I guess that makes me a Philistine and a troglodyte both, since the bows around here get a wipe of whatever rosin is handy, and may see half a dozen or more brands between rehairs.
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Offline fidla

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #1 on: Nov 21, 2005, 02:46:14 PM »
Did the article talk at all about hair or the stick used?  We know how quality of horse hair can affect tone, also was a bow machine used in the test or was it more informally done with a human tester?

I've heard this about mixing rosins as well.  It could very well be true.  We know that rosin works by coating the outer layer of hair (essentially rosin dust is attracted to the hair by its electro-static principal).  When the hair is pulled across the string, the resulting friction melts the rosin.  It sticks to the string for a micro-second, "plucking" the string as it passes.  This causes vibration, vibrates the bridge, etc etc and so forth.  Thus different qualities and properties of rosin can cause a confusion of layers on the hair.  Think of melted wax coating a string.  As different types of wax, with different ingredients are added, the result can be a lumpy, vary-formed strand, causing hiss and "bow noise". 

A cheap solution is to wipe the hair with denatured alcohol (after removing the frog from the stick of course.  You don't want alcohol any where near your wood stick (not a worry for carbon materials).

Offline beeswing

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #2 on: Nov 21, 2005, 02:59:28 PM »
A good hair cleaning can put off the need for a rehair, or so I've read. In my experience, denatured alcohol also does a decent job of getting rid of the spot of finger schmutz that often appears near the frog.

With what he says about mixing rosin (may cause "the horsehair to become too firm to acquire the tone you are trying to achieve.") one may assume that the trial was with four different bows, or four rehairs of the same stick, or a good cleaning in between times, or what, he doesn't say.

It looks like the bowing was done by human hands, "a single pitch with one change in bow stroke..." and the pictures appear to show a down followed by an up-bow.
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Offline apollonike

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #3 on: Nov 21, 2005, 03:46:04 PM »
Hrm, I need to join ASTA.

stone

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #4 on: Nov 21, 2005, 03:57:44 PM »
EDITED.
« Last Edit: Mar 12, 2006, 03:23:27 AM by stone »

Offline farmerjones

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #5 on: Nov 21, 2005, 04:05:16 PM »
If you're talking rosin again, i find it dificult to believe an article that does nothing to compare the benefitts, ramafacations and out and out tradition of stolen rosin compared to the purchased. I've been a long time proponent of stolen rosin, in fact for years. Not only has it saved me money, but it makes your bow work much better than going without. This mixing thing has me worried, you can be sure. Sometimes the borrowee gets warey of the borrower.  I must kick into super schmooz mode or only befriend one poor sot or quite a spell. Beez, you've certainly put a bee in my bonett.  Next thing you'll wack me on is "shelf-life." Would you believe anybody expounding on rosin shelf-life that sells rosin? Would you eat the pie of a skinny cook?

fj

Offline beeswing

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #6 on: Nov 21, 2005, 11:48:16 PM »
I don't think I could live with myself if I took a whole block of someone else's rosin. Sorry, just the way I am, not likely to change. Swiping a goodly up-and-downing of it onto the hair while they're not looking is a whole different story, and is a fine way to occupy one's time. Goes along with my sense that whatever rosin is closest to hand is the best one to use.

I've never had a block of rosin go bad on me without being dropped on a hard floor first.





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Offline Mnfele

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #7 on: Nov 22, 2005, 12:26:58 AM »
Does this "mixing" include changing from Hill Dark to Light because of seasonal changes (humidity) ? I keep both just for that reason.

Offline fidla

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #8 on: Nov 22, 2005, 12:29:01 AM »
I don't think I could live with myself if I took a whole block of someone else's rosin.

don't knock it until you've tried it ;)

Offline beeswing

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #9 on: Nov 22, 2005, 02:15:10 AM »
OK, but right now I can't think of that many people who deserve to lose a chunk of rosin that way.


 * whistling, gazing off sideways into the distance... *
I want to be a musician when I grow up.
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Offline fidla

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #10 on: Nov 22, 2005, 12:39:03 PM »
OK, but right now I can't think of that many people who deserve to lose a chunk of rosin that way.

it's certainly one way to promote a new rosin product...

stone

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Re: Rosin choice yet again
« Reply #11 on: Nov 24, 2005, 06:42:17 PM »
EDITED.
« Last Edit: Mar 12, 2006, 03:39:05 AM by stone »

 




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