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Author Topic: Lightweight bow?  (Read 6456 times)

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Offline fiddledeedee

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Lightweight bow?
« on: Feb 22, 2008, 03:24:37 AM »
I'd like to try out a traditionally shaped light weight fiddle bow. [lighter weight than 54g]

Can anyone recommend a name brand bow that has consistent light weights?  I'm not near any fiddle shops, so I'd probably have to order something on trial.

I'm shying away from the incredibow, only because all of my experience has been with a regular shaped bow.
sheryl


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Offline Jansberg

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #1 on: Feb 22, 2008, 08:46:53 AM »
There are the arcus bows which have a link on this site..

They are about 10 grams lighter depending on model.. But they are also expensive..

I can not metion anybody else, but now and then I have come across a good light wooden bow..
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Offline giannaviolins

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #2 on: Feb 22, 2008, 10:49:36 AM »
Generally about 59.5 gm is the lightest I find conventional style bows. 

Offline natnot

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #3 on: Feb 22, 2008, 01:43:51 PM »
I have an Arcus - I like it a lot. I think they're about 50g, and they play very nicely.

Offline sreizes

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #4 on: Feb 22, 2008, 07:04:47 PM »
For conventional wood bows, the lightest I've seen reference to seems about 55 grams.  I have one at 55 gms with hair, generally if you see one lighter than that it is the weight without hair.  Most of the superlight ones seem to be older bows and if they are good they tend to be expensive.

Baroque bows tend to run lighter, but I gather that's not what you're after.

Offline fiddledeedee

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #5 on: Feb 22, 2008, 08:04:54 PM »
I would be ok with  a carbon fiber bow too.  Thanks for the input on the Arcus bow.  It's probably a bit high for my budget.  I thought I'd ask and see what reccomendations I get from people.
sheryl

Offline giannaviolins

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #6 on: Feb 22, 2008, 08:31:00 PM »
My recommendation would be to stick with a standard weight stick in the lower price ranges.

Offline madmat

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #7 on: Feb 22, 2008, 09:27:07 PM »
Generally about 59.5 gm is the lightest I find conventional style bows.
That seems to be the weight of all my Glasser Braided Carbon Fiber bows, and they feel pretty good to me. They are all very consistent from one to the next.
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Offline sreizes

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #8 on: Feb 22, 2008, 09:52:46 PM »
It occures to me to ask why you want a light bow - are you maybe thinking more of balance than actual weight.  A fairly heavy bow can feel light if it's balanced more toward the frog and vice-versa.

Offline chrisandcello

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #9 on: Feb 22, 2008, 10:12:20 PM »
Quote
It occures to me to ask why you want a light bow - are you maybe thinking more of balance than actual weight
I guess if a player chokes up on the bow to their own balance point, the wire wrap could be removed to lose a few grams?......

Offline fiddledeedee

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #10 on: Feb 22, 2008, 10:42:18 PM »
Actually, I have several violin bows, -- a couple are good bows that I acquired years ago and wouldn't use for fiddling, one is a good carbon fiber bow that holds up well in outdoor weather but the weight is average, a couple are what I call junk bows -- they  came to me with another fiddle I purchased.

I've taken up trying to learn Celtic fiddle tunes lately, and the friend who was showing me the technique/style suggested that it might be a lot easier to play with a very lightweight bow.

I thought I'd ask to see if there was any particular bow brand someone could recommend. I realize that bows are very subjective [part of the reason I have a collection: I know it's easier to play "heavy orchestral music" when  I have a heavy bow.
And faster music plays easier with a lighter weight bow. ]

So I'm open to suggestions on the weight issue.

It occures to me to ask why you want a light bow - are you maybe thinking more of balance than actual weight.  A fairly heavy bow can feel light if it's balanced more toward the frog and vice-versa.
sheryl

Offline chrisandcello

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #11 on: Feb 22, 2008, 11:59:18 PM »
Don't have any branded bows, but on a weight issue would a 3/4 size or baroque bow (around 2" shorter) be any good?

Offline giannaviolins

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #12 on: Feb 23, 2008, 01:48:27 AM »
baroque bows are wonderful for fiddling.

Offline chrisandcello

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #13 on: Feb 23, 2008, 02:10:56 AM »
Suprised they are not more popular....very user friendly, easy to control, intimate.......I usually find I need a small period of re-adjustment to a standard bow if I've been using the baroque for an extended (weeks) period though.
Also great for fiddling in confined spaces...much less of a unwieldy weapon ;)

Offline fiddledeedee

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #14 on: Feb 23, 2008, 02:17:21 AM »
baroque bows are wonderful for fiddling.

So do they handle similar to a regular bow?  If yes, I might have to try one....
sheryl

Offline sreizes

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #15 on: Feb 23, 2008, 02:35:21 AM »
Yes and no...  A "proper" baroque hold would be in front of the frog, closer to the balance.  Incredibow has brought out a baroque styled bow that looks interesting.

Offline chrisandcello

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #16 on: Feb 23, 2008, 10:57:23 AM »
Quote
So do they handle similar to a regular bow?  If yes, I might have to try one....
In my view yes...but better....and cheaper...more practical...good tone. Have a look on e-bay...I like the one's being sold as african blackwood...but just type in 'baroque bow' to see. There are at least 3 suppliers selling...
I think the key difference (apart from weight) is ease of maneuverability...bit like comparing a honda to a limo in the car park.
I am biased...cause I like them ;D
« Last Edit: Feb 23, 2008, 11:08:49 AM by chrisandcello »

Offline muttonhead

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #17 on: Feb 26, 2008, 07:56:19 AM »
Hmmm, I don't quite understand the willingness to make adjustment for the difference in playing a baroque bow but not make the adjustment for an Inredibow which has roughly the same balance and handling difference. At 35gms they are light enough to really make a noticeable difference.  If you like the baroque shape, the Incredibow folks make those too.

Offline chrisandcello

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #18 on: Feb 26, 2008, 11:03:20 AM »
Sorry muttonhead...I do tend to champion these baroques...maybe a bit OTT...but its all experience related.
Myself, I've never tried an incredibow...the 80-90 (approx) UK would be too pricey a trial compared to 20 delivered to the door ebay wins. The incredibows make huge sense on paper and forum reviews etc...guess I'm a sucker for the underdog...that everlasting hair is so tempting though ;)

Offline muttonhead

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #19 on: Feb 26, 2008, 09:37:59 PM »
but its all experience related.
So true, and it's very possible that I just don't have enough experience yet to really tell the difference.

Offline chrisandcello

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #20 on: Feb 26, 2008, 10:57:08 PM »
Guess most of us occupy the same boat ;)...be interesting to hear what solution fiddledeedee settles on. (I still love those baroques though ;))

Offline fiddledeedee

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #21 on: Feb 27, 2008, 01:44:02 AM »
I've taken a look at the ebay baroque bows, but I'm not convinced.  [Nothing like trying to return ship something to China]. And the price point is close to the baroque bow offered by Shar. What' I'll probably do is wait until I test one in person, or if that takes too long, order a sampling from either shar or swstrings and try something out for a week or two.  Another thought I've had is to shred wrappings on a cheap bow I have to see if i can lighten it somewhat.
sheryl

Offline sreizes

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #22 on: Feb 27, 2008, 05:33:46 PM »
Another thought I've had is to shred wrappings on a cheap bow I have to see if i can lighten it somewhat.
that will change the balance more than anything I believe.  May do more harm than good.

Offline Steve_W

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #23 on: Feb 27, 2008, 07:47:30 PM »
From what I've seen, lightweight wooden conventional bows often have stiffness issues. I have an old Emile Dupree that's 54g and although it's great for fast Irish tunes, it's pretty whippy and doesn't work well for other stuff.  I do most of my playing with an Arcus Sinfonia and it's a great bow...  It's not all about the weight though.  My backup bow's a Coda Diamond SX and it doesn't feel all that different from the Sinfonia on the strings even though it weighs 60g vs. 50g for the Sinfonia.  No problem to do cuts, etc. with it.  I know a bunch of (celtic) fiddlers that are going for these.  Agree with Steve R. that balance is more important than weight.  It's easier to play with a well-balanced heavy bow than an unbalanced light one. -Steve

Offline chrisandcello

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Re: Lightweight bow?
« Reply #24 on: Feb 27, 2008, 09:05:08 PM »
Quote
thought I've had is to shred wrappings on a cheap bow I have to see if i can lighten it somewhat
I've done this on a cheap bow....wire and leather off...and in that case the balance change was better for me...also took the opportunity to scrape off the varnish and try some of my own concoctions + a bit of recamber. Nothing is lost on a cheapie..........
If you choke up on the bow or do the thumb under the frog grip...then 'standard' balance points become a bit academic anyway........

 




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