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Bow repairable?

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A freak accident caused a green stick type fracture behind the head of my daughter's favorite bow. I was told by a well-respected bow expert that the bow is now junk, stating that the head would always sag. Frankly, I don't get it. Even now, the bow plays as is. My kid, who is an advanced player, likes her bow on the loose side, so very little tension would be applied to the crack. Can this type of crack simply be closed with a strong glue so that the crack will not become worse? If yes, do you know a bow maker who can do the repair well enough so that the bow can at least be used as a back-up?

Photos attached.

Thanks for your input.

post-23717-1213719998_thumb.jpg

post-23717-1213720020_thumb.jpg

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It looks like it might be repairable. Try contacting Lynn Hannings, she has a website, she is a great repairer.

The bow will have lost value even if it is repaired, but it would still be useable.

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It looks like it might be repairable. Try contacting Lynn Hannings, she has a website, she is a great repairer.

The bow will have lost value even if it is repaired, but it would still be useable.

Thanks, Pebbles. I will definitely contact her.

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I have repaired bows with the tip broken with good sucess.I cant tell where the crack is from the pictures.Can you post a larger picture just the tip where the crack is.

Monroe

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We could use a better picture, but I think I see where the break has occurred. This can be repaired but if you are not comfortable with this, do not do it.

I think I see an earlier repair on the shaft, near the tip. These repairs can be so cleverly done that it is difficult to find them. Get your magnifier lens out and look at the tip and shaft and see if I am correct.

Mike D

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I would say it can be repaired but it will need re-inforcement which will be visable. The break is in a critical place and the length of the break is very short.

As in this CN Bazin,which had a similar break.

untitled13.jpg

untitled11.jpg

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New photos uploaded.

++++++++++++++++++

If this is my bow (broken this way) I would go to a hard ware store to buy a aluminum tube of smaller size.

cut it in 3/4 of an inch in length and shape two ends of the bow to fit them (both ends inside of the tube). It is because the

tube is smaller size, I would use plastic wood to built the shape to make it look like an unbroken bow.

Use varnish to touch it up. It would have the strength but not necessary the look. (still a junk, but useable)

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++++++++++++++++++

If this is my bow (broken this way) I would go to a hard ware store to buy a aluminum tube of smaller size.

cut it in 3/4 of an inch in length and shape two ends of the bow to fit them (both ends inside of the tube). It is because the

tube is smaller size, I would use plastic wood to built the shape to make it look like an unbroken bow.

Use varnish to touch it up. It would have the strength but not necessary the look. (still a junk, but useable)

Yuen, I have said before that I have some affinity for you as a peaceful member of Maestronet. However, this sentiment is tested with posts like your most recent, because when it comes to violin or bow repair, you are the very last person who should be doling out technique or volunteering how you would do it. Surely there are other things you can contribute here besides advice.

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Yuen, I have said before that I have some affinity for you as a peaceful member of Maestronet. However, this sentiment is tested with posts like your most recent, because when it comes to violin or bow repair, you are the very last person who should be doling out technique or volunteering how you would do it. Surely there are other things you can contribute here besides advice.

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I know your point well. I only consider the structure of the bow. Did you offer any explanation why it is bad? (No, just complaint )

( Listen, please) I know something and explain it too.

Some people believe the sound is traveling along the bow .

Any repair that interrupt the flow of sound is bad. Just like a crack on the top of a violin. Flow of sound would have been interrupted if

the repair is not thoughtful.

Right or wrong, I don't know but at least I am aware of it. Are you aware of this? IF you do why not say so.

The bow's strength has been weaken or compromised, the tube will give back some of its strength that glue may or may not.

The more glue you use the weaker the strength, (extra glue will only fill space) ask any glue research people. The less glue you use it may not do the job.

It is not clear what is the best (right amount of glue, where it is applied) ? Tricky thing to do. (glue is not to be used to fill space, research people say)

(I did say it still a junk, not claiming anything)

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+++++

I know your point well. I only consider the structure of the bow. Did you offer any explanation why it is bad? (No, just complaint )

( Listen, please) I know something and explain it too.

Some people believe the sound is traveling along the bow .

Any repair that interrupt the flow of sound is bad. Just like a crack on the top of a violin. Flow of sound would have been interrupted if

the repair is not thoughtful.

Right or wrong, I don't know but at least I am aware of it. Are you aware of this? IF you do why not say so.

The bow's strength has been weaken or compromised, the tube will give back some of its strength that glue may or may not.

The more glue you use the weaker the strength, (extra glue will only fill space) ask any glue research people. The less glue you use it may not do the job.

It is not clear what is the best (right amount of glue, where it is applied) ? Tricky thing to do. (glue is not to be used to fill space, research people say)

(I did say it still a junk, not claiming anything)

Yuen,

We are dealing with violin bows whose weight and balance are critical to the performer. I would think that adding a metal tube and plastic wood might upset both the weight and the balance, besides looking very ugly. My purpose here is to save the playability and appearance of the bow with the understanding that its value as a collectable is virtually gone. I am not ready to call the bow junk, just yet. Here is a link to a repairman who illustrates how he uses silk thread to repair bow cracks. http://blogs.ebay.com/ollavaca/entry/Crack...0QQidZ343501014

Thanks for your sincere input.

Herman

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Yuen,

We are dealing with violin bows whose weight and balance are critical to the performer. I would think that adding a metal tube and plastic wood might upset both the weight and the balance, besides looking very ugly. My purpose here is to save the playability and appearance of the bow with the understanding that its value as a collectable is virtually gone. I am not ready to call the bow junk, just yet. Here is a link to a repairman who illustrates how he uses silk thread to repair bow cracks. http://blogs.ebay.com/ollavaca/entry/Crack...0QQidZ343501014

Thanks for your sincere input.

Herman

+++++++++++

Good link. I must say, the guy has the same line of thought as mine. He used silk, I use

aluminum tube. Same idea. (silk is lighter and better)

If you go back to think about the sound traveling along the bow theory. Any repair at that

spot of your bow will divert the flow of sound. The other luthier said it is junk, not without

this thought in mind. Since your daughter is an advanced player, why take chance. Buy her

a new bow

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+++++++++++

Since your daughter is an advanced player, why take chance. Buy her

a new bow

Yuen,

In my original post, I said that I wanted to try to save the damaged bow to use as a back-up bow. Yes, I have already undertaken a search for another bow. These days, when a "cheap" bow for an advanced student can cost more than $3000, and a step-up fiddle is in the $35,000 range, I wish I had taken my parent's advice and become a doctor instead of a professional musician and music teacher. The repairman in the blog charges $450 for the repair with silk thread and epoxy, quite a bit, I think, but a lot less than the cost of a decent bow.

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Hmm, this "interruption of flow" theory of broken bows sounds like hogwash. Sound waves are not like some Chi life-force; they do not need to travel along the hair, down the wood and back into the other side of the hair. That makes no sense at all. The only areas of interest that remain important here are strength and balance, both of which (in some cases, perhaps this one) can sometimes be saved with silk wrap.

And what kind of mere step-up fiddle costs as much as a used Lexus anyways? Evidently I've been picking the wrong lottery numbers.

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And what kind of mere step-up fiddle costs as much as a used Lexus anyways? Evidently I've been picking the wrong lottery numbers.

Hi Rokovak,

Perhaps "step-up" was a not the right word to describe an instrument significantly better than the one owned at present. My daughter is currently playing on a Roth Strad model (level VII) which I bought for a song 4 years ago on e-bay and put another $500 into a set-up. The instrument is terrific for what it is. It got the kid into the Juilliard Pre-College, but the sound has been described as OK and not very interesting. She was told she needs a better instrument. Well, after trying dozens of instruments from a variety of sources, I can tell you that up to about 30 grand, she didn't find anything significantly better than the Roth. There was absolutely no point in purchasing any of those fiddles. We discovered that at $30K, some (amazingly not all) violins did begin to sound much better. A 50 year-old Karl Becker, for example, was just beautiful, with a buttery high register and a refusal to produce a bad sound, no matter how much weight was applied to the strings. It was, however, $35K. No, I didn't buy it, but I am trying to figure out how to pay for it if I did buy it. A Lexus will eventually turn into a pile of metal scrap, while a fine violin will make a player happy forever.

Herman

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Glue alone, or glue with a wrapping (silk or whatever) probably won't hold up in the long term on a break like this.

Gluing and inserting a spline might work.

I have to agree with you. In fact, I would extend the spline right through the head of the bow as it looks like it might have had a broken head at an earlier time, and bring the spline back an inch or so down the stick past the break. This would serve to strengthen the last two inches or so of the stick. And I would use The G2 epoxy that many have had reservations about using. Here are some pictures I took tonight of a bow I repaired 20 years ago, broken tip:

post-24795-1213849898_thumb.jpg post-24795-1213850026_thumb.jpg

The way the flash reflects off the spline it makes it look very noticeable, but in general viewing you need to look carefully to notice it. The original stain I used has faded so it could probably do with some touch-up.

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Glue alone, or glue with a wrapping (silk or whatever) probably won't hold up in the long term on a break like this.

Gluing and inserting a spline might work.

The bow i posted a couple of pics of has held for 6-7 years,it was done by Raffin using some sort of glass fibre or maybe kevlar wrapping and resin(maybe epoxy not sure)

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The bow i posted a couple of pics of has held for 6-7 years,it was done by Raffin using some sort of glass fibre or maybe kevlar wrapping and resin(maybe epoxy not sure)

++++++++++++++

It all depends on what material wrapping you used. If it is silk material then it will last as silk material.

If you allow aluminum tube, it will last as long as the tube. Glass fiber works the same.

The balance of the bow, its appearance or its repair durability are in question. Some trade off are there.

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The bow i posted a couple of pics of has held for 6-7 years,it was done by Raffin using some sort of glass fibre or maybe kevlar wrapping and resin(maybe epoxy not sure)

Sorry, I should have been more specific. I meant to say that the thread-type wrapping shown in Hermans link probably wouldn't work, because his is a transverse break, and thread wrapping wouldn't provide the necessary longitudinal strength. It can work well for a break which runs with the grain.

Any sleeve with good longitudinal strength glued on the outside would probably be plenty strong with the right surface prep and adhesive, including Yuens aluminum tubing. Flexibility in the area repaired this way would be greatly reduced, and flexibility in this area is important for the playing qualities.

Since Herman wants minimal impact on the appearance and playing qualities, I suggested a spline like Bill Yacey has shown.

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Sorry, I should have been more specific. I meant to say that the thread-type wrapping shown in Hermans link probably wouldn't work, because his is a transverse break, and thread wrapping wouldn't provide the necessary longitudinal strength. It can work well for a break which runs with the grain.

Any sleeve with good longitudinal strength glued on the outside would probably be plenty strong with the right surface prep and adhesive, including Yuens aluminum tubing. Flexibility in the area repaired this way would be greatly reduced, and flexibility in this area is important for the playing qualities.

Since Herman wants minimal impact on the appearance and playing qualities, I suggested a spline like Bill Yacey has shown.

No problem,i understand what you mean with the thread idea of repairing. The one i posted pics of ,the repair looks heavier than it really is,the glass fibre or whatever it is is right next to the wood,the resin coating seems to magnify it making the stick look alot thicker.

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Hmm, this "interruption of flow" theory of broken bows sounds like hogwash. Sound waves are not like some Chi life-force; they do not need to travel along the hair, down the wood and back into the other side of the hair. That makes no sense at all.

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Hi, Rokovak

I am not too sure " makes no sense" part so quickly. Sound travels in air quite slowly if you ask a physicist, they will tell you so.

If it is correct, the sound does travel in the stick earlier than in air. It is this part of sound the people are talking about.

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vibration will travel faster through a piece of wood than air, but what vibration are we talking about here, and for what purpose, what is creating it, and what do you want it to do? The bow certainly doesn't radiate sound to the air, but this is getting off topic here.

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