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Questions for Hill Bow Aficionados


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I have a collection of Hill bows and I would like to know the distinguishing characteristics and/or stamps used by Tubbs & Allen. I want to add these 2 makers to my collection and want to have some degree of familiarity with their output while at Hill. I have 3 Tubbs bows made post Hill which are pretty easy to spot but I'd like to know if his production while at Hill had any other telltale characteristics. I also have bows made by lesser former Hill makers (e.g. Bultitude, Watson) which don't compare favorably to Hill makers such as Yeoman, Napier, etc. (IMHO).

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Consider looking through old auction catalogues, spotting bows with the stamp W.E Hill, they were often the early work of James Tubbs, Very distinctive to my eye and quite different from later production. Don't recall ever seing a real early one with silver face for example, often rounded rather than square frog. when you see a few, they become obvious. There are quite a few unstamped as well.

The frog on this one is sooo typical of early work. (bought on ebay with a crap fiddle about 4 or more years ago) unstamped, early James Tubbs.


I don't see Allen bows much to be of any help.

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Thanks to you both for invaluable information! You guys are great!

Could you please give me a general idea of how Tubbs later production (as shown below) differs from his early production at Hill? Would you say the earlier work is just rougher or is there more to it?




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I removed Jacob's post as you requested... but his message to you was correct. "At" the Hill workshop is not really the correct image for Tubbs relationship with the Hills. If my memory serves, both Tubbs and Allen spanned the period in which the "W. E Hill" (no and sons) stamp was employed. Of course, it seems as Tubbs may have had a habit of obliterating this stamp with his own when bows came in to him for rehair later on. :)

If I'm incorrect about the stamp, someone please correct me. My brain is full of last week's adventures at the VSA presently.

Among a few other things, Allen's head style (especially in the chamfers) is rather individual, and his technique for making Parisian style eye inlays also differed from the rest of the pack.

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