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Bow straigtening

Discussion in 'Bows and Rosin [DB]' started by Adrian Cho, Apr 17, 2005.

  1. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    What are people's thoughts on straightening bows? If the bow has developed a slight warp to the left or right at the tip, can it be restraightened and how is it done and what effect will it have on the bow in the long term? Any recommendations on anyone in the Ontario/NY/MA area that could do it and not screw it up?

    Also, if the bow has developed such a warp what does it mean about the bowmaker and/or the materials that were used?

    A violinist friend of mine had a warp in her bow and gave it to a local bowmaker to straighten. He used direct heat (stovetop) and the bow was apparently ruined. She says it is now too soft and the heating introduced another warp that the guy could not correct.
  2. prelims222


    Sep 20, 2004
    Southeast US
    Don Reinfeld in Rochester might be a good bet.
  3. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I had a bow (my Oskar E. Meinel) corrected by a local luthier. It worked perfectly. I posted a similar question beforehand here at TB, so there is a thread out there were a few of the experts sounding off on the subject.

    As long as they are made of wood, there's a chance of something like this happening. I wouldn't sweat it. If it still tracks right, I might not even worry about it. Mine was actually kicking left in the middle of the bow, so it was a little prone to hitting the strings if you allowed your hand to turn over too much. If I hadn't had it corrected, it would have been useless pretty soon, as the hair tension was just making it get worse and worse. That made the decision easy for me.

    It's perfect now. As straight as my other bow. he scorched the stick just a bit, but after it was polished out, it looks fine.
  4. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    bowmakers do this all the time, there is however a chance that the bow may break. a good bowmaker will have enough experience to tell you to proceed or not.
  5. a. meyer

    a. meyer

    Dec 10, 2004
    portland, oregon
    Kolsteins would be worth checking out too.
  6. It's a shame, but each time we ask for something to be corrected that really should not go wrong in the first place (recambering excepted here) we should realize that maybe we started with a somewhat sub-standard item or storage situation. It is a must to loosen the tension on a stored bow and make sure it is stored without uneven pressure on it. I'm not saying the repair person didn't make a mistake or that it's the customer's fault either, it just strikes me that the situation was already in a "salvage" situation before the repair person was involved.

    As far as the material or the bowmaker goes: It might be an unfair assumption to fault either one without knowing how much tension was on the bow, the storage conditions (bass bag pocket, bow case, out in open (humidity level for sure), age of the bow, cost of the bow, pernam. or brazil, etc. There are so many possible culprits here that one can't assign fault to any reasonable degree. I have heard of bows being recambered over stoves, so that method is not unusual;- perhaps it may have been too hot, but we don't know that. If your friend answers all those questions she might be able to. If you take in a flat tire, sometime they can fix it, sometimes they can't. Most of the time they will try. Perhaps warped bows (is that redundant?) are similar.