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Bowing Nylon Core strings

Discussion in 'Bows and Rosin [DB]' started by mbunyan, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. mbunyan


    Feb 3, 2013
    Hi all,

    I have a Stagg EDB with Innovation Rockabilly nylon core strings... Will they bow? I love playing pizzicato but have been told a bow will help me learn tone and control?

    I've heard that braided nylon strings are 'difficult' to bow. Does this mean impossible?

    Finally, does anyone think it is essential to own a bow? Will it help me in the long run?

    Cheers for any advice...
  2. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    Arco is a skill worth having. Lots of folks here and elsewhere may give a variety of reasons for it, like better intonation practice, etc. (and I don't disagree with most of them) -- but, bottom line, I just think it's a good ability to have, as it makes you a more "complete" player.

    Innovation Rockabilly strings can be a little difficult to bow, but not because of their core (many "orchestral" strings have nylon cores) but the outer surface - the nylon is smooth and tough for the bow hair to grab.

    You may have to experiment with a few rosin choices to find one that will work with those strings.

    Now, take this with a grain of salt, because a customer told me this but I never tried it (and it's unconventional). He had some Innovation strings and needed to occasionally bow; he said he took a couple of small pieces of scotch tape and ringed them around the strings where the bow contacts them - and the rosin "grabs" the tape and allows him to bow. Again, all disclaimers apply, YMMV, etc. - as I laughed when he told me that one! But he swears by it... ;)
  3. mbunyan


    Feb 3, 2013
    Hey thanks for the answer Mark... You've got an excellent website if I am not wrong so I guess you know what you are talking about...

    Experimentation is the name of the game here I guess but you've inspired me to give it a go.

    Cheers for this...
  4. salcott

    salcott Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2007
    NYC, Inwood.
    You could get some 600 sandpaper and just take the shine off the bowed part of the string.