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General rosin questions

Discussion in 'Bows and Rosin [DB]' started by bopeuph, May 1, 2009.

  1. bopeuph


    Jul 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    So I'm starting to get into legit playing, and I have some questions that I couldn't find answers to on the net. So here they are:

    *How often should I rosin? I find I need to do it at least every day, if not a few times each day if I shed a few hours.

    *What is too much?

    *Also, I have had my strings on this bass since December of '07. People tell me that that's too long, even though I have been away from the bass for six months while I was out of the country. The bass does sound great, though, and I got lots of complements at my last orchestra gig. How do I know when they've had enough? They sound fine to me.

    By the way, I am using Pop's on d'Addario Helicore Hybrids. And, as I live in Florida, the stuff rarely keeps its shape. :meh:

  2. Alex Scott

    Alex Scott

    May 8, 2002
    Austin, TX
    everyday isn't too much, and when you play for several hours you might need to add more rosin.

    Putting 2-3 strokes starting from the frog all the way to the tip is a good starting point, then you can play and see if you need more.

    Don't put so much that it cakes up on your strings immediately, and remember that it acts a little differently until it warms up from the friction of playing, so maybe try to warm up before putting rosin.

    If you're happy with your strings, don't change them, I think every 6 months is pretty good for pros, not all do that.
  3. Enough rosin is when you have enough friction to do whatever it is you're doing (much more for orchestra than for solo). Too much is when you're seriously gunking up the strings, leaving rosin flakes all over the bass or choking in the dust... at that point you've gone well past the point where the friction starts going down again, and you're better advised to clean it all off.

    As for strings, they last how long they last. If they've got nicks or other damage, or they're starting to sound dull, buzzy, or not hold tune, then it's time to change them. Otherwise just go with it. But don't put up with bad sound... if you don't like how they're sounding, change them. Remember that strings change very slowly so it can be an effort to remember how they used to sound when they were fresh (especially if you're playing Spirocores, which will last for many years).
  4. Buogon


    Feb 2, 2009
    New Jersey
    How about having strings on my one of my basses for "9yrs" they still have good sound ,although i agree that it's time to change them. Spiro's do last a long time ,but this is a unique case , maybe this is why i been with Thomastik for the long haul.
  5. 9 years... yeah, that's about how long my last set of Spiros lasted, till the A string windings cracked at the bridge and it started to buzz.
  6. punkjazzben


    Jun 26, 2008
    All good advice.

    I use rosin everytime I start a new rehearsal or practice session, and re-apply if those sessions are around or over about 3-4 hours. This is using Pop's ... I seem to remember Nyman lasting ages, though, when I was using that.

    Double bass strings can last years if you look after them, cost a lot of money, and so I would agree that you should really only change if you NEED to. Pros can afford to change them regularly out of principle, normal people usually can't.
  7. bassist14


    Oct 17, 2005
    hey, this is a bass-forum, please donĀ“t talk about military topics:ninja:
  8. bopeuph


    Jul 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    Should I go to the rosin bass then?:bag:
  9. You should try to get used to a certain amount of rosin. After a while you will know how much is right for you but you need to do a bit of experimenting first. Never judge the amount buy how things feel at the start of your session. Wait till you've warmed up. There are ways to artificilally shorten the warm up time though. Wash your hands first.

    1. Wipe all the rosin of the strings with a cloth with some meth spirits on it. then use a dry cloth to rub the string quite hard its full length. I put the cloth round the string and twist it till its a little tight then drag the 'twist' like a handle up and down a few times. This not only cleans the string from bits of skin and dirt but warns it up so you have to wait a miute or two berfore you start tuning.

    2. Wipe the hair of the bow on a clean cotton cloth wrapped around your finger until there is no rosin coming off. Then 'frisk' the hairs. This is done by taking the hairs at bout the middle of the bow lightly between your thumb and index finger and pulling gently until the hairs escape releasing what ever dust is still on them in a little cloud of rosin.

    3. take a clean cloth and twist it lightly around the stick of the bow and wipe it back and forth along the length of the bow a few time.

    These steps have the effect of tricking the instrument and bow into thinking they have been warmed up. The only one that needs to warm up now is you! Put only one stroke of rosin on you bow from frog to tip and start to play some open strings tenuto. At first you might find that there is no sound at all but after a few strokes the rosin will have spread itself nicely over the working area (don't forget to go right to the tip!).

    Force yourself to use this amount for a few days and you'll find that your left arm will start to do more work. I f you then move up to 2 or 3 wipes of rosin a day (never 'refil' during the day, only if you play again in the evening) right at the start of your program
    you will come to point after a few weeks that you feel comfortable chosing how much rosin you need.

    If you change or rehair your bow or get a new instrument or strings you might have to adjust the amount of rosin you use. Certainly after a rehair you will need a lot less.

    Hope this is helpful.

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