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Thumb Position and bowing

Discussion in 'Orchestral Technique [DB]' started by PommyBadger, Jul 15, 2012.

  1. PommyBadger


    Jan 25, 2012
    Hi Everyone,
    I have recently started investigating thumb position and after the initial pain was able to find the notes and the octave and such but then when i was bowing in thumb position i was getting a really horrible, nails down the blackboard sound. How can i get rid of this? am i not holding down the string enough?
  2. Possibly, or possibly you have your bow in the wrong place. It has to be closer to the bridge than in a lower position, but not too close, and everything happens a lot quicker.

    How high are your strings (measure at the end of the fingerboard)? Too high up and you just won't be able to stop them properly.
  3. PommyBadger


    Jan 25, 2012
    Ah thank you so much i tried bowing down a bit and no more horrible sound thanks very much your advice helped alot
  4. Andrew has a good idea; it might help to measure the height of your strings from the underside of the string to the fingerboard in mm, then, ask at the Setup and Repair forum.
  5. robobass


    Aug 1, 2005
    Cologne, Germany
    Private Inventor - Bass Capos
    If you have adjusters and are just starting out with TP, then I'd recommend setting your action as low as possible, even if it means getting some buzzes here and there. You will get the basics down much more quickly, and then you can gradually bring it back up.
  6. chicagodoubler


    Aug 7, 2007
    Chicago, that toddling town
    Endorsing Artist: Lakland, Genz Benz
    What does your teacher say?!!!

    These things are impossible to convey online.
  7. NicholasF

    NicholasF Guest

    Jan 17, 2012
    Although ive only been playing in thumb position for a few months,
    1) in the begining i never had pain in my wrist or fingers because my teacher took an entire lesson to show me how to use the position
    2) i havnt developed the habit of wresting my arm or wrist on the bass when in the position
    3) to solve the case of the terrible tone, remember that as you go up the finger board, your bow must shift as well, ask your teacher to show you how its done, you dont want to develop swimmers bow.
    4) Also very common with poor bow tone is the angle of the bow and the stick. The bow must remain parallel to the bridge, and on the G string it can be difficult, and the stick should be slightly angled towards the scroll.

    This is a lot to think about, you should be practicing this in front of a mirror under teachers instructions, dont just go and do these things, you will develop bad habits, and these can physically hurt you.

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