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Need help picking Carbon Fiber Bows.

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#1 twoblink



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Posted 18 June 2000 - 01:44 AM

I went to the local music store, and I test played a few bows. I should have brought my violin but I didn't, and so they let me borrow one of the nice ones ($11K! ouch) from the vault.

Anyway, so I tested the Coda Classic, the Conservatory, and then a Spicatto. I liked the Coda Classic the best, the Spicatto was the most expensive, and by far the loudest, but the Classic has the best playability.

The store didn't have any of the Glasser Carbon Fibers, which were the ones I wanted to try... My question is, anybody try the Glasser Carbon fiber vs. the Coda's?

Also, I'm not sure I'm understanding the different between the Glasser Composite vs. the Glasser Carbon Fiber. Is the composite made of composite wood or composite of fiberglass and carbon fiber where as the carbon fiber one is pure carbon fiber?
Is the carbon fiber worth the extra $100 over the composite? It looks like great value, both of them. I need a new bow badly, my old one is cheap AND warped, making playing really difficult.

As much as I'd love to get a Coda, my budget is about $200 for a bow (poor college student.) So I see that SouthWest Strings has the composite for $85 and the Carbon Fiber for $185. Suggestions? Should I order it on trial?


#2 crystal



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Posted 18 June 2000 - 11:47 PM

You sound just like me. I have been on here asking these same questions lately, as I too am new. These poor people get asked these same questions over and over again and they are so gracious about answering them. If you'd like to read some current discussions that are going on, look up these three topics: About on page 2, there is a topic titled "Ok, so the winner is the Glasser Carbon Fiber, but isn't the Coda supposed to be the best?".

Then about on page 4, look up these two topics: "The Yellow Brick Road - Guide to bows and strings", and also "Violin Bows" on the same page.

There is also much more in the archives if you want to do a search and read some older discussions, just go to the top of the screen and click on "search". This will bring up some old discussions of this old beaten horse.

I am currently in the process myself of deciding between two bows, both carbon fiber. A guy is shipping me a Glasser Carbon Fiber to try out and I'm also going to try out a Musicary, which is about $345.00. I cannot afford a Coda at this time. But these two are supposed to be excellent and come very highly recommended. If you'd like me to tell you who this guy is, I can give you his number and website. Also Sharmusic.com carries both bows and will ship them out for only $15.00 to try in your home.

If you want to write to me a personal note at my e-mail address, click on the letter icon above my reply.

Good luck to you.

#3 mrmojo


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Posted 19 June 2000 - 10:37 AM

I highly recommend the Musicary.

#4 Oy-Oy


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Posted 19 June 2000 - 10:58 AM

An excellent source to ask about all carbon fiber and composite bows is www.cellos2go.com. They specialize in cello equipment, but also carry fiddle bows and have much better prices than Shar or the other big houses.

#5 LBlake


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Posted 20 June 2000 - 06:03 AM

I have been on a huge quest for carbon-fiber bows this year as well.... In fact, it's what brought me to find this discussion board! I have gone through extensive testing with many many of them... all mine, cello bows, though.

However, to answer one of your questions - the Glasser is the same Carbon-fiber type of material as the Codas... (I'm not saying it's identical, because I don't know) but, it is not a wood hybrid...

Here's a list of all the carbon-fiber or composite bows I've managed to hear of and/or try in the search - I'd say it would be very well worth taking the time to get to try as many as possible (especially don't miss the arcus, which is the dramatically different one of them all)

Glasser Composite (least expensive of all)
Glasser Carbon Fiber
Coda "Conservatory"
Coda "Colours"
Arcus "Sonata" (there is a special edition of this available, I think, at the moment)
Coda "Classic"
Arcus "Concerto"
Berg "Ebony"
Spiccatto (comes in varying stiffnesses, each with adjustable stiffness)
Berg "Deluxe"
Berg "Gold"

If you do a search on any of them (probably just the name, not so much the model), you will probably find substantial information on each.

I tried to put them in order of price, too, just to give you an idea. (although, prices vary a little).

I've tried all of these in cello bows except the Musicary, the Spiccattos, and the Berg "Gold".... I've had lots to say about them all, too. Feel free to e-mail if you want any further opinions from me.

And, I also strongly recommend www.cellos2go.com to even violinists.... They have some great information on that site, and they do also have many violin things.

Good luck in your search!

#6 Andrew Victor

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Posted 20 June 2000 - 09:37 AM

Here are a few more brands of composite bows:

The Carbow (also advertised in the trade pubs) from 15 rue Demopole,
14000 Caen France [(33) 07 55 80 59] FAX: (33) 31-86 02 18.

The "von Bennigsen model" is available from David Stone, Assoc. Ltd.,
Grat Dowles , Stone st., Canterbury CT4 6DB, England.

Johnson Strings of Newton Centre Massachusetts, markets the "Claudio
Righetti" composite bows in Lamy, Pecatte and Sartory models for $1050
to $1450, resepectively in silver for vioin and Pecatte and Sartory in
gold for $1895 and $1995. Silver-mounted cello bows in the Lamy and
Peccatte models are $1450 and $1595.

Also, I have seen some no-name composite violin bows from Asia (in the $50 category) that were pretty good playing bows.

#7 brickwagon


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Posted 20 June 2000 - 03:37 PM

StringWorks has the cheapest prices for the CodaBow bows (violin, viola, cello) if you are interested in those - service is absolutely the finest you can receive.

[This message has been edited by brickwagon (edited 06-20-2000).]

#8 goran


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Posted 20 June 2000 - 05:34 PM

Here is my info list concerning composite bows. *** main model name, --- sub model name

Danziger Strasse 17
D-97209 Veitshöchhen
tel: +49-931-9500602
fax:+49-931-9500606 www.arcus-bow.de
*** Concerto (violin 1995 DEM, viola 2295 DEM, cello 2495 DEM)
*** Classic (violin 995 DEM, viola 1195 DEM, cello 1295 DEM)

Ary France International
B.P. 74
Route de Monesties
81400 Carmaux
tel: +33-5-63365799
fax: +33-5-63367963 www.ary-fr.com
*** Musicary $300

Benoit-Rolland S.A.R.L.
4 Rue du General Weygand
56037 Vannes
Tel: +33-2-97471805 www.spiccato.com and www.spiccatobow.com
*** Maestro (adjustable) $2200 (Ifshin)
--- Solo
--- Super-Solo
*** Spicatto (adjustable) $1800 (Ifshin)
--- Classic
--- Solo
--- Super-Solo
***· Arpege (Classic model non-adjustable) $700 (Ifshin)

Berg Bows, Inc.
P.O.Box 6235
Bloomington, Indiana 47407
tel: 800-762-8994 +1-812-336-8994
fax: +1-812-336-3033 http://bergbows.com
*** Ozim
*** Repu

A.L.G. (Alain Le Gouic)
23 Rue Jean Rouge
13001 Marseille
phone: +33-4-91556566
fax: +33-4-91334349 http://members.aol.com/algbows
*** Carbow
--- Classic
--- Concert

tel: +1 507 454 1509 www.codabow.com
*** Classic $775 (CodaBow)
*** Conservatory $400 (CodaBow)
*** Colors $400 (CodaBow)

C.F. Durro Bows (USA)
Exclusive wordwide distribution:
Ideal Merchandise Company
53 West 23rd Street
New York, NY 10010, USA
tel: +1-212-675-5050
fax: +1-212-989-9275
*** Violin $300 (Durro)

Carbon/wood hybrid bows
*** J.S. Finkel $1800 (Shar)
*** E. Jumeau $1150 (Shar)
*** Conbrio $825 (Shar)
*** H. Bru $700 (Shar)

Glasser Manufacturing Co., Inc.
4330 Bullard Avenue
Bronx, New York 10466, USA
tel: +1-718-994-1613
fax: +1-718-324-1918
*** Advanced composite $90
*** Carbon graphite $180

Claudio Righetti
Verona, Italy www.intracom.it/liutaiveneti/righetti/home.htm
*** Lamy
*** Pecatte
*** Sartory
Prices: $1035-$1400 (Johnson String Instrument)

Sharpinbow (UK)


#9 CAR


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Posted 20 June 2000 - 07:06 PM

These posts are troubling for many reasons. If the person who gives you their opinion of a bow is an accomplished cellist and you are a student of two years, even if you played the same bow you wouldn't be playing it the same way. And vice versa. Someone with no command of technique whatsoever could give a great bow a lousy review simply because they can't play it well. So unless you know the person giving the advice, I'm wondering how helpful the advice is.

Empirically, of course, if the input you have is that the bow fell apart in your hands after six months, then that is something we can all relate to and want to stay away from. But preference for strings, rosins, again has to do with how you play, what you play on, and the like.

I can't think of a single shop that sells bows that doesn't have them available for trial. Just do it.

As for price, many companies have strict pricing and discounting policies. Therefore, I seriously doubt Stringworks has the lowest prices on Coda bows, since Coda is one of those companies. But it is nice to support the stores you have had good experiences with.

#10 StringWorks


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Posted 21 June 2000 - 12:36 AM

<<As for price, many companies have strict pricing and discounting policies. Therefore, I seriously doubt Stringworks has the lowest prices on Coda bows, since Coda is one of those companies. >>


Indeed CodaBow has price requirements and a maximum discount allowed for all its merchants, and because we offer the maximum discount allowed (legally) by CodaBow, we do have the lowest price. Some others may also offer it at that same price, but none can sell it lower with permission from the company.

StringWorks, Inc. http://www.stringworks.com

#11 twoblink



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Posted 21 June 2000 - 12:54 AM

CAR, you are right of course. But I can tell you that while I might not know a very good bow when I see/hear one, I do know a very bad bow... I also know a warped bow (which I have) and I can tell you, you don't even have to be a violin player to guess that a warped bow probably doesn't play well.

I'm also a poor college student and so I have financial constraints. So the recommendations are great, I don't think any of these bows would play worse than my current warped one, and so I take it in stride. I will probably give Shar a call tomorrow and have them send me a few bows to demo. I'm looking for a bow that I'm comfortable with and one that I like sonically (and can afford). Those things are things I want and know I want regardless of number of years experience...


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