Hey all.

I'm not a fiddle player.  I plan to build a box fiddle, Full Size.
I also plan to learn to play.

QUESTION:  can you use a 1/2 size Bow on a Full Size Violin?  I just find the bow really long and prefer to have a shorter stroke across the box.

This screw things up ??

Thanks

Views: 471

Replies to This Discussion

Longer doesn't mean better (no matter what you've heard your whole life!). Think of it this way: If the bow's size was related to the size of the instrument, then an upright bass bow would be more than 6 feet long. You can certainly use a shorter bow, but I would encourage you to use a fullsize bow if you have one available. The reason people like shorter bows is usually because it disguises poor bowing technique (easier to keep the bow straight if it's super short). A longer bow will give you much more versatility and if you ever decide to pick up a real fiddle, you'll be all set.

I totally agree with Ben, and I do usually use a full size bow whilst playing mt cigar box fiddle, my acoustic luthier made fiddles and my factory produced electric fiddles.

The reason for this is the length of note that can be produced and one bow stroke can cover a lot of notes if you are slurring notes together.

Having said that I often use a shorter bow (3/4 Size) when playing tunes that demand very little bow movement.

 

If you possibly can. I would recomend a full size bow.

Thanks folks

 

I should have said, the music I want to play are mostly quick solo tunes, Irish Jigs, Scottish Airs and Hymns.

 

Thanks

 

(ps- the one time I had a bow in my hand, I found the length very awkward)

Hi James.

The reason that a bow is a particular length is that for most people, if you have the instrument in the correct position and the bow at 90º to the strings your arm should be pretty near full stretch at the tip of the bow. This allows you the longest stroke and therefore the longest continuous note while keeping the bow at the correct angle to the strings. This explains why a cello bow is in fact shorter than violin or viola bows. I'm not sure if a bass bow is shorter still as I never made those.

Having said that, if you really don't like a full size bow and you can do what you want with a shorter one there doesn't seem much reason why you wouldn't use the shorter one.

All the best.

John

My guess is that the awkwardness came more from it being a foreign object and less about the length. As a public school instrumental music teacher, I can tell you that being comfortable with the bow is by far the hardest part of playing the violin. It really just takes a lot of hours with the bow in your hand to get used to it. One thing that wasn't really mentioned was that a full size bow will give you more stylistic options. Yes, for your jigs and whatnot you'll be mostly hanging out in the middle of the bow, but a full sized bow will give you a bigger range between the "punch" near the frog and the "delicateness" near the tip.

John, FYI bass bows are the shortest but have, by far, the widest hank of hair.


James Boutilier said:

Thanks folks

 

I should have said, the music I want to play are mostly quick solo tunes, Irish Jigs, Scottish Airs and Hymns.

 

Thanks

 

(ps- the one time I had a bow in my hand, I found the length very awkward)

https://sites.google.com/a/pgcps.org/mr-kepler-instrumental-music/v...

Here's just a quick little video that I shot for my students. The second video down talks about the bow hold. You can probably go ahead and start with your thumb inside the frog, on the stick. In my school district we start with the thumb on the ferrule because it gives the average underdeveloped 4th grader's hand more control.

Hi Ben.

That makes a great deal of sense as the bridge on a bass is further from the players shoulder (which is pretty much what defines the optimum length). Strangely enough, violin and viola bows are the same length (give or take a mm) although a viola player will be bowing a little further away than a violinist. Almost everything else is scaled up a bit, but the length remains the same.

"What's the difference between a violin and a viola? A viola burns longer." - Victor Borge


Ben said:

John, FYI bass bows are the shortest but have, by far, the widest hank of hair.

RSS

The Essential Pages

New to Cigar Box Nation? How to Play Cigar Box GuitarsFree Plans & How to Build Cigar Box GuitarsCigar Box Guitar Building BasicsCigar Box Guitar Parts Store

Site Sponsor

Recommended Links & Resources


Discussion Forum

Fiddle String Diameter

Started by Bobby Wallen Jan 5, 2017. 0 Replies

beginner needs knowledge

Started by Alex Martinez. Last reply by Bobby Wallen Jan 21, 2016. 2 Replies

Voo Doo instruments

Started by Peter Rudolph. Last reply by Bobby Wallen Jan 17, 2016. 4 Replies

Fiddle neck angle

Started by Wade Feb 22, 2015. 0 Replies

Fiddles and cellos as raw materials

Started by Paul H (PRH). Last reply by rusty case Nov 18, 2012. 7 Replies

Shorter Bows on Full Size Violin ??

Started by James Boutilier. Last reply by Roadkill a.k.a. John Maw Oct 29, 2011. 7 Replies

Blog Posts

"Little Fish" Project

Posted by Steve Bookout on January 22, 2022 at 11:12pm 0 Comments

How to add photos?

Posted by Stephen Sell on January 13, 2022 at 1:19pm 2 Comments

My first 3 string cigar box guitar

Posted by Stephen Sell on January 13, 2022 at 1:16pm 1 Comment

Shedding a Tear for Dave Lynas

Posted by Poorness Studios on December 20, 2021 at 8:30pm 4 Comments

Latest Activity

Darryl Tuttle left a comment for Lonman
"Thanks for comment on templates….Not Much time for playing or building last few…"
1 hour ago
the anonymous pick commented on AGP #'s photo
Thumbnail

AGP #454 - ''Strainer Reso''

"mite  e  fine "
2 hours ago
Randy S. Bretz liked AGP #'s photo
3 hours ago
Uncle John commented on Uncle John's video
Thumbnail

Mary Don't You Weep ~ old traditional Gospel

"Thanks, Alan.  Thanks, Rooster.  It is a pretty good box.  A bit heavy.   "
4 hours ago
Rooster Reaves commented on Pontius's video
Thumbnail

Cigarbox Guitar Johnny B Goode - TABS Available

"Very cool man!! Dig that sitar sound in there."
6 hours ago
Rooster Reaves commented on Uncle John's video
7 hours ago
AGP # commented on Randy S. Bretz's photo
Thumbnail

Carved brass " Longhorn Skull " bridge

"Outstanding!, one of your best Randy. :-)"
7 hours ago
AGP # liked Randy S. Bretz's photo
7 hours ago
AGP # liked Lonman's photo
7 hours ago
AGP # liked Poorness Studios's video
7 hours ago
AGP # commented on Uncle John's video
Thumbnail

Mary Don't You Weep ~ old traditional Gospel

"Big Performance on the Big Old Box by the Big Old Guy from Iowa :-D"
7 hours ago
AGP # liked Doug Thorsvik's video
7 hours ago

Music

© 2022   Created by Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service

\uastyle>\ud/** Scrollup **/\ud.scrollup {\ud background: url("https://storage.ning.com/topology/rest/1.0/file/get/963882636?profile=original") no-repeat scroll 0 0 transparent;\ud bottom: 25px;\ud display: inline !important;\ud height: 40px;\ud opacity: 0.3 !important;\ud position: fixed;\ud right: 30px;\ud text-indent: -9999px;\ud width: 40px;\ud z-index: 999;\ud}\ud.scrollup:hover {\ud opacity:0.99!important;\ud}\ud \uascript type="text/javascript">\ud x$(document).ready(function(){\ud x$(window).scroll(function(){\ud if (x$(this).scrollTop() > 100) {\ud x$('.scrollup').fadeIn();\ud } else {\ud x$('.scrollup').fadeOut();\ud }\ud });\ud x$('.scrollup').click(function(){\ud x$("html, body").animate({ scrollTop: 0 }, 600);\ud return false;\ud });\ud });\ud \ua!-- End Scroll Up -->