Violin Bow Rehair

From time to time, the hair on your bow hair will need to be replaced. Rehairing generally runs between about $50.00 and $100.00, depending on the quality of the hair and the experience of the craftsperson. Sorry, J.S. Fisher Violins is not currently offering rehair services.  

Where can I get my bow rehaired?

If possible, try to find a qualified local technician. Bow hair quickly absorbs moisture from the air. Consequently, in humid conditions, the hair will go lax, and may be too long for your bow, so that you can't sufficiently tighten the bow to play. On the other hand, if the bow is rehaired in a humid environment and shipped to a dry climate, the hair may tighten to the point where you can't fully release the tension of the stick. In extreme circumstances, the bow can even become damaged. By having your bow rehaired locally, you can be sure the the climate conditions at the shop will be the same as those where you will be playing. Of course, this doesn't account for travel or the effects of heating and air conditioning on your indoor environment.

If you do need to have your bow rehaired by someone outside of your local area, be sure to inform the technician about where you will be keeping the bow. If you expect to be in a humid environment, or if you expect to play outdoors in humid weather, ask the technician to make the hair slightly shorter than usual. If you expect to be in dry conditions, ask him or her to make the hair slightly longer than usual.

For rehairing or repair work on your CodaBow bow, contact CodaBow International at 1-888-CodaBow (1-888-263-2269).

For bow restoration, valuation, or for the highest quality hair and craftsmanship, we recommend Lynn Hannings, a bow maker and musician in southern Maine.

Arcus Bows

There is a great deal of confusion about Arcus bows and what is required for rehair. Due to the relatively high tension of the Arcus shafts, Arcus recommends using slightly more hair than is typical for wooden bows. In all other respects, Arcus bows are rehaired in exactly the same way as traditional wooden bows. In 2014, Arcus started measuring the tension of each individual bow and indicating on the bow the ideal amount of hair that they recommend. If your bow is marked in this way, you'll find the numerical recommendation imprinted on the shaft of the bow, under the frog, beside the serial number. For Musing bows and Arcus bows manufactured prior to 2014, please see the chart, below.  Note that all numbers are in mm2 (square millimeters) - this is the unit of volume typically used by technicians to measure the thickness of a ribbon of horse hair.

Type S+P-Series
Cadenza, Concerto, Sinfonia, Sonata
A+M -Series
Allegro, Veloce
Müsing Series Standard
Wood & Carbon
Violin 8 7 7.5 5-6
Viola 10 9 9.5 6-7.5
Cello 13 12 12 9-10
Double Bass White 15 14 14 11-13
Double Bass Black 16 15 15 12-14

According to Bernd Müsing, at Arcus . . . The ideal hair thickness depends on the elasticity and curve of the bow, but you can also modify the hair thickness to match the play and feel of the bow to your demands. A thicker hank will provide a softer feel and make the bow less bouncy. A thinner hank will improve the bounce, provides a "tighter" feel with increased agility.
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