Bow Repair

Bow Rehair & Repair

Your bow must be maintained. When you bring your bow in, Tom will look for any problems and offer you advice on how to keep your bow in good working condition so that you will get the sound you want. 

Lynn Hannings, a Maine-based bow maker, believes that the amount of hair really needed in a bow can be deceptive. “Players think that the more hair you have in there, the better. But the best possible sound comes from the smallest amounts of hair. Other-wise, you’re deadening the sound with layers and layers of hair.” Hanning emphasizes that for the student and professional alike, regular rehairs are an especially good idea for players living in a harsh climate. “The length of bow hair I would use for winter is much different than a rehair I do for summer. For winter I size it long, giving it the opportunity to shrink without doing damage to the stick. In spring I do the opposite, sizing on the short size, because I know that it’s going to be hot and muggy before too long, which will stretch the hair out.”

Bow bugs (anthrenus museorum) are first cousins to the moth and magically appear in unopened cases. Their favorite food is rosin and bow hair (and sometimes gut strings). How can you tell if you have bow bugs? If you open your case and the hair of your bow looks like someone cut it with a pair of scissors, you've probably got bow bugs.

For infested cases, vacuum the case well, spray with a bug repellent and place the case in sunlight (bow bugs hate light) for a couple of days. We also suggest placing a cedar block inside the case (or mothballs if you don't mind the smell) to kill any remaining bugs.

If you have to store your bow for an extended period of time, hang it on a wall, away from direct sunlight.

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