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So... this Rosin stuff...?
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Rattus Norvegicus
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May 14, 2013 - 1:45 pm
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tell me about it

:p

in that, as a total beginner, all I know is that I have a little block of stuff that can sometimes improve the sound when I apply it to the bow, and before I applied it to the bow, not a sound could be made.

 

I know it adds friction to the hairs, so that they can vibrate the strings.

 

but there's more to it than that, so I thought I'd ask the more experienced.

 

my rosin seems dry, although it's always described as sticky. is this because it's a cheap, entry level rosin that came with a cheap, entry level violin shaped object? SHOULD it feel sticky?

 

obviously it WORKS, as sounds happen, and when sounds go bad, it can make them sound good again.

would there be any benefit to investing in a better rosin? (as, even though the expensive ones cost, percentage wise, a LOT more, in the big scheme of things, it's still peanuts. what's a four or five hundred percent more expensive matter when the cheaper one only costs a quid or two.)

 

what Rosins do people like, and why?

also, I've seen Rosins saying they are for Summer and Winter. what would the difference be and why?

anyway, that's just my nosy of the day. have fun.

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Freq
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May 14, 2013 - 2:16 pm
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In my experience it is supposed to be dry. It even makes dust under the strings when you play. But it also sticks to the strings after a while so I usually wipe the strings off after I played(also on the surface under the strings). If there is much rosin on the strings they are not able to vibrate as good. 

 

I used both "expensive" and inexpensive rosin, and I did not feel any difference between the two. I never heard of winter/summer rosin :D Maybe someone who has been playing longer can tell. I used the same rosin through the winter, and it worked just fine :)  

I hope that it answered some of your questions:)

Practice don't make perfect, practice makes permanent.

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HatefulPain
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May 14, 2013 - 2:21 pm
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Rosins are dry and sticky. The rosin I prefer now is a rosin that come with the violin. So it doesn't automaticly mean that a rosin are bad if you got it in a outfit. Dark rosins work better for dry and cold climates, they often also dust a little less then a light rosin. 

'Armed with theory, practice becomes meaningful. Through practice, theory becomes fulfilled.' - Egon von Neindorff.

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DanielB
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May 14, 2013 - 2:23 pm
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So far as my limited experience, the rosin used for violin isn't usually actually sticky in the honey or orange marmalade sense of the word.  As it comes off the rosin cake and onto the bow hairs, it's more of a powder that is just tacky enough to hold onto the bow hairs. 

I do remember one upright bass player I've known using some stuff from a jar/tub that actually seemed to be sort of tarry, and I don't know if that is normal for that instrument or something weird he liked.

But back to violin rosin, if it is a drier harder sort, it falls off the hair and onto the top of your violin easier.  And sounds a bit more "whiney" as opposed to "darker" (grippier) rosins which sound a bit more "growly".

Other than the hard yellow kind that had no name and came free with some of my violins, I have used 4 kinds/brands.

The one I currently use most is "Magic Rosin".  It comes in two types, 3G and Ultra, but in my opinion there isn't a lot of difference between them.  The Ultra is supposed to have a bit more grip, though.  Nice stuff, I don't have any problems with either kind.  I can get good sounds and they don't leave excess dust all over the place.

I also use Hill "dark".  A bit more growly and grabby, and I have to put on quote a bit too much before it will make a mess of the top of the violin.  Probably my favourite of ones I've tried so far.

Another one I've used was RDM "dark".  It was ok, and better than the free no-names, but I gave it away to a friends because between having a cake of Hill dark and a couple of Magic Rosin, I'm not going to run out of rosin for a loooong time.

So far as what I didn't like about the free no-name stuff..  It tended to leave more dust on top of my violin and it sounded more hissy and whiney for me.  It works, but the "good" rosins don't cost that much considering how long a cake will last and anything that you can get a bit better sound with helps, especially at first.

Personally, I think getting better strings is probably something to do before a better rosin, if you can manage it.  But better strings, rosin, and bow are about the easiest and least expensive "upgrades", at least for folks like myself who started with inexpensive beginner violin outfits.    

 

 

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

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Rattus Norvegicus
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May 14, 2013 - 3:24 pm
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all very useful and interesting.
having already broken my e string, and replaced it , that in itself improved the sound, so new strings all round would probably be a big difference.

 

reassuring to hear how other people find they feel, it's reassuring to find that it's not just completely dried out and "wrong" as it's always described as sticky.

 

I like the sound of those darker rosins, and I'll probably pick some up to see how I like them compared to what I have now.

 

after all, it doesn't cost a lot to experiment with rosin really.

 

just thought it may be interesting and educational to get out there, and see what people thought.
:D

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StoneDog
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May 14, 2013 - 4:04 pm
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I was using some old stuff just laying around in the case but it was very old. It worked but I decided to try D'Addario Kaplan Artcraft Rosin, Dark> It works well and I am happy with it. Been using it for about a month now.

Just one note >> Do not drop it on a cement floor or it will be multiple pieces of rosin.

I dropped mine last night.

 

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Mad_Wed
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May 14, 2013 - 4:54 pm
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I use dark rosin (D'Addario Kaplan Artcraft Rosin, Dark) - works better in winter time (dry and cold climate). In summer time even my cheap chinese rosin works well. Makes more dust though.

About should You or shouldn't invest in it: for now i'd say, only if You are so curious. But i'm agreed with DanielB, better strings will make You happier than a new rosin.

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Rattus Norvegicus
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May 14, 2013 - 5:49 pm
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I'm eternally curious, that's my problem ;)

better strings are definitely on the "to buy" list, but rather more expensive than rosin.

 

alas, I always have a massive to buy list. and not enough to buy it with.

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Freq
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May 14, 2013 - 6:15 pm
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I think that "eternally curious" sounds like a good quality instead of a problem:) 

 

Practice don't make perfect, practice makes permanent.

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Rattus Norvegicus
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May 14, 2013 - 6:59 pm
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hehe. yeah.

out of interest, someone in chat posted a link about bow care and rosin earlier (ironically, saw it almost straight after I posted this) and it said that there are rosins with gold particles in it, and that it's just a gimmick, and more likely to damage the bow than help it.

which sounds very likely to me, but the old curiosity kicks in, and I find myself wanting to know. WHAT do they say it adds? in order to make it sell?
because it sounds bonkers to me, and I do wonder what kind of advertising guff it takes to talk people into that one.

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cdennyb
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May 14, 2013 - 7:23 pm
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I have tried about 4 different rosins, just as Daniel has said, same results for me as well but I was on the list to order some Bakers' Rosin and after waiting for over a year I finally got some... 24$ a cake!

It was well worth every penny. Virtually dust free and it allows the sound to be made by the string(s) almost instantly even when changing direction of the bow.

This is just a very technical and magnified explanation but using the "stock" rosin, allowed the bow to move a little distance before finally biting into the string and causing the vibration (if that makes sense to you). The Bakers' is a natural product, not sold retail and has a "shelf life" as well. I find it takes far less arm movement with the bow to create the sounds from the strings. This allows for instant bow direction changes with hardly any noticeable drop in tone.

Just my opinion.

"If you practice with your hands you must practice all day. Practice with your mind and you can accomplish the same amount in minutes." Nathan Milstein

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coolpinkone
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May 14, 2013 - 10:43 pm
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@cdennyb 

dang..I keep forgetting to get on that list.... note to self.

I like dark rosin best so far... :)

I went from thinking rosin would help me sound better, to not using it much..  now I play a lot.. and I need rosin and I know when.. and I can't quite put my finger on when that insight happened. :)

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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ozmous
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May 14, 2013 - 11:58 pm
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The sticky rosin is the dark one, which is the winter, after some time, it gets sticky..I use one and I like it a lot because it does not leave a lot of residues unlike the light one, and it doesn't make a lot of screetchy sounds, it gives a pretty great grip of the strings, primarily because dark rosins are used mostly for cellos or double basses, but of course, not all dark rosins are good, neither all light rosins are bad, it sometimes depends on the maker, I have a $5+ dark rosin that is made by Alice.

cheers! - ⁰ℨ

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Fiddlerman
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May 15, 2013 - 9:08 pm
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I thought that I had placed myself on that list shortly after you but I haven't heard anything yet. :-(
I have to see what the hype is all about.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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cdennyb
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May 16, 2013 - 10:43 pm
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Check back in with Tom Baker and see if they have you scheduled for this next batch they'll process.

Tom had some severe health issues, almost lost him! but he's back at it in moderation. Just e-mail them and his wife will no doubt reply. Sometimes Tom actually answers but I've had both.

I can almost guarentee if you clean the bow hair with alcohol and the strings too and then start with Bakers' fresh, you'll notice an immediate improvement in response and sound. The way you can play Pierre... it'll be more noticeable to you than how I play.

"If you practice with your hands you must practice all day. Practice with your mind and you can accomplish the same amount in minutes." Nathan Milstein

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Fiddlerman
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May 18, 2013 - 10:59 pm
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Thanks Dennis. I keep forgetting to ask.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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