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Does Anyone Play a P&H Carbon Violin Bow
Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (1 votes) 
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Irv
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March 22, 2020 - 5:12 pm
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I just came across the P&H Bow website (it looks like they are made in India and marketed in England) and I love the technique they use for easy customer rehair.  The only tool required is the button screw.  It appears that they make both fibreglass and carbon fibre bows.  

I wondered if any forum members use them and have any thought on them.

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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Irv
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March 23, 2020 - 1:29 pm
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An update.  I have an example of their viola carbon bow currently in transit for experimentation.  

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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Irv
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March 27, 2020 - 10:51 am
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Received carbon viola bow from p&h.  It looks like they use an inexpensive hydraulic wire crimper with a special purpose set of dies to shape the hair ends.  A short length of copper tubing is the likely source of stock material.  See photo below for detail.

C60DB972-C6EB-4201-B756-195223BC896D.jpegImage EnlargerB3C3E0A4-8DE3-4D16-A11B-B19E4AE2360C.jpegImage Enlarger

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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Fiddlerman
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March 29, 2020 - 6:50 pm
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Very interesting 🤔

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

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Irv
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March 29, 2020 - 8:01 pm
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@Fiddlerman and others.  Currently playing the viola bow on a cello, and it seems perfectly suited to that use.  No clue what a brute their cello bow might be.  For the interest of @bocaholly, the cloth to resin ratio is likely 50:50.  It is the most responsive (admittedly cheap) carbon fiber bow I have yet tried.  The unbleached white hair is not pretty, but there is a lot of it and it take rosin well.   The ebony frog is well done and the combination imitation whale bone and metal wrap is attractive.  Grip is imitation leather (similar to Glasser).  Logo on stick looks to be simple paint transfer.  The stick geometry is designed to quickly tension the hair and I think that it takes more turning torque on the button than normal (no noticed issues with button screw thread or frog nut position).  

I also purchased replacement hair sets at $7 each.  The manufacturer paints the tip end of hair red, but I have yet seen a difference in the ends.  They must use a hot wire to cut the hair bundle ends because they are perfectly even.  That must stink.

My first reverse engineering goal is to make a set of crimper dies so I can use my Harbor Freight hydraulic wire crimper to make hair sets (I plan to use corian sink stock).  Then I will see how easy it is to replace the hair.  It looks like a five minute job.  

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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bocaholly
Boca Raton, Florida
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March 30, 2020 - 8:04 am
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@Irv ... I think it's plausible, to me, that certain viola bows (guessing yours is around 70gr.) work well on cellos considering that the Arcus CELLO bows are actually only around 70 gr. too. Of course, they're built (shaped) and have the appropriate stiffness for that lower-than-average weight. 

50/50 carbon-to-resin ratio sounds about right. For the record, I recall Bernd Müsing saying somewhere that basic CF bows usually have a 40/60 carbon to resin ratio. His "Müsing" line is the reverse: 60/40 carbon-to-resin. The Arcus line is 80/20 ... lots of carbon particles to line up and transmit vibrations. Sweet

Irv, I got a chuckle at the thought of having yet another element of my violin swag - your DIY bow hair changing kit - that I could order and magically hope to play better, LOL. I'd be changing my bow hair every time the weather went from rainy to nice down here bunny-headbang

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Irv
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March 30, 2020 - 10:52 am
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@bocaholly and others.  According to my wife’s food scale (do not tell her), the bow weighs 65 grams.

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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starise
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March 30, 2020 - 3:35 pm
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Thanks for sharing this Irv. That's much closer to a do-it-yourself solution. Still need to crimp it....but I'm thinking that since some shops around here charge 200 for a rehair job, if I liked the bow I might just buy those refills. It seems they are one of the few companies that realize not everyone is only a few miles from a repair shop and have actively found a solution.

Here's something else you might find interesting. I have one of these and it does ok for what it is. Very light weight. Hair NEVER needs changing. You could drop in a puddle of water and once dry could play with it again. Unaffected by humidity.

INCREDIBOW

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Irv
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March 30, 2020 - 3:48 pm
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@starise and others.  I think that you have misread the thread.  The P&H bow is intended for home rehair.  The only tool needed is the frog button.  The company sells new hanks of hair with installed clip ends for about $7.  

I only brought up the design of the hair end ferrules because I want to use the technology for rehairing other bows (the traditional method of wrapping with string is tedious).  

I am aware of the incredibow.  I would like to try one but have not found one cheap enough to warrant experimentation and do not feel like spending $150 on something with nylon hair.  

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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Irv
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March 30, 2020 - 3:56 pm
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I provided a picture of the tool I plan to use (with a diy set of dies) to achieve the required horse hair crimps. Each string instrument will likely require its own set of dies. The tool utilizes a few ounces of hydraulic fluid to exert quite a bit of force on the jaws. A nice bit of kit for about $30.46E992B5-AB89-46FF-9E41-52A2AF6CBDDF.jpeg

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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starise
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March 30, 2020 - 4:22 pm
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Irv said
@starise and others.  I think that you have misread the thread.  The P&H bow is intended for home rehair.  The only tool needed is the frog button.  The company sells new hanks of hair with installed clip ends for about $7.  

I only brought up the design of the hair end ferrules because I want to use the technology for rehairing other bows (the traditional method of wrapping with string is tedious).  

I am aware of the incredibow.  I would like to try one but have not found one cheap enough to warrant experimentation and do not feel like spending $150 on something with nylon hair.  

  

I think it's just the way I worded my reply that seemed I didn't understand. I understood that a person doesn't need to have a special jig to rehair that bow. 

However IF the goal is a total at home re hair solution, then your idea to use the press should do it. The only thing you need is horse hair, a similar crimp and the little press tool.

I'm not sure I'm ready to go that far yet. I think I would initially be content to try the bow out, see if I liked it and then probably just buy the re hair from them. Still miles better than doing things the old way. Kudos to you for trying new things!

I checked out the links at the P&H site for US. They had two contacts. Neither one led to a link to even see what they cost. Apparently the marketing for those over here tanked in some way.

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Irv
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April 1, 2020 - 8:11 am
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A couple of added details.  The company advises the use of a comb to ensure that the hair is not crossed between the end cleats before installation.

A mechanism for securing the hair into the bow is patented (USA 4040322 and U.K. 1524958).  

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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starise
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April 1, 2020 - 8:28 am
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Links to this product from a US supplier come up empty. The links take me to music site but the product is nowhere to be found.

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Peter
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April 1, 2020 - 8:40 am
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@Irv -

Besides the crimp, is any other retention method used in parallel such as re-flowed resin or heating the hair? I'd be keen to assess the strain performance of a crimp-only end, compared with a conventional cord seizing, both with and without the extra retention measures.

With regard to tooling for the crimps: check out the second-hand tool stores and similar places in your area for old crimp tools; you may find a few pairs with likely die size / type 'going for a song'. Making your own dies for the hydraulic set is a big project; the heat treatments alone are quite complex if the dies are to be tough enough.

Another concern which I have is clearance of the crimp into the frog and tip mortices. The cord seizing is very svelte in profile compared with a piece of crimped copper tubing. When I make mine up, I mould the end to shape (the knot and ends are the problem) while the resin is still flexible. Decades of seamanship and electronic crafts have given me an edge here.

I wish you good luck with this latest venture and look forward to your reports. 

Peter

"It is vain to do with more that which can be done with less"  - William of Ockham

"A crown is merely a hat that lets the rain in" - Frederick the Great

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Irv
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April 1, 2020 - 9:20 am
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I am going to wing two birds with one post.  Here goes.

@starise, I sent you an pm regarding where I got mine.  Good luck.

@Peter .  It looks to me that the hair is cut about 3 mm beyond the crimp (likely with a hot wire) and the horse hair hank version is fused with what looks to be ca glue.

The patent refers to the use of pvc containing monofilament that they found to have similar rosin holding characteristics to horse hair.  I procured three specimens of this product for a violin.  It looks like the ends are heated in a cylindrical die and compressed into a fused button.  The process is likely similar to that used to butt weld polypropylene water main pipe.  The patent has a diagram but no description for this.

I took dimensions of the crimp and it looks like a #4 AWG is a close approximation for the lower portion.  I could likely form the upper indent section by silver soldering a small steel rectangle on the other half of the die.  My approximation of the copper tube wall thickness is 0.6 mm, so I do not think that complex metallurgy is required to create an acceptable die for this.  I have been wrong before.

I have no doubt regarding your seamanship but the crimp is likely to have a more svelte mortise profile due to the amount of compression obtained by the press.  Hank length accuracy is also likely better if a jig was created to provide a consistent stretch while the hair is clinched.  

I approximated the diameter of the crimp at 1/4” diameter (which makes sense as the originators were English engineers).  Standard refrigeration tubing of that diameter has a thickness of 0.030” .  K&S item #8131 is 1/4” diameter brass tubing with a wall thickness of 0.014”.  I am going to try that first.  

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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Peter
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April 1, 2020 - 9:50 am
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Irv said
...

 My approximation of the copper tube wall thickness is 0.6 mm, so I do not think that complex metallurgy is required to create an acceptable die for this.  I have been wrong before.

...  

There may be some flash extruded between the die sections, and unless the dies cover the entire length of the crimp barrel the remainder may flare out.

Will you be favouring the playing face of the hair bundle away from the indented side of the crimp, to mitigate the crushing? Perhaps fine-tuning the angle of same toward the playing edge? This presumes an asymmetrical crimp; using a hexagonal die set would not offer this feature unless you include it in your silver soldered die prostheses.

Peter

"It is vain to do with more that which can be done with less"  - William of Ockham

"A crown is merely a hat that lets the rain in" - Frederick the Great

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Irv
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April 1, 2020 - 10:13 am
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@Peter et al.  Per provided photos in the thread above, it appears that there is no extant “flash” from the die set.  The measured width of the crimp is 2.5 mm.  The measured width of my die set is 10 mm.  

My faulty color vision skewed my previous comments (which I will edit).  The instructions clearly state that the red dot (side of crimp opposite of indent) faces forward on tip and faces backward on frog.  My wife pointed out the dots.

Man has no special rights because he belongs to a particular race.  The soul emanates equal and eternal from bodies different in shape and color.  It is sufficient to say ‘Man’ to comprehend therein all rights.                                                    — Jose Marti 

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

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