new bows

new bows

our new incredibows arrived on Friday. One each, cello , viola and violin.We’ve tried the viola and violin bows, and they are very good, and a nice sparkly grey as well! I first read about these bows here , so thanks to whoever mentioned them.BTW it’s Eds’ first viola bow.

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A pupil brought her new incredibow to a workshop the other day. The tutor tried it out and was agreeably impressed. He remarked that it was an ideal bow for session playing.
Trevor

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Gummidge

You (and others) may be interested to note the following Yahoo group

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Incredibow/

where folks post their comments on this bow and Ed Wilcox (the maker) answers/comments.

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I too have invested in an incredibow and am well impressed with the improved tone. I need all the help I can get.

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Are we talking about the carbon fibre bows which are currently on the market? I was considering investing in one of these, since the bow I have (given to me along with a fiddle - all for free) has quite a noticeable twist in it. I expect you get a better quality of bow than you are likely to get paying the same price for a wooden bow. However, I have only been playing (after a fashion) fiddle since January and a part of me says that I should learn to get the best out of what I have before I start upgrading.

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has anyone tried the Carbondix bow and if so what do they think please?

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I have a Codabow Conservatory model I’m quite fond of. They’re more expensive than some carbon bows out there (made in US) but I think they’re a cut above many of the carbon bows by other makers (at least any of them under $200).

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I regularly use a Coda Classic carbon fiber bow. It does the job. Very responsive *and* stable. But I also like my pernambuco sticks. The unbreakable carbon fiber is good for sessions and drunken pub crawls, er, gigs. And the Classic really is a decent bow—in all ways comparable to wooden bows at twice the price.

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Can somebody either explain this incredibow / carbon fiber bow deal to me or link me off to some informative site? I’m very curious. It sounds space-aged. Except, I don’t know if I could ever buy a thing called an "incredibow" with a straight face. (Is there an infomercial?)

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Never mind. I found the website. It frightens me for some reason. A bow that never needs tightening or new hair? What will they think of next? A fiddle that doesn’t need tuning? A spitless flute? E-Z Pipes? A self-regulating bodhran? An auto-harp? (Oh, hang on a second…)

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I handled the incredibow that was brought to my workshop, but I didn’t use it. It is very light and a little shorter than a traditional violin bow. The stick is carbon fibre and pretty well straight (as I remember); it is rather reminiscent of a baroque bow with the air space between the hair and the stick. The hairs are nylon (or similar artifical fibre) and appear to be bonded to the ends of the stick. I don’t remember seeing a frog for tightening the hairs - I don’t think there is one (the absence of the frog and its internal mechanism would immediately lighten the whole assembly).
I can well believe the hairs are pretty well everlasting; being artifical fibre they would take far more punishment than horse-hair. And even if several hairs break over a period of time, the cost of a new Incredibow is very similar to the cost of re-haring a traditional bow.
About the only reservation I have regarding the hairs is this: since they presumably wouldn’t have the microscopic "sub-hairs" that horse-hair has and which grip the rosin and the strings, do the Incredibow hairs need rosining more than traditional hairs, or is a special grade of rosin required?
Trevor (0133hrs BST)

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I’ve never had the doubtful pleasure of using a bow with a noticeable twist in the stick. I’m quite sure it is the last thing to place in the hands of a beginner, for it would be not only more difficult to control but would inculcate bad habits (probably ineradicable).
It is fairly normal for wood bows to acquire a slight lateral bend over a period of time (usually measured in years) with a lot of playing. This lateral bend can be easily corrected by a luthier and the bow will then be as good as new. I had this job done to my cello bow a few years ago.
I’m not so sure about a bad twist in the bow. The best thing is to take it to a luthier for an opinion. If the repair is impossible, or uneconomic depending on the value of the bow, then you have acquired a good stick for potted plants in the greenhouse.
It’s always difficult to advise on this forum if a beginner needs to buy a bow. The person really needs an experienced player or teacher, or a trustworthy dealer, to advise him in the store. As a rule of thumb, I’d suggest something in the region of UK£200 should buy a decent bow which will last many years and be useful up to at least intermediate standard.

Trevor (0211hrs BST)

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From all I have read of the incredibow, the new bows take LESS rosin and sound great. I’ve done lots of research and talked to people who actually use them. I agree, the site looks like it was designed by a13-year-old, but I found the actual person (Marc Wilcox) to be very professional. To the point that when I found out he couldn’t meet my wish for time, he pointed me towards someone who has them in stock - thus losing a potential customer. I ordered it tonight, a featherweight model. I’ll post my impressions here if you’d like.

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In mid August Ed Wilcox announced Incredibow II which uses different hair to the original bow. (I have an Incredibow I). On my bow there is slight hair "noise". On the new bow there is none (confirmed by customers - also needs less rosin - they reccommend Tartini- and produces better tone and more volume. The II also has less bow arc, though I have never had a problem with the arc on the "I".

Ed was magnanimous enough to offer to take back people’s Incredibow I’s and upgrade them to the II version for an additional $25.

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Caraaz, I have had a carbondix bow now for a month or so and think its great. Light and responsive and only £80. Had tried several very expensive bows that my teacher had on trial and didn’t think they were much different from my bog standard beginners bow. Was offered a shot of the carbondix bow by a friend at a session and it felt great.

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I’ve got two of Ed Wilcox’s Incredibows and I can recommend them highly.A friend of mine who is a luthier has a couple as well,and out of curiosity we removed one of the hairs with the aid of a Stanley knife and tried to break it.We even got hold of the ends with two pairs of pliers and pulled with all our might,but no dice.Ed says that they will never break,and that seems to be the case,unless you go at them with something sharp.

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At a tune workshop last night one of the pupils (just coming up into the intermediate stage, I guess) was a bit upset by the state her new bow of 6 months had got into. Despite being carefully looked after and not misused it had acquired a lateral bend and also a twist - the pointed end was no long in line with or even parallel to the frog. The bow was inexpensive and NOT made of pernambuco wood, but something much cheaper and just not up to the job.
The moral of this is: if you get a wood bow make sure it’s pernambuco (or possibly snakewood). Sure, it’s more expensive but the quality will be there and it will be much more dimensionally stable. Otherwsie, go for a carbon fibre (aka graphite) bow.
Trevor

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Hi all,

This is a somewhat shameless plug but I hope it will be of interest to people in the UK. My wife and I have started stocking some incredibows here in our online shop and also have one on ebay - we’ve also imported Tartini rosin (the recommended one) to get people going.

There’s a bow and rosin on eBay at the moment at http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=7306725167 and also we’re getting some in to our shop at http://www.danceofdelight.com - the advantage is that you can try one out and it’s not so much of a hassle to return it if you don’t find it’s what you want. We think they’re great!!

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Hey folks,

It seems you’ve all been wondering about the Incredibows, and I can tell you from personal experience ( I just got one) that it is a great bow, at a very cheap price!

The first time I saw one, I kept on going. Then I started reading about them on another forum (FiddleForum) and was intrigued, since there was so much positive acceptance once someone tried one. So, I emailed Ed Wilcox (owner-he and his wife Carolyn invented it-and they are super people by the way), and he mailed one out to me since he had one in stock.

I was so impressed with it, since it made my fiddle sound much better in tone-definitely a fuller tone-that I became a Incredibow dealer! I guess I was so enthused with it, and since I had been out of work for some time, Ed and Carolyn offered to make me a reseller, and I jumped at the chance!

Seriously, these are really good bows, that can give the good wood bows a run for the money. They to give a cleaner tone (no hair noise ), and fuller too ( with my fiddle anyway).

As I mentioned, Ed and Carolyn are really nice people-they are not just in it for the money, like many are these days. They really want you to have a better bow at a good price, and are willing to share this with their dealers too. We all sell at the same price, so you just pick who you want to buy it from. Some carry stock, like Mark at Dance of Delight, so that is good for you on the other side of the big pond.

One thing I did want to mention also is the Tartini rosin-I got a cake of that too, and it works extremely well with the Incredibows synthetic hair, and you need very little compared to horsehair bows.

The bows are the same length as normal violin bows, and in fact, have just a little more length in the hair. Just so you know, too, from most all accounts, the featherweight is the way to go-it is easy enough to get used to, and is less tiring to push around, and gives the best response, instead of weighting the bow down, just to make it feel the same as the traditional wooden/horsehair bow.

I’m not saying that there aren’t nice carbon fiber or hosehair bows out there, but you add up all the benefits (price, 3 year warranty, trade in value, response and ease of play), and it’s hard to compete with the Incredibow if you take all that into consideration, especially the price!

It works for me, and I was one that passed it by the first time I saw it! I’m now glad I went back and kept an open mind!

Try one, you’ve got nothing to lose, with a 30 day satisfaction guarantee, and 3 year warranty-how many bows on Ebay or otherwise can equal that? Very few, I’m sure.

Anyway, it’s nice to meet you guys and girls, I’m in Lansdale, PA, USA, and my name is Barry. Hope this helps some of you who were hesitant about trying one-don’t be-they’re good bows!

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Oh, wow, I just saw that I resurrected an old thread! Oh well, it’s still true, what I said, but most of you have probably found that out by now!

Anyway, up until a few weeks ago, I was just an ordinary fiddler, who thought they looked a little funny. They actually now have the same height in the frog as normal bows (due to the change in August 05) and it gives you a redesigned grip area-that has rounded corners and flats on 4 sides, so very much like a normal octagonal grip, but more comfortable, with a non slip rubber surface now (dull finish), which I like alot-I thought it was going to be shiny rubber, and slippery-it’s not!

See you all around, I hope!
You can visit my webpage here:
http://hometown.aol.com/bluespiderweb/index.html

Be well, Barry

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I have a carbondix and it’s really great value for the price (100-150 eur). Balance and sound are way better than wooden bows for the same price. I can recommend it on that budget.

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