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Crooked Bow For My Violin?

by Joey C.
(SF, California)

Hi Marie,

So, my friend and I went to a music store the other day. She is very good at violin, but I'm just a beginner teen. We went to the music store to pick out a new bow for my violin.

Well, there was this awesome light brown bow that I really liked, and it was the right size for me and everything.

So the owner of the store was telling us the price of the bow, and while he was telling us, my friend Kate, held the bow up by the end and held the bow high up in the air, and looked at the wooden part in the sunlight (through the windows), and said to the music store owner, "Umm.. this bow is bent".

Well the owner looked embarrassed like he knew better, and I was SHOCKED, because I would never thought about something like the bow being even slightly bent!

I chuckled at first, because my friend showed him what's what. And I learned a little bit about being careful about the bows that you buy.

And of course I bought a different bow that was straight.

So, now that I had a few days to think about it, NOW I'm wondering this:

1. How do you know if the bow is bent? How can a beginner check and know?

2. How do you know if it's bent 'too far'?

3. Is it possible to UN-bend a bow to make it straight?

4. Do violin bows all bend or warp over time? If so, how often should we replace our bow(s)? Or do just cheap ones do this more than better stronger brands?

3. This is probably the most important question out of these three - WHAT is the problem with having a bent bow? Will it affect the way a violin music sounds or plays?

I think that's the question I'm most curious about?

If you can help explain this, that would be TERRIFIC!

Thank you in advance- ?

Joey C.

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