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Fiddle Facts

Fiddle Facts

by Al Stancel

Originally published in American Lutherie #8, 1986 and Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume One, 2000

Steel Wool: A No-No. Steel wool is still used by some players to clean strings and momentarily increase bow hair grip. Warnings: 1) Steel wool destroys strings with repeated use; 2) Steel wool contains an oil to prevent its rusting. This oil transfers to the bow hair, the case, the blanket and everything, compounding the bow skip problem. The solution is to stop using steel wool and start with fresh hair and a cleaned case plus new strings.

Spotlight on the Bow Bug. Bow bugs are in Indiana, New York, Miami, and all points! A bow used once per day will not be cut up by the bow bug; he (it) hates light, and will not park on a bow used or kept in light. The bow case closed for a few weeks is an open invitation for him to munch on the rosened hair. The bug can get in the case at any time, or never. It is not predictable. However, if you have chunks of hair cut in the case, be sure to vacuum the case thoroughly and add two plain moth balls to the closed case.

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