TUBBS Fine German Violin Bow Circa 1935


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GERMANY – on the bottom flat of the stick behind the frog.

No, the bow is not English even though I purchased this bow from an older English gentleman. I still remember meeting Mr. Charles Southwool from Union County, New Jersey, where I grew up during my high school years. My dad and I used to go out on weekends and collect old violins and bows. We would purchase instruments at estate sales, auctions, and once in a while an entire collection at someone’s home. This bow was in Mr. Southwool’s violin case. I mention this because as I’m getting older and I’m noticing more and more that we are just stewards of many things. He took great care of his instrument and bows. I can still remember the smell of the inside of the old case and him unwrapping the violin that was wrapped in a colorful silk cloth. These nicer items we treasure and take care of can go on and on. I have meticulously gone over his bow and have just finished restoring the stick after about 44 years.

The fine German bow has a famous English maker’s name stamped on it. German violin and bow makers did this for marketing reasons especially after World War I because the Western world was not eagerly purchasing anything coming out of Germany. The artisan work is gorgeous throughout this stick, the wood, silver work, and hair dressing. The bow is pernambuco specie, round in section and mounted in sterling silver. A very nice stick with a camber that descends rapidly from the head of the bow. I like that in a stick. For me, it helps me control the bow better. I replaced the broken bone tip and replaced the silver tinsel winding along with a new leather thumb grip. The frog is blind eye; solid ebony without mother-of-pearl eyes. The mother-of-pearl slide is slightly linear in its gorgeous pink, green, and blue hues. The endscrew has a solid silver cap and the bow is older than me , close to 85 years old and definitely worth the time and the effort it took to bring it back. It is in very good condition and has a gram weight of 62.5 grams fully haired.

Sometimes I ‘m asked if a good bow makes a difference. Yes, absolutely! It’s always about sound. A high-quality bow definitely influences the sound production, clarity, and articulation. Musicians are always looking for balance, a stability, a connection with the string, and a responsiveness that allows the bow to feel like a natural extension of the arm. Players want a bow that makes complex musical passages a breeze to play. A good bow will enhance tone, response, and help the player perform advanced off the string articulations. Many times, the bow is forgotten about and put on the back burner. We have players that come to the shop thinking they just need a new violin to sound better. A 180-degree turn sometimes is very necessary. Yes, an about face. The bow is so much more important than you could ever imagine.

Weight fully haired 62.5 grams.