#1
So I just saw Sergio Altamura - Final Blu

At about 2:20 in, he uses a violin bow on the acoustic - something I've never thought about doing before, but I'd quite like to experiment with it. However, knowing next to nothing about violins and stuff, I'd like to find out if there's any problems that could occur, i.e. it could be likely to snap the strings.

Anything else that should be noted, too?

Thanks
#2
Quote by Winsbury
So I just saw Sergio Altamura - Final Blu

At about 2:20 in, he uses a violin bow on the acoustic - something I've never thought about doing before, but I'd quite like to experiment with it. However, knowing next to nothing about violins and stuff, I'd like to find out if there's any problems that could occur, i.e. it could be likely to snap the strings.

Anything else that should be noted, too?

Thanks

You're not likely to break the strings. It would blow my mind if that was even possible. You are far more likely to break bow hairs, so expect to have to get a rehair, eventually (though having less hairs on the bow seems like it would be advantageous for that playing style).
Sincerely, Chad.
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#3
you would be better off utilising a cello bow rather than violin bow as it is meant for thicker strings. you may want to look into getting flatwound strings to cause less wear and tear on the bow
#5
Jimmie Page shreds that bow. I've used my daughters violin bow on my acoustic. I t sounds really cool, but your range of movement is very restricted. Between the width of the guitar itself and the fact that the bridge is relatively flat compared to a violin or cello its hard to play a single string. Even Jimmie is playing a few strings at the same time. And lets face it, as great a player as he is, he was a bit sloppy at times. Finally, bows are not cheap. so to shred them up like that can end up costing a bit. But I think that you should try one out . You might love it. Good luck
#6
K.Tripoli is exactly right... Page did it many years back. Stringed instruments like violins and cellos have the playing surface raised and curved, and the instrument body is cut in to allow for the many angles needed.
Essentially, on a guitar you can only play all the strings at once.

For similar (and better) effects you might consider the "E-Bow":

http://www.ebow.com/home.php

Which has been for sale for many years and which can produce a wide variety of effects.

Other interesting (and cheap) effects can be accomplished by using a small rod or stick to tap on the strings.
#7
Thanks everyone!

I know about the curvature of violins/cellos, but I'm thinking I should be able to at least be able to play the top string by itself, or the e and b strings together - like he does in the video.

As for the E-Bow, I don't know exactly how it works, but work it produce loud enough sounds on an unplugged acoustic?
#8
Quote by Winsbury
Thanks everyone!

I know about the curvature of violins/cellos, but I'm thinking I should be able to at least be able to play the top string by itself, or the e and b strings together - like he does in the video.

As for the E-Bow, I don't know exactly how it works, but work it produce loud enough sounds on an unplugged acoustic?


Ebow on the acoustic doesnt work that well...unglugged AND plugged in, it takes too long for the Ebow to vibrate the strings. Unless you were using a soundhole Pickup perhaps.

just like on the electric if you back off the ebow away from the pickup the attack is reduced...and that would be even more on the acoustic, after about 10 seconds you start to hear some faint sounds from it.
Last edited by WaltTheWerewolf at Mar 17, 2011,
#9
I didn't hear him play the B string. Thats why it can be a difficult to play IMO.
#10
Quote by k.tripoli
I didn't hear him play the B string. Thats why it can be a difficult to play IMO.


now i dont want to rip apart one of my son's violin bows to experiment but, i'd imagine DADGAD tuning could work well with a bow with all the drone possibilities in that tuning, perhaps a cello bow to get better volume.
#11
Hmmm.... Can't find the article right now... As many know, I make cigar-box guitars and such and a number of guys make cigar-box fiddles.
There are various ways to make a "bow" very cheaply; might be good to experiment with.

The easiest is just a piece of PVC tubing, 1/2" or so, with nylon fishing line for the "hair". Put a bend into the PVC and wrap many turns of the fishing line between the ends so that the tension of the bent tube keeps it straight.
You then have to use regular violin-string rosin on the nylon line to get enough friction to work.
Cheap enough to take a shot at.