Trade Secrets: Repairing a broken bow head


A less invasive and more reversible version of a well-known repair method

By Lauri Tanner

Bow restorer, Florian Leonhard Fine Violins, London, UK

I use a relatively thin piece of pernambuco in my version of this classic repair. The strength of the repair comes from its cross-lamination structure, rather than the thickness of the spline. A thinner spline also means that the area immediately behind the back of the head is kept as strong as possible, leaving intact the maximum amount of longitudinal fibres. In addition, this method theoretically allows for someone to repeat the cut in the future with a slightly thicker saw blade. In combination with the use of hide glue, this approach is the closest to reversible as I have managed to get. 

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