How much rosin should I apply to my bow to get a better sound?



Asked by: Donna King

How much should you rosin a bow?





In most situations, you’ll only have to rosin the bow per 3-5 hours of play time. People with stringed instruments that have thicker gauge strings like basses, cellos and even violas, will probably end up rosining their bows a little more frequently than violinists.

How much rosin do I need?

On average, you should apply a few (about 5) strokes of rosin before each practice session or performance. If you are practicing frequently or for many hours in a day you will find that you need more rosin more often. If you are not practicing much, you will go longer before more rosin is needed.

Can you put too much rosin on a bow?

Too much rosin will make the bow feel stickier as it moves across the strings. Excess rosin can generate a cloud of rosin dust as you play, and the sound will be harsh and scratchy. Rosin debris will fall onto the surface of the instrument and, over time, can damage the varnish and the wood.

Should I rosin my bow everyday?

IMO every 1-3 days, or just… as necessary. If it is “smoking”, you have used too much. If you wipe the strings clean and then they still look clean after playing for a minute, you need more rosin. After that, it is a personal choice as to how much grip you want vs what your bow needs to play the best.

How do I know if I have enough rosin?





Here are two possibilities: Acoustically: you shall strike the bow across the strings as a test. If the bow does not slide easily and produces no sound or only a faint, thin sound, then the bow hair does not have enough rosin. But if the bow is very scratchy, then it may have gotten too much rosin.

How often should I put rosin on my bow?

Typically, students should re-apply rosin every four to six playing hours, which equals about two times per week.

Why won’t my violin make noise?

If your violin does not make any sound, your bow is likely new or your bow has just been re-haired. A bow needs rosin to grip the strings and make a sound. Take your new rosin and break it in with 400 grit sandpaper.

Why does my violin bow sound scratchy?

Too much rosin on the bow hair produces a scratchy, unpleasant sound, while too little will cause the tone to fade out during your bow stroke. Finding exactly the right level of rosin to apply is like everything else involved with learning to play the violin… it takes practice.

How can I improve my violin bowing?

4 Tips for Improving Your Violin Bowing Technique



  1. Hold the bow correctly. How you hold the bow determines the pressure and angle of the bow on the strings. …
  2. Keep your elbow at a right-angle. …
  3. Keep that bow in the middle – and the middle. …
  4. Keep the bow flat on the strings.


How often do you replace rosin?

If it remains shiny and free of dust, you are unfortunately working with old rosin. Generally, a block of rosin will last for anywhere between six months and two years.

What should rosin feel like?

Your rosin has to be sticky enough to grab the strings and help you make a sound with your instrument. But, if your rosin is too sticky it feels slow and gums up your strings. If it’s not sticky enough, it feels like you’re skating across the top of the string and expending a lot of energy for not much sound.



How tight should a violin bow be?

A good rule of thumb is 3-4 twists of the screw, but of course this will differ depending on the instrument. Tip: If the hairs begin to separate and become wavy, you’ve loosened the bow too much: they should still be relatively close together and straight.

How often do you replace rosin?

If it remains shiny and free of dust, you are unfortunately working with old rosin. Generally, a block of rosin will last for anywhere between six months and two years.

How often should you replace your rosin?

once every 4-6 hours

Generally, we find that players are reapplying rosin once every 4-6 hours or solid playing. For professionals, this is usually once a day, but for beginners playing 15-30 minutes a day, we find that once a week is plenty.



How often should I clean my bow?

As always, the best way to keep your cello bow clean is to wipe it down well before and after every time you play. This prevents the build up that requires more frequent cleaning with soap and water or cleaners and polishes. Secondly, you should store your bow safely while it’s not is use.

Does a violin bow need rosin?

Violin bows produce sound by sliding across the string and causing the string to vibrate. Bow hairs in their natural state, however, are too smooth to cause any vibrations. If you were to slide a bow without rosin across a violin string, it would produce no sound at all!

Why won’t my violin make noise?

If your violin does not make any sound, your bow is likely new or your bow has just been re-haired. A bow needs rosin to grip the strings and make a sound. Take your new rosin and break it in with 400 grit sandpaper.

Why does my violin bow sound scratchy?

Too much rosin on the bow hair produces a scratchy, unpleasant sound, while too little will cause the tone to fade out during your bow stroke. Finding exactly the right level of rosin to apply is like everything else involved with learning to play the violin… it takes practice.



Why is there no sound from my violin?

New violin bows often do not produce any sound because they need rosin. Rosin is extremely important because it provides the bow hair with friction in order to produce a sound when the bow is pulled across the violin strings.

How do you score new rosin?

Back and forth ten or twenty times out to the tip. Ten or twenty times then back and forth a whole bunch. And then you keep doing that.

What should rosin feel like?

Your rosin has to be sticky enough to grab the strings and help you make a sound with your instrument. But, if your rosin is too sticky it feels slow and gums up your strings. If it’s not sticky enough, it feels like you’re skating across the top of the string and expending a lot of energy for not much sound.