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5 ways to extend the lifespan of your cello bow

Musical instruments normally last for a long time depending on the material, brand, and ownership care. Though these musical instruments do not last eternally, there are several ways to extend its longevity. In the case of cello bows, one of the several ways to prolong its use is through cleaning, storage, maintenance, and consultations with professionals. To know more about these things, read down below.

Different ways to extend the life of your bow

Clean the stick after each practice session

You might not be aware of this but you should clean your bow stick after every use. The suggested cleaning method is by using a soft fiber cloth to remove rosin dust, moisture, and dirt. Why? The more you prolong these things, the higher are the chances that it will stick to the bow and be much harder to remove. One way to think of is when a coffee is pilled on your jeans, you try your best to wash it immediately since it will be difficult to wash off if it leaves a stain.

Besides a soft fiber cloth, there are available special cloth that are for retail. They are intended for the cleaning maintenance of bows. Also, avoid cleaning your bow stick with general household cleaning materials since this is specifically made for harsh and strong environments.

Never touch the bow hairs with your bare hands

It is not evident but our hands contain the most moisture since it touches and lands on different things especially for people with oily and acidic skin. Bow hairs, like the cello bow itself, are delicate and sensitive non-living things. Exposure to a foreign material may damage them internally and externally -- this is why we need to be mindful of how we handle our cello bows.

Never touch your bow hairs directly with your bare hands, may it be clean or dirty. The oils in our hands can sink in the hairs and make it sticky, fade its color, and overall, damage its playability.

Place it inside a case when not in use

Similar to mobile phones, cello bows needs storage. Often when buying a cello bow, casing and storage are inclusive upon purchase. Take advantag of this freebie and store your cello bow. Cello bows are vulnerable to its surroundings especially if out with many people. One may accidentally hit, bump, or in worse case scenarios, break your bow.

Having a protective material against harmful risks may increase the longevity of your bow. Another beneficial thing about casings is that you have an instant storage when travelling or bringing your cello bow outside.

Loosen the bow’s tension after practice or performance

Although finding the perfect balance of a cello bow’s tension might be hard, you should still decrease its tightness after every practice or performance. By doing this, you are giving your musical instrument a room to breathe. Think of it as when wearing jeans, you unzip your jeans after every wearing since it gives comfort and more room for breathing. It is the same thing for cello bows after being in a tight position every playtime.

When in doubt, consult a professional

No one knows a musical instrument more than a professional. They are called these names for a reason and it is to be the specialized people that knows cello bows historically, inside and outside. If you do not trust your gut, then consult to a professional. There will surely be handling or professional fees but it is what you are paying them for.


Cello bows are like newborn babies. They need utmost care, love, patience, bills, and security to ensure their proper growth and development. It is no different with cello bows as these musical instruments needs the proper and right amount of care and maintenance to last a long-time. Though a user or a musician should not see this as a hindrance but a responsibility. Cello bows are an investment that may last a lifetime when taken care of the right way.