As a one-person show, Jennifer Creadick Violins, Inc, has had to make some decisions about how much work one person can take on. At this time, my focus is on doing great bow rehairs and great "set-ups" for my customers.
What is a violin "set-up"? It is, in fact, critical. When I do a set-up, I pay attention to the measurements and condition of such things as
For more involved repair and restoration work such as neck resets or repairs requiring top removal, we luckily live in an area where there are several other violin makers/repairers not too far away and I am happy to make that referral for you.
So, a proper set-up allows for ease of playing and intonation and character of tone. This is of course necessary for beginners and professionals alike. The violin is a challenging instrument to play. With a proper set-up you will be able to play more easily and your instrument will be optimized for sound production.
A little more about my rehairs: I learned bow rehairing during the summer of 1994 with Lynn Armour Hannings. And just in the nick of time. My first daughter was born the following year. I'm sure I would not have been able to have spent so many focused weeks learning about bows for many more years!
I spend quite a bit of time with your bow when you bring it in for rehairing. It always gets a full cleaning and polishing and inspection. If it is particularly grimy with years of built up rosin, you actually receive a gift! I will sell you a special polishing cloth for only $1 :)
I order my bow hair in bulk and it is of the highest quality only. By that I mean that it is strong yet elastic and evenly white but unbleached. It is well "dressed" when I purchase it. By that I mean that it has been picked over so that the hairs are even thicknesses and not kinked. Yet, when I collect the hank of hair for your bow, I take time to dress it one more time, pulling out any single hairs that might corrode the tone in bowed passages that require quiet finesse.
New plugs and wedges are precisely cut. The hair is dampened and left to dry, one or two loose stray hairs are trimmed and voila! a beautiful ribbon of hair.
How often to rehair your bow? In general, once or twice a year depending on how much you play. Or if it has stretched too long or looks yellowish or dirty. Or if bow bugs have gnawed off half of it.