New subject on rosin


What is so great about this rosin? Just wondering. What rosin does everyone use? I am looking for a new rosin. I know this has been discussed before but not sure where ?
January 25, 2018 at 9:24 PM
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Steve Srader

Johns next favorite Rosin is Andrea A Piacere violin Rosin ! Its a dark green
This reply was modified 12 hours ago by Steve Srader.
January 25, 2018 at 11:03 PM

John Cockman

Steve is right! I love Andrea A Piacere right now. Half a cake is around $20. But Baker’s is my fav. It’s just so smooth and grippy.
However, high-end rosin is not necessary in order to sound good. But, practice is!
January 26, 2018 at 8:11 AM


Oh no…I just ordered all that fancy rosin, and NOW you tell me practice is what I need…lol…at this point, 2018 has been more complicated than our usual complicated messes…so…I’m gonna be lucky to even find the time to put the rosin on the bows…but…I’m always hopeful stuff will gradually simmer down and let me get into some practice time. I already went over my forgotten Gardenia Waltz once…I’m sure I forgot all of that again by now…we’ll, one of these days if I get some time to myself again, I’ve got several choices of fancy rosin



  • Over the last nine months I have gone crazy with rosins , I am going to have to build myself a rosin display for the wall in my Man cave , I have been trying everything that might or maybe could give me any kind of helpful edge , I have Andrea A Piacere , Andrea Solo , Holstein Premium , Kaplan Dark , Melos light , Melos Dark , Pirastro Eudoxa , and Super-Sensitive Dark , That's eight rosins in Nine months , So other than a chance to try out <strong>Bakers Rosin</strong> , I am totally done , I also have Five Violin Bows from one fiberglass Bow , wood bow , and two Carbon Fiber bows and one Weaved Carbon Fiber Bow so I am done with bows for now . I have tried Six different Brands of strings so I am done with that . I believe experimenting has satisfied my need to know if these things can help me . Mostly nothing has helped me more than Practice and Training , researching everything violin via internet , Working Dr. Johns lessons and BGD Forums and Practice ,  And Playing along with Johns videos once able to keep up has really helped my timing and tone . Bow control has been the hardest for me so far and still is .
  • I’ve seen that some people pay very little attention to their rosin and others become rosin connoisseurs...I wonder how much difference it actually does make...anyone know?
  • Cricket , Andrea A Piacere is gentle very smooth and buttery , defiantly not as scratchy , Your bow feels and glides easily over the strings soft and sweeter , All the others have a more harsh sound and are more grabby and somewhat louder , I guess It depends on what you want Andrea Solo rosin is very aggressive grabby and loud .
  • A question for rosin ? How often should the bow hair be cleaned of rosin ?  As I do have some dark spots showing , down by the frog and then there's natural dust and  , contaminants , accidental touching the hair getting body oil on the hair and so on ?
  • Steve, I never worried about rosin because I wasn't sure I could tell any difference between the rosins I used.  Then I got some Oliv-Evah and lo & behold it did make a noticeable difference...for a little while...but now when I switch back & forth I can't tell any difference anymore at all...??

    One thing that complicates this is how the rosins mix on the bow.  One high end rosin I got says to only use it on new hair and don't contaminate it with other rosins (!)  I know some people whose favorite rosin is actually a few strokes with two different cakes mixing it up.  Maybe thats what happened the first time I tried out the Oliv-Evah on a rosin soaked bow.  I guess I'll rehair a bow & stick with one rosin on it until I figure this out...We can all go crazy together...or else just rosin the bow & forget it.

    Oh yea...there's lot's of literature saying that the life of a cake of rosin is only a year to a year & 1/2!  After that it looses it's magic, but still works as a rosin of course.

    On top of it all, some companies say it's actually impossible to make two batches of rosin, at different times of the year with different sources of supply etc. etc. that will be exactly the same.  So just ordering the same brand doesn't mean you'll get what you got the last time..

    (Did I confess I'm going to tap some spruce & pine trees when the sap runs?)
  • Oh well, now, that all adds some confusion, doesn’t it?  I’ve seriously thought to scrape sticky resin off various conifers myself, just to see what happens.  I know you can mix tha5 with ashes and make a decent glue...which has noth8ng at all to do with our conversation here...still, you know...there’s that.
  • Wow this topic really does have interest to many of us.  I have often wondered how rosin affects playing and I think I have figured out that unfortunately it was the practice that made the difference.  But I may try some of these suggestions just to see what difference they make.  thanks for the interesting discussions and suggestions.
  • Hi Roger,

    I like Jade in the winter when it is dry in the house and the humidity is low. It is "grippy"  but leaves a lot of dust.  I like Melos, one of John's recommendation from a while ago, in the summer.  It is lighter and less grippy  which is good in the summer in Mississippi and less dust.
  • Our humidity is often in the single digits Bruce, with our colder weather.  It makes a lot of static and you get shocked touching things.  I don't remember that happening down south.  In the northern Yukon, it would stay for weeks around 50 below, and when I'd slide off the couch to get up, (making a lot of static) and touch the stove handle it would knock me on the floor.  I've had the smoke alarm go off touching a light switch.  My fiddle changes dramatically.  The wall mouldings will shrink in the winter, and then swell up in the summer and distort.  How this affects the rosin doing it's thing I have no idea, but the cheaper rosins will turn the fiddle white with dust.  Reading up on the manufacturing process, it says they process the tree wood to extract the ingredients and turn it into granules which is used to make the rosin.  So it seems to me it would be different if it's actually made from drained sap, like maple sugar.
  • Steve, thanks for splitting the thread for us. You are now a rosin connoisseur, to be sure!

    I take an old dry toothbrush and clean my bow every few months. It really seems to help.

    Rodger, those are some good thoughts on rosin. I'm not sure how the humidity effects it. I would think a dry climate would be better for rosin once it's on your bow, but dry weather may also make the cake brittle.
  • Here in northern Kentucky you get shocked all winter grandson goes down the plastic slides at the park for the thrill of shocking one of us right after  They have gas station warnings in the winter to touch the outside of your car with a key or something metal so you don’t create a spark opening up your gas tank.  I don’t know if they tell you that in se ky or not, but we didn’t get shocked nearly as much.  Anyway, I started trying to p,ay the fiddle up here, and I’ve always found some dark type rosin better in winter weather for me, and lighter in humid summer weather.  I’ve got some French made jade I just got from Lion’s Den, I’m anxious to try it.  Last night I finally got some time, but very tired and sleepy, to try the jade for the first’s been warmer here, but I still consider it winter...I’m not sure if I think if jade as dark or light,  Since I barely use much rosin at all, I loaded the bow up to see, but I was so tired I couldn’t tell...I was just fiddling resslly bad last night. of these days...I hope to do more experimenting.  I guess this was a totally useless
  • I know it made a very big difference when I moved up from the cheap Chinese rosin that came with my beginner fiddle to a cake of Kaplan Dark.  I've had that one for a couple years and have been reasonably happy with it.  Good job, everyone... you're effectively making me want to try another variety! :-)
  • Guys, I got my new rosin and still haven’t had a chance to tr6 it...I had bought myself a felt pick for that old cheap autoharp I’d gotten off eBay a few years back and never got to use that yet either...ugh...I’m losing it from lack of music time...there’s been a lot going on up and down the road...just wearing everybody out dealing with it all.  Hopefully at some point or other there will be some point of normalcy again...a lot of loss in the family in TN and resulting confusion, etc.
  • Sorry to hear that... Hope every thing is back to normal soon. I'm glad your rosin came!
  • Sorry to hear that... Hope every thing is back to normal soon. I'm glad your rosin came!
  •’ll be a while...we’re waiting for investigations, etc.
  • well, I've decided I like my new Kaplan dark rosin better than the old cake (like ten yrs) in the green felt wrapper.

    I'm getting a lot smoother draw now.  Before I had a few spots where it was like a large particle was stuck to the bow and would make a noise when that section passed the strings.

    All I did  for the change-over was to run a dry toothbrush up & down the hair a few times. I am like a 4 yr old with a glue bottle when dealing with liquids,  so I balk at getting any solvents, etc. around my instruments or bow.

    I must have knocked the "nasties" off, I'm guessing.

  • Dave , Glad to hear your bow is doing better ! I keep a tooth brush handy at all times if nothing else it helps to evenly distribute the Rosin , A lot of times I don't even add rosin , I just stroke the hair a few times with the tooth brush as the tooth brush is loaded too from using it on the bow ! Ha
  • Question:  Are you trying to find the best rosin for the bow hair? or the best rosin for strings?

    Doesn’t the rosin accumulate on both the bow hair and the strings?

    Some String brands recommend that certain rosin(s) work better w/ their strings.

    I use Pirastro Gold rosin w/my Evah Pirazzi Gold strings.  Yes! Same company for strings and rosin.  And I am happy doing this.

    If you Google the “Dominant Strings Company, they recommend rosin(s) that  work best with their  (Dominant) strings. Maybe other violin String Companies do the same.

    I, too, use a toothbrush on the bow hair; and every now and then, I gently brush the strings where the rosin may have accumulated.








  • I have never cleaned a bow.. or a fiddle, for that matter.... rosin must be a quarter inch thick in spots. :)   A "violinsit" told me my luthier would kill me if he saw that rosin, but he never said a word when he did a minor repair.

    I use whatever rosin is in the case I grab.  I mix and match cases/fiddles, depending if I'm carrying two fiddles or a fiddle/mando or other instruments.
  • Goettjp , Rosin is somewhat corrosive to the finish , other than that to each his own , I know a fiddle player that is above and beyond a really good player , that cleans his fiddle somewhat sometimes not often , His fiddle has that aged not clean look , and his bow hair is really dirty around the frog area , But few in my area can out play him !

    He played a couple tunes on My Fiddle , and made me realize there's nothing wrong with my fiddle but Me ! Ha
  • Someone before me stripped the finish off my original fiddle.... Fred at the Violin Shoppe in Nashville said that cut the value in half ($2500 -> $1250), but heck, it plays alright for me.  I only paid $200 for it.   And after I had Bobby Hicks and Michael Cleveland sign the bouts, I"d never sell it anyway.
  • I don't blame you , I would not sell it either , I have one fiddle I accidently spilled some alcohol on the top plate and it ruined the finish , I tried to gently dab it off but it was to late it dissolved the finish , can't fix stupid , So on that violin I redid just the top plate but it was not a expensive fiddle I paid $800.00 for it new , it plays the same as it did and looks as good as it did !
  • When it comes to keeping my strings clean, I try to remember to clean them off after each use, but rarely do so. But, still, I try to keep the rosin off the strings when I'm done.

    I also try a little once in a while to keep my fiddles looking good but I admit I'm not the world's best at this task.
  • Glad I found this thread! I know it several years old, but I find myself in the search for a "dust-less" rosin. I've got several cakes of various brands of rosin, and every one of them are dusty. Combined with the thick pollen down here in FL, I wind up coughing quite often while playing the fiddle. Anyone have any recommendations for a rosin that's not quite as dusty? TIA!

  • I switched to Lonesome Pine rosin about a year or so ago.

    It is by far the best I've tried and leaves the smallest amount of dust of any I've used so far.

  • Thanks, @fiddlewood! I will definitely look them up. It looks like they sell out of eBay... do you know of anyplace else they sell from?

  • fiddlewood
    edited March 2022

    Yes, ebay is their main outlet.

    You can email Tad Marks (he makes it) if you prefer to buy straight from him.

    I have a couple extra cakes of "Original" and could send you one to try if you PM me your address.


  • Someone else told me about Lonesome Pine. I think I might try it next.

  • @John (BGD)

    Just FYI

    Most of the pros I know of that use it use the "smooth".

    Myself I tried the "original" first and have stuck with it so far.

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