Ken Altman

Bow Maker

Finely crafted bows for violin, viola, cello and bass.

The bow a player chooses to use can have a significant effect on the quality of the music produced. Every bow will draw a distinct tonal range from a given instrument, and will respond differently to various bow strokes. The right bow can bring out the best qualities of an instrument, and enhance a player's abilities. How do you go about finding the "right" bow for you? The best way is simply to try them in the circumstances in which you normally play. You will know when a bow works for you. The weight and balance, the feel of the bow in your hand, the way it plays both on and off the string strokes, the tone that it draws from your instrument: these are all elements that should be considered, and they can be satisfied with a fine handmade bow.  

For sixteen years I have made bows one at a time, incorporating time honored methods and materials. Each stick is carefully chosen for its characteristics of grain, density and flexibility. I pay close attention to every detail that goes into making a fine bow, from the silver or gold fittings, to the weight and balance, to the final finish.  These factors all contribute to a bow that responds to a player's utmost demands.

Would you like to try a bow?



Photos of the bow making process

The Pernambuco Man Story

How to choose a bow


© Ken Altman 2012

Member of

International Pernambuco Conservation Initiative - USA

International Pernambuco Conservation Initiative /Comurnat