Otto Dürrschmidt, Bass bows
We now offer fine bass bows by the Otto Dürrschmidt
family. Similar to our other German makers(Steffen)
Kuhnla and Dorfler, these too are made to our exact specifications.
Also, quite indigenous to the German fine tradesmen tradition, these
bows follow a long family history of bow making, emanating with Otto
(the founder) since 1894. As is still common today, a highly
specialized trade is passed down through multiple generations of
family members: grandfathers, to fathers, to sons and daugters to
extend and keep the family tradition thriving. Here we have
some really great bows made by Uwe and daughter Cindy.
More about the Dürrschmidt bows and our exclusive
First about the German models.
One thing we never want to do is tell the Germans how to make their
German bows! We simply confirm our desired weight and balance
points, but let them go 'do what they do'. You'll see three
levels of German bows and 3 levels of French bows. These
too, as just about every good German bow out there, follow the
famous Pfretschner German bow in length, weight and feel.
(Notice the frogs have a slight roundness towards the bottom.)
If you measure from the very tip to the butt end of the pernambuco
stick (not included the tightening adjuster), they are 28 3/16" and
with the adjuster, the complete length of bow is 30 9/16".
Notice too, small little things like the beautifully upgraded
Abalone mother of pearl slides on all of their bows made for us!
These tend to weigh between 137-142 grams. All of our special
order Dürrschmidt bows have an octagonal shape.
There are 3 distinct levels here.
You'll notice that with Dürrschmidt, he will designate his 3 levels
by how many stars are stamped on his bows. First, all of his
bows have the family crest (coat of arms) stamp on the frog.
Then above the frog he will stamp "Otto Dürrschmidt" and depending
which level will have just a plain stamp with no star, then a 2 star
and 3 stars designate is best, highest grade.
What's the difference between the 3 levels?
They ALL have the same quality workmanship, all use good quality
pernambuco. The weights are similar as well. What makes
them different then? Before makers select the pernambuco to
make a bow, they test and grade the quality and density of the wood.
This is VERY important. Only the best bows can be
made using the highest quality and most dense wood. The most desired
pernambuco only comes from a small part of the pernambuco tree,
whereas most of the other wood in the tree (still quite good), will
be designated for less expensive models. So each level here
(just the brand alone with no star, a 2 star and then 3 star) will
have been graded accordingly in the beginning stage. Also, the
fittings and types of metals used will only go on the best bows.
The quality/density of the pernambuco wood makes a huge difference
in material cost and quality of performance.
The 3 star bows are made with the BEST pernambuco
wood. With a higher density (harder) wood, the maker can make
the bow more supple and more responsive by having a "skinnyier" bow
without having to sacrifce the weight (ie. more dense, means
heavier). This way, you have the fullness of sound (for the
biggest, fattest sound with the desired weight) but with a super
supple and responsive bow. It doesn't get any better than
Here's the 3 star Pfretschner model Dürrschmidt bow.
Steve (owner) likes some to have the nice Sterling ring around the
adjuster. $1,845 (Of course, we ship
bows out for trial. Read about our bow trial policy.) Order
the 3 star Dürrschmidt bow here.
Otto Dürrschmidt 3-Star German bow, $1,890
A 2-Star Dürrschmidt German bow, $1,295
Quality pernambuco, Otto Dürschmidt (no
Otto Dürrschmidt French Bass Bows
Most French bow players will often notice that our
all of our French bows (regardless of maker) are different and
better than any other comparable contemporary French style bows
offered around the world. This is Steve's (owner), speciality.
For decades, even while the Germans have the best workermanship and
quality, their French bows more resembled long German bows, with
French frogs on them, rather than what one would normally expect on
a really great French (Sartory) bow. Our makers have been
super receptive and have gladly modeled and copied their bows to the
great French masters: A slightly wider hair width, shorter in
length, weights that average between 134-140 and similar cuts and
balance points as the French masters. Also, important for
balance is the length of bow at the butt end, after the frog length.
On the most expensive French Vigneron and Sartory bows, they tend to
have a more normal shorter length, extending after the frog.
They look better (like a French bow looks!) and the fulcrum balance
in the hand is way more balanced this way. Like the German
models above, these too come in the 3 distinct price levels.
The length from tip to butt end (without adjuster) is 26 5/8" and
with the adjuster included, 27 1/2". These are the same exact
lengths as the longer Kuhnla models (that we also offer) and the
famous Sartory bow models that were made by now retired, Reid
Hudson. These French bows are beautiful! Steve here
again: "It's the small things like a nice finish
(chestnut brown), the beautiful Abalone pearl underslide, and most
of all, that 'feel' that we all look for in a good bow....they
How to try one of these now?
We now have the largest selection and range of bass bows found
anywhere in the world. With such a range and selection, it is
not uncommon for a player to ship 1-3 bows to try. Once you
find the one you like, you then ship the remaining bow(s) back.
Customers pay shipping both ways here.
Otto Dürrschmidt 3-Star French bow, $1,890
2-Star Dürrschmidt French
Quality pernambuco, Otto Dürschmidt French
(no star) $950
For International customers
delivering outside of USA:
While we normally like to offer free shipping to
USA customers, international is a bit more tricky. Here, the
shopping cart will automatically calculate the charges for you.
Usually, this works quite well, but if you encounter any problems
ordering, simply email us and we email you back the exact cost
before your purchase.
only available with bow purchases:
We offer this
special packaged deal when buying a new bow from us!
Read about our special
bow accessory packages here.
Bow Packaged Deal
1. String Emporium Deluxe Bow Case and Rosin
2. String Emporium Bow Quiver and Rosin
3. String Emporium Deluxe Bow Case,
S.E.Quiver and Rosin (saves $54)