Strings alert: China airports enforce ban on resin

Strings alert: China airports enforce ban on resin


norman lebrecht

October 28, 2015

Daniel Hope had his resin confisacted on leaving Shanghai earlier this month.

Cellist Trey Lee and another string player from Hong Kong suffered a similar experience on leaving the same airport. Every string player carries resin for bow maintenance.

The restrictions  appear to be enforced at the moment only in Shanghai and Guangzhou. But under 2015 China rules resin is considered a potentially explosive substance. The advice is: do not carry resin in your hand luggage, until further notice.




Thanks to Rudolph Tang for the research.


  • Max Grimm says:

    Resin or Rosin??

    • Ray Richardson says:

      Strictly, resin is the sticky goo exuded by some trees and rosin is the substance formed by distilling the stuff. Ive found that string players use both terms to refer to the darkish red solid they rub on their bows, but I have the general impression that probably more say resin than rosin.

      • Max Grimm says:

        Given the choice between resin, rosin and colophony, one really learns to appreciate a compound, such as “Bogenharz” (bow-resin).

  • Jeffrey E. Salzberg says:

    This affects ballet companies, too, although the quantities they use are unlikely to be in carry-on luggage.

  • Ricardo says:

    Another step towards the gagafication of this already very gaga and sorry world run by idiots of the highest calibre. Send in the clowns! No, wait, they are already here….

  • NYMike says:

    In the US, we say “rosin.” To clarify, it’s used on the bow-hair – generally from horses tails – to grip the strings as the bow glides across.

  • Gianmaria says:

    It’s getting more and more ridiculous every day. I got stopped once and nearly arrested at Philadelphia airport for possession of a plastic baton, a notoriously thin pointed weapon of mass destruction….