I just found this pdf which says:
The repeated measure/bar is used only for drums, piano, or guitar.
Is this still the case? And if so, why isn't it used for other instruments, e.g. violin?
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Very often, the parts for non 'rhythm section' instruments (keys, bass, guitar, drums) are not inclined to be quite as repetitive as chords or drum patterns. Often the repeated measure is simply not needed in other instruments. However, it can definitely be found in parts for other instruments from time to time, and any reasonable player of any instrument would understand its meaning.