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> Guitar Confusion - Setup
NoSkill
post Apr 10 2009, 09:21 PM
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Hi Folks,

I've done some great reading here. I'm just getting back to playing after a long break and picked up my early 90's Jackson Slinky and played. I always liked playing it, as it was comfortable for me. About 5 years ago, I heard a friend play a Fernandes 7 string with sustainer pickups. I ended up buying one from mail order. (I know, I know,) but I live in a rural area with no access to it.

Well, by the time I got the Fernandes, I had stopped playing due to frustration, family, my kids, etc.

Here's where I get confused. I've always admired guitar players who seem like their fretting hand is barely grasping the neck. They look so soft in their left hand, just easy and almost effortless. One of my favorite guitar players is Rik Emmett and I just was amazed at how "soft," his left hand is.

Watching a friend of mine play, he has the same, VERY soft left hand. Effortless. My left hand feels like I'm trying to take a lug nut off my truck with a pair of pliers....

This afternoon, I took that Fernandes out of the case. After tuning the double locking Floyd to Eb, (about an hour **groan**) I started to play a lesson that I was working on...this guitar plays like butter. I find I'm hardly using any fret pressure and the notes and tone are better than I've ever heard out of my playing.

I have a "hard," left hand with all three of my American Strats and my Jackson...with this Fernandes, I'm holding the guitar like I think I should....

I can only tell you experts the symptoms, I have no idea what affects this. I play with #11 high E's in all the guitars and have them tuned standard or to Eb. The Fernandes just plays so beautifully...the others play like I'm in a bar fight.

I'm going to maybe make some video to demonstrate but would love to get into a dialog with things to compare.

Thank you very much.

Probably too confusing of a description now that I re-read this... rolleyes.gif

This post has been edited by NoSkill: Apr 11 2009, 12:52 AM


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Roadside
post Apr 11 2009, 10:39 AM
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It´s probably, as you said the fretboard, which might be a thicker one, which you like more. It´s just your taste. Some like Les Pauls with their thick fretboards others hate them. And it might be the type of wood it is made of? Could that be the case!?

In the end, I think you play your best on the guitar you like the most. This is how it goes for me.

Cheers!

This post has been edited by Roadside: Apr 11 2009, 10:58 AM
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Muris Varajic
post Apr 11 2009, 11:04 AM
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Could be something with sting tension too
since you like how your Fernandes feels tuned in Eb.
What string gauge you use on your other guitars btw?
Speaking of tension, some guitars has more tension
compared to other and it's just like that,
scale has a lot to do with tension
you you will probably need to solve gauge issue
and eventually action. smile.gif


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NoSkill
post Apr 11 2009, 04:41 PM
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Would there be any advantage of taking the Fernandes that I like playing, and the Strat that I struggle with, to a guitar tech as an example of what I like to see if it can be a setup thing?


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Gwazi
post Apr 11 2009, 06:30 PM
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just throwing this out there, could it be the string action? i know that when i first started i had a real high action, and yes, it was really hard, but when i got it adjusted down, it was real soft, so unless i misread that probably is the issue.


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NoSkill
post Apr 11 2009, 08:24 PM
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Gwazi, I don't think you have misread it. The action is marginally higher in the guitar that is harder to play. I just was wondering if there were more components than that. That's a good start for me though.


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Apr 11 2009, 10:08 PM
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QUOTE (NoSkill @ Apr 11 2009, 05:41 PM) *
Would there be any advantage of taking the Fernandes that I like playing, and the Strat that I struggle with, to a guitar tech as an example of what I like to see if it can be a setup thing?


Possibly...

Tell us a bit about your setup on the Strat. What string gauge are you using, how high is the action compared to Fernandez etc.


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NoSkill
post Apr 12 2009, 04:29 AM
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I'm not sure of the exact gauge on the Strat but it's heavier than the Fernandes. The action feels equal. I made sure both were tuned to Eb to verify that. Another thing I noticed, I was working on a tapping lesson and found that the Fernandes was very easy to tap with. The Strat was not, getting almost no sound unless I HAMMERED to string, and then only half the volume of picking. The Fernandes makes about 80% of the sound of picking, with tapping firmly but not aggressively. In my estimation, using the same technique, the Fernandes is considerably louder tapping. I wanted to add that little tidbit in case it brings anything to mind.

Happy Easter!


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Apr 12 2009, 05:23 PM
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What kind of pickups do you have on Strat and Fernandes?


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NoSkill
post Apr 13 2009, 03:55 AM
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The strat has S-S-S, the Jackson (little better) has S-S-H, the Fernandes (the best) has Active Sustainer (turned off) - H.

It seems that the humbuckers are better for me, for sure. I have a strat with S-S-H that I'll take a look at tomorrow as well. I'm reading a lot and learning a bit.

Thank you for this discussion.


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Apr 13 2009, 01:16 PM
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It seems that the pickups play important role there. If you are unsure what to do with the Strat you can always switch pickups and lower down the action a bit - this would definitely improve playability and get it closer to Fernandez.

cheers mate


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NoSkill
post Apr 13 2009, 04:36 PM
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Thanks, Ivan. I'm going to try and lower the action a bit for playability and test some more. Thank you, again, for this discussion.


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kjutte
post Apr 16 2009, 02:05 AM
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If I were ever to start over, I would use .08s until I had good vibrato and fingerstrength, then move up.
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