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> Acidic Fingers And Dead Skin
Im here to succe...
post Jul 22 2013, 12:03 PM
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Hi guys. A big problem I encounter is how long my guitar strings last. A friend of mine plays the guitar about 5 hours a day and his strings last a lifetime. I read somewhere that certain guitar players have an 'acidic' substance produced by their fingers which causes the discolouration of the strings.
Here's a picture just before I'm about to start playing the guitar, notice how the fingertips are filled with dead skin, so after a couple of minutes of bending the strings etc, it ends up all over the fretboard.
Does anyone have any advice on how to strengthen my fingertips, I play for like 3 - 5 hours a day for the past 6 years so I'm hardly a beginner.
When do you wash your hands etc, because if I wash my hands, the skin softens and looks like the picture below, however if I don't wash my hands and they're sweaty, it really batters my strings in the long run and they all end up discoloured and need changing.
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dcz702
post Jul 22 2013, 12:15 PM
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My strings go dead pretty quick to. Go to the shop t least once a month and buy several packs change every couple weeks. I sweat all over the neck and just wipe my neck and strings down once a day when my axe gets put down for the night. Maybe you just gotta restring more often. smile.gif
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Slavenko Erazer
post Jul 22 2013, 12:26 PM
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Oh man, that fingerboard looks messy. Maybe your action's too high's so you have to make more effort while playing?
Or Wash your hands after every meal and u'll have no problems with sweat. cool.gif

This post has been edited by Slavenko Erazer: Jul 22 2013, 12:28 PM
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jstcrsn
post Jul 22 2013, 01:05 PM
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you will just have to clean your string and frets after every practice.
It is usually salt from sweat, and salt will destroy everything, so the quicker you can get it off the better

p.s. find a product that can remove salt(from your guitar store)
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Im here to succe...
post Jul 22 2013, 01:13 PM
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Yeah i do seem to do all of these things already, and "slavenko" my action is nice and low, i like my guitars battered! smile.gif

Also - do any of you guys have any tips on strengthening the skin on my fingertips?

This post has been edited by Im here to succeed: Jul 22 2013, 01:15 PM
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Im here to succe...
post Jul 22 2013, 01:41 PM
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I've just came accross this, I use a Dunlop guitar cleaner, spray it on the towel and slide it up and down the fretboard which has just made my strings and fretboard look shiny, will try that for a few days and see how it goes
http://m.wikihow.com/Clean-Guitar-Strings
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Darius Wave
post Jul 22 2013, 02:34 PM
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I fight with similar problems very often. Before You'll go to the doctor who can give You some medication to descrease the level of salt/acid in Your sweat, You should take a close look at the place You store the guitars. For more than year I thought my student has a problem with acid sweat but once I refreshed the guitar and brought it back with new strings he was on a vacation. Two weeks later guitar never touched by his hand was almost all rusty. The true problem were the air conditions in his room. He changed the room for storing guitar and it helped.

Otherwise - never ending cleaning, hand creames and Elixir strings.

For cleaning fretboard (not painted one) is lemon oil. IfYou use it often make sure to remove it completely so the wood won;t absorb to much humidity


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BTrian
post Jul 22 2013, 04:26 PM
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cleaning the strings after practicing helps a lot (especially under the strings)

my hand sweat is kind of agressive, too.
Strings usually turn green/black/copper (the last one is especially quite strange for nickel coated nylon strings oO)
after 1-2 weeks of playing and the fretboard doesn't do that much better.
I clean the whole fretboard every few weeks when changing strings.
the bad thing about dead strings is you don't really notice it cause it's gradually killing the tone.
The first thing I spot is playing in the higher frets doesn't sound clean cause there's dirt on the strings.

Changed to Elixir strings on my electric, which do pretty well (a month without problems)
haven't really found good working coated nylon strings yet, though.

As for strengthening fingertips only playing a lot and on a regular basis helps.
my fingertips usually look way worse than in those pictures biggrin.gif
and even if you build up skin on the fingertips, it doesn't stay there for that long
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Musicman65
post Jul 22 2013, 08:21 PM
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I have super acidic sweat too. My bridges and strings corrode quickly if left uncleaned. Here are the two things that solved my issues:

1. Clean with rubbing alcohol after playing. I use a rag and wet a section of the rag and wrap it around each string and scrub from nut to bridge. I also douse the bridge and wipe dry.

2. I keep a clean rag that I pretreat with ArmourAll vinyl treatment (for car vinyl treatment). This stuff is basically silicon in a water based solution. I dampen a rag with it and let it dry. The dry rag is used for wipe down before and during performances. I also wipe my hands with it. Same affect as "String Ease" spray. It keeps the dead skin from sticking on the strings and creates a barrier for sweat so it wipes away easier.

These two things allow me to get more life and better feel from a set of strings.

I also cut up a fine scotch pad into strips and use the mildly abrasive strips to clean my strings if the happen to get crud on them. I wrap the strip around the string and wipe end to end, pulling up to avoid touching the frets.

Unconventional but works well.

bd

This post has been edited by Musicman65: Jul 22 2013, 08:23 PM
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Mertay
post Jul 22 2013, 09:08 PM
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This is gross but I'll share just don't hate me smile.gif

After a brake I started guitar again and my fingertips were like yours in the picture, I thought the skin would harden eventually but I don't know why that time it took too long...so I got mad once and slightly chewed them off tongue.gif

Next day of course I didn't play cause the skin was too tender. The other day it wasn't totally healed but I said what the hell and played, it hurted a little bit. Next day the same and after that I noticed the skin thickened as is healed!

I guess its some sort of adaptation process of the body, if the dead area of skin is slightly removed but still used a harder area starts building. But keep in mind I just removed the dead skin that was hanging out don't actually damage yourself!

ps; also noticed on photo, don't cut your fingernails that short either or they will shrink and it will be harder to play guitar wink.gif

This post has been edited by Mertay: Jul 22 2013, 09:10 PM


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Cosmin Lupu
post Jul 23 2013, 12:34 PM
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QUOTE (Mertay @ Jul 22 2013, 08:08 PM) *
This is gross but I'll share just don't hate me smile.gif

After a brake I started guitar again and my fingertips were like yours in the picture, I thought the skin would harden eventually but I don't know why that time it took too long...so I got mad once and slightly chewed them off tongue.gif

Next day of course I didn't play cause the skin was too tender. The other day it wasn't totally healed but I said what the hell and played, it hurted a little bit. Next day the same and after that I noticed the skin thickened as is healed!

I guess its some sort of adaptation process of the body, if the dead area of skin is slightly removed but still used a harder area starts building. But keep in mind I just removed the dead skin that was hanging out don't actually damage yourself!

ps; also noticed on photo, don't cut your fingernails that short either or they will shrink and it will be harder to play guitar wink.gif


Dude... I will take the gross at the next level and tell you that... I totally understand, as I went through this myself smile.gif and I sometimes chew or take away that particular part of the hanging dead skin so that the layer beneath it will thicken and NOT expose the vulnerable part. If it's not too much, I will photograph this once it happens - not the chewing part tho laugh.gif re-reading this, I am sure it's a bit difficult to understand, but it makes sense, I assure you.

Well, it so happens that I too have a very sweaty hand when playing and especially when I go onstage, due to the emotions before the gig, I sweat even more, but since I am using the Elixirs, my strings aren't too bothered by this fact.


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Jul 23 2013, 03:13 PM
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I use to clean the string if I notice that I sweat to make them last longer. If I don't clean them after a gig with my band, they can last just one day. There are some special products for this that I haven't tried but that help to make your strings last longer. One of them is called Fast Track.


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Mertay
post Jul 23 2013, 04:08 PM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Jul 23 2013, 11:34 AM) *
Dude... I will take the gross at the next level and tell you that... I totally understand, as I went through this myself smile.gif and I sometimes chew or take away that particular part of the hanging dead skin so that the layer beneath it will thicken and NOT expose the vulnerable part. If it's not too much, I will photograph this once it happens - not the chewing part tho laugh.gif re-reading this, I am sure it's a bit difficult to understand, but it makes sense, I assure you.


biggrin.gif


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