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  #1  
Old 07-28-2012, 07:00 AM
hello people hello people is offline
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Default Strings feel like barbed wire

Some days the strings and general action on my D28 feel super smooth and nice and easy to play...other times they feel like barbed wire...completely not supple...they feel over taut and downright uncomfortable.

Ever have this kind of feeling?

(please note my guitar is set up well and the action is not over high etc)

It's just some days it's good...some days I feel I can't play

Know what I mean?

Is this usual?
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Old 07-28-2012, 07:05 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hello people View Post
Some days the strings and general action on my D28 feel super smooth and nice and easy to play...other times they feel like barbed wire...completely not supple...they feel over taut and downright uncomfortable.

Ever have this kind of feeling?

(please note my guitar is set up well and the action is not over high etc)

It's just some days it's good...some days I feel I can't play

Know what I mean?

Is this usual?
Have you ever noticed at what point in the day this happens?

Perhaps you had taken a shower a short time prior? Perhaps you were doing some woodworking?

Other than that it should not feel too much different.

I don't have any callus buildup to speak of and I only play a couple of hours a week, but even with fairly high action on my guitar it never feels uncomfortable.

HE
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  #3  
Old 07-28-2012, 07:20 AM
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Nah it's none of those things...I think in my case it's a mental thing...sometimes it just doesn't feel right
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Old 07-28-2012, 07:28 AM
srick srick is offline
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Same here-

I am in the healthcare field and wash my hands some 20-40 times daily. Last winter, it led to split fingertips which are terribly painful and slow to heal.All of the cyano-acrylate glue in the world (and I have the medical grade stuff) didn't really help much.

So for the righthand, I am using fingerpicks as opposed to my bare fingertips. I've tried various combinations including Alaska picks, etc. Presently I like a Fred Kelly speed pick and Fred Kelly 'freedom' poly pick. I also like the pro-piks, but they can be very 'clangy'. Plus, I have a tendency to catch the edge of the pro-pik when strumming.

Left hand is a different story. Light gauge strings help, but then my instrument doesn't sound so great. Tuning my normal gauge strings down a half step - has really helped the fingers a lot. You should probably try this as a first step.

Also, long ago when I first started, I had tried several sets of flat-wound strings - I love these and should probably try some again.

Generally, I favor John Pearse strings, but have also found the Martin strings to sound good on my instruments.
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Old 07-28-2012, 07:36 AM
virob virob is offline
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Yup, know what you mean. Happens to me all the time. I think it depends on a lot of things, how much I am playing, what else I have been doing, how tired I am etc.
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Old 07-28-2012, 08:16 AM
Glennwillow Glennwillow is offline
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When I had medium strings on my D-35 and my AJ, the strings felt very bad under my fingers. I shifted over to light strings on all my guitars and since then I have not had any troubles.

As others have suggested, if your fingers are soft from hand washing, the strings can hurt more. In my case, light gauge strings helped.

- Glenn
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Old 07-28-2012, 11:17 AM
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How long have you been playing it? It sounds like you need to play more. Once the guitar is set up right and feeling good for you generally speaking, the guitar isn't changing - your perceptions are.

To me, that indicates that you could stand to build a more consistent set of muscle and muscle memory and technique in your hands by playing more and regularly.

(p.s. Also - Don't play shortly after taking a shower, doing the dishes, swimming or anything else where your hands have been soaking wet. I almost didn't mention that, because it seems like such a no brainer, but then I remembered that everyone on forums comes from different backgrounds and knowledge/experience base...)
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Old 07-28-2012, 11:53 AM
JoeCharter JoeCharter is offline
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I know exactly how the OP feels as I used to feel occasional pain as well that seemed totally random.

I refer to it as the transitional period. Your hands are starting to adapt to the pain. If you persist, the pain will eventually go away and your fingers will be stronger.

Deal with the pain. There's no shortcut.
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Old 07-28-2012, 12:08 PM
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How long have you been playing the guitar ? Do you play mostly open chords ? Please, tell us some details...
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Old 07-28-2012, 03:43 PM
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No, you shouldn't have a continuous swing as you've described. Tell us how you play, the condition of your strings and the humidity factor if it changes daily. J.P.D.
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  #11  
Old 07-28-2012, 03:53 PM
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I've been playing for 20 years...my D28 is a lovely guitar...but new...it's only a couple of years old and due to moving overseas I haven't played it much. I don't think it's opened up yet.

For the first time in my 20 years I have decided to try to learn a skill. I want to learn flatpicking for bluegrass and as near as I can get to a Chet style fingerpicking style.

In 20 years I haven't had a lesson and have just played what I have accrued naturally over time.

Anyway...on top of that I would love to learn how to set up and maintain a guitar myself...which would require me to buy some tools...but that's ok.

As far as the guitar feeling like barbed wire...I don't mean that it is painful to my fingers...I mean that it just feels like I have nothing to play...I can play a lot...but I don't know any songs...nothing that a typical acoustic guitar player may know...no acoustic standards like Windy and Warm or any of those kinds of things.

It's a mental thing...I just need to work more and open up my palette and improve my skill base...

...so no...it's nothing at all to do with having done the washing before or swimming or having a shower or the type of strings I use or playing open chords or any of that stuff.

One final thing...I play almost every day...but in 20 years i have never played with any kind of goal...never tried to practice anything...just played stuff. In the whole 20 years I think I learned the fingerstyle for 'Julia' and the fingerstyle for 'Boots of Spanish Leather'...Julia is from The White album and Boots of Spanish Leather is a Bob Dylan song...both have nice fingerpicking...I learned those songs but in 20 years that's it.

So...even though I play often...I don't play and haven't played with any focus or with any goal...but I finally realise that I now want to do that...I want to learn flatpicking and the Chet alternating thumb picking.

I'd love to learn chicken picking...but ****...
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