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  #16  
Old 02-05-2019, 10:46 AM
btbliatout btbliatout is offline
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I concur with mountainmaster. I'm primarily a nylon player, but I'm no stranger to a steel string. For me it's much easier to play a steel string like it's a classical guitar than it is to play a classical guitar like it's a steel string. Because of the wide neck and the high action of a classical, there are a handful of positions that are simply impossible to play (without unwanted muting) if I don't have my wrist low and my forearm practically in front and parallel to the front face of the fretboard, which is more or less a rather natural holding position if you're holding the neck high up in the classical way.

Meanwhile I'll add my thoughts on my in-the-works nylon string if and when Alistair gets done with mine and it arrives ;^). *Sigh* it's a long wait.
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  #17  
Old 02-05-2019, 12:53 PM
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kramster kramster is offline
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I like the X 10 nylon plugged in... hope this helps
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Emerald: X-20, Center hole X-10 (Maple) and X-7 (redwood), Amicus, Paduak X7,X10, & X30, Spalted Chen Chen X 10,
CA: Early OX and Cargo
Blackbird: Savoy
RainSong: CH-OM, CH-WS
Journey: OF660
McPherson: Touring(Honeycomb and gold), Sable
Some wood things by Epi, Harmony, Takamine, Good Time, PRS, Gypsy Music, keyboards, wind controllers.. etc
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  #18  
Old 02-05-2019, 05:08 PM
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Methos1979 Methos1979 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mountainmaster View Post
Since you are a steel string player I suppose you are looking for a crossover nylon guitar.

Keep in mind though that traditional nylon string guitar dimensions are a tried and tested formula. Deviate from those and you enter a grey area with a few potential pitfalls.

Steel string players often expect that a lower nut width will make a nylon string easier to play for them. Unfortunately this is not always true. If you do not adapt your technique to a classical hand position this could actually make a nylon string guitar quite difficult to play.
That is... unless you (or your luthier) make sure to lower the string height. In my experience a standard nylon string action (4mm at the lower E and 3mm at the high E) does not work at all for a crossover nylon. So what you need are high tension strings to allow for a lower action.
My Emerald X7N was set up quite high at 4mm on both sides and I am still in the process of tweaking its action. It is now at 3.8 to 3.5 but I would like to reduce the treble side some more.

And then there is the issue of slipping. I have a nut width of 47.6mm (1 7/8") and a string spacing at the nut of 41.5mm. This puts the outer strings quite close to the edge which (in combination with the 16" radius) causes the high E to slip off occasionally.
In addition, if I play a chord with an open high E, I sometimes accidentally mute that string. Sure, that is probably just my sloppy playing but it would be nice if this guitar was a little more forgiving.
If I could do it over I would insist on getting a 48.5mm (or even 49mm) nut for this string spacing.
Just the kind of interesting information I'm looking for - thanks.
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  #19  
Old 02-05-2019, 05:10 PM
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Methos1979 Methos1979 is offline
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Originally Posted by kramster View Post
I like the X 10 nylon plugged in... hope this helps
Do you play it like a classical or a steel string? What are you plugging it into? Signal chain/effects?
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  #20  
Old 02-05-2019, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Methos1979 View Post
Do you play it like a classical or a steel string? What are you plugging it into? Signal chain/effects?
I just play my usual goofy stuff: some finger picking and strumming with no pick...nothing really nylon like, but I do try to fake it a little ... till I go crossed eyed... you know ... like when you are a lefty and they try to make you a righty and then give in and give you lefty green handled scissors and turns out you are only lefty when eating and writing and playing piano and driving on the left side of a car, but do everything else you do righty like scissors and sports and guitar and right footed too.

Oh..and guitar to VE 8 to Bose Compact... will try T1 to Compact tomorrow if I remember .
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Emerald: X-20, Center hole X-10 (Maple) and X-7 (redwood), Amicus, Paduak X7,X10, & X30, Spalted Chen Chen X 10,
CA: Early OX and Cargo
Blackbird: Savoy
RainSong: CH-OM, CH-WS
Journey: OF660
McPherson: Touring(Honeycomb and gold), Sable
Some wood things by Epi, Harmony, Takamine, Good Time, PRS, Gypsy Music, keyboards, wind controllers.. etc

Last edited by kramster; 02-06-2019 at 03:03 AM.
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  #21  
Old 02-05-2019, 06:41 PM
ceciltguitar ceciltguitar is offline
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At my request, Alistair left plenty of space between the outer "E" strings and the edge of the fretboard on both of the nylon string beauties that he built for me so that string slippage is NOT an issue.
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  #22  
Old 02-06-2019, 09:54 AM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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No disrespect meant with this post. I have heard some absolutely spectacular nylon guitar playing. Yesterday was the first time I took the time to play a few nylon string guitars, including that hard-to-find Taylor A12e-N I mentioned earlier in this thread.

No doubt the wider (and flatter) fretboard was a factor, but the sound I got out of those nylon guitars was less than great. Of course, my lack of experience with nylon guitars also played a big part.

I went into a Guitar Center and checked out their classical acoustic room. Some of those necks felt like playing a surfboard! While definitely a different sound from my steel string guitars, it wasn't a soothing sound to my ears. I played a couple of them plugged in, and appreciated it more. In fact, there was a thin-body Ibanez that I almost enjoyed... but not as much as the one Taylor steel string I played right before we left.

For the record, I am not a Guitar Center hater. I have bought from them in the past (guitars, amps, PA, all kind of accessories) and will likely do so again... but our experience there was a cliche': 5 employees talking amongst themselves, never acknowledged us the entire time we were in the store. While we were in the classical acoustic room, there was a kid torturing an acoustic guitar and bellowing off-key in the main acoustic room. My wife laughed - "He's doing that on purpose, right?"

I had to go in that room to retrieve that Taylor nylon string (it wasn't in the room with the other nylon offerings) - pleasantly surprised to see that guitar in there (first I've seen one in the flesh) - and took it back into the classical room to be able to somewhat hear it. Seriously, he was wailing the tar out of that Martin he was playing... I was surprised that no employee went in to check on him.

We left without buying anything, but it was the first time I spent more than a few moments with a nylon string guitar and took the time to compare a few. Realistically, I'll have to think on this a while... I've enjoyed the nylon discussion here, but it isn't just another guitar. No doubt, my lack of nylon experience and technique is apparent.

So, for you guys who are playing/enjoying nylon, tell us a bit about what draws you to that.

Thanks in advance,
Jim
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  #23  
Old 02-06-2019, 12:13 PM
EvanB EvanB is offline
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Jim;

I think it is very difficult to get the best out of a nylon string guitar, but when you hear the best you want it. That was my feeling when I first heard Montoya--I wanted that sound.

I've never gotten it. My first problem was the very wide fret board--how do people play that? My second problem was the extremely high set up that it takes to get any real volume. My third problem was that I didn't play well to begin with.

However, there are tonal qualities with nylon strings that I like in terms of vocal accompaniment. So, I moved toward the hybrid nylons; 1 7/8" nuts, cutaway, radius fret board, electronics, carbon fiber. None of those guitars have given me the projection I hear from a good classical player playing a good traditional classical guitar.

But I get the tonal quality I want and, as you note, plugged in changes the experience. Since receiving my Emerald 7 electric I have been neglecting my acoustic instruments.

Another thing you might want to try sometime is to run an electric nylon through some distortion. I like acoustic nylon for writing songs and for playing with small groups. I like that different strings can come very close to giving a nylon strung guitar a steel string sound. I like pushing nylon for a completely new sound.

Sorry the nylon experience didn't work for you. As you can tell, it works for me. To each his or her own. I've enjoyed your play and you seem to be doing quite all right with steel. Still and all, there should be at least one nylon in your collection.
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  #24  
Old 02-06-2019, 05:03 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Hey, Evan - I'm open to it. While I didn't bring one home yesterday, it's still a consideration. IF it were to happen, likely I'd start with something inexpensive. I understand your "rental" program, but I'd have to have a bit more of a handle on how to get the best out of a nylon guitar before being convinced to drop some big bucks on one.

I'd still like to learn from other nylon players here regarding what drives them in that direction. At home, there is an outstanding player that does a couple different restaurant gigs - he plays (I think) a Gibson Chet Atkins CE-AN... masterfully, I might add. It is a perfect accompaniment to his very mellow voice.

This ol' rock 'n roller is still interested.
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  #25  
Old 02-06-2019, 05:53 PM
EvanB EvanB is offline
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Jim;

I recommend an inexpensive Yamaha or Cordoba. I further recommend that you take one of your sweet love songs and go acoustic with your vocals and the guitar.

I owned a Chet--heavy sucker. Innovative at the time, and always good for what it was good for, but technically left behind by new electronics, materials, and design. I'd say the same for it's closest match, the Godin Multiac.

You have a beautiful voice and I think you'll find that a nylon string guitar will bring out some surprising vocal qualities. That's a guess. Your wife will let you know.
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  #26  
Old 02-06-2019, 06:04 PM
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I probably should have clarified my intentions/desires in going with a nylon. I'm in the camp that is looking primarily for a hybrid nylon A/E to be played primarily amplified. Why? Mostly just for comfort. The three hour gigs are killing my fingertips after two hours. My thinking is that perhaps the X10 with it's bridge pickup with six individual transducers would amplify extremely well and give me the best of both worlds. But I know nothing about anything nylon though I've played classical guitars in the very distant past.
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  #27  
Old 02-06-2019, 06:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Methos1979 View Post
I probably should have clarified my intentions/desires in going with a nylon. I'm in the camp that is looking primarily for a hybrid nylon A/E to be played primarily amplified. Why? Mostly just for comfort. The three hour gigs are killing my fingertips after two hours. My thinking is that perhaps the X10 with it's bridge pickup with six individual transducers would amplify extremely well and give me the best of both worlds. But I know nothing about anything nylon though I've played classical guitars in the very distant past.
Both of my main guys that demo in my Youtube thingys use nylon strings when they play solo gigs... Gal the shredder guy from Israel uses either a used Cordoba or a Rodriguez (which he bought at NAMM when we went a few years ago, and played in the John Wayne airport boarding area for awhile). And Michael V plays a Yammy crossover . Both say it is so much easier on their fingers.
Michael plays a Tele thing his brother made whilst leading his band.
__________________
YUP....
Emerald: X-20, Center hole X-10 (Maple) and X-7 (redwood), Amicus, Paduak X7,X10, & X30, Spalted Chen Chen X 10,
CA: Early OX and Cargo
Blackbird: Savoy
RainSong: CH-OM, CH-WS
Journey: OF660
McPherson: Touring(Honeycomb and gold), Sable
Some wood things by Epi, Harmony, Takamine, Good Time, PRS, Gypsy Music, keyboards, wind controllers.. etc
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  #28  
Old 02-06-2019, 07:07 PM
ceciltguitar ceciltguitar is offline
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To find out whether or not you like playing and / or gigging with a nylon string guitar, a good start would be a used (or B stock) Cordoba Fusion - if you want a fretboard with a radius, or a used Cordoba (or B stock) GK Studio - if you want a flat fretboard. Both models both come equipped with decent electronics. For the price range (less than $500 used) both of those guitars look nice, and play nice, and sound nice both acoustically and plugged in. Both models have tighter string spacing than a standard "classical" guitar.

Nylon strings feel and sound different than steel strings, so give yourself some time, maybe 6 months, to get comfortable enough to decide if playing a nylon string guitar for gigs is the route that you want to go. If you like the feel of nylon strings, especially if they are significantly easier on your fingers, but prefer the sound of steel strings, there are plenty of electronics that can be used to get more of a steel string sound out of a nylon string guitar.

I have a Cordoba GK Pro, and I love it!
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  #29  
Old 02-06-2019, 09:14 PM
btbliatout btbliatout is offline
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Captain Jim,

To join in on the 'Why nylon?' train...

I started with trying to teach myself steel string via DVDs and YouTube. To keep it short, I found myself attracted to finger style playing, which was the start of my interest into the realm of classical guitar...which led me to Andrés Segovia...'nough said, but to keep going...

I didn't stop playing my steel string by any means, but instead of trying to teach myself, I ponied up for lessons in classical guitar. And in time, per my ears and my limited abilities, I found the tonal variance that could be obtained with nylon strings was larger, thus I suspect it will allow me (if I practice diligently over the years) to express myself more so than my steel string. Of course I'm with you, in that my ability to generate a great tone consistently on nylon strings is not great :-); I suspect that comes with the 10,000 hours of training before one is an "expert."
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  #30  
Old 02-06-2019, 09:45 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Next time I get a chance, I'll look for a Cordoba Fusion. I spent most of the evening looking at video reviews of these various nylon offerings. The Cordoba has a bit of a radius on the fretboard, but is just a tad wider than the Ibanez. The Taylor still interests me, but my wife is somewhat appalled at the lack of finish on the Taylor (varnish only).

I'll be interested to hear what that Cordoba Fusion sounds like in person. My ear still prefers the steel strings. (Old dog... well, you know)
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