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  #1  
Old 07-11-2019, 05:13 PM
dtpolk dtpolk is offline
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Default Help with hard playing guitar!?

This one is a little weird. I've been playing guitar for some years now and never run into this before. I have a Luna Gypsy Spalt acoustic.
[Yes, I know the arguments against Luna, but this is a good one with good tone.]
I have set this guitar up with the lowest action. before string buzz, that I could get, and I'm playing Martin FX light strings, my usual strings. The neck is straight and NOT twisted, the neck angle is good, frets are good, and I can find no other faults.

Yet the guitar is unusually hard to play!!

Now, I'm an older player, so I've considered that maybe my hands are giving out (heaven forbid)! But I've done a lot of setups, and I'm wondering if there's
something I've missed.

Any ideas?
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  #2  
Old 07-11-2019, 05:33 PM
Imbler Imbler is offline
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Most people do a good job with saddle height in a setup to get 12th fret action where they want it, but fewer people get the nut slots low enough and that makes a hard playing guitar for the first few frets.

If you did a good job with the nut, then I would ask if it is a low volume guitar. That makes a person pluck harder which makes you need to fret harder or closer to the fret to avoid buzzing.

Those are the only two ideas I can offer - I'm sure others will chime in with possibilities,
Mike
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Old 07-11-2019, 05:44 PM
dtpolk dtpolk is offline
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Yea, I got the nut almost (but not quite) too low. The action really is as low as it can be. But I've been wondering about the frets. As I said, they are good for what they are! However, many of the mid and lower range acoustic makers (particularly those in Asian countries) have been using fret wire that's skinny like angle hair! I'm wondering if that could be a problem?
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Old 07-11-2019, 08:08 PM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is offline
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What are the vertical heights from the top of the 12th fret to the bottom of the two E strings? If you play an open string just harder than the hardest you normally play, it should just begin to buzz: if not, the nut slots are too high.

Their website states that the Gypsy guitars have a setup and neck profile that is easy to play. The one in their video suggests the one is the video has low action.

The frets in the video appear to be a standard width. If you are used to playing wider frets, that could make it seem different. Fret height is another variable, as is neck width and string spacing at the nut and saddle.

Ideally, one should play with the minimum amount of force required to depress the strings against the frets and obtain a clean sound. Another options is to look at your technique and the amount of force you are applying. You might try experimenting with the minimum amount of finger force required to obtain a clean sound.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Imbler View Post
If you did a good job with the nut, then I would ask if it is a low volume guitar. That makes a person pluck harder which makes you need to fret harder or closer to the fret to avoid buzzing.
The guitar in their video doesn't have a lot of sound. As Imbler mentioned, it might be that you are using more force - plucking and fingering - trying to get more sound out of it. The result is more effort used in playing. That could seem like the guitar is "hard" to play.
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:49 PM
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DenverSteve DenverSteve is offline
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Since no one here can see or play your guitar for you, my advice is to take it to your local trusted guitar tweaker and let her/him look at it. If that's not an option for you then I would have another guitar player evaluate it from a playing perspective to see if they concur that it's difficult to play. From your description of your setup, it should play great.
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Old 07-12-2019, 07:12 AM
redir redir is offline
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Yeah at this point take it to a guitar repair tech with experience. It might be worth your while. IF not then you know you will need something else. Neck width, thickness and shape could have something to do with it too.
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Old 07-12-2019, 09:21 AM
Mr. Jelly Mr. Jelly is offline
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I have a theory that the designed EQ of a guitar can affect the feel of playing it. This depends on the players individual ear and the tones the person needs to feel satisfied from the output. As an example if a persons ear desires mid-range tones and the guitar, though sounding good, doesn't produce much in the mid-range area the player will unconsciously compensate by playing harder with either hand or both. Sustain can be another area where a person compensates to achieve a result that a guitar isn't designed for. The action etc. can be just fine but playing it can feel hard. Therefore it may be perfect for a different person.
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Old 07-17-2019, 07:18 AM
jrodriguezcros jrodriguezcros is offline
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According to the website (https://www.lunaguitars.com/query?upc=819998084752), this guitar has a 25,5'' scale length. This is quite long, the same as most Fender electric guitars. With the same strings and action this will feel stiffer than most acoustics.
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Old 07-17-2019, 10:10 AM
dtpolk dtpolk is offline
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Yea, I should mention that my hands are rather small (short fingers). So are you suggesting that a shorter scale might be in my favor?
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Old 07-17-2019, 11:16 AM
jrodriguezcros jrodriguezcros is offline
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It's not about the size of the hands really. I know a girl with very small hands who plays double bass beautifully. It's more about the tension you are used to. If you are used to playing short scale Gibsons, for example, you will notice a change when you start playing a long scale Martin. Then again, my experience is that you will get used to it eventually. Just play a bit everyday, in a few weeks you'll miss the tension when you go back to a short scale instrument.
Of course, a good set up is important, and others factors like neck thickness might help as well like others have said.
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