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  #1  
Old 06-01-2020, 04:15 PM
dan6652 dan6652 is offline
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Default Sore tips

Hi, I practice about 1 1/2 hour each day on a Fender CD-140SCE acoustic with Martin 12-gauge strings.

I've been doing this for 3 or 4 years now, and I assume I have built enough calluses (am I wrong?)

Still, my fingertips are getting sore and the string marks (ruts) stay there for a while after I stop playing - see image, taken almost 2 hours after I stopped.

1) How can I deal with the issue? Filing, rubbing?

2) I have a 4 mm gap between the fretboard and the strings at the 12th fret. Does this mean that the neck is bent? Visually it look perhaps slightly out of line with the body, but I am not sure.

3) How long can you guys play each day on 12-gauge?


Last edited by dan6652; 06-01-2020 at 04:30 PM. Reason: Fixing a typo.
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Old 06-01-2020, 04:20 PM
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4.0mm seems quite high - are you measuring like this?



I read this as over 2.0mm but under 2.5mm
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Old 06-01-2020, 04:28 PM
dan6652 dan6652 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brucebubs View Post
4.0mm seems quite high - are you measuring like this?
Exactly like that.
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Old 06-01-2020, 04:32 PM
Goodallboy Goodallboy is offline
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Thatís quite normal and thereís nothing to be concerned about unless your setup is not correct, and if it isnít Iíd get it seen by a qualified tech.

My guitars are set up well but my finger tips look like I play a lot of guitar, just like yours do.
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Old 06-01-2020, 07:33 PM
jp2558 jp2558 is offline
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I get ruts like that in my fingers even when playing electric with 9ís. It just comes with the territory. I have two Martinís with 12ís and a Takamine with 11ís too.
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Old 06-01-2020, 08:16 PM
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I have a groove like that on my ring finger pretty much constantly. Nothing to worry about.
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Old 06-02-2020, 01:53 AM
nikpearson nikpearson is offline
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Default Current action is very high.

And that will be making it needlessly hard to fret the strings. As a starting point Iíd get a good setup done by a luthier or tech. More typical action would be around 2.5mm on the low E and 2.0mm on high E strings.

This might not prevent the grooves in your finger tips but it will make playing the guitar much easier. The string height at the nut and neck relief will also be checked as part of any good setup.

Iím also guessing that if your fingertips are quite dry then they will take longer to return to normality! Perhaps try moisturising after playing or overnight.
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Old 06-02-2020, 02:47 AM
pegleghowell pegleghowell is offline
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This isn`t what I was expecting from this thread,I think I`ll have to visit the clinic afterall.
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Old 06-02-2020, 07:42 AM
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I run 11-50 strings and after about an hour, sometimes less, my finger tips get sore. My guitars have great action and are short scale. I've been playing for fifty years so I don't think it's going to change.
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Old 06-02-2020, 08:06 AM
AgentKooper AgentKooper is offline
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As others have said, if youíre measuring correctly, that action is way high, and thatís why your fingers hurt. Take it in for a setup.
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Old 06-02-2020, 08:20 AM
bufflehead bufflehead is offline
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Many of us would consider a 4mm action unplayable.
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Old 06-02-2020, 08:32 AM
Earl49 Earl49 is offline
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Dan, I have been playing for a long time, and rarely on anything lighter than 12's. I played for 2Ĺ hours straight in a backyard jam on Sunday evening, and my fingers still looked like yours several hours later that night as I headed for bed. Your fingers look normal to me. Once you have good established callouses the fingertip becomes hardened and the string indentations will stay there for a while.

I agree that 4 mm is quite high for the low E, making the problem worse. You are also now likely in the habit of grabbing WAY too hard. You only need enough pressure to get a clean buzz-free tone. Anything after that is wasted muscular effort. When 5 ounces is good enough, 5 pounds does not add anything -- except accelerated fret wear. I'm guilty of that, but working on it....
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Old 06-02-2020, 08:34 AM
rokdog49 rokdog49 is offline
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My guys are around at 2.5 millimeters, the highest at 2.75.
One thing I would Consider is your technique. Often times folks press way harder than is needed to fret a note. Some styles call for that, but in my experience, heavy pressure isnít always needed. I have a very strong fretting hand and I can bend a 16 gauge B string up a full step if necessary. Most of the time, I donít press all that hard though.
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Old 06-02-2020, 10:06 AM
dan6652 dan6652 is offline
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OK thanks everybody for their opinions.

You made me realize that I AM grabbing too hard. (And confirmed my suspicion about those 4 mm).
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Old 06-02-2020, 10:32 AM
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You may be grabbing too hard, and that's always something worth keeping in mind (along with avoiding similar tension in your strumming/picking hand). I'm guilty of that too sometimes. But I bet those high strings are the main issue. I've been playing .12 -.54 strings every day for years, and the only time I can ever recall my fingertips hurting since I first started playing regularly is after playing guitars with high action, particularly at the nut. I'd have the nut slots looked at as well as the action at the 12th fret.

BTW, I get those dents in my calluses sometimes too, but they don't hurt.
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