Login    
   Praise Whistlers Abroad
   Home Page: praisewhistlers.org
    Register FAQ  •  Search    
It is currently Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:05 pm

All times are UTC - 6 hours


Jump to:  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 36 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2017 10:57 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
My little sister has dropped two el cheapo guitars in my lap, hoping that I can re-string these 'lovely' instruments for her grandchildren, ages 8 & almost 10.

One is a First Act 1/2 size plastic thing ... er ... guitar. I've changed 2 strings. Getting those close to the right note almost seemed to max out the tuners -- or my strength. Any alternate tuning suggestions rather than standard?

Two strings + two bad shoulders = one tired, grouchy older sister. A mountain dulcimer is much easier to change strings on!

The second one is a 'no name' standard size, full of spider webs. Any suggestions for getting those cleaned out will be immensely appreciated. This area is, unfortunately, well known for brown recluse spiders which like dark spots. Can you tell I'm a bit leery of messing with this guitar? 8-[

Would it be easier to just go buy better instruments and use these for kindling? 8)


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 8:16 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 10:16 am
Posts: 528
Judy K wrote:
My little sister has dropped two el cheapo guitars in my lap, hoping that I can re-string these 'lovely' instruments for her grandchildren, ages 8 & almost 10.


Would it be easier to just go buy better instruments and use these for kindling? 8)


Cheap guitars can be very disapointing. Two more dulcimers and playing :party: with Aunt Judy might be more fun. :thumbsup:






\:D/

_________________
Hmmmmm....... Just had a thought.


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 9:40 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
:mrgreen: :thumbsup:

Already have the extra dulcimers covered, even a couple of smaller sizes on hand (plus a new one showing up within the next week), Tommy.

The eight year old great-niece shows a musical bent that I've been encouraging all along. Shucks, at 18 months old she was trying to properly finger one of your larger whistles rather than just tootling away.

:party:


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 10:26 am 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:25 am
Posts: 1193
Location: Richmond, VA
Just wipe the webs off with a duster. Maybe a long handle one ... :mrgreen: [-o<

Guitars are finicky sometimes, in my experience. The plastic one is probably not worth your time, imo.

Be sure when you re-string to put some graphite in the nut - just a couple of passes with a no 2 pencil will get it done, needs lubrication to function.

You can clean the fretboard (wood and frets) with lemon oil and 0000 steel wool (Lowes, Home Depot ... don't use anything else, it's too coarse and will damage the wood). Go easy, you want to clean and polish not remove a lot of material. 0000 steel wool is more gentle than it sounds though, very forgiving. Wipe off the excess with a clean rag, you don't want it on the strings.

When I restring mine (all of them, electric and acoustic) I put the hole in the tuning peg in line with the groove in the nut then put the string through completely. With one hand pull back on the string and measure about a fret and a half on wound strings, two frets on the others. Too much string on the peg can be stressful on the peg and hard to keep in tune (it will stretch). The strings should come from inside the headstock to the peg too, btw. Tune up to the pitch - go south of where you want to be and tighten to pitch. Clip off the excess string with wire cutters. There's lots of YouTube videos on this too btw.


http://www.wikihow.com/Restring-a-Guitar

_________________
Behold, as for the proud one, His soul is not right within him; But the righteous will live by his faith.
Habbakuk 2:4


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 10:39 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
I have a nice, loooonnngggg handled duster -- never thought to use that! You are handier to have around than a shirt with pockets, Sir JRC. \:D/

One other question -- I was going to use a set of lighter weight strings to string both instruments. A nephew (in law) who used to play an electric guitar said the heavier weight strings would be better because the kids would be hard on the guitars. The question is ... is he right? The pack of strings is D'Addario Flat Tops 'Resophonic' running from a 16g to a 56g. On the plastic First Act, I still went lighter, using a set of DR Extra Life 'Black Beauties' - 9g to 42g.

Good choices or bad choices? Or it really won't make much difference on lousy instruments any way?

:joker:


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2017 9:09 am 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:25 am
Posts: 1193
Location: Richmond, VA
I used to think heavier was better, not so sure anymore. I'm putting lighter strings on all my guitars: 10's on the electric and 12's ( I think) on the acoustic. I like them much better, especially on electric.

My concern would be the kids rather than the guitar. I don't think they're going to do any damage regardless (short of slamming them against the wall :roll: ) but lighter strings may be easier to play, and as a result may keep them engaged longer.

That said 16's sound really heavy to me and the DR's are electric strings if I'm not mistaken. Don't see a version listed on the DR site for acoustic: http://www.drstrings.com/acoustic . On a plastic guitar - may not matter, I don't know.

_________________
Behold, as for the proud one, His soul is not right within him; But the righteous will live by his faith.
Habbakuk 2:4


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2017 9:42 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
Yes, the DR's are electric. I've used them on my dulcimers with decent results. I've used a multitude of different strings trying to find the 'perfect' wound strings. Flat Tops have very little string 'zing', which suits me fine. (I just don't like that sound at all!) Another set that I really like the sound of is Silk & Steel. Mellow is a good thing. My dulcimers are generally tuned DAd, using 26-16-12 gauge strings.

I've got a set of baritone ukulele strings (nylon). May try those on the plastic guitar. With it being 1/2 size, they may actually be long enough. The baritone uke tunes to the same tuning of the 4 highest strings on a guitar. Might work. :-k

Letting all of this muddle through my brain cells over and over again gives a halfway decent excuse for procrastination about getting the guitars strung .... doesn't it? :mrgreen:


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 15, 2017 10:34 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
Well ... the First Act guitar is toast, possibly permanently. A nephew volunteered to finish stringing it. A tuner snapped. I guess the strip (of three tuners) can probably be replaced. Would it be worth it is the question? :-k

Have to admit the little plastic thing did actually have a nice sound on the two strings I had managed to get safely tuned.


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 7:40 am 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:25 am
Posts: 1193
Location: Richmond, VA
Worth asking if you like the sound of it. Found this:

https://www.firstact.com/pages/faqs

How are the tuners attached to the headstock?

_________________
Behold, as for the proud one, His soul is not right within him; But the righteous will live by his faith.
Habbakuk 2:4


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 7:46 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
The tuners are a strip of three on a metal plate attached to the guitar with 4 screws. Looks like a simple fix. I even know where a guitar shop is, although the strip tuners might be cheaper to just order online. Amazon Prime & free shipping might just come in handy. 8)

That First Act link was handy. I found out that they really do expect the little plastic guitar tuned to the standard tuning. Thanks! :wave:


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 9:58 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
Judy K wrote:
Already have the extra dulcimers covered, even a couple of smaller sizes on hand (plus a new one showing up within the next week), Tommy.


A follow up on the new dulcimer mentioned above. Just got it today! It's a small thing - only 24" long in total with 18" between the nut & bridge. Sounds like a well tuned music box.

\:D/


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 9:24 am 
Offline
PWA Founder
User avatar

Joined: Sat Dec 17, 2005 4:42 pm
Posts: 389
Location: colorado
Yes it really is me!
Judy and Jim thanks for keeping PWA alive.
I like the asymmetry of the dulcimer! It reminds me of my life.
I haven't made one but did make a panjo* with a diatonic fingerboard. When the customer got it the bridge had fallen over and he never tried to fix it and never sent it back for a fix. Probably IN A CLOSET SOMEWHERE like I feel I've been sometimes.
New years eve went to the VA with pain and referred to St Mary's for gall bladder removal. Last month had a cancer removed from ear. They got it all but the ear got an infection. Being treated for that. Lawn needs mowing. Whistle to make. My shop is in working order, clean and organized...wish I was.
Oh I have fixed a few violins for little or no pay, just for fun. It seems everyone has an old fiddle in a closet. One day I hope to find one that is worth more than the time and money it takes to fix.
Believe it or not I am an optimist!
Cheap guitars are certainly a challenge! I have a pink Barbie that I painted black waiting for an interested and interesting patron. It is a potential U-Bass.
Guess I just needed to talk...thanks for listening!
Mack

*banjo with a cooking pan for a body.

_________________
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 2:13 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2006 2:43 pm
Posts: 413
Location: Portland Oregon area
Good luck w those guitars. No wonder the are used to play da blues.

Mack- great to read your post! Sorry to hear of your health challenges. It is evident however your sense of humor and humility are intact...

Blessings!


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 12:09 am 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
:party: MACK!! :wave:

I hate that you've had health issues, Mack, but have come to the conclusion that growing older is certainly not for sissies. Seems like one ache gets cured or fixed and another one pops up demanding attention. :?

U-Bass as in a bass ukulele? I may be interested so, how interesting does a patron have to be? Would it be a better answer to the broken First Act (which has plastic frets) problem than replacing the tuning peg?


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 8:24 am 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:45 pm
Posts: 1595
Hey, Mack! Hey, everyone! :wave:

Judy, if the First Act has already snapped a tuning peg, I would move on. However, if you must plow forward, go with lighter strings.

First of all, anyone who would play a First Act is a beginner, and lighter is easier on uncalloused fingers.

Second, a First Act probably doesn't have a reinforced neck and I believe heavier strings will snap a neck faster than light ones. If that happens it's good for kindling and maybe a few parts for a hobbyist rebuilder.

As for the other, maybe. At least it will be built to last a bit longer.

_________________
Religion requires, grace enables.
http://realgodseekers.blogspot.com/


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 7:12 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
Connie!! \:D/ Woot! :wave:

The lack of a reinforced neck is something that worries me about the standard size, no name guitar. There is some crackling in the paint (yeah, the whole thing is painted) up the neck, and no indication of a truss rod. The First Act is entirely plastic. Splashy color is possibly the only true benefit .... for an 8 yo.

I thinking of tossing the mess back to my little sister and buys the kids something like a Martin backpacker or a baritone ukulele. Any and all suggestions would be deeply appreciated. The younglings are a small eight year old girl and a tall almost 10 year old boy.


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 9:35 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:45 pm
Posts: 1595
I would get the 8 yr old a half size or 3/4 size guitar. No or low name brand guitars are often way nicer than they use be, as computerized building has brought much higher standards to those lower end instruments.

For the 10 yr old, just depends on his size. I am about the size of a typical 11 yr old and Ilike to practice with a 3/4 Applause guitar.

Yes, no neck reinforcement really is the make or break for me. Otherwise you have a toy that WILL eventually break.

Ukes are fun, but only if there's someone who can help them learn. Do they have a taste for dulcimer? If so, that would be fun, I would think!

_________________
Religion requires, grace enables.
http://realgodseekers.blogspot.com/


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 9:38 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:45 pm
Posts: 1595
Oh, how I've missed this board! I had heard it was't working, but am so glad to find we're till here!

_________________
Religion requires, grace enables.
http://realgodseekers.blogspot.com/


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 10:16 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
ConnieS wrote:
Oh, how I've missed this board! I had heard it was't working, but am so glad to find we're till here!


It has been ... interesting ... keeping things going, which is due mainly to jrc. Mention was made of shutting down the board, save Dana some $$, etc. Offers were made to possibly help or pay the cost, if given a rough idea. Still no idea what the upkeep is.

This place is a calm oasis in the vast desert of the internet, for me. I hope it can continue.


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 10:32 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
Oops, forgot the 'guitar' part ... :roll:

I used to chord on a baritone uke while singing, wwaaayyyy back in the 70's & 80's. The nylon strings and tuning the strings same as the 4 highest guitar strings is why I see it as a possibility.

Both kids enjoy plunking around on the dulcimers but don't seem ready to try to learn anything but making noise. My niece showed more interest in the whistles, IMO. My sister may be indulging in wishful thinking with the guitars.


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2017 7:25 am 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:25 am
Posts: 1193
Location: Richmond, VA
HEY GUYS !!! wonderful to see some prodigals returning!!!!

:sunny2: \:D/ :party:

_________________
Behold, as for the proud one, His soul is not right within him; But the righteous will live by his faith.
Habbakuk 2:4


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2017 1:45 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:25 am
Posts: 1193
Location: Richmond, VA
Quote:
This place is a calm oasis in the vast desert of the internet...


Indeed it is.

_________________
Behold, as for the proud one, His soul is not right within him; But the righteous will live by his faith.
Habbakuk 2:4


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2017 3:11 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:45 pm
Posts: 1595
Yes, trying to stay connected on Facebook is quite a bit like mucking around the pigpen. :roll: :oops:

Thanks so much to both of you for keeping the lights on. So grateful!

_________________
Religion requires, grace enables.
http://realgodseekers.blogspot.com/


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 6:06 pm 
Offline
PWA Founder
User avatar

Joined: Sat Dec 17, 2005 4:42 pm
Posts: 389
Location: colorado
It's fun again here!

The amp for my bassjo is First Act. Somehow it survived the beginner guitar "player". (not me)

Judy if you have about $400 you can get a U-bass on line. You need a better amp than mine.

If I do the modifications on the Barbie the cost will be for parts, shipping and a little wage. Strings about $30 tuners about $80 a pickup about $100 and labor about $100. Shipping about$40.
And a Mack guarantee for more fun than any other bass and a sound that is very surprising.

_________________
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD


 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Guitar ... yes, guitar ... help, please
PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 7:22 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:20 pm
Posts: 1488
Location: Southern Ohio
Mack, I much rather have a Mack-bass around than a U-Bass! However, this wouldn't be turned over to the unloving care of my little sis's family. They are a tad (more than a tad!) careless with things ... :roll: ... much more. However, an older nephew that was more than willing to string the standard guitar for me might be a worthy recipient. The only stopper would be the width of the neck. This nephew is a large man that wears a size 18 wedding band. Not sure a converted Barbie guitar would fit his hand. :-k

A good amp is no problem. A couple of my dulcimers have internal pickups and I have a nice Vox amp handy.

.... dagnabit, now I'm wondering how my hand would fit the guitar! #-o


 Profile  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 36 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 6 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
cron
phpBB skin developed by: John Olson
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group