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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Pick twist


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/390960

ltcheese23 - Posted - 06/10/2023:  05:51:14


Is it normal to twist the middle and index finger picks to hit strings straight? Seems it's the only way for me to hit accurately

Tractor1 - Posted - 06/10/2023:  06:01:55


some do

RioStat - Posted - 06/10/2023:  06:03:40


May not be normal for everyone, but a a lot of people do it, myself included.



One of the goals of fingerpicks is to find what works best for you, and you seem to have done that

trapdoor2 - Posted - 06/10/2023:  07:17:15


I do. I noticed early on that my picks were wearing along one edge. I gave them some twist to center the wear. Took me a couple of tries.

sunburst - Posted - 06/10/2023:  07:17:33


Mine are bent to be off center of my fingers but not really twisted. It makes the string center better on the pick blade.



 

thisoldman - Posted - 06/10/2023:  08:02:34


I use angled picks by Propik...takes care of that issue for me. On the other hand, when I "play" my dobro, the angle on those picks is wrong so I use straight picks and twist them.

Texasbanjo - Posted - 06/10/2023:  08:15:31


Don't twist your picks, just adjust your banjo neck where you're hitting the strings straight on. Move the neck up or down, back and forth, and find what's comfortable and gives you the result you want.

Twisting picks usually ends up with people not remembering exactly how much the pick was twisted, which way, etc., and makes practice and/or playing with others more difficult because you keep having to adjust.

Try my way, see if it works. If not, then twist away.

Laurence Diehl - Posted - 06/10/2023:  08:15:33


I just move the angle of the neck to hit the strings straight on, but there’s nothing wrong with twisting the picks and it’s certainly preferable to twisting your wrist in ways that feel uncomfortable.



 



**whoops I guess Sherry just said the same thing. Never argue with Sherry. 


Edited by - Laurence Diehl on 06/10/2023 08:18:28

AGACNP - Posted - 06/10/2023:  08:18:07


quote:

Originally posted by ltcheese23

Is it normal to twist the middle and index finger picks to hit strings straight? Seems it's the only way for me to hit accurately






Regarding the relatively small subset of pickers I have met and personally had this discussion with (including myself)...



The idea is to allow your natural picking motion, while either bending the blade or turning the pick on the individual finger to allow flatter attack to the string. Seems to decrease pick noise and improve tone, although that's also subject to individual "taste" and highly subjective in nature...not unlike the preference in archtop vs flathead tone...but I digress.


Edited by - AGACNP on 06/10/2023 08:18:35

steve davis - Posted - 06/10/2023:  08:18:18


To determine how your picks are contacting the strings color the blades with a felt tipped marker and then play for a minute.

I like to have the center wear away the mark for the best tone and see ink still on the edges turning the picks to achieve this and learn where my "sweet spot" is.


Edited by - steve davis on 06/10/2023 08:19:33

Stu D Baker-Hawk - Posted - 06/10/2023:  09:12:31


Chubby Checker ain't the only musician promoting the Twist.  I've been doing it to my finger picks for decades!



 


sunburst - Posted - 06/10/2023:  09:27:49


My arthritic left wrist doesn't have the range of motion that it once did so I like to angle the banjo for left hand comfort.



I like to pick near the center of my finger picks and my thumb pick. I fit my finger picks as shown above, and I also sometimes have to heat and re-form a thumb pick so that I'm picking near center of it also. That means the angle of the banjo is fine where it is for both hands.



 

Will Frady - Posted - 06/10/2023:  11:21:48


I don’t bend my picks but I wear them with a slight rotation. Instead of the bands meeting in the middle of the finger, under finger nail, they’re just a little off set . I hope that made sense.

nc2va2nc - Posted - 06/10/2023:  11:35:07


Does anyone file down their thumb pick to make the blade shorter?

Culloden - Posted - 06/10/2023:  12:04:06


quote:

Originally posted by Will Frady

I don’t bend my picks but I wear them with a slight rotation. Instead of the bands meeting in the middle of the finger, under finger nail, they’re just a little off set . I hope that made sense.






I was going to post the same thing. I have always worn my picks a little bit off center on my fingers.



It makes sense to me.

banjoman56 - Posted - 06/10/2023:  12:34:46


I used to just lift the neck to where my picks centered up, but because of shoulder pain I play with the neck lower now and just rotate the picks on my fingers. I tried the twisted pick method, but like them better rotated.


Edited by - banjoman56 on 06/10/2023 12:35:41

arnie fleischer - Posted - 06/10/2023:  13:06:35


I thought I was the only one who wore his fingerpicks slightly off center until I interviewed my late friend Ben Freed for BNL and he told me he did the same thing.

steve davis - Posted - 06/10/2023:  14:25:19


quote:

Originally posted by nc2va2nc

Does anyone file down their thumb pick to make the blade shorter?






I buy Dunlop xl tortoise thumbpicks for the good fit they are and then I shorten the blade about 1/16" and a rounder end.



 

Jack Baker - Posted - 06/10/2023:  14:27:35


I try never to twist my picks to either side as when I did, it seemed to put a weird pressure on my finger tendon. I spoke to a hand doctor who didn't know that much about picking any instrument but that twisting your finger picks could be a bit risky. I showed how I wore them and picked for him and that was his conclusion. I adjust the angle of my banjo neck for comfort and tone...Jack


Edited by - Jack Baker on 06/10/2023 14:39:37

chuckv97 - Posted - 06/10/2023:  14:42:39


I off-centre mine a bit,, but if you watch John Apfelthaler or Alan Munde pick way off at an angle, you really have to wonder if it’s all that crucial for good tone.

Jack Baker - Posted - 06/10/2023:  17:32:31


Different for everybody. As long as you get the job done it's fine....Jack

gcpicken - Posted - 06/11/2023:  20:35:35


 


Edited by - gcpicken on 06/11/2023 20:39:51

steve davis - Posted - 06/12/2023:  04:04:00


If it sounds good change nothing.

monstertone - Posted - 06/12/2023:  09:49:43


Excepting maybe JD Crowe & Sherry, I think most banjo players fiddle with their picks, one way or another, until they find what works for them. Lincoln Hensley (Sonny Osborne protégé) has a YouTube vid on trimming the thumb pick. The most important thing is to mark your finger picks, so you always put them on the right fingers. And store them in a 35mm film case, or something, so they don't get bent out of shape.

steve davis - Posted - 06/12/2023:  14:15:15


Seems like after a couple of years we figure out the best strike angles for our picks,imo.

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