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Jan 26, 2020 - 3:04:32 PM
51 posts since 12/14/2012

Is there some simple way I can create my own tab on Microsoft Word documents? My hand written attempts are never very successful.

Edited by - Bill Rogers on 01/28/2020 11:01:20

Jan 26, 2020 - 3:23:30 PM
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10444 posts since 6/2/2008

Not necessarily simple, but it can be done.

Just choose a monospace font such as Courier.  I think 9 or 10 pt are good.  Type a line of hyphens to create a blank line for a string. Copy and paste the line 4 times to create a staff of 5 lines/strings.  Adjust the vertical line spacing if necessary. Add some returns after the staff then copy and paste multiple staffs (staves?) with space between them.

To write the tab, start typing in fret numbers on the appropriate lines. If you do it by replacing hyphens as you type, you'll avoid pushing the line of hyphens out beyond the margin.  No problem if that happens. Just delete hyphens after the last number you typed.

It's time consuming, but I think it's the only way.  It's how people type brief passages of tab into forum posts.  They either use the Plain Text window for their entire message or select "Formatted" from the drop-down style menu in the Rich Text window.

Good luck.

Jan 26, 2020 - 3:28:35 PM
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Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

23706 posts since 8/3/2003

Here's some blank tab paper, in case that would help you : blanksheetmusic.net/

Also, have you downloaded Tabledit's TefView? It's free and you can learn to use Tabledit with it and can write and save 16 bars of music (I think that's right, if not, someone will let me know). Then your tabs will look very neat and playable. Go here for free download of TabView: tabledit.com/tefview/index.shtml

Jan 26, 2020 - 4:10:48 PM
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10444 posts since 6/2/2008

I'm pretty sure TEFview does not have any tab editing capability. It's just for viewing.

The 16-measure limited editing is in the free demo version of TablEdit. Not the same thing as TEFview.

Go to this page to choose the TablEdit that's right for your computer and operating system.

Jan 26, 2020 - 6:00:09 PM
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Kimerer

USA

912 posts since 2/17/2006

I use Lilypond to typeset the music, and then Lilypond then creates the tab automatically.

Unfortunately, while Lilypond is very powerful, it is more akin to a programming language than a music editing tool. It is not easy to use. I do not know of any workable Graphical input device for the tool.

Lilypond is open source and free, and it runs on all the platforms, Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Jan 27, 2020 - 4:57:16 AM
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Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

23706 posts since 8/3/2003

quote:
Originally posted by Old Hickory

I'm pretty sure TEFview does not have any tab editing capability. It's just for viewing.

The 16-measure limited editing is in the free demo version of TablEdit. Not the same thing as TEFview.

Go to this page to choose the TablEdit that's right for your computer and operating system.


Guess I was wrong.  The only thing wrong with the demo of Tabledit is when you print you get D E M O right in the middle of your tab and it's unusable.  At least that's the way it used to be.  Been several years since I checked it out.

Jan 27, 2020 - 5:38:54 AM
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10444 posts since 6/2/2008

quote:
Originally posted by Texasbanjo
The only thing wrong with the demo of Tabledit is when you print you get D E M O right in the middle of your tab and it's unusable.  At least that's the way it used to be.  Been several years since I checked it out.

Pretty sure it still does that. The point of the demo is to let you try the features, but not have a full working version of software for free.  Inconvenient, but understandable.

It's common for demo versions of software to be crippled in some way until you pay.  Not the same as the pay-if-you-want-to model of shareware.

Jan 27, 2020 - 6:15:04 AM
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RB3

USA

587 posts since 4/12/2004

Bite the bullet and purchase Tabledit. It's well worth the money.

Jan 27, 2020 - 6:37:54 AM
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784 posts since 1/21/2004

Peter:
I don't use MS Word, I use MS Excel. I've been using Excel long before TefView was readily available.
Once you create the template in Excel creating tab is relatively easy.
Tab created on Excel is neat, clean, you can send it to students and don't lose it.

Unfortunately, I don't know how to attach an Excel file on a Hangout post.
You, or anyone else, can send me an e-mail (don't private message me, I'm not good at that)me and I'll send a template and a sample tab. heavythumb@yahoo.com

Heavythumb

Jan 27, 2020 - 7:29:54 AM
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10610 posts since 2/12/2011

As Wayne said above, Bite the bullet and purchase Tabledit. It's well worth the money.

Jan 27, 2020 - 8:11:21 AM
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10610 posts since 2/12/2011

With Tabledit you not only write the tab but you can edit, change tempo and tons of other things. Don't waste your time with anything else. Here is the manual.


Jan 27, 2020 - 10:37:51 AM
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Nickcd

UK

165 posts since 1/28/2018

Try Musescore - it's free and will do standard banjo tablature (+ linked standard notation - or key in standard notation & will translate to a linked tab)
Think only does gDGBD tuning - though there may be someway to alter this.

You can also export it as a PDF for printing. 

Edited by - Nickcd on 01/27/2020 10:41:16

Jan 27, 2020 - 11:34:33 AM

51 posts since 12/14/2012

Many thanks for the fantastic responses to my question. I'll explore the options. You are all brilliant contributors.
Peter

Jan 27, 2020 - 12:22:11 PM

Kimerer

USA

912 posts since 2/17/2006

I have MuseScore running on my computer. You can, indeed, set the string tunings for the tab staff.

First, create the tab staff using Edit=>Instruments. In the dialog box, find and select "Banjo [Tablature]" on the left side and click the "Add" button.

Go back to the music score page, and you should see the Banjo tab staff. Right click on the "Banjo" label to the left of the staff and select "Staff properties..." in the context menu. That will post a Staff Properties dialog. At the bottom of the dialog box is a button labeled "Edit String Data". That will post yet another dialog where you can edit the pitch of each string, add strings, etc.

MuseScore looks like a fairly useful tool with a nice GUI. I don't use it because I can format the output better using Lilypond, and I have worked out templates that I use to speed things up. But as I said, Lilypond is not for folks who are not comfortable programming computers. I have not found a useful GUI for the tool.

I would suggest giving MuseScore a look to see if you like it. It is free.

Jan 27, 2020 - 1:50:05 PM

waspz

UK

35 posts since 1/13/2009

quote:
Originally posted by Kimerer

I use Lilypond to typeset the music, and then Lilypond then creates the tab automatically.

Unfortunately, while Lilypond is very powerful, it is more akin to a programming language than a music editing tool. It is not easy to use. I do not know of any workable Graphical input device for the tool.

Lilypond is open source and free, and it runs on all the platforms, Windows, Mac, and Linux.

 


Tabledit which is mentioned later in this thread will export lilypond code. Unfortunately with the release of macos catalina lilypond no longer runs on a mac because it is a 32 bit program and catalina only runs 64 bit.

Nigel 

Jan 27, 2020 - 3:06:32 PM

Nickcd

UK

165 posts since 1/28/2018

quote:
Originally posted by Kimerer

I have MuseScore running on my computer. You can, indeed, set the string tunings for the tab staff.

First, create the tab staff using Edit=>Instruments. In the dialog box, find and select "Banjo [Tablature]" on the left side and click the "Add" button.

Go back to the music score page, and you should see the Banjo tab staff. Right click on the "Banjo" label to the left of the staff and select "Staff properties..." in the context menu. That will post a Staff Properties dialog. At the bottom of the dialog box is a button labeled "Edit String Data". That will post yet another dialog where you can edit the pitch of each string, add strings, etc.

MuseScore looks like a fairly useful tool with a nice GUI. I don't use it because I can format the output better using Lilypond, and I have worked out templates that I use to speed things up. But as I said, Lilypond is not for folks who are not comfortable programming computers. I have not found a useful GUI for the tool.

I would suggest giving MuseScore a look to see if you like it. It is free

 


Thanks for that - haven't used it for a while but  when I did never discovered that feature - brilliant! 

Jan 28, 2020 - 7:40:44 AM

784 posts since 1/21/2004

I've had some request for the Excel template I mentioned in a post above.

As luck would have it, I'm having a problem with my e-mail account.
I think I've e-mailed everyone who requested the template.  If you requested a template and didn't get it, I apologize.  Send me another e-mail, I'll try to send you the template.

Damn recalcitrant e-mail system.

To the rest of the community, I apologize for this post.

Heavythumb

Jan 28, 2020 - 11:53:49 AM
Players Union Member

janolov

Sweden

40147 posts since 3/7/2006

I once made an Excel tab template. It is not possible to add Excel files as attachments to the post so I made a pdf just to show the template.

However, when I tried TablEdit I gave up the Excel and bought the full TablEdit software.


Jan 28, 2020 - 5:07:05 PM

7056 posts since 11/4/2005

quote:
Originally posted by RB3

Bite the bullet and purchase Tabledit. It's well worth the money.


Nice to see ol' Wayne Clyburn is still giving good advice.  Spend the money and get Tabledit, it's a very powerful program and well worth it.

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