Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

281
Banjo Lovers Online


Feb 21, 2024 - 4:49:57 PM
8 posts since 1/30/2024

I play clawhammer banjo but can't grow out my claw fingernail because of work. I've been using the ProPik clawhammer pick, which is my favorite of the options, but it'll get hung up on the strings as I'm playing, and can move around as you play. Other picks I've tried:

-Joel Hooks' brass banjo thimble: stays on the finger well, very comfortable, but too quiet, not enough control on the strings

-Cling pro plastic frailing pick: sounds pretty good (a little plastic sounding for my taste) but uncomfortable for any period of time. Does stay in place well though

-Cling pro brass frailing pick: more comfortable, but I had to change my attack angle too much for my liking

-The alaska pik: for my larger fingers, uncomfortable and not great sounding

-Fake nails: I could never find a good fake nail that fits and stays in place for my fingers

Is there anything else out there?

Feb 21, 2024 - 4:54:40 PM

5632 posts since 5/29/2011

You can cut one out of a ping pong ball and tape it on with cloth medical tape.

Feb 21, 2024 - 5:00:03 PM
likes this

11330 posts since 4/23/2004

https://fredkellypicks.com/product-category/freedom-pick

Some folks like these. The largest ones are painfully small on my fingers.

I've been looking for 50 yrs. Never found anything that works for me.

Joel Hooks thimbles are my favorite for heavy nylon strings...stroke style...

I liked the feel and sound of the ping-pong picks...but they don't last long for me.

Feb 21, 2024 - 5:11:21 PM
likes this

8 posts since 1/30/2024

quote:
Originally posted by Culloden

You can cut one out of a ping pong ball and tape it on with cloth medical tape.


That sounds like a great idea! You know after all these years never considered making one myself 

Feb 21, 2024 - 5:12:20 PM

8 posts since 1/30/2024

quote:
Originally posted by trapdoor2

https://fredkellypicks.com/product-category/freedom-pick

Some folks like these. The largest ones are painfully small on my fingers.

I've been looking for 50 yrs. Never found anything that works for me.

Joel Hooks thimbles are my favorite for heavy nylon strings...stroke style...

I liked the feel and sound of the ping-pong picks...but they don't last long for me.


I did try the freedom picks a few years back, and had the exact same result, too small! 

Feb 21, 2024 - 5:35:51 PM
Players Union Member

dbrooks

USA

4645 posts since 3/11/2004

John Balch, a member here, put me on to making a clawhammer pick from a ping pong ball. I later moved on the Fred Kelly Freedom Pick (I agree that they run small in size). Here's link to John's directions for a pick from a ping pong ball.

PING PONG BALL PICKS - Pattern & instructions - jbalch's Blog - Banjo Hangout

David

Feb 21, 2024 - 7:23:15 PM

amsweet

USA

65 posts since 3/6/2021

Cameron DeWhitt plays with sitar mezrab.

I keep my figernails short and I have tried the ping pong ball method and the Fred Kelly picks. I didn't care for either. I just play with what nail I have and adjust my hand position for the best sound. Usually, both the flesh of my finger and the nail hit the string, which makes a unique, but not unpleasant sound.

Feb 21, 2024 - 9:14:23 PM

235 posts since 12/27/2019

banjotune - like you, tried most of the lot, including the diy ping pong picks. My own preference is still for the brass ProPik -- for sound, fit, and comfort.

I do use a small strip of thin medical tape across the band, though, to keep it tight on the finger. Once applied, the tape stays on between sessions. One strip usually lasts a good long time, up to several weeks.

Feb 22, 2024 - 4:07:35 AM

geemott

USA

271 posts since 7/7/2005

There's Claw Jam (clawjam.com) picks. I haven't had much success with them, but might be worth a try for you.

Feb 22, 2024 - 5:52:26 PM
likes this

802 posts since 7/10/2012

quote:
Originally posted by dbrooks

John Balch, a member here, put me on to making a clawhammer pick from a ping pong ball. I later moved on the Fred Kelly Freedom Pick (I agree that they run small in size). Here's link to John's directions for a pick from a ping pong ball.

PING PONG BALL PICKS - Pattern & instructions - jbalch's Blog - Banjo Hangout

David


I've tried a bunch of frailing picks and the ping pong ball picks from this guidance are the best for me.  One addition to John's guidance I made was to use a heat shrink tube.  Cut off about 1/2" from the tube and put it over your finger with the pick on, then heat it up with a hair dryer until it shrinks around your finger (go slow so it doesn't shrink too much) and leave it on until it cools.  Perfect fit and you don't have to worry about re-taping every time.  

Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Privacy Consent
Copyright 2024 Banjo Hangout. All Rights Reserved.





Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.4375