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Thread: Fender Tru-Shell picks

  1. #1
    Registered User mandobassman's Avatar
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    Default Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I have been wanting to try these new picks from Fender for a while now and finally decided to order one. They don't say they are made of casein, but the product description is almost exactly the same as other picks that I know are made of casein, so I'm assuming it is. The only other casein picks I have tried is a couple of Red Bear picks. Both of the Red Bear models I tried had tone to die for but I had to beat the instrument to death to get any volume. They (the Red Bear's) were beautifully made with the smoothest polished edge I have ever seen on a pick. The down side to the Red Bear picks for me was the lack of volume, the price, and the fact that they are almost impossible to purchase new from Red Bear. I got mine used.

    So this new Fender Tru-Shell is not as smooth and polished as the Red Bear. It has a smooth but grippy surface. Not sure just how to describe it but it has a bit of texture to the surface but still is smooth. The model I bought is the 346 shape in Extra Heavy. It is the exact same thickness as the Fender Extra Heavy celluloid picks (1.125mm). The tone is very full bodied and deep, but still maintains a sweet high end without being overly bright. I was able to get a very warm tone with plenty of volume and the pick is very smooth on the strings. I have been playing with it quite a bit over the last three days and I have to say I am liking it quite a bit. I played with it for a couple of hours today and at one point decided to get out a couple of other picks from my collection. I played with a Planet Waves 1.125mm celluloid and a Dunlop Ultex 1.14mm, both are the same 346 shape. I immediately realized how much better I liked the Tru-Shell. The real test will be when I play it with a band on stage, but so far I think this might be my go-to pick.

    At around $8.00 it's not cheap, but compared to some of the other casein picks such as Red Bear, Hense, and John Pearse they are actually quite a bargain. Definitely worth a try.

    Here is where I bought mine. The price seems to change by the day. I paid almost $8 for mine. Now it's showing it selling for $6.69.

    https://www.amazon.com/Fender-Tru-Sh...ru-Shell+picks


    The Hense casein pick is the next one I want to try out.
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  3. #2
    Registered User Chris Bowsman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Thanks for the heads up. I'm a pick junkie, and do not own any of these. You can guess what's gonna happen

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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I saw these in the local band and orchestra megastore the other day, I'm heading back right now. Like you, i have some Red Bears which i love for guitar, not so much for mando, John Pearse, Papa's and from http://www.happyturtlepick.de/

    There's also Clayton nutone picks from some unspecified polymerized animal protein http://www.steveclayton.com/premium.php I think i bought a couple and lost them. Another Seattle store that usually has some kind of casein pick is Dusty Strings
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  5. #4
    Registered User mandobassman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by gtani7 View Post
    I saw these in the local band and orchestra megastore the other day, I'm heading back right now. Like you, i have some Red Bears which i love for guitar, not so much for mando, John Pearse, Papa's and from http://www.happyturtlepick.de/

    There's also Clayton nutone picks from some unspecified polymerized animal protein http://www.steveclayton.com/premium.php I think i bought a couple and lost them. Another Seattle store that usually has some kind of casein pick is Dusty Strings
    I forgot about Papaís. Thatís Another one Iíve been wanting to try. The problem with so many of these pick makers is that they often only make them in one style. Papaís, John Pearse, and Clayton all only come in one shape. Fender does make the standard shape but they also come in 346, which many mandolinists use.

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    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by mandobassman View Post
    Papaís, John Pearse, and Clayton all only come in one shape.
    http://www.steveclayton.com/guitarpicks.php

    I'm pretty sure Clayton Picks come all shapes and sizes. Click on each material to view other shapes. I own a triangle shaped Clayton that I got at a local music store. It's a bit scratchy sounding to me.

  7. #6
    Be Wild Zach Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    https://m.ebay.com/itm/Papas-Turtle-...IAAOSwv0tVffzF

    Papas are available in triangle too.

  8. #7
    Registered User mandobassman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Zach Wilson View Post
    http://www.steveclayton.com/guitarpicks.php

    I'm pretty sure Clayton Picks come all shapes and sizes. Click on each material to view other shapes. I own a triangle shaped Clayton that I got at a local music store. It's a bit scratchy sounding to me.
    Yes, most Clayton picks do but the NuTone casein picks only come in one shape and 3 thicknesses. My comment was referring to just the casein picks.

  9. #8
    Registered User mandobassman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Zach Wilson View Post
    https://m.ebay.com/itm/Papas-Turtle-...IAAOSwv0tVffzF

    Papas are available in triangle too.
    I didnít know that. When I first saw Papaís, they had different colors and materials but only one shape.

  10. #9
    Registered User DavidKOS's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I liked the Tru-Shell picks a lot - seemed like a good pick for the money!

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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Zach Wilson View Post
    https://m.ebay.com/itm/Papas-Turtle-...IAAOSwv0tVffzF

    Papas are available in triangle too.
    Looks promising. Anyone know the thickness/girth of this pick?

  12. #11
    Registered User Jeff Budz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Thanks for the heads up! Just ordered a few.

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    Chief Moderator/Shepherd Ted Eschliman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I tried the Fender and thought they were okay, if not a bit soul-less. The next pick you'll want to sample is the new D'Addario Acrylux Reso or Nitra. They have the same 346 shape, 1.5 mm. I've settled on the red reso, although they're both pretty close. They come in a back of 5 just under $10 US. They're bright, but not overly so. I got between this and the Dunlop Primetone 515P in the 1.3 gg.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Registered User Kalasinar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Thanks for the info in this thread. I love trying new picks, especially casein, so I'm quite intrigued by the Fender Tru-Shell.

    Concerning the availability of Red Bears - they are hard to obtain, but it might be a case of checking their website regularly to see what will be available and when. Unfortunately their recent Picker's Choice in heavy gauge has just finished, but it will come round again eventually. I have a Red Bear I managed to nab ages ago which is still going strong, and I bought a new one last Friday through their Picker's Choice. I think their Tuff Tones are available again, though I've never tried one.
    Last edited by Kalasinar; Nov-05-2017 at 1:43pm.

  16. #14
    Registered User Rob Beck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I have had a fender Tru-Shell for a while now and whilst itís obviously very subjective, I found them hard to grip and with a soft tone that I really didnít bond with. When I bought it I made a few private YouTube videos comparing the tone. I have made the Tru-Shell video unlisted now, so if anyone wants to take a listen they can. I can still hear the Ďsoftí tone and it sounds like the plectrum slides over the string more than plucks it to me. (Could be my technique though!)



    Here is the URL in case it doesnít embed: https://youtu.be/FyzbdT54oUY
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    Registered User Michael Neverisky's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Rob, thanks for the video. I listened both the Fender and Primetone recordings of Somewhere which provides a useful comparison.

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  20. #16
    Registered User mandobassman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalasinar View Post
    Thanks for the info in this thread. I love trying new picks, especially casein, so I'm quite intrigued by the Fender Tru-Shell.

    Concerning the availability of Red Bears - they are hard to obtain, but it might be a case of checking their website regularly to see what will be available and when. Unfortunately their recent Picker's Choice in heavy gauge has just finished, but it will come round again eventually. I have a Red Bear I managed to nab ages ago which is still going strong, and I bought a new one last Friday through their Picker's Choice. I think their Tuff Tones are available again, though I've never tried one.
    Last I checked Red Bear's site, which I admit has been quite a while, you could not place a order for any pick. Instead, they produced random versions of pick models throughout the week and released them for sale every Friday morning. At that point it was like a feeding frenzy for those who were wanting to buy, with everyone trying to purchase at one time. It was then I gave up on Red Bear.
    Larry Hunsberger

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  21. #17
    Registered User mandobassman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Eschliman View Post
    I tried the Fender and thought they were okay, if not a bit soul-less. The next pick you'll want to sample is the new D'Addario Acrylux Reso or Nitra. They have the same 346 shape, 1.5 mm. I've settled on the red reso, although they're both pretty close. They come in a back of 5 just under $10 US. They're bright, but not overly so. I got between this and the Dunlop Primetone 515P in the 1.3 gg.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_8287.jpg 
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    Thanks Ted. I might try one of these at some point, though I will say, I have not bonded with any acrylic pick so far. I might try the Nitra, since it's a acrylic hybrid and the web site says that it has warmer tone than the Reso.
    Larry Hunsberger

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    D'Addario FW-74 flatwound strings
    1909 Weymann&Sons bowlback
    Ibanez PF5
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    3/4 guitar converted to octave mandolin

  22. #18
    Registered User Nick Quig's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Tru-shells are vastly improved if you bevel them, they polish up really well!
    also Hawk picks are well worth checking out...https://hawkpicks.co.uk/

  23. #19
    Registered User mandobassman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Quig View Post
    Tru-shells are vastly improved if you bevel them, they polish up really well!
    also Hawk picks are well worth checking out...https://hawkpicks.co.uk/
    That's another one I forgot about. A Hawk pick was added to the Travelling Pick Sampler II just after I had it and was wishing I could have tried it. That's one more I'll have to order. I just never ends!!!
    Larry Hunsberger

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  24. #20
    Registered User Jeff Budz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I got a Tru-shell Extra Heavy in the mail last night and had a chance to play with it this morning. Compared it to a CT-55 and Primetone 1.5. To my ears the Tru-shell seems to have a strong fundamental tone but not a lot of highs, good volume. Kind of like a "analog tape" or "ribbon micorphone" effect. The CT-55 has less fundamental and way more treble, the Primetone (my favorite pick) is somewhere in the middle. The Tru-shell is pretty cool and I may grow to love it as it gets played in. I also have the Medium and Heavy coming in at some point. I would love to try a Red Bear pick, but their "you can't buy it" sales technique has me thinking they can go fork themselves.

  25. #21
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I just ordered one and plan to put a speed bevel on it. That will brighten the tone and should give more highs. I have a CT 55, prime tone, and wegen tf 140. I’ll let you know how they compare.

  26. #22
    Registered User Nick Quig's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Budz View Post
    I got a Tru-shell Extra Heavy in the mail last night and had a chance to play with it this morning. Compared it to a CT-55 and Primetone 1.5. To my ears the Tru-shell seems to have a strong fundamental tone but not a lot of highs, good volume. Kind of like a "analog tape" or "ribbon micorphone" effect. The CT-55 has less fundamental and way more treble, the Primetone (my favorite pick) is somewhere in the middle. The Tru-shell is pretty cool and I may grow to love it as it gets played in. I also have the Medium and Heavy coming in at some point. I would love to try a Red Bear pick, but their "you can't buy it" sales technique has me thinking they can go fork themselves.
    Put a bevel on it!.. CT55 and Primetone are both beveled!

  27. #23
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    just taken delivery of one of these (based on this thread) initial impressions are it's good. I don't have a huge amount of pick experience (being mostly a fingerstyle guitar player) but it's more mellow than the various jazz picks I have, possibly also a more complex tone. Ordered some primetones, will see how it compares to those. The shape will take some getting used to, though on the whole, having largish hands, I prefer large picks to small ones.

  28. #24
    Registered User Jeff Budz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I tend to like the darker sounding picks these days but may put a bevel on one side to see how it changes the sound. It's also my experience that picks like this will "auto-bevel" with time as they get played in. Glad I got it, looking forward to the lighter gauges for guitar too. Also ordered some Hawk picks, those look promising. I don't think it's possible to have too many pick options.

  29. #25
    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    This sounds more interesting. Especially as I consider Red Bear & such to be bright sounding. Almost the same as BC.
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