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Thread: Fender Tru-Shell picks

  1. #51
    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by mandobassman View Post
    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.
    Charmed Life Picks gives options of casein based picks like Red Bear as well as some synthetic picks that I have on order but haven't received yet (They have a 2 week wait time at present), but their description suggests they'll be similar to BC. We'll see. NFI.
    Phil

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  2. #52
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Well I went ahead and got an EML pick to satisfy my curiosity. I must say they are in an entirely different league from the Tru Shell picks. I have never tried a Red Bear pick, but based on a previous poster's review of the Tru Shell pick (that they are basically trash compared to a Red Bear) I'd guess these EML picks are similar to Red Bear picks (i.e. they are WAY better than Tru Shell and all three (Tru Shell, EML, and Red Bear) are casein material). FYI, EML does make picks made of materials other than casein.

    These stay in my hand much better than the Tru Shell. I put a bevel on my Tru Shell, and that improved the tone, but I couldn't get it to stay put in my hand. The EML pick stays in my hand pretty much the same as my BC (I'll know for sure at the next jam). Tone wise, I'd say the EML is pretty similar to a Blue Chip TAD 60. This makes sense as I got a large triangle EML in 1.5 mm thickness. So it's the same size and shape, same bevel, and the material must sound similar to Blue Chip material.

    So I have to say kudos to Eric for making a great pick. But here's the rub, the EML picks (at least the size I got) cost the same as a Blue Chip, which I believe is also about the same as a Red Bear. So this doesn't help me much. Sure it's a great alternative to a BC TAD 60 or CT 55, but what I'd like is a cheaper alternative Although, if you're into Red Bear picks, maybe these EML picks ARE a great alternative for you because you can actually order one normally and not go through the insane process Red Bear requires.

  3. #53
    Registered User EricLopez's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Thank you so much for the review, Steven! I remember making your order last week. The quality of polishing does indeed make a difference in a pick's grip, although I do still believe a Fender pick can sound quite nice after putting on a proper bevel, even though the surfaces aren't polished and the casein they use is a little bit softer (it took me a long time to find raw casein whose hardness I was happy with). I understand the price gripe though haha. It would be nice to be able to drop the price down a bit (more people would buy them if they were cheaper as well), but between the material costs and the serious work that goes into making consistent (and high quality) picks by hand, the price seemed right. Hopefully others will also find it worth the cost of makers such as myself and Blue Chip
    Owner of emlpicks.com

  4. #54
    Registered User Rob Beck'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/
    Crikey, you're not wrong Nick - I tried bevelling my Tru-shell with a foam four sided nail buffer thingy, and wow, what a difference! It's still a slippery little blighter but I'm using it much more now and the tone is vastly improved.

    To be honest, I should have considered this before, I did the same thing a few years ago to an unbevelled BlueChip that I was equally unimpressed with and that too was much better. The BlueChip still sounds better and grips much better, but as a back up I like the Tru-shell much more now.
    Rob

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  6. #55
    Registered User Jeff Budz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Since this thread came up I’ve ordered and tried the Tru Shells, Hawks and Red Bears. The hawks and the Red Bears are the prettiest picks I own, that’s for sure. I’ve drilled “grip holes” in all my picks even my Blue Chips picks just don’t feel right without them to me now. Overall, all these picks are nice, but I’m 100% the most comfortable using and the sound is the best when I use the 1.5mm Primetone triangle pics with drilled grip holes. They have a great slightly dark tone, just a little bit of flex that seems to matter when playin* very fast, and they are quite inexpensive.

  7. #56

    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Budz View Post
    Since this thread came up I’ve ordered and tried the Tru Shells, Hawks and Red Bears. The hawks and the Red Bears are the prettiest picks I own, that’s for sure. I’ve drilled “grip holes” in all my picks even my Blue Chips picks just don’t feel right without them to me now. Overall, all these picks are nice, but I’m 100% the most comfortable using and the sound is the best when I use the 1.5mm Primetone triangle pics with drilled grip holes. They have a great slightly dark tone, just a little bit of flex that seems to matter when playin* very fast, and they are quite inexpensive.
    Just got my first Red Bear. Hard to snag one, but worth the wait. Will report back later.

  8. #57
    Registered User Murphy Slaw's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Mando&Me View Post
    Just got my first Red Bear. Hard to snag one, but worth the wait. Will report back later.
    It's now officially later.....

    ; )
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  10. #58

    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy Slaw View Post
    It's now officially later.....

    ; )
    Murphy, yes, it is. Past due.

    I'm not sure what the material is, but I really like the way it sounds and feels. In some ways, I like it as much as my Blue Chip.

    Mando&Me

  11. #59

    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    Those Tru Shells are definitely a great low-cost alternative to Red Bears. I have several of both the Fender and Red Bears that I’ve shaped and beveled in subtlety different ways, all with good musical effect. Another one to throw in the mix (which I just discovered from another pick thread on the cafe) is this D’Andrea Radex. I just got a 6-pack of ‘em and that’s what I am going to be playing for the foreseeable future. Similar feel to Ultex 1.14s, but the slightly thicker gauge and round bevel (as manufactured) give a mellower tone and nearly non-existent pick noise without much sacrifice in volume. These are really nice. And very inexpensive to boot!
    "Well, I don't know much about bands but I do know you can't make a living selling big trombones, no sir. Mandolin picks, perhaps..."

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  13. #60
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I still have to order some John Pearse Casein, since I have purchased and tried two Charmed Life Casein picks and like them almost as much as my Blue Chips. If I could find casein picks that I like as much at a better price, I would appreciate the cost savings (NFI.)

  14. #61
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    You have to polish the edges. I use a 4 sided beauty nail buffer. First beveling the edges of the pick with a nail file then buffing the edges smooth with the buffer to a high shine. They have great tone, good feel and are around the the same size as a BlueChip CT55. The Fenders don’t last as long you have to rebuff them often to keep them smooth. If you have and overly bright instrument these tend to tone it down a bit. Overall $8 vs $35 the value is in the Fender. That said I use a BlueChip last’s forever has great tone, super slick across the strings easy to hold on to.

  15. #62
    Registered User Elliot Luber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fender Tru-Shell picks

    I love the three-star comment on Amazon: "This is what you get for drunk shopping. A 7-dollar pick." He's convinced me to try one. I love Red Bears, if this is anything like them I'll be happy.
    Eastman 605 and Kentucky 300e mandolins.
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