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Thread: Finger Ease

  1. #26
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    NFI, I swear by this stuff: http://www.guitarhands.com/

    When playing at a festival, an application of guitar-hands just on my finger tips gives me several (4) more hours of jamming without a problem.

    I am sure there are other formulations. This is just one that works reliably well for me.
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  2. #27
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    From what I know, FingerEase is made of vegetable oil and propellant and I have never seen any adverse effects on fingerboards. I use such a very small amount it is barely noticeable but have seen people over spray it which would be yucky. I can't smell much odor from it either. My nose is not particularly sensitive either so yours might be.

    If I started using it in 1972 that would be 46 years minus a 10 year hiatus means I would have noticed problems in 35 years of use I'm sure. But, if you do not like it, don't use it, fine by me! No product on the planet works for every consumer.

    Back to the original discussion, sorry if I misread the actual topic.

  3. #28
    Registered User harper's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    If the problem is that your callouses are not thick enough, and it's not a question of technique or set-up, you might try this: Rock-Tips, available from Amazon.

    https://www.amazon.com/Rock-Tips-Liq...words=rocktips

    I had to play harp for several hours at a gig two months ago and had not taken time to build up my callouses first by daily practice for at least two weeks. This product helped. You apply it to your fingertips with a small brush and let it dry.

    I gave a bottle to a fellow mandolinist recently in my group and she finds that it works well.
    Harper (My other mandolin is a harp)

  4. #29
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Never seen that, very interesting!

  5. #30

    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Quote Originally Posted by FredK View Post
    . . . I haven't had any problems with finger pain while playing the mandolin but acoustic guitar was another story. . . .
    We're all different. After 45 years playing guitar without any insurmountable problems, I picked up mando, and it was creating enough pain, numbness, and tingling in my fingers and arm to make my mando unplayable. Then (acting on advice from Mando Cafe), I got the nut reworked. It solved the problem.

    So my question for Sherry is: Have you tried a few other mandos to see whether the problem is your fingers or your mando?

  6. #31
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Interesting that they sell a “2 year protection plan” with the “Rock Tips” I wonder if it covers string breakage?
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

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  8. #32

    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Quote Originally Posted by Timbofood View Post
    Interesting that they sell a “2 year protection plan” with the “Rock Tips” I wonder if it covers string breakage?
    Lol. I saw something nearly as bizarre the other day at a different website, can't remember the exact item now, but it was another expendible item (something that gets used up and likely wouldn't last 2 years anyway). Automated systems I guess.

  9. #33
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    I have seen people use powder on the fingerboard to help them slide on the strings and that softens the hands, so does using a hand cream at night when you go to bed...I know a fellow that soaks his hands in pickle juice (vinegar) to toughen up his hands,,,The only thing I can say is that playing more at home each night will tend to toughen up your finger tips and you can rest whenever you feel any discomfort...I play some gigs that go for five hours and my hands hurt like crazy but I keep playing because that is what I am getting paid to do....You say you have had the mandolin looked at by another person, was that a luthier or just someone that played one, he might like the strings set higher than what you need...Just a suggestion, there are posts on here that tell what a good string height is.....

    Above all DON`T QUIT PLAYING....

    Willie

  10. #34
    Registered User Sherry Cadenhead's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    So my question for Sherry is: Have you tried a few other mandos to see whether the problem is your fingers or your mando?
    Wish I could.
    This space reserved for 5 year mandolin gift to self.

  11. #35
    Registered User Sherry Cadenhead's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Thanks for all the comments. I believe my setup is fine. Two respected Cafe members, as well as Gerald Jones, one of the Arlington music camp instructors, have checked it and said so. It does seem I press too hard, so I'll work on that. Some interesting products have been mentioned. Think I'll figure out which to try first.

    I won't be quitting, Willie. Did that 20 years ago, and, boy, do I regret that decision!
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  12. #36

    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Mandolin hurts. That's why it shares a name with a dangerous kitchen cutting implement. I managed to get over the finger pain by playing mandolin from Friday night straight through to Sunday evening on a campout/fiddler's convention weekend. My fingers were so sore and my brain was so fried from so much making music, but after that, the callouses were so thick that it didn't hurt anymore. Plus now, even if I take time away from the mandolin, as soon as I play it again my fingers are like, "Woah, we know what this is, make some callouses QUICK!"

  13. #37
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Sherry,
    Another old trick is to use alum, you can get it at a pharmacy. A spoonful in a coffee cup of water and soak your fingers for 10 minutes and after a week or so your fingertips will be toughen up. Or so I have been told.

  14. #38
    Registered User Sherry Cadenhead's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    I started this thread over a year ago and have only today figured out my problem. I've been using Rock Tips on my fingertips, which has helped some. I should add that my fingertip tenderness has only occurred when playing chords. I have normal calluses from playing other stuff an hour a day most days for the past 4 years.

    My regular teacher is a classical violinist, not a mandolinist. Today I had a lesson with a local mandolin teacher to help me with my chord issues. In the course of the lesson I realized he was not maintaining constant pressure when playing chords, but, rather, released pressure between strums. What a difference that makes! I'm still pressing the strings too hard, but releasing pressure should help.
    This space reserved for 5 year mandolin gift to self.

  15. #39
    Registered User John Bertotti's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    What worked for me was playing shorter periods at first and more often. Instead of an hour straight I would play until a bit tender then stop until they felt a bit better usually later that evening. And any chance I had to play just five minutes during the day I would.
    My avatar is of my OldWave Oval A

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  16. #40
    Isolated enthusiast Caleb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    I like Finger Ease and have used it for many years. The slick feel makes it seem like the strings are newer for way longer, especially on guitar. I also press down too hard and play aggressively. Been doing it too long and can’t seem to give it up. I also think mandolins are just harder to play than, say, guitar: but finding the right one with the right setup, strings, etc, can make a world of difference.

    Sherry, I’m just one city over in Euless. Curious to know how you found your instructor. This area has always seemed very sparse in mandolin resources in general to me.
    *** Specializing in mandolin mediocrity since 2006. ***

  17. #41

    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Quote Originally Posted by Sherry Cadenhead View Post
    I'm still pressing the strings too hard, but releasing pressure should help.
    I did a few clinics in the past with guitar player Kenny Smith.
    He said the first thing he does when he picks up an instrument, is to warm up using only the slightest touch with his fretting hand, while maintaining a clear tone.
    Takes some getting used to, but once you find that happy spot where you're not pressing too hard, it'll feel like night and day.

    It really doesn't take a lot of pressure to get good tone... and at the same time relieve tip tenderness.

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  19. #42
    Registered User Sherry Cadenhead's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Quote Originally Posted by Caleb View Post
    Sherry, I’m just one city over in Euless. Curious to know how you found your instructor. This area has always seemed very sparse in mandolin resources in general to me.
    Caleb, I'll send you a PM regarding an instructor. I agree as to sparse mandolin resources in the DFW area.
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  20. #43
    Registered User Russ Donahue's Avatar
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    Brian - One finger's worth or two? Hopefully not both hands!
    One watch by night, one watch by day...if you get confused, just listen to the music play.

  21. #44
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    I have used FE sparingly for decades. first on guitar, then bass, now mandolin. What it does for me is lessen the dreaded "SQUEEK!" and lower the resistance sliding my fingers over the strings. May help lengthen string life and put some oil on the fretboard. I believe FE is vegetable based.

    Another benefit is that it can help soften callouses so they don't peel. Had that issue originally, especially on the side of my index finger from barre chords.

    Bob

  22. #45
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    Default Re: Finger Ease

    The callous on my left index gets so thick and hard you can't even play,I have to shave it down with a scalpel...

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