#1
I'm sick of fighting my guitar for every note, and am trying to increase the play-ability of my guitar as much as I can. What can I do to make it easier to play?

I have a few ideas myself, but I'm wondering if I've missed anything.
Actually, I go by Dave, but there are already too many Daves on this forum.


Fender MIM Stratocaster
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#2
not quite sure what you mean by that, but maybe lower the action, go with lighter strings.

maybe just bring it to a tech for a complete set up?
#3
Lower the action, lighter strings, if you have a glossy neck try rubbing it down with some 000 or 0000 steel wool. If the neck is just too thick for you though you will want to find another guitar with a thinner neck such as ESP's
#4
just to add on to that the others have already said, you can clean the fretboard, clean the hardware, put new strings on, if it has a trem, check the spring tension and all that good stuff, level/recrown frets.

oh, and racing stripes/speed holes
#6
Might be just me, but anytime I felt a lack of playability in a guitar I just dumped it and got a different one. I don't keep stuff I have to fight with...
Current Gear:
2002 Gibson Les Paul Standard
'57 AVRI Fender Stratocaster
MIJ Fender Jaguar Special HH
Marshall JVM410
Vox AC15 C2
#7
Lighter strings and experiment with different scale lengths and fretboard radiuses and neck shapes. Go to a shop and try lots of different guitars out. Even stuff you usually wouldn't think of trying. Playability, speed, precision, all of them basically come down to comfort.
#8
Quote by 57Goldtop
Might be just me, but anytime I felt a lack of playability in a guitar I just dumped it and got a different one. I don't keep stuff I have to fight with...


The point of doing this is so it plays properly, If you set up a cheap guitar it can play pretty decently. IMO, instead of blowing money on a new guitar (simply for the fact its not set up properly) you should just get it set up. But this is a completely different situation if you're trading a guitar to get a better higher quality guitar.

I don't care if you got a 4k Gibson, if it's not set up well, you might as well be playing a $100 starter guitar
#9
Lightning bolt stickers.
NOW PART OF THE

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#10
Quote by GibsonMan321
Lightning bolt stickers.

damn! i knew i missed something. this man knows what he's talking about!!

you know, its been proven that lightning bolt stickers are made from 96.47% real lightning! so by equipping your guitar with, lets say 3-4 stickers, you'll increase your energy, charisma and badassery! its all proven fact. this research was done by scientists in the field of science
#11
Quote by menotbug
The point of doing this is so it plays properly, If you set up a cheap guitar it can play pretty decently. IMO, instead of blowing money on a new guitar (simply for the fact its not set up properly) you should just get it set up. But this is a completely different situation if you're trading a guitar to get a better higher quality guitar.

I don't care if you got a 4k Gibson, if it's not set up well, you might as well be playing a $100 starter guitar

Yup, I agree 100%. Setup should always be the first thing done to improve the way a guitar plays (regardless of how much the guitar cost).

I guess whenever I've found myself in that position (sick of fighting a guitar) I've already done all that stuff to try to "make it work". But if you've already tried a good setup, different strings, pickups, etc, and it still doesn't work... well maybe it's just not the right guitar for you. Everybody's different. And no matter how much you force it sometimes a certain guitar just doesn't "fit", you know?
Current Gear:
2002 Gibson Les Paul Standard
'57 AVRI Fender Stratocaster
MIJ Fender Jaguar Special HH
Marshall JVM410
Vox AC15 C2
#12
i am kind of an odd guitarist for a few reasons. first off is that i can play my RG pristege's neck as well as a 50's profile Gibson's, or a strat, or whatever. i kind of train myself to be able to play a wide variety of guitars and sometimes that is an extra 'spark' going off in your head about something new.

when i am working on improv, and for some reason i am playing a lot of D-minor, i will do leads with metronome on my easiest playing guitar, then to more of a middle range playing guitar, than to a 50's LP profile. obviously the LP is the hardest one to play on due to a thick neck, slightly harder due to being a single cutaway, etc.

after i have done it on the LP, i usually go back to one of the easier guitars, and am running laps around myself having gone through those changes of guitars.

so IMO fighting the guitar a little bit is a good thing, it makes the other ones play easier.
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#13
Well, right now I'm trying to get my Strat "up to snuff" so to speak. Up until recently I was using .10s and had medium-high action (around 3mm-3.5mm on the 12th, in comparison my tele's at like 1.5mm-ish), because I felt that practicing on high action and thicker strings would help make me a better guitarist in the long run. But, while I was trying to get a bend down (specifically this) and kept plucking the B string when I'd release the bend, so that's when I finally broke down and caved. I want my Strat to be as easy, or easier, to play as my Telecaster is.

So naturally, we lower the action, get smaller gauge strings and...

...what else?

"Rub the back of the neck with 0000 steel wool"

-Darkdevil725

[X] Already planing on getting some to dull the poly finish on it.

"Experiment with different scale lengths and fretboard radiuses and neck shapes"

-grohl1337

Hmmm, not quite what I had in mind, but I was playing a real neato CIJ Mustang at a GC this past weekend. I'm pretty sure it was 24" scale. That played like a dream, but I'm pretty sure it also had .9s on it, so they felt like .7s tension-wise.

"Lightning Bolt Stickers"/"96.47% real lightning!"

-GibsonMan321/User_Name336

How did you find Lightning Bolt Stickers with .9647 purity? They must be vintage since the US regulated them to only .7750 back in the early 80s. Don't want to get raided by the Department of Justice like Gibson.

"A Good Set-up"

-57Goldtop

Check. Now, I'm working on a great set-up.
Actually, I go by Dave, but there are already too many Daves on this forum.


Fender MIM Stratocaster
Fender Jaguar Bass
Epiphone EJ200 Super Jumbo
Fender Excelsior 13w
Acoustic B300HD (with matching 1x12 cab)
BOSS BD-2W
NYC Big Muff Pi
#14
sounds like you need an action adjustment, way as well intonate too while you're down there
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esp/ltd mh-50
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way huge green rhino
mxr micro flange
mxr smart gate
dunlop crybaby
#15
Quote by kangaxxter
I'm sick of fighting my guitar for every note, and am trying to increase the play-ability of my guitar as much as I can. What can I do to make it easier to play?

I have a few ideas myself, but I'm wondering if I've missed anything.


this isn't meant to sound dickie but maybe you need to make some adjustments in your actual playing. have you tried for instance relocating whee your hand sits when picking? different sized picks? strats do make you work a little harder than many other guitars. i know when i decided to go from the superstrats i had been playing to a SSS strat i had to make a few changes since there was no floyd and of course the sound was different.
#16
Simply get a new set of strings (same size or lighter if you like, try coated too) and have it set up properly by a knowledgeable tech or luthier. Forget steel wooling the neck (not easily reversed once done) unless you are sure thats a part of the problem. Then go from there.
--- Joe ---
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#17
Don't know what strat you have but if its under $3000, then you could always write "Fender Custom Shop" on the headstock. That would boost morale by 3 morale points and increase your enthusiasm by 2 points.

It'll make you feel like you're playing a nice guitar. And you could try to replicate a signature of one of the custom shop builders. Then you wouldn't need any other mods.
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#19
I really dont think that light strings make a guitar easier to play (to an extent, dont use 13's). If anything, putting 9's on my LP would really mess me up. I play 11's in standard tuning just because I feel like it gives me more control.

And if you're having trouble picking, try changing what kind of pick you use. I think jazz picks make playing fast runs just a bit easier
#20
You could try putting 8s on it, they're extremely easy to play. Also, technically lightning stickers only put out %5 of their potential power, since the government didn't want any non-legit players beating the superstars, so you'll have to take off the lightning speed restriction.