#1
I have been playing on and off for a few years and have never had any issues playing rythm, but when it comes to playing any lead, i end up in a cycle of pain because the skin just falls of my fingers and end up having to stop, so my ability to improve feels impossible at times. Its all start, stop, start and stop and very frustrating.

The problem seems to start when i go beyond the 12th fret, im fine at first but when i start bending then it doesnt take too long for the problem to occur again, the tension feels too much for the finger tips.

I have a Jackson Dinky and dont imagine it has anything to do with the guitars and have used D´addario XL and EB Super Slinkies, both 9s (and nickelwound), but still the same probelm.

Could it be the strings im using, i cant really go anything under 9s because i have a Floyd Rose, but maybe its the type of string, like nickelwound that could be a factor?

Any help or advise would be greatly appreciated!!

Thrasher
#2
Hmmmm... I bend on my acoustic with 12s on it and have never had any problems.

Sounds like you've never built up your calluses. Also, are you using two fingers to bend? If you're only using one, it only stands to reason that it will take more force to bend the string. Use a helper finger to push the string, if you're not already.

Playing on a more consistent basis will help build your calluses and alleviate the issue.
#3
Yeah that seems to be the issue and I have no idea why, I always use 2 fingers for bending because 1 would just me too sore, with 2 i can get more force as you say.

I play as much lead as i can, despite my screen name im not playing anything too brutal on the fingers, a lot of Queen at the moment.....
#4
you'll develop the constitution and endurance eventually. keep at it!
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#5
Perhaps it has something to do with the way you bend. The fingers should really just push the string using the meaty pad of your fingertip. Occasionally, guys will have problems with the string slipping under their fingernail. When I bend, the string doesn't move up or down on the tip of my finger - no friction equals no pain and no lost skin.
#6
Yea by the sounds of it you need to just keep doing it. Maybe practice making up random solos from scales on the top three strings, and slowly just keep going towards the 12th until it starts to hurt. Work there for a bit until it doesn't then move up a fret, and so on until you can solo above the 12th with no problems.
#7
Time. That's the cure. I still rip skin off the tips of my fingers at extended gigs but the callouses beneath stop it from hurting excessively. They'll still be a little tender the next day but nothing to worry about. Just keep playing, it takes a long time but you will get there eventually.
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#8
Thanks for all the advice!! One thing i did forget t point out was its just the E,B an G strings anything higher than the 12th fret. that seem to cause a problem, the others are fine.
#9
Play more!

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#10
Super glue. Apply to finger tip you bend strings with the most. Let dry. DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING UNTIL IT'S DRY. Also helpful when your on a gig and you rip a finger.
Last edited by sparkeyjames at Mar 27, 2012,
#11
Quote by sparkeyjames
Super glue. Apply to finger tip you bend strings with the most. Let dry. DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING UNTIL IT'S DRY. Also helpful when your on a gig and you rip a finger.


Superglue, are you being serious!!
#13
Quit being a litle girl and chop off ur fingertips and fashion some prosthetics. Down tune.

Kidding, it's been done.

Anyway. Superglue little strips off bandaids to ur fingertips for playing until u heal. Lighten ur string gauge. Downtune, and build up calluses.
#14
... Oh, and grab a decent steel strIng acoustic!
#15
on the topic of super glue i heard about SRV super gluing his fingers to parts of his body that were less important, just tearing off the skin and using it as a pad. But in your case calluses probably haven't set in entirely. Just wait a while take it a lil easy and don't play with wet hands.
#16
When I started, I would play until my fingertips KILLED. Wasn't until I got more into acoustic playing that my hands really toughened up. Practice on an acoustic and when you move to electric, you'll shred!
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#17
Quote by 667
Quit being a litle girl and chop off ur fingertips and fashion some prosthetics. Down tune.

Kidding, it's been done.

You are referring to Tony Iommi? He didn't do that intentionally you know?
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#18
Quote by Cathbard
You are referring to Tony Iommi? He didn't do that intentionally you know?


He'd be pshyco if he did, right?
#19
Quote by sparkeyjames
*superglue* Also helpful when your on a gig and you rip a finger.


Yes.........but it's a PITA to get off afterwards
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#20
Hmmm...I seldom ever use more than one finger at a time and practice bending with all fingers to get them all used to it. At one point, I looked like I had snake skin on my finger tips from ripping the tips up all the time from practice. The callouses eventually smoothed over once they got thick enough. Maybe you just need to reach that point?
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#21
Play play play and it'll get easier. I'm like Cath, I can do a 2 hour+ gig and the skin will be hanging off my fingers, but it won't really hurt because of the callouses. And once you build your fingertips up nice and strong, you can also think of moving up to thicker strings if you wish. You have to take it in steps.
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#22
Play more regularly. That's all you have to do. I get the same way when I go too long without playing. I pick back up, and (usually my ring finger is the worst) my fingers are all ripped up and peeling. But if the callouses are there, that skin will peel away, and your fingertip will still be hard enough to play without pain. Getting there is the hard part. You don't necessarily want to play so much that you get blisters (been there, and it sucks. Takes even longer to heal), but you want to toughen your fingers up. One of the songs that really shreds my fingers is the solo to "Money" from Pink Floyd. Gilmour does some pretty huge bends on the high E and B that always tore my fingers up. Fun song to play, and the solo will definitely toughen up your fingers.
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#23
Definitely pick up an acoustic my friend. For the first two years I played it was exclusively acoustic, and most the time 12-string. My fingers would be so sore, but when I got to electric I was like "oh, my fingers don't have to bleed anymore? Awesome!" Btw Cath, that's pretty intense. I don't think I have ever played quite that hard
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