#1
Hello,
I play bass quite often and because I prefer fingers over pick I play it with fingers.
Because of that I cut my nails on my left hand quite often so they are as short as possible but I also have to play classical guitar for which I need nails because without them is sounds awful.
I thought of guitar rings or whatever you call them but I am afraid that it would sound too much as playing it with a pick which is not kind of sound I want really.

Does anyone have any experience with guitar rings here? How does it sound?
#2
one of my female friends used my acoustic and she scratch the fretboard with her long nails.. (let's say she can't borrow my acoustic again).

I prefer cutting my nails short, I use a pick anyways so long nails isn't necessary for me.. I guess it's a player preference short or long fingernail.
I have Washburn guitars 'Maverick Series' and bass 'Bantam Series' and a few pedals and amps, but man I wish to have more patience and drive practicing my playing, if it's equal to the modding itch, then I'm golden.
#3
Adjusting your playing technique to the bass can help. While I imagine it would be quite difficult for the fingers, I reckon it should be possible to do most thumb techniques and regular playing with the thumb's flesh. Personally, I have no good experience with using anything as a replacement for my nails. But I took to playing with my fingers again after years of playing with a pick because I felt it distanced me too much from the instrument, which I did not like. Everytime I go back to using something that isn't supposed to be a pick, but still acts as a replacement for nails, resulting in this awkward 'not-really-one-or-the-other', that just tends to annoy me.

So I'd just advise you to stick to playing with fingers and adjust your technique, I'm sure you'll be able to find a good way around it. Either way, whichever you want to put effort in, go with what feels right and don't put too much analysis and thought to it. Your hands will know what is best.
Wise Man Says: The guitar is obviously female, she's got hips, breasts... and a hole.
UG's Flamenco Club
#4
For me, left hand no nails, I have super low action and they really get in the way - right hand nails for picking and strumming on acoustics. I use a pick on electrics. No experience on Basses.
#5
no nails on my left hand, short to short-medium nails with acrylic overlays on the right. i play fingerstyle guitar and bass.
Quote by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
#6
patticake

You you leave the overlays on permanently? I've thought about using them, but still prefer to compromise with my own weak nails. - I've read that overlays may waeken your nails by restricting the oxygen supply to the base of the nail, dunno.
#7
Tony Done

Personally, I don't need to use acrylic aid of any kind, as I've quite sturdy (though unfortunately somewhat crooked, my saving grace being that I prefer quite short) nails. But those colleagues of mine that do use it don't cover the entire nail. Just half of it in general, leaving a fair clean space (half a cm) at the base tends to give them plenty of oxygen. Another method that some use is superglue and silk. That way, if you wreck a nail, you're not actually wrecking the nail. It's just the silk that's flying off, which they can actually re-attach. Though I cannot vouch for them having a decent tone.
Wise Man Says: The guitar is obviously female, she's got hips, breasts... and a hole.
UG's Flamenco Club
Last edited by FretboardToAsh at Oct 18, 2016,
#8
Quote by levtomas1998
Hello,
I play bass quite often and because I prefer fingers over pick I play it with fingers.
Because of that I cut my nails on my left hand quite often so they are as short as possible but I also have to play classical guitar for which I need nails because without them is sounds awful.
I thought of guitar rings or whatever you call them but I am afraid that it would sound too much as playing it with a pick which is not kind of sound I want really.

Does anyone have any experience with guitar rings here? How does it sound?


Unfortunately there is no solution to this problem , bass strings grind nails . My solution is to play bass with apick or use my thumb exclusively . I'm primarily a guitar player so the choice was easy for me, but you have quite the predicament!
#9
Quote by levtomas1998
Hello,
I play bass quite often and because I prefer fingers over pick I play it with fingers.
Because of that I cut my nails on my left hand quite often so they are as short as possible but I also have to play classical guitar for which I need nails because without them is sounds awful.
I thought of guitar rings or whatever you call them but I am afraid that it would sound too much as playing it with a pick which is not kind of sound I want really.

Does anyone have any experience with guitar rings here? How does it sound?
Your question is sort of a moot point really. Steel strings will sound brighter that nylon, with only flesh. Steel strings grind down nails. I guess pushing the treble up on the amp is a sort of solution, but it won't reshape the transients to sound entirely like nails.

Since you already have finger style experience, why not extend that to learning "hybrid picking", for your steel string and electric work?

You can also put a bit of CyA directly on the tips of your nails. It's obviously not as rugged as acrylic extensions, but it might help a bit.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Oct 28, 2016,
#10
I fingerpick pretty much exclusively on all my guitars: acoustic, electric and classical. I keep my picking hand fingernails approx 1.5mmt o 2mm longer than the tips. This is long enough to pick well but also short enough to use the fingertips too if I want too. The key to using fingernails is regular grooming and maintenance: I use a very fine file just about every day to keep the nail tips smooth and correctly shaped. It's the little nicks and scratches that lead to breakages
#11
Garthman

I could have written that. I don't play with the pads, but they touch the string and get a black stain.

I keep a small knife with file and scissors and my keyring, for instant repairs, anywhere, anytime - except airport security.
#12
Quote by Tony Done
patticake

You you leave the overlays on permanently? I've thought about using them, but still prefer to compromise with my own weak nails. - I've read that overlays may waeken your nails by restricting the oxygen supply to the base of the nail, dunno.


i've had 'em on for most of 22 1/2 years. i imagine that acrylic chemicals are toxic, but my nails grind off in just a day or two of playing. i first had them done when i was preparing for a 3-day show and after one day of rehearsal of our six weeks of rehearsal, my nails on their left sides were ground down to the skin. i drove to the closest nail place, had plastic tips done with overlays, and the rest - as they say - is history.

btw, when i have let them grow off, they seem healthy but they do have to grind your nails a bit for the bond, and if you peel them off, they take some nail with you. i tried playing with removable fake nails, but they pop off. i tried finger picks, but it turns out i hate 'em. i tried regular maintenance, but my nails don't catch on anything - 8 hours of rehearsal was like sandpaper
Quote by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
#13
patticake

I've also tried fingerpicks and couldn't get on with them. The closest I've come is with Alaska piks, which fit under your nail, but it involved a lot of messing about with a dremel to get them comfortable, and I had to tape them on. I've never been in a situation where my nails have worn down as fast as yours though, if I had to, I would go your route.

My middle finger nail has got very thin and weak recently, and unfortunately it is the one which gets the heaviest use - my fingerpicking style tends to lead with it - so I might have to take steps before too long. I wonder what they would think if I went in to get one nail done?
Last edited by Tony Done at Oct 30, 2016,
#14
In the grand spirit of this question I had captured a fingerstyle artist in the local community and removed his fingernails with visegrips.

So far his play has been subpar, to say the least.
#15
Quote by Tony Done
Garthman

I could have written that. I don't play with the pads, but they touch the string and get a black stain.

I keep a small knife with file and scissors and my keyring, for instant repairs, anywhere, anytime - except airport security.


LOL. I have one of those too. And mine was confiscated by security guards in Manchester Airport - I had to buy an envelope and stamp and post it back to myself. Daft - I doubt that any sane person would attempt to hijack a plane with a knife with a blade 1.5 inches long. Duh.

Quote by Tony Done
. . I've also tried fingerpicks and couldn't get on with them. The closest I've come is with Alaska piks, which fit under your nail, .


Exactly the same for me. The only Alaska pick I use is a large one for my thumb if that nail breaks - I can live with that - but they are useless for fingers.
#16
It helps to not clip my right hand nails. As for the left one, i don't clip them entirely. I tend to clip 60-70% off. I like having about 2mm of nail. That helps take off some stress off of my finger tips. If I have no nail at all (left hand) then my finger tips get sore much quicker.
#17
Quote by Bandit King
It helps to not clip my right hand nails. As for the left one, i don't clip them entirely. I tend to clip 60-70% off. I like having about 2mm of nail. That helps take off some stress off of my finger tips. If I have no nail at all (left hand) then my finger tips get sore much quicker.


Oh I couldn't do that - the nails dig into the fretboard ultimately ruining it. I keep mine cut as short as possible - fingertips rule when fretting.