Anyone use false nails , or have a better solution ?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Flat357, Feb 20, 2008.

  1. Flat357

    Flat357 Banned

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    http://guitarplayernails.com/instructions2.htm

    The above link shows how to put on false nails etc .

    I'm finding that I get a few sessions out of my nails , and then i'm left with a groove on the thumb side of my middle finger , which I then have to cut back , and wait for them to grow again , which is a bit frustrating .

    I keep the whites at about 1.5 - 2mm , and have seen some players like Johnny Hiland with huge nails , which just wouldn't do for me .

    The thought of false nails has crossed my mind , but it seems an awful lot of messing for a guy who doesn't play just Country .

    I've heard that some of you guys cut them at an angle .
    Any reason why ?

    Anyone want to post pics of their nails and explain the reasons / benefits for their cut ?

    Finger picks are a totally different subject , so please stick to just nails thanks :p

    Come on guys , let's get girly :D
     
  2. Fret Melter

    Fret Melter TDPRI Member

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    Hells Yes I use artificial nails!! They rule! what I use are a kind that you will find in like Rite Aid for around $2.50 for about 48. THey have a more subtle cure radius than others. They are a sort of Matte as well. The secret I would say to mine would be taking the size nail in the pack that you want to use, and then underneath it, take the next size down and superglue them together. This makes them indestructible to wear, (Well, almost :) ) The rule for length for me is to look at my finger, palm towards me with my fingers straight up in the air, and if I can see Just barely , almost no nail over the tip whilst looking at a 90 degree angle at them, that is how I like them length wise. I used to have them Johnny Hiland long, then as noticed while playing with no nails for the hell of it, Although regular finger tips are nothing compared to my artificials , I was faster and cleaner. I started to ween myself off of the length of them, and I ended up with the rule I stated earlier. All in All, Artificial nails Add clarity, control and are a whole lot stronger and less brittle than natural nails!!
     
  3. pengipete

    pengipete Friend of Leo's

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    An old trick used by classical guitarists is to build your own nails up with nail varnish and tissue paper then trim them to shape.

    You could try applying clear nail varnish to add a bit of extra hardness and protection against friction.
     
  4. CDKopf

    CDKopf Tele-Holic

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    No way!!! Ive been kickin that idea around in my head for a while. I got the Scotty Moore fever here recently and those damn finger picks are driving me INSANE! Ive chewed my nails like an idiot since I was a toddler so even when I try to let em grow they just don't work. Holy crap I cant believe it. OK i'm in...I'll let you know how they work out.. just don't tell the guys at work!!
     
  5. Cassady

    Cassady Tele-Afflicted

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    I had a buddy (really) that used to play acoustic guitar in a number of different bands and he used to use false nails from time to time. He was a pretty big guy with a full beard and usually wore cowboy boots, a leather vest and a leather cowboy hat.

    He said that he got really funny looks from people when he broke a nail and needed to buy artificial nails to play a gig. I'll bet...

    I haven't ever tried them myself, but I've considered it. I do use clear nail polish on my right hand to try and strengthen my nails.

    I recently read an interview with Leo Kottke where he advises players to trim their nails short and use the flesh of their fingers for finger picking. He blames finger picks for a serious bought of tendinitis that he went through that almost ended his playing career and is pretty adamant about not using nails or finger picks.

    I'm still more comfortable with nails and when I've used finger picks I've really disliked them, even though they sounded terrific.

    Cassady
     
  6. Flat357

    Flat357 Banned

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    Here is an application video



    Regarding those guys that cut their nails at an angle , i'm curious what direction the angle should be .

    That's pretty much why a pic would be useful .

    Also , should the nail be longer than the actual protrudence of the pad ?

    Mine would need to be very long to do this as my tips are quite fleshy .
     
  7. Tim73

    Tim73 Friend of Leo's

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    I use clear nail polish and have let the middle finger, ring finger & little finger on my right hand grow. I trim the corners of those nails so they are slightly more pointed and it stops them ripping / tearing. It's been trial & error but seems to have stayed in shape for the last few weeks.
     
  8. Flat357

    Flat357 Banned

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    Trim in which direction ?

    If you face the back of your hand towards you with nails showingfully , which side of the nail is highest ?

    For the record guys , i've experimented so much this morning that i've now cut my nails off , so will need a weeks growth again to getback to normal :confused:
     
  9. Charlie Bernstein

    Charlie Bernstein Poster Extraordinaire

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    I keep my nails short and pick with my finger- and thumb-tips - the skin, not the nails. Sounds less raspy than nails, gives a lot more control, and requires less nail care: I just keep a nail clipper in my toy box for those Curse of the Werewolf moments. (I use it on my left hand, too.)
     
  10. telesavant

    telesavant Tele-Holic

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    That also works for me (though I haven't had the need to laminate the nails together, it's a great idea), I just use them singularly. When the groove appears in the nail don't cut it, use your favorite file and gently remove it, keep the sides rounded, and reshape the nail. They should BARELY protrude above the fingertip. The beauty of these nails is they grow along with your real nails and are virtually indistructible (they will fall off in time however). With these nails, you can keep them on, regularly trimming them, for weeks!! I use the CVS "Broadway" brand square tip--they have a "tab" to hold the nail while placing on your nail to glue -- couldn't be easier. Also I find a gel form of cyanoacrylate (superglue) is far superior to the thin, standard type -- more drying time, and no running. After using just the finger tips for years, there's no comparison. You now have the choice of the fingertip, or the nails, which are closer to the sound of the pick -- much more consistant in attack --- pick/nails. The nails "fly" and are as smooth as butter!!
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2008
  11. Fourth Feline

    Fourth Feline Tele-Holic

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    I am usually a plectrum player, but wanted at least some stronger right hand nails to brighten my occasional fingerpicking.

    I ended up using 'Mavala' nail hardner ( contains formaldehyde ) which I found at the cosmetics counter of the local chemist. It is claimed to bond the 3 layers of nail together near the tip - and so you only apply it once a week or so to the end of your nails.

    It seems to work very well.
     
  12. blue water girl

    blue water girl Tele-Afflicted

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    Brent Mason has used two fake nails on his middle and ring finger since the early eighties (around 25 years). He wears them every day unless they get loose and he takes them off or they need to be replaced. He puts them on with krazy glue. Since he works almost every day he never goes long without them unless we are on vacation. Chet Atkins is the one who turned him on to the fake nails and showed him how they should be cut and filed. They are barely noticeable.
     
  13. Flannel Pat

    Flannel Pat Tele-Holic

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    So does Brent have a real fingernail on his first finger, or does he just play with the flesh?
     
  14. Flat357

    Flat357 Banned

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    Julie ,
    Would you do me a favour and ask Brent if he / you could take a pic of the nails so I can see how they are filed please , and possibly the length ?

    Also can you other nail users do the same .

    This would be a great help .
    Thanks in advance .

    Another thing that is interesting :

    When I play with fingers only , or pick only , I can pretty much play anywhere between the bridge and the neck without issue , but obviously using nails means the closer to the saddle , the more tension there is on the stroke , so are you guys playing further away from the saddles when using nails ?
     
  15. Leon Grizzard

    Leon Grizzard Friend of Leo's

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    I really like the sound of stick on nails, but they were just too much trouble. You have to keep them on all the time so they are there is you pick up the guitar to practice and of course at gigs. I just found they popped off too easily when I was loading gear, or just closing the car door sometimes.

    I've been trying Alaskapiks (alaskapik.com) for a while now, and they may be the solution for me. The angle is much more natural than regular finger picks. They sure are ugly though.
     
  16. telesavant

    telesavant Tele-Holic

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    Try breaking a natural nail!! Absolutely nowhere to turn!! The glue ons are no problem at all. No one was more reluctant than I, believe me, they are the answer for many, and especially for the ones whose nails leave alot to be desired. Yes you CAN lose one, but usually only at the end of it's life, and no more often than you'd break a nail in that same car door. Alaskapics rely on a healthy, relatively long nail to work correctly, again if you break that nail -- You're Done!!
     
  17. Leon Grizzard

    Leon Grizzard Friend of Leo's

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    I don't disagree; it just took more diligence than I could muster day in and day out. (Although Alaskapiks don't take much nail.) Now maybe I had application problems. At first they would last a week. At the end they popped off more readily it seemed. The lady in the nail store hooked me up with acrylic gel resin, and told me to lightly sand the nail lenthwise, put on a layer of gel, let it dry, sand that courser, both ways, use the gel resin to stick down the nail.

    What's the right technique? Talk to me, girlfriends.
     
  18. blue water girl

    blue water girl Tele-Afflicted

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    You must not be putting them on properly or you are leaving them too long so that handling the gear they pop off. Brent uses these nails every day on television shows, recording sessions, they do not come off without biting them off unless they have been on a long time and are getting worn out. He glues them on with just a small amount of krazy glue and then cuts them down low, just equal with the end of his finger, and sort of files them so there is a bit of a sharp point in the middle. They are on so well that he sleeps in them and just basically leaves them on at home all the time. Once he gets his nails cut and filed the length he likes them he will reuse it over and over for a very long time before starting over with a brand new unused nail from the box. There is an ashtray on his nightstand (a decorative one - we don't smoke anymore- yeah!) but anyway, he uses this to put his used nails when he takes them off and he just gets them out and uses them over and over until they have to be thrown away or he loses them.
     
  19. BellyBoy

    BellyBoy Tele-Holic

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    Man I can see it now, folks will be diggin thru your trash and we'll soon see an ebay auction for "Brent Masons, gig used, Lee Press On Nails"...
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2008
  20. Ethical

    Ethical Tele-Holic

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    Looking at the back of my hand the nail rises slowly from the thumb side to a peak about 2/3 of the way across the nail then drops sharply towards the little finger. I keep my nails trimmed such that the peak overhangs the end of my finger by about 1/8th of an inch.

    I have naturally very strong nails so I don't need to go in for any of these artificial enhancements :~)


    Ted
     
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