What Capo works best with a Bender?

Rockerfeller

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I'm curious what capo style or brand works best with a Bender? Are there any you've found work better at keeping the B string in tune?
 

johnny k

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I am not sure you are supposed to use a capo with a b bender. Regular telecaster, probably, b bender, it sounds weird to me.
The bender is meant to play licks and fills, if you are going to play rhythm, maybe capoed telecaster ?
 

ThermionicScott

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Non-expert thoughts: combining a capo with a bender seems like a good way to saw through the frets where it's applied if you're not careful. I'd use something like a Shubb that applies as little tension as possible to hold down the strings.
 

Pineears

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Been using a capo with B Bender for 8 yrs or so. No problems. I thinks it’s a Kayser, but it’s not labeled. Mostly gets capo for a country boogie in G or C. I’ve had 2 refrets in 8 yrs but not because of a capo.
 

T Prior

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Why would there be problems ? I use a few , the one I use the most is a Kyser. Capo's are difficult with lighter gauge strings regardless of the brand. Floppy strings are just what they are, floppy!

If we are gonna play songs like "Lot of Leavin' To Do" you gotta Capo the 2nd fret ! Bender or not .
 

brookdalebill

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I am not sure you are supposed to use a capo with a b bender. Regular telecaster, probably, b bender, it sounds weird to me.
The bender is meant to play licks and fills, if you are going to play rhythm, maybe capoed telecaster ?


Kinda my “take”, too.
If I were to use a capo, I’d use the D’Addarrio capo with the tension thumb screw.
I’d also recommend slightly heavier strings, at least an 11 set.
 

T Prior

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I'm not understanding this topic as to why B or G Benders can't use a capo. IF you play a BAR chord anywhere up the fretboard and pull the B or G, isn't that the same as a Capo ? How does the B or G string know you are using a Capo or BARRING at an upper fret ?

If we play without a CAPO , but yet play off the root "A" position at the 9th fret , which is a hot bed of Bender Heaven, does the B string care ? We are fretting the B string at the 10th fret and then pulling it. Our finger is a capo.

The Bender isn't meant to play "licks or fills" , its meant to play MUSIC executed by the player, whatever it may be. There are no limitations to creativity.

The Capo gives the player an arsenal of OPEN STRINGS in various positions, thats why we would use one, especially in positions under the 5th fret which allows us to use varied root forms with OPEN strings.

My Emmons Steel pulls the same strings, it doesn't much care where the BAR is. 0 fret or 12th fret. Or above the 12th fret.
 

hmemerson

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I'm curious what capo style or brand works best with a Bender? Are there any you've found work better at keeping the B string in tune?

That's an excellent question, and there's no easy answer.

In theory you'd want something that presses down, but with as little friction as possible, right? Certainly stainless steel frets would help, but I digress.....

I don't own or use a B-Bender, but I've used capos on my electrics forever, and I place them directly on the fret. This gives maximum friction, so DON'T do that.

Are you familiar with the Glider Capo? It was developed by the late guitarist Greg Bennett, and it may work for what you're concerned with. Here's a video of Greg playing & using the glider:


Best,
Howard Emerson
 

MatsEriksson

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Third Hand Capo.

Skärmavbild 2021-05-20 kl. 11.42.04.png
 

brookdalebill

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That's an excellent question, and there's no easy answer.

In theory you'd want something that presses down, but with as little friction as possible, right? Certainly stainless steel frets would help, but I digress.....

I don't own or use a B-Bender, but I've used capos on my electrics forever, and I place them directly on the fret. This gives maximum friction, so DON'T do that.

Are you familiar with the Glider Capo? It was developed by the late guitarist Greg Bennett, and it may work for what you're concerned with. Here's a video of Greg playing & using the glider:


Best,
Howard Emerson


Fantastic capo!
I had one, but gifted it to a friend who was impressed with it.
I almost never use one, but the Glider is the best “in performance” capo I ever had.
I forgot it was a Greg Bennett invention.
Now I know how to get another one.
Thanks!
 

244300

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I'm not understanding this topic as to why B or G Benders can't use a capo. IF you play a BAR chord anywhere up the fretboard and pull the B or G, isn't that the same as a Capo ? How does the B or G string know you are using a Capo or BARRING at an upper fret ?

If we play without a CAPO , but yet play off the root "A" position at the 9th fret , which is a hot bed of Bender Heaven, does the B string care ? We are fretting the B string at the 10th fret and then pulling it. Our finger is a capo.

The Bender isn't meant to play "licks or fills" , its meant to play MUSIC executed by the player, whatever it may be. There are no limitations to creativity.

The Capo gives the player an arsenal of OPEN STRINGS in various positions, thats why we would use one, especially in positions under the 5th fret which allows us to use varied root forms with OPEN strings.

My Emmons Steel pulls the same strings, it doesn't much care where the BAR is. 0 fret or 12th fret. Or above the 12th fret.

I'd go with this answer.
 

Silverface

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What's a capo? :D

Seriously, the few times I have put a capo on a bender I have used my Elliott. It is the most precise at putting just the least amount of necessary pressure exactly behind the fret crown. Unfortunately Elliotts are the most expensive capos around - I primarily use it on my D-28 and D-41.

A Paige will work well and is a fraction of the cost, though! What you DON'T want is any heavy capo or big ones with large string contact points or high pressure.

However -

The single most critical thing is that your guitar be properly set up. I've been doing tech work for 50 years, and the vast majority of electrics I see either still have the "off the shelf" setup or have terrible fretwork, with "aircraft carrier" frets - i.e. flat on top.

Any player who gigs and/or is concerned with playability and intonation needs to have all guitars professionally set up; only custom shop and small shop instruments are properly set up unless rare luck is involved.

Nuts are always cut shallow with high 1st fret action - INTENTIONALLY - so players can have the slots lowered for THEIR style and attack, because raising the height of nut slots - if done properly - involves making a new nut! And frets are usually a bit inconsistent, plus the neck relief should be flatter fo many players.

But the TOPS of the frets need to be leveled consistently - then crowned (rounded using specific files for each width) and polished to a jewel-like finish. And crowning is the BIG problem - if they are flat on top the guitar will play out of tune, and may have odd overtones and buzzes.

Most players don't have nut files - decent ones are gaged for each string gage and expensive - a full set covering most gages costs about $300. And good crowning files that last for more than a couple of jobs are $80-100 each. And you need 3 or 4 of them if you have a few electric and acoustic guitars of mixed brands or models.

If you can't do the work yourself take them to a professional tech - not the guy in the cubicle at GC, or a guitar store salesman who does "setup" on the front counter There are boutique guitar shops or techs that run their own business in just about every major town. If you don't know one ask good local players who they use. And a full setup including fret dressing and nut re-cutting runs $125-$185. It takes 4-6 hours if done professionally and carefully, and is the least expensive "per hour" tech work other than refinishing!

Back to the topic - a capo will NOT work with flat or inconsistent frets (buzzing, tuning and intonation issues) or a high nut (which will foul the tuning immediately).

If your guitar has never had a pro setup don't waste your time or money.

I hope that helps - I just can't stress after decades of tech work AND gigs how important it is, including when using capos with or without benders.
 




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