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Slide Setup How do you setup for slide without killing action?

#1 User is offline   Rockin Rod 

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 06:16 AM

I'm a newbie and recently bought a 2011 ES335 and would like to play slide occasionally but don't want to ruin the fast action. I use glass slides on third or pinky finger. Leave it alone and just try not to hit frets? What does everyone else do? Any suggestions?

#2 User is offline   L5Larry 

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 08:10 AM

I don't play slide, but..... I do play in a Blues band with an incredible slide player.

Not only do I setup his guitars, I built his two main Strats. He play regular chords/lead and slide on the same guitar, in both standard and open "E" tuning. The setup for this combination is somewhat of a compromise for both styles.

Here's how his guitars are setup:
1. Medium strings - He uses D'Addario XL115 strings (11-49) and switches out the .011 for a .012. Heavier gauge strings are really the key, I don't know how anybody plays slide on 9's or 10's, much less on a setup the will also be used for fingerstyle.

2. Neck relief - Is standard, just barely "not flat". Neck relief is set for standard playing, as it's really not part of the slide equation. Various open tunings will affect the neck relief, so it's best to start out pretty flat in standard tuning. Many songs require both chording and slide work, so even at the extra tension of say open E tuning, the additional neck bow needs to leave the strings at a height that is fret-able.

3. String height - Is set medium to high. To start out, set your string height as high as you can possibly stand for standard playing, then lower them as low as you can for slide. You'll end up at a happy medium. Heavier strings in general lend themselves for higher action because you need the extra height to have something to grab for bends. He and I both use heavier gauge strings (I use 12-52 LaBella), and even my string height for standard playing is "high" to most players.

4. Intonation - Is set for standard playing from the fretted string at the 12th fret.

5. Slide pressure - Light touch is the key to avoid banging frets, playing in tune, sounding good, and not tearing up and grooving the frets. Hand position and slide angle is also important to avoid banging the frets at the high E string and tearing up that edge of the fretboard.

Hope that helps.

#3 User is offline   Versatile 

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 03:18 AM

Personal favourite 'sliders'...

Johnny Winter and Mick Taylor...

Who both appear to slide on standard set-up and tuned guitars...

A 335 would sound superb in slide mode...an alternative option might be a solid(S/C's sound good) perhaps with a slightly raised action...

V

:-({|=
Fiddling at the Pearly Gates
or somewhere
Lower and Warmer....

I like kayaking....it really floats my boat....

I dig most stuff....

#4 User is offline   Rockin Rod 

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 04:04 PM

View PostL5Larry, on 03 July 2013 - 08:10 AM, said:

I don't play slide, but..... I do play in a Blues band with an incredible slide player.

Not only do I setup his guitars, I built his two main Strats. He play regular chords/lead and slide on the same guitar, in both standard and open "E" tuning. The setup for this combination is somewhat of a compromise for both styles.

Here's how his guitars are setup:
1. Medium strings - He uses D'Addario XL115 strings (11-49) and switches out the .011 for a .012. Heavier gauge strings are really the key, I don't know how anybody plays slide on 9's or 10's, much less on a setup the will also be used for fingerstyle.

2. Neck relief - Is standard, just barely "not flat". Neck relief is set for standard playing, as it's really not part of the slide equation. Various open tunings will affect the neck relief, so it's best to start out pretty flat in standard tuning. Many songs require both chording and slide work, so even at the extra tension of say open E tuning, the additional neck bow needs to leave the strings at a height that is fret-able.

3. String height - Is set medium to high. To start out, set your string height as high as you can possibly stand for standard playing, then lower them as low as you can for slide. You'll end up at a happy medium. Heavier strings in general lend themselves for higher action because you need the extra height to have something to grab for bends. He and I both use heavier gauge strings (I use 12-52 LaBella), and even my string height for standard playing is "high" to most players.

4. Intonation - Is set for standard playing from the fretted string at the 12th fret.

5. Slide pressure - Light touch is the key to avoid banging frets, playing in tune, sounding good, and not tearing up and grooving the frets. Hand position and slide angle is also important to avoid banging the frets at the high E string and tearing up that edge of the fretboard.

Hope that helps.


#5 User is offline   Rockin Rod 

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 04:05 PM

View PostL5Larry, on 03 July 2013 - 08:10 AM, said:

I don't play slide, but..... I do play in a Blues band with an incredible slide player.

Not only do I setup his guitars, I built his two main Strats. He play regular chords/lead and slide on the same guitar, in both standard and open "E" tuning. The setup for this combination is somewhat of a compromise for both styles.

Here's how his guitars are setup:
1. Medium strings - He uses D'Addario XL115 strings (11-49) and switches out the .011 for a .012. Heavier gauge strings are really the key, I don't know how anybody plays slide on 9's or 10's, much less on a setup the will also be used for fingerstyle.

2. Neck relief - Is standard, just barely "not flat". Neck relief is set for standard playing, as it's really not part of the slide equation. Various open tunings will affect the neck relief, so it's best to start out pretty flat in standard tuning. Many songs require both chording and slide work, so even at the extra tension of say open E tuning, the additional neck bow needs to leave the strings at a height that is fret-able.

3. String height - Is set medium to high. To start out, set your string height as high as you can possibly stand for standard playing, then lower them as low as you can for slide. You'll end up at a happy medium. Heavier strings in general lend themselves for higher action because you need the extra height to have something to grab for bends. He and I both use heavier gauge strings (I use 12-52 LaBella), and even my string height for standard playing is "high" to most players.

4. Intonation - Is set for standard playing from the fretted string at the 12th fret.

5. Slide pressure - Light touch is the key to avoid banging frets, playing in tune, sounding good, and not tearing up and grooving the frets. Hand position and slide angle is also important to avoid banging the frets at the high E string and tearing up that edge of the fretboard.

Hope that helps.


#6 User is offline   jdgm 

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 04:48 PM

View PostL5Larry, on 03 July 2013 - 08:10 AM, said:

I don't play slide, but..... I do play in a Blues band with an incredible slide player.

Not only do I setup his guitars, I built his two main Strats. He play regular chords/lead and slide on the same guitar, in both standard and open "E" tuning. The setup for this combination is somewhat of a compromise for both styles.

Here's how his guitars are setup:
1. Medium strings - He uses D'Addario XL115 strings (11-49) and switches out the .011 for a .012. Heavier gauge strings are really the key, I don't know how anybody plays slide on 9's or 10's, much less on a setup the will also be used for fingerstyle.

2. Neck relief - Is standard, just barely "not flat". Neck relief is set for standard playing, as it's really not part of the slide equation. Various open tunings will affect the neck relief, so it's best to start out pretty flat in standard tuning. Many songs require both chording and slide work, so even at the extra tension of say open E tuning, the additional neck bow needs to leave the strings at a height that is fret-able.

3. String height - Is set medium to high. To start out, set your string height as high as you can possibly stand for standard playing, then lower them as low as you can for slide. You'll end up at a happy medium. Heavier strings in general lend themselves for higher action because you need the extra height to have something to grab for bends. He and I both use heavier gauge strings (I use 12-52 LaBella), and even my string height for standard playing is "high" to most players.

4. Intonation - Is set for standard playing from the fretted string at the 12th fret.

5. Slide pressure - Light touch is the key to avoid banging frets, playing in tune, sounding good, and not tearing up and grooving the frets. Hand position and slide angle is also important to avoid banging the frets at the high E string and tearing up that edge of the fretboard.

Hope that helps.

I'd plus this if we still had pluses.
Action = NOT LOW. Finger behind slide finger damps strings, very important (2nd finger if 3rd finger has slide). Easiest tuning is to open G (Elmore James). As well as the above, Ry Cooder, Sonny Landreth play innovative slide.
Lee Ritenour 'Slippin' In The Back door' off 'SugarLoaf Express' - he plays a superb slide solo in ordinary tuning then continues without the slide....it all depends on who you are listening to...

#7 User is offline   rct 

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Posted 15 July 2013 - 08:35 PM

I have played slide on ordinary guitars set up for ordinary guitar playing since...well, since Betts did, so that'd be after Brothers and Sisters. It takes practice, but so does playing slide on a "set up" guitar.

It's the sounds you don't make that matter. All slide sounds good, the notes just work well with the context most use them in. It's not making the noise that matters, and you can not make noise on any guitar.

Sure, I haven't practiced slide in a while, so I can only preach right this moment.

rct

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