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onewilyfool

Have any of you "TRIED" a real tortise pick???

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I'm a bluegrasser and I play my round shouldered J45 with nothing but medium strings and turtle picks. One jam I showed up with out my custom pick and found a plastic heavy in my case. It felt like I was playing with a wet noodle. The turtle pick affects tone like nothing else. It also is as stiff as a quarter and there is no wasted travel motion when striking strings. To me it's a must if you fancy yourself as a flatpicker. The sea turtle is protected and a definite no no. There are other turtles, the red eared slider, that are non indigenous and actually threaten the native western pond turtle. In the 90's, the nija turtle crave had pet stores sell millions and millions of what became know as dime store turtles. They got illegally let loose in every pond, river, lake and stream in America. My picks don't wear out but occasionally need a short stint with a fingernail file.post-26386-027388300 1321640287_thumb.jpg Onewileyfool, I'm in the Bay Area. Send me a PM.

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I'm a bluegrasser and I play my round shouldered J45 with nothing but medium strings and turtle picks. One jam I showed up with out my custom pick and found a plastic heavy in my case. It felt like I was playing with a wet noodle. The turtle pick affects tone like nothing else. It also is as stiff as a quarter and there is no wasted travel motion when striking strings. To me it's a must if you fancy yourself as a flatpicker. The sea turtle is protected and a definite no no. There are other turtles, the red eared slider, that are non indigenous and actually threaten the native western pond turtle. In the 90's, the nija turtle crave had pet stores sell millions and millions of what became know as dime store turtles. They got illegally let loose in every pond, river, lake and stream in America. My picks don't wear out but occasionally need a short stint with a fingernail file.post-26386-027388300 1321640287_thumb.jpg Onewileyfool, I'm in the Bay Area. Send me a PM.

 

So, are all new turtle shell picks (not scavanged from vintage tortoise objects such as combs and brushes, etc.) illegal for sale in the US, or is it practical to buy new, legal tortoise/turtle picks? I'm a little squeamish about this, as all forms of sea turtles are endangered, but I'm curious if there are legal natural substitutes, or synthetic substitutes that perform similarly.

 

After posting this, I went on the Red Bear website and read some reviews, and it seems they might be worth a try. The problme is they give you too many choices of pick styles and thicknesses, and at $20 a pop, you don't necessarily want to order a dozen to figure out the right one for you.

 

Any non-bluegrass style flat pickers here with experience with these?

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So, are all new turtle shell picks (not scavanged from vintage tortoise objects such as combs and brushes, etc.) illegal for sale in the US, or is it practical to buy new, legal tortoise/turtle picks? I'm a little squeamish about this, as all forms of sea turtles are endangered, but I'm curious if there are legal natural substitutes, or synthetic substitutes that perform similarly.

 

After posting this, I went on the Red Bear website and read some reviews, and it seems they might be worth a try. The problme is they give you too many choices of pick styles and thicknesses, and at $20 a pop, you don't necessarily want to order a dozen to figure out the right one for you.

 

Any non-bluegrass style flat pickers here with experience with these?

 

I used some of the red bear stuff early on when if first came out. Very convincing substitute for genuine tortoiseshell (I've got a lot of experience w/the genuine article). However, back then anyhow, they were prone to breaking, especially if you let them jangle around in your pocket and get some surface scratches. I had a couple of them break.

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This is a great topic. I am very pick aware when I play. Many years ago I used only tortoise, but I'm not that picky any more. I used Fender Extra Heavy regular sized picks exclusively, until very recently. On a tip from an Eric Johnson video--(Eric tells his students to use a very small pick)--I started using the littlest, black, Gibson Heavy picks. Noticeable difference in agility. Now the regular size picks feel clumsy.

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After posting this, I went on the Red Bear website and read some reviews, and it seems they might be worth a try. The problme is they give you too many choices of pick styles and thicknesses, and at $20 a pop, you don't necessarily want to order a dozen to figure out the right one for you. Any non-bluegrass style flat pickers here with experience with these?

 

The Red Bear is as close to tortoise as anything. Their medium is a good place to start, and depending on whether you like a pointed pick or a round one, I'd go with style B or style E, respectively. I like a rounded pick and use the E shape......not as bright on the high strings and lots of power from the low end. They aren't cheap and it can get expensive to experiment with shapes and thicknesses. I've bought and used the Ex-Hvy, Hvy and Medium and prefer the medium for a tortoise imitator. I order them with the standard bevel, no edge shaping. They will not wear out.

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