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Replacing picks? How often?

Postby ManFromGlass » Sat May 26, 2018 1:50 pm

Just curious -
The tips of some picks wear quite quickly while others take their time. How often do you replace old picks? I assume harder picks get replaced less often and often replacing is done when it feels or sounds like it should be replaced.
Unless there is something I'm not considering?
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat May 26, 2018 2:11 pm

Soft material picks likely need replacing frequently, hard materials, (stone, bone, metal, Michael Wegen's special stuff......) may last a lifetime. I'd say keep a couple unused and compare them, when the new one feels better bin the old one. Mostly picks are dirt cheap (obviously not Blue Chip, Wegen, and other 'boutique' picks but they are usually the ones that last forever anyway) so jus bin em as soon as you notice them getting scratchy/sticky/blunt.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby Wonks » Sat May 26, 2018 2:31 pm

Most of mine get replaced because they simply disappear into whatever local wormhole in space/time exists as I move around the house. I've rarely worn out a plectrum for the basic reason that however many plectrums I buy, I will have lost them all within 3 months at the most.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat May 26, 2018 3:50 pm

Another good reason not to buy Blue Chip picks then Wonky :D
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby CS70 » Sat May 26, 2018 5:20 pm

I usually lose them way before they need replacing :)
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat May 26, 2018 8:16 pm

I have lost two Wegen picks in the 5 or 6 years I have been using them, cost to me about €25.... It would have been cheaper to lose a few dozen cheap picks but I still think it's worth the risk (and they are so big you can hear them drop so it's a bit easier to find them again.....).
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby Music Wolf » Sat May 26, 2018 8:56 pm

I use Stoneworks picks (Plane Jane, thin).

Either the guitar will wear out first, or I will.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby blinddrew » Sat May 26, 2018 10:03 pm

I use Jim Dunlop thumb picks, i generally take about 1/4" off the end before I get round to replacing them.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat May 26, 2018 11:40 pm

Michael Wegen keeps talking about making a thumb pick, I would love a pick that behaved like my Wegen GJ picks when I gripped it with my index finger but didn't fall to the floor (or, more likely, into the soundhole) when I let go.

Standard thumb picks present the tip at 90º to your thumb joint but when I fingerpick I use my thumb nail which doesn't. A flatpick, using the bluegrass/power grip also presents at 90º but I haven't mastered this yet. My pick grip presents the tip around 45º from my thumb, as if I'm picking with the lower part of my thumbnail (hold your thumb vertically and imagine picking with the portion of he nail that is at 10:30), not at 0º as a classical player might nor at 90º like a thumb pick but about halfway in-between.

The only thumb pick I've found that does this (by allowing the pick to rotate on the thumb grip so the tip points in the correct direction) is the bumblebee but it is a floppy nylon thing which simply doesn't work for me.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby garrettendi » Mon May 28, 2018 9:26 pm

I once did a gig where the plectrum snapped in two during a heavy bit.

Naturally, I donned my "Rock Star" persona and gave the broken plectrum to an "adoring fan" to sell for thousands when I make it big.

Said "adoring fan" was a friend of the bassist, and I'm pretty sure he just chucked it in the bin when he got home.

Oh well... When I get a record deal it's his loss.... :headbang:
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby zenguitar » Mon May 28, 2018 11:30 pm

garrettendi wrote:Oh well... When I get a record deal it's his loss.... :headbang:

Forget the record deal, you've had TWO questions in the magazine Q&A, you're a 'made man' now.

Andy :beamup:
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby DC-Choppah » Tue May 29, 2018 1:48 am

I've been playing these for decades
electric: https://www.musiciansfriend.com/accesso ... uitar-pick
acoustic: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001J6SPV0/re ... UTF8&psc=1

I've got some that are probably 10+ years old and still fine. But sometimes a pick will get a groove in it where it will catch the string and affect my playing. I toss those out. I think that happens when the pick gets damaged from sliding down the string and getting a groove cut into it. I wouldn't play on picks that actually wear out. These don't.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby garrettendi » Tue May 29, 2018 8:30 am

zenguitar wrote:Forget the record deal, you've had TWO questions in the magazine Q&A, you're a 'made man' now.

I would be but I still haven't received my royalty check in the post.

I'll give you 3 more days before I take legal action! :lol:
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby ore_terra » Tue May 29, 2018 9:04 am

for the electrics, Ultex 1 mm get replaced when the edges have too many notches (too much pick scratch) to play smoothly. I normally dont give them time to get the tip rounded.

acoustic, I dont play it very hard... these ultex .75 mm seem to last forever.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby garrettendi » Tue May 29, 2018 9:09 am

I used to use the red Tortex picks (0,5mm) but I found it made my playing sloppy. Less control.

I gradually went up in thickness, with the yellow (0.73mm) ones and now I use the purple ones (1.14mm).

The purple ones give me great response, and help me play faster and more accurately. I really should use thinner ones for acoustic strumming but I can't be bothered. For electric they are ideal though.

I always have several on the go at once, but when they look a bit worn, I throw them away. Usually I lose them first though!
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby CS70 » Tue May 29, 2018 9:49 am

garrettendi wrote:I really should use thinner ones for acoustic strumming but I can't be bothered.

You most definitely shouldn't! Unless you want to sound like Cat Stevens, that is :D
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed May 30, 2018 7:33 pm

Definitely, for me at least (as is documented on here) thick pick always sound better and I would consider a 1.14 tortes (which was what I used for years) the thinnest that will maintain a good tone on an acoustic (if you like it bright). My thin picks, these days are Wegen 1.4mm Bluegrass picks but they are made of a very hard material so are stiffer than tortes of the same thickness.
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby ore_terra » Wed May 30, 2018 9:24 pm

I think depending what you’re playing: of I would be playing along with somebody else I wouldnt use the 0.75. Probably 1. More if I had to do solos.

However for recording chord strumming I really think my j 45 sounds better with the ultex 0.75
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby The Red Bladder » Wed May 30, 2018 9:54 pm

And there was me with a witty and very pithy reply - and then I reread the question and realised that it was about replacing picks and not what I thought it was!
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Re: Replacing picks? How often?

Postby ManFromGlass » Thu May 31, 2018 12:53 am

Was the reply surgery related? :D
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