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 Looking to buy first stick 
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Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 3:39 am
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Location: Maine, USA
Post Looking to buy first stick
Hi. I've always liked the sound of the stick since I heard King Crimson as a teenager. (Way back in the early 90s). I've flirted back and forth with getting one over the years, but recently got more serious.

So as a beginning stickist, I'm looking at a budget stick. I have seen a couple on-line and know that a 10 string is probably where I want to be. I was looking at a used one on the guitar center site, which looked okay, and was on the lower end of the stick price spectrum, I know that they salespeople will have no clue what the tuning is, and I have no clue which tuning I really want. I figure the classic tuning is probably best, since the scarce books and videos are probably in that area. There's also one on CL that is a bit more, but a lot newer...

I have seen the krappy tapping instruments, and that's not quite my cup of tea. The cheap part of me says do it, the prudent part of me says the wiser thing to do is to save my money and get the good one first, that way I won't be buying it twice.

So a couple questions:

1. What tuning should I be looking for?
2. Are there ways to change one of my guitars so it is more stick like, to start learning with? (This is while I find a stick)
3. Anyone have a budget stick they want to sell a nice guy?

Thanks, ad


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Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:16 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
First of all, welcome to the conmunity. You'll find a vast array of knowledge and opinions. Take what works for you and go from there.

I made the jump to stick a little over 18 months ago. I simply called stick enterprises and ordered up.

There is a great video here that goes into hunting out a used stick. Greg Howard goes into many of the areas and answers a lot of what you asked.

As far as the tuning a guitar to match stick...i did that with a strat while i was waiting for my 12 string grand. I tuned it to the classic tuning on the melody side of the stick. It gave me the ability to try the shapes and such. The feel and spacing are not the same, but it does make you feel better while you wait.

The tuning is C# F# B E A D. going from the heaviest to the lightest string. The c# well be a bit floppy, but it was better than nothing.

Check this video out and then call Stick Enterprises and see what they have in stock for used instruments. That way the used instrument you get is all reset and possibly upgraded.


https://youtu.be/dPkht0U3zZA

Anyway... welcome to the family

Tp


Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:17 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
Thomas is absolutely right. I would add this: if you are going to spend money in something you don't know very well, be sure to buy something that you can always sell later on, without loosing money. The only stick like instrument you can have that does not devalue and is fairly easy to sell would be an original Chapman Stick. My best option would be, call them. Use Skype if it is expensive but call them. They have amazing retrofitted instruments along with new ones. And nothing beats a Chapman stick ;)


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Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:39 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
The Stick is really accommodating, and musically flexible - it's an instrument that lends itself well to a variety of tunings and styles of play. I am a bit biased in that I simply called up SE and ordered one, and then bought a used one to get me started while I waited for my railboard. The instruments are brilliant, I fell in love with it immediately...

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Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:50 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
If you are going used, I second the suggestion to buy from SE. That way you know your stick is set up properly. Eventually, you will be able to tune your stick yourself and do all the adjustments yourself. But it's a lot easier to learn how to do this if you start from an already properly set up instrument.
They have several in-stock 10 strings to choose from:

As for what tuning, well there's an adventure in and of itself! :lol:

Search this forum, there are threads about all the tunings, as well as one about my own experiences here: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11592

Matched Reciprocal is where I would start, even though I ended up in mirrored 4ths. Don't worry, if it doesn't work for you, you can change it. That's the beauty of the stick.

http://www.stick.com/shop/inventory/

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Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:42 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
Welcome ad! Buy used from Emmett! Like everyone said, it will be set up right. As far as tuning, the melody in fourths, the bass in fifths. All material out there can be applied to that. And the bass in fifths is the "magic". A STICK IS A STICK IS A STICK IS A STICK...

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Sun Jul 16, 2017 2:52 pm
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
Thomas_Powers wrote:
.

The tuning is C# F# B E A D. going from the heaviest to the lightest string. The c# well be a bit floppy, but it was better than nothing.

Tp


Assuming that E is the low e on a guitar..., what are the gauges?


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Wed Jul 19, 2017 3:24 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
That's a loaded question...
you need to measure your guitar.
I'd use a tension calculator to figure things out.
https://wahiduddin.net/calc/calc_guitar_string.htm

My vintage Stick #404 uses Newtone strings with the following gauges.
http://www.stringsdirect.co.uk/strings-c1/chapman-stick-strings-c40/newtone-strings-newtone-stick-tapping-strings-08-91-10-string-full-set-p2242
adam193 wrote:
Assuming that E is the low e on a guitar..., what are the gauges?


Wed Jul 19, 2017 4:30 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
Looks like it might be more hassle than its worth to mod my strat for this...

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Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:40 am
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Post Re: Looking to buy first stick
adam193 wrote:
Looks like it might be more hassle than its worth to mod my strat for this...
Welcome to the forum,

I was teaching a guitar player at the University of Virginia before they got a Stick in the department for students to use. All he had to do was tune his guitar down a little to get some slack int he strings. I'd suggest tuning it down to:

Eb
Bb
F
C
G
D

you might need to get slightly thinner strings for the high Eb and Bb than the ones you currently use, but you can certainly start working on your right hand in all 4ths this way. Also, you'd want to angle the guitar up more vertically.

Hope that helps.

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Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:17 am
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