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Author Topic: Softening Thumbpicks  (Read 620 times)
Jeff
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« on: December 27, 2006, 06:28:24 PM »

For the heck of it, just because I'm exploring the different sonic possibilities of my new LV-03, I'm breaking out the thumb and fingerpicks again for a while.  I'm using a Fred Kelly Slick Pick and after a few nights of playing, the part of my thumb next to the nail where the end of the part of the pick that wraps around the thumb rests is getting very sore.  I suppose it's just another place for me to get calloused, but somewhere (it might have been in another forum), I read something about boiling a thumbpick to soften it for a custom fit.  I tried putting the pick in water that had just been boiled, but it had no effect.  Is anyone familiar with this procedure?  Does it even work?  I guess I could actually boil the pick for while, but if so, for how long, and isn't it pretty hot to be wrapping around your thumb?
Any advice would be appreciated.
Jeff
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Steve
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« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2006, 06:49:56 PM »

I just bend those Kelly's backwards until they feel comfortable.  I do that with Zookies and Dunlop tortoise, even though they are hard plastic.  If they are still tight I bend them back even more until they fit right.
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PortHueneme
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« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2006, 08:26:58 PM »

I have tried the water thing. I put the pick in a small cup of water and micro waved it. Yes you can burn your thumb, the trick is to get it warm enough to be pliable and cool enough not to burn to badly.
I actually have had better luck going into an optical shop. Some of them have glass bead baths used to heat up plastic eyeglass frames for adjustment. Many shops today use hot air.
If you have a powerfull hairdryer you might try heating up the pick with it. I did one a while back while it was on and as soon as the pick was soft and shaped I stuck my thumb in cold water to set the shape.

Today I use Pro-Pics, they have a plastic pick, but a metal thumb wrap, much easier get the best fit.
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Jeff
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« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2006, 04:27:07 PM »

Tried just bending it back until I thought it would break, and that did make it more comfortable.  With two daughters, I have industrial strength hairdriers in the house.  I'll give that a try tonight.  Thanks for the tip.
Jeff
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OMV-40
OM-3R
LV-03
Martin OMC-15E
Late 70's Univox Acoustic
Kentucky Mandolin
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