Bad habits

Help! I'm hopeless. I need some basic slide lessons and I need to find a slide that fits my finger. Every slide I try is either too large and falls off, or is too heavy for my bad finger and I end up pounding on the strings. I have resorted to playing a weird Rockabilly style with open G tuning on my three string. Not exactly what, even with my limited talent, I would like to be known for.

 Can anyone put me on the right track?

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  • I had the same problem with slides. I like to put it on my  pinky finger, but most slides (steel, brass, glass) are just too big internally and it flops around a lot. I finally resorted to putting many layers of blue painter's tape on one side of the inside of the slide to reduce the internal diameter. It's not the most elegant solution, but once I had enough tape applied, I used a razor to cut off the exposed tape so it doesn't show when playing. I found that putting the taped portion away from the strings, keeps your finger close to the stings when sliding. I think it helps with feel.

    If you really need to reduce the slide inside diameter, a couple of ice cream sticks will build up faster than just tape. You can cut them, glue them in, then cover with several layers of tape so it is comfortable on your finger.

  • Joe, if you have trigger finger, you may do better with the slide on you middle or pointer finger.   One other thing.  Having the guitar stabilized with a strap helps me.

  • Hey, Joe.  Maybe you've found your style with the rockabilly style.  

    Fit is important.  I have under medium sized fingers and a Jim Dunlop # 230 tapered brass slide and several ceramic slides from Dave Lynas.   A cool thing about the Lynas and my Dunlop is that one end is bigger than the other and I can use one end on my pinky and one on my ring finger.   The tapered Dunlop slide is the most error forgiving slide I have used.   I've also got some bottle necks from Maddog that work well.


    I am never quite satisfied with my slide work.  But one thing that helps is when I kind of visualize using my finger as a slide, keeping flat over the strings and at a straight right angle to the neck.  Just thinking about the finger and forgetting the slide weirdly helps me.   I still need to get better about keeping the slide moving a bit.  


    Everybody likes different materials.  I don't like bone.   It does not slippery slide as well for me.  


    Justin Johnson's lessons are among the best lessons on slide.

    • Thanks John. I did download some of Justin's vids a few weeks back and am trying to get the hang of it. I have       about 6 different slides but my main problem is that I have to use the slide on my little finger most of the time because I have what is called "Trigger Finger" on my ring finger and it locks up on me quite a bit.

       I'll check out the slides you guys recommend and see what I can come up with.

  • 306333019?profile=RESIZE_1024x1024306333987?profile=RESIZE_1024x1024306335163?profile=RESIZE_1024x1024306336959?profile=RESIZE_1024x1024I make custom bone and bone n wood slides, custom sizes made just for you. Here`s one I just finished out of bone with a carved top. My wood top bone slides are real nice too, I use highend exotic`s and spectraply wood for the tops. I also just brought out the slide set, stubby with a ring slide included.  Ask around there`s a lot of players that use my sldies......Mojobone Works    check out my facebook showcase page.

    • Randy,I'll take a look.

  • I add that it is 2 1/2 in. long and the perfect weight.
  • I had the same problem with getting a slide that fits. I am now using a Craftsman 16 mm socket. Has inside ridges which grip my finger. Found it at an Ace Hardware store. Sounds good. Looks cool.
  • This might help. The first video is about the absolute basics of slide playing, include different slides, shapes, sizes etc.
    • Pat, I'll check it out this evening.

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