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View Full Version : Temporary 12th fret single strin guke capo - idea



LPeacock
08-05-2018, 05:55 AM
Okay, I haven't tried this out yet as I need to get some of that elastic, non-sticky, green garden tape - the kind used to tie roses, etc. to espaliers. Right now I have two ukes here where I am and both have low G-strings and I want to try claw hammer uke techniques without having to change the low G-String. I can do that, of course, without having a high G-string but I was trying to figure out how to capo just the low G-string, That would be hard to do on either of my tenors as the 12th frets are close to the neck, where the wood is too thick to use a single string capo of any sort. So, I'm going to see if I can use garden tape to wrap around the 12th fret, probably having to start at the 10th fret. Will let you know how my experiment turns out.

daviddecom
08-05-2018, 07:15 AM
Hereís (http://frets.com/FretsPages/Musician/Banjo/PenCapCapo/pencapcapo.html) a simple trick for a banjo 5th string capo that would probably work for a ukulele 4th string. NB: Iíve tried it on a banjo but not on a ukulele.

Grizzly Adams
08-05-2018, 08:58 AM
Along the same lines as the Bic capo above, is the Banjo Highway side tensioning 5th string capo. It costs a lot more, but works better, in my experience, and I have tried both. Your post got my curiosity up, so I tried the BH capo on my tenor uke with the BH capo at the 12th fret. It works well for claw hammer! The downside is you basically have a three string ukulele, as the G can not be fretted at all below the 12th fret. It does ring nicely as a drone string in high G, however.

Here is a demo, if interested:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Ot77pBDctY

LPeacock
08-05-2018, 09:10 PM
Thanks. I saw that and didn't quite understand how it would work. Am also afraid of scratching the instrument.

LPeacock
08-05-2018, 09:11 PM
Oh, that's cool! Thank you.

LPeacock
08-06-2018, 03:14 AM
Here's another one but I don't understand the principle of how it works, just as I don't understand how the bic pen cap capo works. How does lifting the string act the same as pressing it down? This one is a copy of the Reagan 5th string banjo capo (which is no longer made) https://strumhollow.com/products/5th-string-banjo-capo . It costs 14.95 and is also available via Amazon.com.

robinboyd
08-06-2018, 03:37 AM
Here's another one but I don't understand the principle of how it works, just as I don't understand how the bic pen cap capo works. How does lifting the string act the same as pressing it down? This one is a copy of the Reagan 5th string banjo capo (which is no longer made) https://strumhollow.com/products/5th-string-banjo-capo . It costs 14.95 and is also available via Amazon.com.

The idea behind a capo is to stop the string from vibrating at the point that it touches the capo. Most capos do this by acting like your fretting fingers and pushing the string down so that it touches the fret wire. A capo that lifts the string up would act like a nut instead. If you look at the nut on your uke, it doesn't press the string down, but it stops it from vibrating between the nut and the tuner.

LPeacock
08-06-2018, 03:58 AM
Thank you for the explanation, Robin.
Linda

stevepetergal
08-06-2018, 04:44 AM
I admit it. I know nothing about claw hammer technique.

If you capo string #4 on your ukulele at 12, you can only play a G with that string unless your fretting hand is in position to fret above that 12th fret. Won't this be unacceptably limiting?

This stupid guy needs an explanation.

kohanmike
08-06-2018, 05:50 AM
Being that UAS is part of my DNA, I would buy another ukulele with a high G string. If they're brought to a gig, get a dual compartment gig bag too.

8 tenor cutaway ukes, 3 acoustic bass ukes, 8 solid body bass ukes, 7 mini electric bass guitars

• Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children's hospital music therapy programs. http://www.theukc.org
• Member The CC Strummers: https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos (https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos)

daviddecom
08-06-2018, 09:21 AM
Of the three (the pen cap, Banjo Highway, and Reagan), I like the Reagan best, but if you're interested in something beyond a quick hack, I think railroad spikes (http://www.frets.com/FretsPages/Musician/Banjo/5thSpike/5thspike1.html) are best.



If you capo string #4 on your ukulele at 12, you can only play a G with that string unless your fretting hand is in position to fret above that 12th fret. Won't this be unacceptably limiting?


Clawhammer banjo technique mostly uses the short 5th string as an offbeat drone; the 5th string isn't typically fretted. Clawhammer ukulele is a little more flexible with a high 4th string where you can fret different notes, but it's not really essential.

David

casualmusic
08-06-2018, 11:23 AM
Hi Linda.

It is easiest and least complicated to try out clawhammer style by changing that #4 G string.

No need to buy a high G string right away, just use the #1 A string from an old set or a new set (or from the other uke) and undertune it to high G.

You can then fret the #4 string normally which means that it will be harmonious regardless of the musical key.

If you pin the #4 at the 12th fret (out of reach), it will be fine for musical keys like D scale and G scale that include the G note, and will clash (sound sour) with scales that do not contain G. So to solutions...

Oldtime banjo players with the short (out of reach) #5 G string solve this by pausing to tune the #5 string into the new scale by changing the tension at the tuner, or by using a high string capo or spikes in the fret board. We make nice by grouping the songs to minimize their tuning back and forth.

But uke players who use full length #4 strings don't need to mess with re-tuning between songs (unless they want to) because all strings are within reach for normal chording and fretting.

And finally, you can try out the clawhammer technique without changing anything. It will just sound plunky instead of plinkitty on the #4 string.

Have fun.

LPeacock
08-06-2018, 11:58 PM
I admit it. I know nothing about claw hammer technique.

If you capo string #4 on your ukulele at 12, you can only play a G with that string unless your fretting hand is in position to fret above that 12th fret. Won't this be unacceptably limiting?

This stupid guy needs an explanation.

Hi Steve, in clawhammer style the high G-string is used as a drone so other notes don't have to be played on it.

LPeacock
08-07-2018, 12:00 AM
Hi Linda.

It is easiest and least complicated to try out clawhammer style by changing that #4 G string.

No need to buy a high G string right away, just use the #1 A string from an old set or a new set (or from the other uke) and undertune it to high G.

You can then fret the #4 string normally which means that it will be harmonious regardless of the musical key.

If you pin the #4 at the 12th fret (out of reach), it will be fine for musical keys like D scale and G scale that include the G note, and will clash (sound sour) with scales that do not contain G. So to solutions...

Oldtime banjo players with the short (out of reach) #5 G string solve this by pausing to tune the #5 string into the new scale by changing the tension at the tuner, or by using a high string capo or spikes in the fret board. We make nice by grouping the songs to minimize their tuning back and forth.

But uke players who use full length #4 strings don't need to mess with re-tuning between songs (unless they want to) because all strings are within reach for normal chording and fretting.

And finally, you can try out the clawhammer technique without changing anything. It will just sound plunky instead of plinkitty on the #4 string.

Have fun. Thank you. But really, I don't want to have to change the string just to use the technique. But it's nice advice as to the A-string.

LPeacock
08-07-2018, 12:01 AM
Of the three (the pen cap, Banjo Highway, and Reagan), I like the Reagan best, but if you're interested in something beyond a quick hack, I think railroad spikes (http://www.frets.com/FretsPages/Musician/Banjo/5thSpike/5thspike1.html) are best.



Clawhammer banjo technique mostly uses the short 5th string as an offbeat drone; the 5th string isn't typically fretted. Clawhammer ukulele is a little more flexible with a high 4th string where you can fret different notes, but it's not really essential.

David

Thanks David. The Reagan type capo looks the best to me too. And it is inexpensive.

stevepetergal
08-07-2018, 02:52 AM
Thank you daviddecom and LPeacock. I now know a bit more.