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Post new topic Reso/tone bar advice, please.
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Author Topic:  Reso/tone bar advice, please.
Roger Rettig


From:
An Englishman in Naples, FL
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 6:39 am     Reply with quote

I have owned a Dobro (a standard wood-bodied 1980-ish D60 - or so I'm told) for nearly twenty years and, before last month, had never attempted to actually play it! I saw it in a music store in VA during my first year working in the US and thought 'I should have one just in case...'

Well, 'just in case' is where it stayed until recently. I was just doing 'Lost Highway' (Hank Williams bio) and the MD needed me to play some 'reso' so I took the plunge.

GBDGBD, of course, and I quite enjoyed myself! I won't say that I'm yet threatening Jerry Douglas' throne but I became absorbed with its contrast to pedal steel.

My question: The Dobro came with a Stevens bar but I hate it. It feels too small for my rather large hand. I found that my hand was muting the strings on either side of the Stevens. I ended up using a Dunlop 3/4" steel bar which filled my hand nicely but wouldn't allow accurate pull-offs due to the rounded end.

Is there a bar available with more body-mass than the Stevens? I don't think I can play what I want to play with the Dunlop so I'd be grateful for any suggestions.

I think my Dobro sounds really good. I had good feedback from a couple of people attesting to its tone 'in the house' so I think it served its purpose for the run of the show. Now I'd like to make some progress.
_________________
RR
Emmons LG3 D-10, JCH SD-10, Zum Encore


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Scott Duckworth


From:
Etowah, TN Western Foothills of the Smokies
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 8:06 am     Reply with quote

Dumb suggestion.. try turning the Dunlop bar around...
_________________
(1) E6 Rogue lap steel, (1) A6 Rogue lap steel, Li'l Izzy, Zoom MS-50G Effects Pedal into a Berhinger mixer and Harbinger V2112 speaker(s).

Amateur Radio Operator NA4IT (Extra)
http://www.qsl.net/na4it

I may, in fact, be nuts. However, I am screwed onto the right bolt... Jesus!
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Roger Rettig


From:
An Englishman in Naples, FL
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 8:14 am     Reply with quote

Ermmm - why not?





I didn't think of that! Embarassed
_________________
RR
Emmons LG3 D-10, JCH SD-10, Zum Encore


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James Hartman


From:
Pennsylvania, USA
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 8:18 am     Reply with quote

Pretty sure Shubb makes a variety of different lengths in that style. Their SP1 is around 3.5" Quite a few different manufacturers of 'Stevens' type bars out there making them in different sizes and shapes.
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Roger Rettig


From:
An Englishman in Naples, FL
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 8:27 am     Reply with quote

It's not so much the length as it is the body of the bar. The 3/4 inch Dunlop fills my hand nicely (although I prefer the BJS 15/16" for PSG) and I can play without accidentally muting strings.

Of course the channels on a proper Reso bar help for picking the bar up quickly.
_________________
RR
Emmons LG3 D-10, JCH SD-10, Zum Encore


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Mark Eaton


From:
Sonoma County in The Great State Of Northern California
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 8:42 am     Reply with quote

Check out Charlie's bars. Charles McClary is in Alabama, in retirement from as I recall a career as a machinist, he developed an outstanding dobro capo and has since followed with a very high quality dobro bar. These are typically a little beefier than some of the other designs out there.

Charlie's a good man, and very pleasant to deal with.

https://www.charliescapo.com/

When playing "dobro-tuned" lap steel (Open G and Open D) and sometimes resonator, though my go-to bar for that is a Scheerhorn, I have been using Bill Asher's bar. It is beefier, and a little more bulky than the Scheerhorn. Bill and his wife Jessica are also wonderful folks!

https://asher-guitars-lap-steels-store.myshopify.com/collections/all-accessories/products/asher-chrome-plated-cold-rolled-steel-slide-bar-super-nice
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Mark
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Brad Davis


From:
Texas, USA
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 8:49 am     Reply with quote

If you have large hands maybe try Dunlop's Long Dawg?
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Nathan Laudenbach


From:
Arizona, USA
Post Posted 15 Nov 2017 8:27 pm     Reply with quote

If the Stevens bar was the only bar known to man, I bet you would figure out how to make due. IZ played a soprano uke for crying out loud! Of course I won't touch anything but my "fat black" Clinesmith polymer bar.
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Scott Duckworth


From:
Etowah, TN Western Foothills of the Smokies
Post Posted 16 Nov 2017 3:59 am     Reply with quote

I had one of the Shubb bars with the curve on the end, thinking it would be better to play those individual notes. Turned out I hated it.
_________________
(1) E6 Rogue lap steel, (1) A6 Rogue lap steel, Li'l Izzy, Zoom MS-50G Effects Pedal into a Berhinger mixer and Harbinger V2112 speaker(s).

Amateur Radio Operator NA4IT (Extra)
http://www.qsl.net/na4it

I may, in fact, be nuts. However, I am screwed onto the right bolt... Jesus!
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Roger Rettig


From:
An Englishman in Naples, FL
Post Posted 16 Nov 2017 5:33 am     Reply with quote

Mark:

I like the look of Charlie's capo and I'm ordering one. His bar looks nice too but I wish he'd posted the dimensions. Perhaps I'll contact him. If it's any taller than the Stevens that would do it for me.

Scott:
I've had moderate success with turning the standard 3/4" Dunlop bar back-to-front. I have to remember that I'm new to resonator guitar so the shortcomings are perhaps more my fault than that of any gear I'm using.

Thanks to everyone who has responded.
_________________
RR
Emmons LG3 D-10, JCH SD-10, Zum Encore


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Mark Eaton


From:
Sonoma County in The Great State Of Northern California
Post Posted 16 Nov 2017 11:24 am     Reply with quote

Good move on the capo Roger, tell Charlie I sent you.

RE the bar there is in fact a FAQ section and questions are answered regarding the dimensions, look for FAQ in blue on the top right of your screen and click on it:

https://www.charliescapo.com/
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Mark
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Roger Rettig


From:
An Englishman in Naples, FL
Post Posted 16 Nov 2017 11:36 am     Reply with quote

He replied to my inquiry and told me that the bar is one inch high. The Stevens bar is maybe 3/4" so I took the plunge.

Capo and bar are on their way to me. I'll let him know you put me on to him. Thanks.
_________________
RR
Emmons LG3 D-10, JCH SD-10, Zum Encore


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Jack Hanson


From:
San Luis Valley, USA
Post Posted 16 Nov 2017 11:51 am     Reply with quote

Scott Duckworth wrote:
I had one of the Shubb bars with the curve on the end, thinking it would be better to play those individual notes. Turned out I hated it.

Me too.
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