School me on the difference between glass & brass slide

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by crazyneddie, Apr 12, 2015.

  1. crazyneddie

    crazyneddie Member

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    I'd like to start trying some slide playing. What's the difference between glass and brass tonally? I suppose I like the Derek Trucks type tone.
     
  2. OM Flyer

    OM Flyer Member

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    To me, brass is grittier and brighter.
    Bottle glass (soda-lime) is smoother and warmer.

    Pyrex/Corocidin glass is thin and trebly.

    Try a ceramic, too.
     
  3. EADGBE

    EADGBE Member

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    Glass is smoother and faster. Brass/metal has more sustain and is beefier sounding.
     
  4. Richard Guy

    Richard Guy Member

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    For my ears, brass has a fuller tone
     
  5. RussB

    RussB low rent hobbyist Silver Supporting Member

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    May I recommend you buy one of each and hear for yourself?
     
  6. Clyde Billt

    Clyde Billt Member

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    As above but I also find that brass has more "drag" that makes it easier for me to control it and hit a note dead on.
    It also introduces a little scrape noise and can make the note sustain longer.

    I prefer brass on acoustics and glass on electric if I'm looking for a certain type of clean sound.
    I have a polished chrome slide that has the advantages of brass and glass.
     
  7. StratStringSlinger

    StratStringSlinger Member

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    There's a difference between soda-like bottles and pill bottles!? I got a pill bottle now but may have to try this soda-like bottle thing if it's smoother and warmer. Where does one find a soda-like bottle slide???
     
  8. derekd

    derekd Supporting Member

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    Yes.

    Thin glass requires slightly different technique to make up for the lack of weight, imo.

    I prefer my thick ceramic slide. Kind of an in between sound.
     
  9. Dashface

    Dashface Member

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    I've just been trying to start learning slide... It's a technique I just don't really know much about. I don't really know where to start learning.


    ...Keep in mind, I'm a very experienced guitarist otherwise. And I've been playing lap steel for years in my Floyd act. I just can't seem to get the hang of slide playing.
     
  10. Sweetfinger

    Sweetfinger Supporting Member

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    The smoother the surface of the slide, the smoother the notes and less string noise there will be.

    The heavier the slide, the more sustain you will have.

    A heavy chrome plated brass slide will have the most sustain and smooth notes without noise. A piece of copper plumbing pipe will have a raspy sound without a lot of sustain.
     
  11. DRS

    DRS Member

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    Buy both. Not like they're huge $$$.
     
  12. mrmatt1972

    mrmatt1972 Member

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    Slide material is something that works with (or against) your touch and technique, along with the sound of your guitar. No 2 slide players sound the same, even with the same slide. So ultimately, IMHO, slide choice is completely a matter of personal preference. How it feels and how well you can control it is a big part of the choice. I like a glass from wine bottle necks, ceramic for acoustic guitar (but I keep breaking the damn things) and thick walled steel.
     
  13. Swamp Thing

    Swamp Thing Member

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    I've tried both and I prefer glass for a few reasons one of them being it's lighter so attempting to play like Derek Trucks is easier to do. Brass is heavy and harder to fly across the fret board with it.
     
  14. daacrusher2001

    daacrusher2001 Silver Supporting Member

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    Same here...I have both, but find I use glass too...
     
  15. orourke

    orourke Member

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    I like brass. They're tough and heavier sounding and feeling. And they don't break in the pocket of your gig bag and leave a pile a broken glass for you to clean up.
     
  16. sharpshooter

    sharpshooter Member

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    Slide choice is both objective, and subjective. For objectivity, there are only two kinds of slides, those which are of a harder material than the strings; chrome/glass/ceramic/stainless. And those which are softer than the strings; brass/bronze/copper.
    The "hard" slides are more "slippery", and need a little more finesse to control, the "soft" slides have more "friction", and make it a bit easier to come-up to a note and "stop", without overshooting.
    The subjectivity is choosing the weight/mass for the sustain you want,, and keeping in mind what finger you want to wear it on.
    As for sound/tone, much of that will depend upon the pressure you use, with a very light touch, much of the diffs between materials is obfuscated.
     
  17. Roark

    Roark Member

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    Then there is the Craftsman 11/16" deep well socket.

    Listen to this,

     
  18. Stardrake

    Stardrake Member

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    Meen-e-ah-po-lis, Meen-ah-soh tah!
    And for the slide extremist, there's the Wolfram tungsten carbide slide. They start at UKĀ£250.00 each! (Bespoke slides cost more....) I'll never be good enough to need one, but they're out there....
     
  19. Seegs

    Seegs Member

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    Here is a nice demo that I got out of the guitar demo section...it covers some of the differences between slides...

     
  20. sliberty

    sliberty Member

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    I've tried them all, and for me, I prefer the ceramics. But even there, you have choices. Wall thickness matters a lot. Heavier slides (thicker walls) will sustain better, but they also weigh the strings down more. This makes it that much more important that your action is high and your strings are a heavier gauge. Setup a guitar properly for slide only use, and then start buying slides. By the time you have tried 8 or 9 types you will begin to have preferences.

    Currently my go to slide is the short Boneyard slide. From Dunlop.
     

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