Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

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Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby murraytunes » Sat Jul 30, 2011 8:38 am

After dropping and smashing yet another glass slide, I decided that rather than fork out another £5 -£10 for a new one, I would seek an alternative. My local builders merchant sold me a copper plumbing joint for £1 and here is the result

http://www.youtube.com/user/MrDjmurray? ... got5OBElSE

Since then a friend gave me a length of copper pipe which works even better, and free! My advice, don't buy a glass slide!
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby Lo-Fi » Sun Jul 31, 2011 4:34 pm

My first slide from way back when was made from a piece of heavy copper tubing scrounged from my father's workshop. I still got it.
I prefer glass though - my favorite slide being the neck off a bottle of Fighting Cock Kentucky Bourbon.
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby TC6969 » Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:20 pm

I tried one of those once on a CBG I built and found it to be way too light for a decent sound.

To be honest, while the playing is great, that one sounds a little thin too.

Try a thick walled brass (not bronze) if you really want to get that thing honking!
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby goldbrick » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:31 pm

I think it sounds real nice
The best slides are found slides-Love my socket wrench and copper tubing
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby straightblues » Thu Sep 01, 2011 10:17 pm

Nice song. I have always found those to be a little too light for me. I have thicker walled cooper tube that I use. Glad it is working for you. The hardware store always has lots of different items you can use as slides. I have gotten lots of strange looks trying out different items.
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby Liquids » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:39 pm

After years of playing guitar, and only trying slide briefly in my first few years of playing, I realized I should get back into it now that I'm considerably more solid in my 'fretted' playing, for fun and for versatility.

I ran down to the closest store and grabbed a thick walled 'short' glass slide and got practicing. Slide is fun! It's a bit of work, but really a meaningful option in one's repertoire.

I also got to researching and realizing maybe a metal backup would also be good over time...so I ordered a (cheaper) backup glass slide for when (not if) it breaks...and three different metal slides too...

by now I've spent as much time thinking/researching actual slides as I have put slide to strings! But that's just how I am and how much time I have available while in front of a computer,,.

Anyhow, went to the hardware store yesterday, found a brass 'nipple' (more or less just a thick, threaded pipe 1-5" in length or so depending) that fit nicely, as well as a small copper sweat fitting (or something) and a steel spacer, got them all, and my online order of slides arrived.
Sawed the pipe last night too....tons of stuff to try!

I agree, that copper seems pretty nice. It may be a little lower on sustain, like glass is, but no one ever seems to complain about sustain with glass. Easy to find and cheap. Soft, but not smashable. Kind of awkward with that 'T' pipe shape you got there, but most hardware stores will also cut a straight copper pipe for you if you buy a length of it, and then potentially you'd be ready to go. Sand the edges with rough sandpaper if need be.

I like the thick walled brass slide I've fabricated, but after all the work put into making the pipe into a slide, the thin & light chromed slide I ordered (ernie ball) is the easiest to work with and control accurately for my kind of playing, more so than the glass is, even....for me.

I think the 'tonal' aspects of the chose slide are interesting, but when I tried the thin walled metal (thin compared to the heavy glass or brass pipe), the control I had from my finger feeling that much closer to the string rather than behind a thick wall, and the nice fit compared to glass and anything else was really helpful, and surprisingly became 'more important' than any other factor (mass, thickness, tone) or benefits another slide has. Sounds good to boot, so to speak.

For me the copper fitting fit nicely too, much like the above slide. But it turns out the one I had was only a 1" length just to cover from my fingertip to the first knuckle. I thought I'd like that length after trying out using some of well fitted sockets from a socket set, but it ended up needing to be a bit 'too' exact and getting caught on the high strings when I moved it to the lower strings for various reasons.

Only thing I personally found 'unusable' were full length slides. Especially if they don't fit snugly. It's just too hard for me to control such a large piece THAT disconnected from my finger, especially if it's kind of flopping around on my finger loosely and needs to be hugged so tightly by my supporting fingers.

There are lots of options for shape/fit/material/size of slides, and I continue to try, order, and return a variety of them...but as a great teach & musician once told me when it came picking and playing with my fingers...in general, whatever approach you choose to take, "like anything, if you do it that way for long enough, you'll get pretty good at it." And so it is with one's chosen slide...after trying out so many variations back to back last night, the differences were notable, some more comfortable than others...however after a while, I suspect getting used to a slide, sticking with it, and keep doing it is the best thing I can do for my tone and comfort level...
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby A J Davies » Mon Jan 16, 2012 10:12 am

Lol I just tooka beer bottle, set it down in an old icecream container with a towel over it and smashed it with a hammer. Then took a file and smoothed out the rough edges and gradually shaped it to kind of how I wanted it.
Looks ugly as sin but sounds okay. Trouble was though the beer bottle has a slight taper in the neck which means I have to hold my finger on a cocked-off angle to keep it evenly flush with the strings as I play.
Gonna have to do another one out of a whiskey or wine bottle I think.

The best home artifact I had was a small porcelain vase - loved the sound, but because of its size and shape I couldn't fit my finger into it and had to just hold it in my hand like a steel, which limited my playing too much.

Thinking either try out a Dunlop Mudslide or keep hunting the old secondhand thrift stores for a vase that fits my sausage finger into it!
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby jeffl » Mon Jan 16, 2012 5:11 pm

I'm a harper, but I've heard that copper is soft enough to become grooved.
BTW, is Diamond slides still in business? Those guys made beautiful stuff. He used to post on here.
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby leftyguitarman » Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:15 am

jeffl wrote:BTW, is Diamond slides still in business? Those guys made beautiful stuff. He used to post on here.


Their site is still up. I hope Ian didn't go out of business. His slides are amazing!
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby Neal » Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:55 am

Yes, just purchased a few more from Ian.
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby A J Davies » Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:01 am

What are his slides made out of? And does anybody have a link to a website?

Ta.
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby diamond » Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:33 am

Hi Guys! Oh yes ~ still going strong and busier than ever!! Thanks for asking 'bout us jeffl - the reason i've not been posting up here regularly is due to our heavy workload....our stockist base has trebled over the last 12 months and still rising (two more N.Y.C. stores will be stocking our slide range very soon) - i'm blessed to have a very understanding family who don't mind me working seven-days a week to keep slides flowing.

Because of this massive rise in requests we've now opened another workshop/outlet in South Central France to cover individual orders coming in from mainland Europe-based sliders - this France-based workshop (run by my good friend Brett and his wife Donna) also helps us with our biggest problem ~ getting hold of the required quantities of quality bottles! :D

Our long-overdue website update will be on-line later this week (the final additions will be uploaded this coming Friday) with totally new color options in the 'Ultimate' hand-blown crystal range; new 'Signature Series' additions - and the incredible 2012 solid crystal glass tone-bar range (the 'cameo' bars are stunning :shock:)

Still at www.diamondbottlenecks.com - and all the necessary info folks need about our products are in the relevent pages......many thanks to all :wink:

Slide On!

Ian & the crew.
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby maxx england » Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:26 am

I have observe that one reason slide get broken is they roll off tables on to hard floors. Ian, dear boy, is it at all possible to make one with a ridge along it, or a little bump stop?
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby diamond » Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:44 am

Young Dan ~ there's a new design that'll be perfect for you in the new 2012 website updates ~ i'll give yow a shout when it's up on the site :wink:

Slide On!

Ian.
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Re: Copper Plumbing Joint for slide

Postby maxx england » Tue Jan 17, 2012 11:23 am

You coming to the Tower Of Song on Saturday night? A memorial gig for Alf Stokes and hat passer for Heart Foundation. I'll be auctioning a practice amp and an Akai S1000 digital sampler. Wouldn't happen to know anyone who has something that would go well in a pub full of blues and suchlike musicians, would you?

And have you talked to Steve Darrington about a stall in the Red Lion or White Horse in Swanage in March?
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