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Help with whammy bar?

Beginners
2112anthem  
25 Oct 2009 18:11 | Quote
Joined: 25 Oct 2009
Karma
Anyone heard the song "Limelight" by Rush? I'm trying to play that, and the solo requires a whammy bar. I've seen people play with a whammy bar, appearing to only use their fingers, but when I try, I find I have to use my whole arm to press down on it and keep it down. Nor can I vibrato with it. Is there something I can/need to do to help, or do I just need to practice (I'm not very strong)? I play a Fender Squier.
deefa  
25 Oct 2009 19:02 | Quote
Joined: 22 Dec 2007
United Kingdom
Karma: 8


His whammy is positioned just below his hand in easy reach for the couple of 'dive bombs' he performs. Shouldn't present too much of a problem, just practice. Make sure the arm is just tight enough to retain its position instead of flopping down.

BTW I see it's your first post. Welcome to the site Anthem!
2112anthem  
25 Oct 2009 19:18 | Quote
Joined: 25 Oct 2009
Karma
Thanks! Right now I can only get the pitch to lower 2 steps, I guess I have a lot of practicing to do! Thanks for helping!
apollos  
25 Oct 2009 22:53 | Quote
Joined: 09 Oct 2009
United States
Karma
hes right thats wut i do and i push it down wiht my pinky and ring finger slowly then lift it up slow or sometimes i push it down fast then lift slow
2112anthem  
26 Oct 2009 15:37 | Quote
Joined: 25 Oct 2009
Karma
apollos says:
...i push it down wiht my pinky and ring finger...

That's my problem, though; in order to get the pitch to lower just 2 steps (1 whole note) I have to press my palm against the bar and use my entire arm, and then it feels like I'm about to break something...

I think there's something I need to do to install the bar, aside from just screwing it in the little hole. I can't think of what, but I'm pretty sure it shouldn't be this hard to depress the whammy bar, and I should be able to use my fingers instead of my entire arm.
Schecter_player  
26 Oct 2009 15:46 | Quote
Joined: 12 Jul 2009
Canada
Karma: 3
If you have really high gauge strings on it might make it harder, but i never play with a whammy bar, so i don't really know.
fender_bender  
27 Oct 2009 00:25 | Quote
Joined: 09 Oct 2009
United States
Karma: 5
What guitar do you have? There are springs in the back of guitars that have a tremolo or whammy bar. If they are tightened to much it would make it more difficult to dive bomb. Adjusting these springs should be done by someone who knows what they are doing. If you adjust them then it will affect your action, your bridge height and your intonation a bit. If its a Floyd Rose trem then I can't help you as I don't have a floyd and never worked on one.
RA  
27 Oct 2009 01:33 | Quote
Joined: 24 Sep 2008
United States
Karma: 16
fender made the point i was going to make. fender's style vibrato are of a very nice design just have to be set up right. bring it to some one to have it balanced.
2112anthem  
1 Nov 2009 19:26 | Quote
Joined: 25 Oct 2009
Karma
Yeah, it's a fender whammy bar; not floating, can only go down. And that does make sense, if the springs are too tight, it'll be harder to pull them. Thanks for helping, and I'll look into getting them adjusted!
fender_bender  
2 Nov 2009 09:23 | Quote
Joined: 09 Oct 2009
United States
Karma: 5
A fender trem will go up if your bridge is set up properly. I think fender specs is 1/8 of an inch from the bottom of the bridge to the body. If your bridge is flat against the body then it won't allow it to go up or if your guitar is used there may be a block of wood in there blocking the trem from bending up. Some people do that to help the guitar stay in tune better.
gx1327  
4 Nov 2009 13:52 | Quote
Joined: 20 Sep 2009
United States
Karma: 9
my squier trem does go "up" but only so slightly before the fulcrumed bridge lies flush with the body of the guitar.

the normal tension of the strings pulls the bridge just barely out of contact with the body
sev121993  
5 Nov 2009 10:23 | Quote
Joined: 13 Oct 2009
Qatar
Karma
Dont let the whammy bar get the best of you. No one wants that kind of reputation.


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