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Khords For The Klumsy

An autoharp type mechanism for guitars.
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I love picking up a fake book and singing the songs. But because I my fingers don't like following my instruction, I can't play guitar chords. I've tried the autoharp, and I love it, however, it just doesn't have the rich soothing sound of an acoustic guitar. I've tested the Suzuki electronic chord thing, and I thing the engineers have a ways to go before I buy one.

This idea is to modify the neck of a guitar to mechanically select chords. Between each of the strings, on every fret, I put a small bent rod with a felt sock on the end. This rod will be used to finger the string on that fret. I imagine this rod to be about 14g, and rigid. This rod is hinged just below the fret board, and then protrudes to the now hollowed underside of the fret board and neck. Each fret will have six of these rods - one for each string - each rod will be slightly offset from the other.

The lucky owner of this gizmo will be supplied a standard set of plastic 'Chord Cards' - precut for common chord. These cards, up to 7 of them, can be placed in the open side of the neck (high E side), and each card has a push tab. These cards are cut out in a manner, that when pushed, will finger the exact string, at the exact fret to achieve that chord. All the player has to do is strum.

Blank 'Chord Cards' will be supplied with the unit, to permit the happy owner to cut the chords that suits them best.

Pre-apologies for my crude drawing.

1st2know, Feb 07 2004

(?) Klumsy Drawing http://216.230.201.53/hbchord.jpg
[1st2know, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

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       The traditional solution is to tune the open strings to a chord, and move your finger or a slide up and down to vary the pitch.   

       I don't know if this new idea would interfere with the guitar's acoustics, causing nasty vibrations.
kropotkin, Feb 07 2004
  

       [krop] the tuning which you talk of is unusual, but is used, "Big Yellow Taxi" by Joni Mitchell being a good example.   

       The trouble is that you have to tune to a chord type (Maj, Min, Maj7, Min7 for example). You then have to use fingering to change the pre-tuned chord, so unless your tune has only one chord type in it, you can't avoid using the left hand for playing.
jonthegeologist, Feb 07 2004
  

       [I'm picking jp nasty vibrations....doo, doo, doo, nasty vibrations....]   

       I played in a garage band in my misspent youth with a guitar tuned as you describe. Great fun, limited capability [capo-bility ?].
normzone, Feb 07 2004
  

       Yes, there is a lot of new metal here to vibrate. When I'm constructing this, I need to make sure that all fittings are tight, and I would use felt washers and shims in the touble spots: where the actuators are hinged in to the neck.

I would also line the openings in the frets with felt. When the actuator is in its rest state, it will be proped against the felt lining.

Replacing all springs with natural rubber will help.
1st2know, Feb 07 2004
  

       I just humm along and stump with my feet. I always found that works better than pretending to know any music.
kbecker, Feb 07 2004
  
      
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