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Cow Horn Picks

Steve in Idaho 07 Feb 03 - 10:36 AM
Steve-o 07 Feb 03 - 12:33 PM
Fifer 07 Feb 03 - 12:38 PM
Fifer 07 Feb 03 - 12:58 PM
open mike 07 Feb 03 - 02:36 PM
DonMeixner 07 Feb 03 - 06:13 PM
Steve in Idaho 07 Feb 03 - 09:15 PM
harpgirl 08 Feb 03 - 01:17 AM
harpgirl 08 Feb 03 - 01:28 AM
catspaw49 09 Feb 03 - 03:14 AM
DonMeixner 09 Feb 03 - 09:36 AM
Rapparee 09 Feb 03 - 09:53 AM
GUEST,Taliesn 09 Feb 03 - 06:17 PM
Murray MacLeod 09 Feb 03 - 07:24 PM
Jeri 09 Feb 03 - 11:11 PM
Mad Tom 10 Feb 03 - 02:05 AM
Cluin 10 Feb 03 - 02:28 AM
Vixen 10 Feb 03 - 09:00 AM
JedMarum 10 Feb 03 - 09:18 AM
Alice 10 Feb 03 - 10:13 AM
GUEST,Norton1 11 Feb 03 - 12:53 PM
Alice 12 Feb 03 - 09:34 AM
Big Mick 12 Feb 03 - 09:49 AM
Jeri 12 Feb 03 - 10:01 AM
GUEST,okzcal 15 Jul 10 - 03:24 PM
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Subject: Cow Horn Picks
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 10:36 AM

I was given one of these a week or so ago from a friend in Montana. It's a bit larger than what I normally use, years of the same old thing, but it is very responsive! I've done a bit of sanding to get the edges more rounded and the point sharper - but so far I'm quite impressed. Anyone else using one?

Steve


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Steve-o
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 12:33 PM

No, but I'm interested. I always use tortoise shell picks (God, please...no wailing- they were made by a friend from his pet tortoise, who died a natural death in his back yard), but I will run out at some point. No matter what anyone says, there is nothing that gives the same sound when it hits a guitar string. Can you make a comparison between the two? Are the cow horn picks available somewhere?


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Fifer
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 12:38 PM

Yes, just started trying with natural horn a few weeks ago. I found some old pieces of horn, and sawed out a number of different shapes, then ground them down to different thicknesses and profiles. I find that a fairly thick and rounded pick gives my mandolin and mandola a totally different, very mellow sound compared to nylon or plastic.
put as good a polish as possible on it when you have the shape you like. You will get a really smooooooth action and sound. They sound a bit "pingy" on a banjo however. Stick at it, it's worth trying all the options.
I run a goldsmiths workshop, so we have all the polishing compounds and equipment to hand, which makes it a helluva lot easier to get a good finish in the horn.


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Fifer
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 12:58 PM

With regard to where you can get horn. If there is anybody in your location making ornaments, spoons or such like out of horn, then they are almost certain to have fingerpick sized offcuts as a result. Who knows, they might even shape and polish some for you.


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: open mike
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 02:36 PM

moo.
perhaps there is a pile of horns at
some slaughter house-don't like to
think of the image of it though.
we have a rendering plant where
animals are taken after death.
I guess this is where the hooves
are made into glue-probably have
horns too.


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: DonMeixner
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 06:13 PM

I can buy cow horn at The Tandy Leather Company. I have wondered about this very prospect my self. Do a search for the last year on guitar picks. I think we have covered this ground before but new news is alway good.

Don


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 09:15 PM

I can't compare Cow Horn to Tortoise as I have never even seen a tortoise shell pick. I've always used plastic. My friends live in Montana, just moved there from here, but drive truck up there most of the year. As soon as they get relocated I'll ask them where it came from for sure. After I got it I got to thinking that every time the horse shoer comes he leaves a bunch of potential picks laying out by the barn.

Since I just got it I'll be curious to see how it lasts. I do like the sound. Although I am experiencing a delay in that after I play it for a bit it starts sounding better. Kind of limp or dull at first - but after a song or two - very nice.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: harpgirl
Date: 08 Feb 03 - 01:17 AM

...do they make ya' play "Camptown Races" better, Norton1?...

"No, but I remember ta' milk the muley cow, for fear she will go dry!"


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: harpgirl
Date: 08 Feb 03 - 01:28 AM

...oh and BTW, I've got two made from petrified buckeye nuts! I got them from a hospital orderly I bumped into in Trenton, Michigan. He was on the run from Ohio...he was a poacher or some such! Mumbling something about not being able to get his money's worth from the patient he denuded in a special hospital wing named after some internet wacko!


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: catspaw49
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 03:14 AM

I think you should really try the Fossilized Fecal picks. I can't afford them myself, but they are cut from the excrement of the rare Florida species of wildcat, Abbyharpia floridicum. The expense comes from the waiting period needed for fossilization to take place. There is no shortage of fecal matter because, although there is only one Abbyharpia floridicum known to exist, it is so completely full of shit that it could supply picks for every picker on the planet for the next millenium and possibly beyond.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: DonMeixner
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 09:36 AM

My Dad once made a Jade pick for a Bluegrass flat picker. It was said to be blistering fast but that could have been the picker as much as the pick. That was twenty five years ago. I wonder what ebver happened to it. It would be fine unless dropped on a stone floor. Maybe he did drop and break it, the memory does get fuzzy.

Don


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Rapparee
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 09:53 AM

You can usually get cow horns at almost any "Rondyvoo" of any reasonable size. The blackpowder shooting crowd uses them to make powder horns. Or go to one of the national blackpowder shooting matches, such as those held by the National Muzzleloading Rifle Association in Friendship, IN or Phoenix, AZ.


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: GUEST,Taliesn
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 06:17 PM

Oh ,forgive me. My being tired played a little dyslexic trick on my eyes.........thought the thread title was "Cow Porn Hicks" and I immediately had to check out what they duff this could possibly be about with a " ya gotta be kiddin'" frame of mind.

Nevermind ;-)


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 07:24 PM

There cannot be such a species as Abbyharpia floridicum Spaw.

It would either have to be called Abbyharpia floridica or Abbyharpius floridicus. In the circumstances, with the presumed gender attribution, I feel that Abbyharpia floridica is the species you are after.

I would have to add that IMHO Abbyharpia floridica is by no means such a prolific spreader of fecal matter as you imply, certainly not by comparison with the species spawcattius defecatorius.

Murrius smartarsicus


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Jeri
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 11:11 PM

I was messing around with Fimo today. (That polymer'clay'.) I made a bunch of beads and then ...a guitar pick. I made it, stuck a hole in it so I could string it as a pendant or something. The damned thing works on the guitar and there's hardly any of that plinky noise from string contact. I'll have to make a couple more and then play the crap (no intended reference to any previous posts) out of something to see if I can break it. I suspect it won't last long, but I have to try in order to be sure.


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Mad Tom
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 02:05 AM

Never tried it myself, but I wonder about material like the hooves of cattle or deer? Too soft?


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Cluin
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 02:28 AM

I would think the hooves would be too soft and would wear out too quickly to be worth the work of making plectrums from them. But maybe deer or moose antler would work better. I've got a few spare deer antlers around here. I'm thinking it's worth a try...


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Vixen
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 09:00 AM

We did cover this topic before...I have been using horn picks for about 5 years. I picked up three at a Bluegrass festival--one's too "slick" and shiny; it gets slippery. One curled up and is now very difficult to use. The last one is terrific, and I have hissy fits everytime I misplace it. I haven't been able to find any more, and when I finally found the vendor I bought them from, he said didn't remember ever seeing anything like them. I'd love to have a spare. Or two.

V


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: JedMarum
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 09:18 AM

I've been using a sort of nylon/plastic pick. I always used plastic mediums - but I found I just broke too many damn strings. The nylon picks don't sound as good (they're a bit scratchy) BUT I can play hard and they don't break my strings.


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Alice
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 10:13 AM

I buy horn picks for my son for the mandolin. Horn picks are great! They are available at our local music store, Music Villa, in Bozeman, Montana. Their web site is:
http://www.musicvilla.com/


Alice


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: GUEST,Norton1
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 12:53 PM

Alice! That's where this one came from! Thanks for the link -

I would thank that a horn pick would work if you used the rosette. That part is Ivory. Regular horn would wear out too quickly I think. And the hoof material would work but only the outer covering. I haven't looked to see how thick it is but next time the horses get shod I'm going to take one of the larger pieces and see if it is thick enough.

Jade? Interesting - much as I drop stuff that would probably not last very long for me.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Alice
Date: 12 Feb 03 - 09:34 AM

I highly recommend the cow horn picks. You can probably purchase them by mail if you contact Music Villa at the link I posted. They cost a little more than plastic, of course, but they last a long time (if you don't lose them). Nice feel to the fingers, easy to grip.

Alice


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Big Mick
Date: 12 Feb 03 - 09:49 AM

Here is a selection of horn picks carried by Elderly Instruments and many of them are made to emulate the old tortoise shell picks.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: Jeri
Date: 12 Feb 03 - 10:01 AM

Norton, the leavings from shoeing a horse would be cross sections of the hoof, wouldn't they? Most likely not as strong as a lengthwise grain.


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Subject: RE: Cow Horn Picks
From: GUEST,okzcal
Date: 15 Jul 10 - 03:24 PM

made some picks out of some moose antler,,,,,,,as well as bone,ebony,and old ivory,,,,,never tried horn,,,,,but i swear by moose antler now,especially playing an accoustic guitar


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