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First, they are made from "solid block" clay. This type of clay is denser than the average "ceramic" slides out there in the market today. The denser the material used, the greater the tonal properties of that slide (volume, sustain and presence). That clay, matched with the specific special custom glazes that we make right here in the shop, creates slide and tone bar possibilities far beyond what was available before. Each slide is hand-worked and hand-glazed, in small batches to ensure the highest quality.
Absolutely NOT!! The majority of so-called "ceramic" slides are made from liquid clay called "slip" and are poured into molds. This molding system does give you the ability to make thousands of slides at a time, all alike… but much depends on the type of slip used. For the most part, those "MUD or Moon" slides are made from a high fire porcelain slip. This material is great for coffee mugs, but if you’ve ever played with one you’ll find out like I did, that it isn’t good for guitar slides.
In order to give the slides any kind of volume of presence, they had to increase the size, or mass, of the slide. This created another problem…the slides became clumsy and bulky, and had a tendency to "bottom out" or what I call "fret clacking." And you ended up with a real rhino on your finger, again…a problem!
Because our slides are based on the theory of density of material rather than mass (size), you end up with a much lighter and maneuverable slide, and no bottoming out on the neck.
Like any tool, it’s nice to have the right tool for the right job! Much depends on several factors about the slide player. For example, what tones are you looking for? What type of rig do you play through? Are you looking for more of an acoustic or an electric application? If you’re playing acoustically, what tonewoods are your guitars made from? Are you using a sound hole pickup, or stage mike…or BOTH? When it comes to the inner diameter of the slides, much depends on what the slider is comfortable with. Also the style or techniques that they incorporate in their playing that will show the I.D. (inner diameter) and length of the slide that is best for them. These are but a few of the questions we ask our customers so that they can have the best chance at truly finding the slide that can deliver the tones they want.
With over 195 finger slide and 58 tone bar possibilities, what we’re trying to do here at RMSC is to be able to offer a custom slide at a non-custom price.