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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 10:38 am 
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Kramer Maniac
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I don't have any real G.A.S. to speak of, but I picked up a "toy" that I couldn't resist the price of on Craigslist. It's a Fretlight guitar that looks to be in dead mint condition. It came with everything except the Fretlight cable. I plugged in the guitar to check out how it played. It's a lot better than I thought it was going to be. It's essentially a strat with lights (if they work).

I looked online, and the cable was $7, nomally $50, but since the company moved to wifi connections, it cost next to nothing. Even if the lights don't work, I have another "beater", that I might put my first MIJ scalloped neck that I have laying around and refretted a while back.

I spent time breaking down the Fretlight guitar. I found that the wood was cracked near the bass side post, that went into the tremolo cavity., and it made the post very loose. Thankfully, it's a very easy fix, if you're not overwhelmed by it.

I opened the crack a little with a screw driver and first dampened the area. Put the glue in the crack and held the crack closed for a few minutes for it to set. It set pretty quickly, but takes a full 18-24 hours to fully cure. I used a block in the tremolo cavity and another block wedge to keep the pressure on the crack, to hold it closed. I then took a very small piece of maple veneer. I damped it, and put some glue on one side, and slid it into the tremolo post hole, on the side of the crack, to further hold it.

On the bottom side of the tremolo cavity, there was a little piece of wood that seemed to be chipped off, probably came off because of the crack. I cleaned that area up, and glued a piece of veneer in that area to replace it, which will further strengthen the repaired crack.

This morning, I removed the bracing, and put the post back in. As I expected, the post needed to be hammered in with the dead blow hammer. The crack is sealed. The post is set perfectly, and all is good with the guitar.

Now the wait for the cable is on. If the lights work, maybe I'll get an Arduino, and program it to show randome chords and scales, and just use it as a decoration.

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"Women and music...I'm always amazed at other people's choices" - David Lee Roth


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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 5:49 pm 
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Kramer Maniac
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Location: Shrewsbury, UK
:worthless

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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 10:11 pm 
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Kramer Maniac
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wizball wrote:
:worthless



Image

:headbang

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Lefty 1986 Focus 1000 White
Lefty 1987 Focus 1000 Black
Lefty 1987 American Pacer Custom II project
Lefty 1988 Focus 700ST Bass
Lefty 1985 Ferrington KFS-2
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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:01 am 
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Kramer Kingpin
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Location: Germany
lespauled wrote:
... and program it to show randome chords and scales, ...


This would throw me completely off :roll .

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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:52 am 
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Kramer Maniac
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Location: Shrewsbury, UK
Me too :yikes

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'85 Retta, Black
'85 Retta, White
'86 Retta, White
'86 Retta, Black
'87 Retta, Shattered Glass
'86 Focus 2000, Hot Pink
'87 JK1000, Red
'10 Pacer Classic, white


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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 7:58 am 
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Kramer Kommander
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Location: ON CAN
Would annoy me more than anything.

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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:12 am 
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Kramer Maniac
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Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2016 10:18 am
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Location: NYC
Image

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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Mon Jan 22, 2018 2:21 pm 
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Kramer Maniac
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Location: NYC
Fretlight as a binary clock????

http://www.exploringbinary.com/my-fretl ... i-edition/

Image

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"Women and music...I'm always amazed at other people's choices" - David Lee Roth


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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 8:26 pm 
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Kramer Maniac
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Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2016 10:18 am
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Location: NYC
The cable arrived Thursday.

I plugged the guitar in, and loaded the fretlight software, and the guitar lit up. It's a very interesting concept. I can see this as an incredible tool for beginners, and anyone that is trying to learn a part of a song.

The included software gives you 3 methods of controlling the lights. The first is pick a chord/scale, like my website, and it lights up the fretboard to show the notes of that scale/chord, etc.

The second is to show you any videos that you purchased from fretlight. I have none, so this is a wasted feature for me, or anyone who isn't willing to buy extra content.

The 3rd is the most fun for an intermediate or advanced guitar player. You select a genre of music, and pick a key, and it has a "jam like" backing track, and it lights up the fretboard where the notes are for the selected backing track. For example, I can use a rock backing track that uses the pentatonic scale. When I select it, it shows all the notes of the pentatonic in the key I selected.

At first glance, it seems like nothing more than my website....on the fretboard. But, this is very powerful. The extra that it gives you are that it blinks the target notes for the next change.

For example: The basic blues pattern is 1-3-4. So, if I choose my key as A minor, the chords would be A-C-D. When you start the backing track, it shows all the notes. But when the next change is about to occur, it blinks the next target note, in this case would be C. While the C is playing in the backing track, it will begin to blink the D for the next transition. It's pretty cool if you're not already aware of target notes. Basically a target note is a not that resides within the chord. Any note within that chord would work, because it sounds like it fits the backing chord. So, of course, the root note would be there. You don't have to stay within the chord structure of the backing chord, but on the transition, it sounds like you know what you're doing if you hit a target note.

I'm not sure how long the novelty will last. I'm not a person that looks at the fretboard much at all, so the lights don't affect me much. In fact, I began to find them slightly annoying, because I had to look at the fretboard, which is foreign to me.

One other thing that bugged me, was that all the LEDs are the same color. This is only an annoyance to me, since I wrote my website in a manner to distinguish between different intervals. It's a non-issue for 99.9% of the people.

After seeing the blinking, I;m really starting to get interesting in the programming aspect. I might be able to make different types of animations with it. But that's down the road a little while.

It will be a great tool, for figuring out a new scale, or a lead from a song. Still, for $100, it was definitely not money wasted.

A quick update. I had my younger son, who doesn't play guitar, trying the fretlight. He was actually strumming chords in minutes. I was stunned.

I guess it proves that it's a great tool for beginners.

_________________
"Women and music...I'm always amazed at other people's choices" - David Lee Roth


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 Post subject: New Toy Day - Fretlight
PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2018 12:47 am 
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Kramer Maniac
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Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2016 11:33 pm
Posts: 359
Great review of the Fretlight. I have only plugged mine in twice as it is strange to almost tilt the guitar towards you to see what is going on.

:yourock

_________________
Lefty 1986 Focus 1000 White
Lefty 1987 Focus 1000 Black
Lefty 1987 American Pacer Custom II project
Lefty 1988 Focus 700ST Bass
Lefty 1985 Ferrington KFS-2
Lefty 2000 FR-422SML


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