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Gene Parsons' Classic Parsons/White B-Bender LONG STROKE option

What exactly is the "LONG STROKE OPTION" ?

The "long stroke option" refers to the length of travel of the shoulder strap lever on both the Parsons/White and the Fender B Bender (also known as the Parsons/Green) StringBender. The standard length of travel, (to raise the B String one full tone), is normally between 7/16th of an inch and one half of an inch, (depending on gauge of B String used).

The "Long Stroke Option" is a modification that increases the travel of the Shoulder Strap Lever, (where it attaches to the shoulder strap), to between 7/8th of an inch to an inch. In other words; the Shoulder Strap Lever travels about 40% farther to raise the B String a full tone.

*What does having a "Long Stroke" accomplish? The extra length of travel at the end of the Strap Lever gives the player more control over the "bending" note. It has a characteristically "SWEET" sound. When I built the first StringBender for Clarence White back in 1967, I built it with an inch and 1/8th stroke. If you listen to the old Byrds records with Clarence and that guitar on them, (like "Easy Rider"), you will hear the characteristic sound I am referring to. Of course a lot of the beauty was simply Clarence playing the guitar, but the inherently great sound of the StringBender was in large part due to its long stroke.

Several years after I built the original prototype guitar for Clarence White I began building, and installing StringBenders in guitars as a business. At that time I responded to the desire of musicians to have a shorter stroke to play fast bender licks. In recent years however, the beauty of the LONG STROKE has been rediscovered.

The current "Long Stroke Option" is not built with quite as long a travel as the original Clarence White bender. I have kept the travel just under an inch to accommodate the "fast licks" but the travel is ample to provide the sweet, Clarence White sound.

-- Gene Parsons

Inventor of the Shoulder Strap actuated String Bender
Gene is reflected in the plexiglass

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