The Effect of Radius on Playability Each manufacturer has a different standard fretboard radius and some even differ by model. It didn’t take me long to decide that I needed to find a solution to this problem. The size of the guitar reduces the scale length, which means the neck is shorter, and your fingers can stretch across more frets. For example a wider neck makes fingerpicking easier and a narrower neck makes it easier for players with smaller hands and also easier to play certain chords. Ok, so it only makes sense that necks should come in different sizes to accommodate your size hand. Their necks generally have a smaller width, and their bodies are normally much thinner than an acoustic guitar. The back of the neck begins with a C at the first fret, and gradually changes to a D as you go up towards the body of the guitar. It is made of solid tonal wood, and features a cutout at the higher frets which will be extremely helpful for hitting the highest notes on your guitar. Guitars With Thin Necks for Small Hands. Around 1.7 inches is the standard width at the nut. That is an acceptable action but higher than a flatter radius neck. We’ll start off this list with a real classic, Squier by Fender. The fretboard is also very well suited to small hands, and it produces a very nice sound. Using the riffs or chords that you find difficult, practice stretching your fingers out. With a fretboard radius of 15”, it is extremely easy for even the smallest of hands to get around. Danny Trent. We are a professional review site that receives compensation from the companies whose products we review. describe? Never bend your wrist beyond what feels comfortable for you. Let's think about how we look at height and hand size. You don’t want to buy a guitar for kids, or a pink guitar, or one that says Taylor Swift in pretty lettering on it. It also offers a scale length of … Basically, the problem that people with small hands find on the guitar is that they can’t get their fingers all the way around the neck of the guitar in order to fret the strings properly. If you’re looking for a slick electric guitar to rip up, this Epiphone is your answer. You may notice that the notes are coming out weak, or you experience pain in your fingers and hand after playing. Big Hands, small hands, fat hands, skinny hands, long fingers, and short fingers. Play a standard guitar and see if you can comfortably reach the top and bottom strings. Danny grew up playing anything … Although the body is laminate instead of solid wood, the tone is still very nice. This 3/4 size guitar is a fantastic option for those with small hands. For a 3/4 size guitar, this Fender can truly stand up to its big brothers in terms of tone and performance. The capo won’t be the solution for every song, but it will help in many cases. I had pain all through my fingers and in my wrist, as well. Scale Length. This also makes the Little Martin stand up to all kinds of conditions, making it the perfect guitar for on-the-road. // Leaf Group Lifestyle, Michael Murray Guitar: Size, Weight and Playability of the Guitar. Learning the guitar is a difficult process in the best of times, but choosing the right guitar for someone with small hands will make it easier for them. The regular width is exactly 1 11/16″so that’s really what many people are mostly used to. He studies physics at the Open University, with a particular interest in quantum physics and cosmology. This will move everything up, getting you to those higher (and narrower) frets. Differences Between 38'' & 41'' Acoustic Guitars, Copyright 2020 Leaf Group Ltd. All Rights Reserved. I know the best thing is to just go and try the guitars, but we’re in a pandemic and it’s … It’s a personal choice and depends on how and what you play. The Little Martin is a great quality guitar from a classic brand that has never brought anything but excellence. It may seem obvious to many that electric guitars are generally smaller and easier to handle than acoustic guitars. The solution? To achieve a perfect fit, the Thalia Capo comes with multiple interchangable fretpads so that you can match the fretboard radius of your specific instrument. Thankfully, after doing some research, I realized that there was a way around the problem of small hands. The measurement of the fretboard radius refers to the radius of a circle from which a small segment of the circumference equal to the width of the fretboard … The best guitar for short fingers or small hands is one with a flat neck that makes it easier for your shorter fingers to reach around the neck. Guitars … So, if the lower frets are already small, you’ll have to squeeze into some pretty tight spaces in the higher frets. The scale length of a guitar is measured from the nut of the guitar to the center of the … Anybody between 3 feet, 10 inches and 4 1/2 feet tall should get a half-size guitar. The neck of the instrument is the long, thin portion that houses the fret-board. You can by smaller guitars for people with smaller hands or children, if you wish: one-quarter-size, half-size and three-quarter-size guitars are all available, and these may be more suitable for small-handed or child players. Greg is a busy father and landscaper who finds the guitar to be a big stress reliever. Neck-thickness is measured as a radius, as if the curve on the back of the neck continued around to form a circle. I know these guitars have had a bad rep in the past, but it’s amazing to see how much they’ve improved over the years. In fact, you could buy what’s known as a 3/4 acoustic guitar. In fact, guitars come in many different shapes and sizes. Remember: the frets get smaller as they go up the neck. But some people (including some very manly men) have picked up a guitar and realized that their hand size made it difficult to play. What makes this instrument unique for smaller hands is the 12″ fingerboard radius. This allows for the strings to be close together, but can make fretting one individual string more difficult. Some are naturally smaller because of the type of guitar; others are built smaller for the specific purpose of fitting people who are smaller. Many Fender guitars, especially Stratocasters, now have a “modern C shape” (or “flat oval”) neck … Any smaller children should get a one-quarter-size guitar. If you’re looking for the classic Epiphone sound … For an acoustic, I personally recommend the Little Martin LXM. Wide, thick neck profiles can be very uncomfortable for people with small hands to play, meaning that guitars with more narrow, thinner neck profiles will be a much better choice than a neck that is too chunky to get your fingers around. Basically, if you don’t have a guitar with narrowed frets, the higher frets will be your best friends. Eveything else being equal, would a smaller or larger fretboard radius be easier to play for someone with small hands and short stubby fingers. If you got some wider that neck allows for your fretting fingers to have more space to maneuver. Fender Modern Player Telecaster Thinline Deluxe. The more you practice with it, the more useful it will be. This means that the curve on the back of the neck is shallower, making it easier to play. Thread starter radiohead625; Start date Feb 25, 2012; R. radiohead625 Member. Lee Johnson has written for various publications and websites since 2005, covering science, music and a wide range of topics. I really enjoy the compound neck contour and fretboard, on my 2017 Fender Stratocaster. Other possible profiles include the “U” profile, virtually rectangular in shape, and the “V” profile, which has a groove running down the center. The frets on a short scale guitar are closer together. Epiphone Les Paul Special VE. When I first started to learn the guitar, I realized that my fingers were constantly in pain. … If you do not find your specific brand and model below you can Google your guitar … A neck radius that is somewhere between 9” and 15” … I’d say that the best guitar for small hands would be a short scale model that also has a thin neck (around 43mm nut width… Today, I’m going to show you some tips that really helped me, as well as 5 of the best guitars for small hands that are currently on the market. This is probably the most boring out of my tips, but also the most useful. The radius of that imaginary circle is the neck radius. Many vintage Fender guitars have a radius of 7.25", whereas most Gibson guitars tend to have a flatter 12" radius… The Squier might still be held back by its ugly reputation as beginner’s junk, but this guitar is truly breaking out the mold. All you need is an instrument that is truly suited to your needs. In the end, small hands don’t have to stop you from playing the guitar well. A neck radius that is somewhere between 9” and 15” is a good starting point for small hands. Both neck/fingerboards seen here in cross section are of the same width; note that the smaller vintage-style 7.25″ radius on the left yields greater fingerboard curvature than the longer modern 9.5″ radius … And you have lost some fret height. The best profile for people with small hands is the “C” profile, found on many guitars that usually have thinner necks, such as the Fender Stratocaster and the Gibson Les Paul and Les Paul Junior. The compound fretboard begins with a 9 1/2" radius, at the first fret, and gradually changes to 14" radius at the neck… An inch and a half may not seem like much, but it actually makes a huge difference. Whether the radius is too flat or round is really only answered on a "per neck… For whatever reason, 12" seems to be the perfect radius for me in regards to playability and comfort. Again, play a normal guitar and see if you think the neck is too thick. Since the circle is larger, the resulting arc across the fingerboard is flatter — because the width of the fingerboard is the same. Like the Jameson Thinline, the Kona K2 is a guitar that gives you more than you pay for it. Something else you’ll have to look at is the distance between the frets. The radius of that imaginary circle is the neck radius. And, 1 ¾ inches another normal width that is preferred by some fingerstyle players. The pinky finger is often the most underutilized asset that a guitar player with small hands has. While you want to be balanced and not cause yourself unnecessary pain, this will help get your fingers to a point where they can play those difficult chords and riffs more naturally. 1) above uses a 16″ radius. If you’re having trouble fretting chords on the first and second frets, try using a capo. However, does that mean that people with small hands can’t play acoustic guitars? Over the … C-Shaped Neck Profile. Ready to find the right guitar for your small hands? And since I was learning guitar at the age of 41, my joints let me know that they were not okay with the situation. Other common sizes for … They are usually not as deep as most U- and V-shaped neck profiles. Offers exceptional playability. How Fretboard Radius Is Measured. Well finished and … For its physical appearance, there are also guitars that are small… Basically, you’ll be looking for a flat C shape on the back of the neck. The neck profile or neck shape along with the fretboard radius is another spec that determines the comfort of a guitar neck, especially for those of us with diminutive hand size. There are plenty of options for men with small hands who just need a somewhat smaller guitar! The updated list of best electric guitars for small hands 2020. This could also mean leads and riffs that are played higher on the fretboard. If this has happened to you, you may have wondered: “Are my hands too small to play the guitar?”. How do you get that perfect guitar posture? As a general rule, anyone over 5 feet tall should be able to play a full-sized instrument. He's based in the UK and drinks too much tea. Guitars With Thin Necks for Small Hands. I felt like I was constantly stretching my hand beyond its normal function. If you want to accommodate some extra string pairs, the neck width on those 12 string instruments is around 1 7/8″. ©2018 LearnGuitars.com | All Rights Reserved, How to Find the Best Guitar for Small Hands, View The Full Specs On Amazon >> Click Here, Top Guitar Effects Pedals for Delay and Echo, Best Distortion and Overdrive Effects Pedals, Include Finger-Stretching Exercises In Your Routine, The edges of the fretboard are somewhat sharp, May show wear somewhat faster than a more expensive model, Fretboard size is excellent for small hands, Durable build for travel and use outside of home, Squier by Fender Classic Vibe 50's Stratocaster, You may need to replace the tuners and/or pickups, Fender MA-1 3/4-Size Steel String Acoustic Guitar, Excellent tone and volume for a 3/4 guitar. We’ve gone through some of the best guitars, all of which have rather reasonable prices for the quality that they provide. Messages 1,559. As for an electric, I recommend the Fender Stratocaster Squier. Looking for the perfect guitar will always depend on the people’s choice and preference. Oddly enough, PRS' 10" radius … Its fretboard has a 9.5” radius, which is slightly larger than some of the options we’ve seen but is still a very reasonable size. The width of the neck – or we could talk about the width of the fingerboard (same measurement) – will be different at the nut end than it is towards the body of the guitar. Well, I used to wonder this as well, but I have good news: There is no such thing as hands that are too small for the guitar! The price tag may be a bit higher than the Fender and Yamaha acoustics we looked at, but it is definitely worth it for the quality. If you’re planning on doing a lot of high lead guitar, it would be better to stick with normal-sized frets. The pattern vintage is a chucky neck shape with just the right amount of shaping in the right places, so that it fits the hand … Larger numbers mean a thinner neck. I did this when I first started playing guitar, and it wasn’t long before I had terrible pain in my wrist after playing. Smaller vintage radii like found on vintage and many RI F-type guitars aggravate the daylights out of my arm....even 9.5". While smaller-built guitars will typically include the feature of a small neck width, there are many normal-sized guitars that also have a shallow neck. This may be the best guitar for 8 to 11 year olds. A guitar is a stringed instrument, available in both electric and acoustic varieties. So nut widths of the classical guitar can reach ar… measure? The following table lists common fretboard radii used by major manufacturer. All guitars vary in shape, size, genres, styles, and sounds. [QUESTION] Fretboard radius and small hands. The solution to this is finding a guitar with a neck that is somewhat smaller in width and depth. I managed to figure these out over the years, and I learned a few from other guitarists as well. Warmoth offers you 3 neck widths and 8 Neck Profile for a combination of 24 neck … Choose a thinner-necked model if possible. So again, like with guitar shapes and sizes, we often think of or look at the human image as a repetitive set of forms that when approached in mass is faceless, featureless and devoid of detail like identical yet shapeless silhouettes. And just like with neck shape, the fingerboard radius can give you an idea of how a guitar will feel and play. This will eventually lead to pain, and also slows you down quite a bit. Here are some quick tips that along with right guitar should help you out. Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images. The width of the neck at the “nut” is another factor that can be looked at to understand neck sizes. A thicker neck will be difficult to play for somebody with small hands. If you are between 4 1/2 and 5 feet tall, a three-quarter-size guitar may easier to play. Most guitars have a neck radius of between 10 and 16 inches… Like I said, this is not a thing that men really want to admit. Also, it is the only acoustic-electric on our list, meaning that you can have the best of both worlds with this little guitar. What Is the Difference Between Classical and Folk Guitars? Like will someone will small hands prefer a 9 1/2" radius rather that 7 1/2" radius … Likely, you’ve found that when you’re instructed to use your ring finger in a certain chord or lead riff, you have to make a monumental effort to stretch until you can fret the right note. This Ephiphone has a great fretboard radius of 12”, which is slightly larger than the Yamaha, but still very manageable for small hands. And I’m not just talking about guitars for kids. So, how can you overcome small hands and find the best guitar to suit your needs? The satin finish is perfect for this type of guitar, and the fretboard is the perfect size for small hands. Neck-thickness is measured as a radius, as if the curve on the back of the neck continued around to form a circle. With such a busy home life, it wasn't until Greg combined the guitar with the internet, that he finally started having fun and improved a lot. The neck on the right (Fig. The neck on this guitar is paper thin (okay, maybe a little thicker than that), but thanks to sturdy construction, it feels solid and secure in the hand. This guitar is the most expensive on our list today, coming in at just over $400, but the price is shown in the quality. Yeah, right, you know what I'm talking about! Feel really is king when it comes to guitars. Like some flowers, animals, bugs, clouds, trees, (and musical instruments)… very easy to recognise, but to draw? Sometimes, those of us with small hands tend to bend our wrist more than we should, trying to allow more space for our fingers to move. If you don’t regularly stretch your fingers, they will never adapt. It is built from solid mahogany, and has a great sound. Just like singers try to find songs that fit their vocal range, guitarists with small hands can find songs that are easier to play for their hands. Les Paul guitars have a longer and curved neck which is around 12” in comparison to the guitars for small hands which usually start from 9.5” and have a flat neck. Finding out about the correct neck size for someone with small hands means understanding overall guitar size and neck width, thickness and profile. It’s also extremely affordable for the quality, coming in at under $200. The truth is another neck with a 10-16″ compound radius or even flatter should be considered to play solos. And not just the pain of gaining callouses on my fingertips (that’s normal).
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