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View Full Version : Smaller Classical Nut Width


FingerFlicker
06-26-2010, 07:49 PM
What are your guys thoughts on the smallers nut width for nylon. Ive only played the "standard" 2" nut width and ive begin looking into some hybrids with smaller necks. Ive heard it takes away from the nylons vibration ability. Any take on it?

lw216316
06-26-2010, 09:00 PM
After many, many years I went from a 52mm nut to a 50 mm nut.

I like it much better.
I have short fingers and it fits me better.
I've not noticed any degrading of tone etc.

It is what I prefer from now on.
It also makes it easier when I switch back and forth between
the nylon and my steel string -
not as much of a difference to adjust to.

- Larry

Brent Hutto
06-27-2010, 03:47 AM
The width of the neck has nothing to do with the ability of the strings to vibrate. It has to do with the ability of the player to utilize the full range of classical technique. Not everyone needs a 52mm width at the nut or even 50mm, it depends on what techniques you are using and how precisely you can manipulate your left hand. I doubt there are many classical guitarists who could get by with less then 48mm or so but I'm sure there are some.

Then again, if you're going to play simpler stuff (non-classical) without much in the way of vibrato or extremely tricky fingerings a narrower neck may work just fine. But in any case, nylon strings are a bit "fatter" than steel ones and take up more room so you're likely to need at least a little wider neck than on your steel-string guitars.

Stoogey
06-27-2010, 05:36 AM
After many, many years I went from a 52mm nut to a 50 mm nut.

I like it much better.
I have short fingers and it fits me better.
I've not noticed any degrading of tone etc.

It is what I prefer from now on.
It also makes it easier when I switch back and forth between
the nylon and my steel string -
not as much of a difference to adjust to.

- Larry

Same here, having quite small hands/short fingers made it tough on my hands when playing for long durations. I got used to it after a while playing on a standard sized nut but after going to the Taylors smaller nut it was so easy to play like butter with no strain in my hands at all.

WaddyT
06-27-2010, 07:44 AM
Actually, narrowing the string spacing by 1- 2 mm has more impact on stretches than changing the scale by 10 mm. Of course it depends on the hand in question, and the size of the fingers.

ewalling
06-27-2010, 09:16 AM
I prefer the narrower nut width found on crossovers mostly because I like to use my thumb to fret the bass string on certain chords, even when I'm playing a nylon string. I find that the small difference in size counts for a lot; with a 1 7/8" nut I can use my thumb comfortably but with a 2" or a little more, I cannot.

What I do prefer on the classical, though, is the 12 frets to the body. The crossovers that have the narrower nut but retain the 12 frets to the body are the ones of interest for me.

GuitarVlog
06-29-2010, 05:52 PM
1-7/8" nut width is probably what you're looking for. All you other concerns have already been answered (and Brent is correct).

Look for a crossover classical.

Herb Hunter
07-03-2010, 11:28 AM
There is another benefit to the crossover guitars besides neck width and that is the curved fretboard. Traditional classical guitars have a flat fretboard while many crossover guitars have a more ergonomic, slight curve.

joehempel
07-05-2010, 11:23 PM
I prefer the narrower nut. I've got an Ibanez Exotic Wood Koa Classical, and I LOVE the thing to death. I own an Exotic Wood Acoustic as well.

But the tone is fine, I can play classical music just fine. It's a bit bigger than the acoustic neck, but not a whole lot bigger, so my small hands an wrap around it nice. I use my thumb alot, which isn't used a ton from what I can see in classical playing, but I like the fact that I can utilize it...I can't on a standard classical neck.

Herb Hunter
07-06-2010, 06:01 AM
...Ive heard it takes away from the nylons vibration ability. Any take on it?

I don't believe the nut width has any appreciable effect on the strings ability to vibrate and I'd like to hear someone who claims it does, explain why.

WaddyT
07-06-2010, 06:48 AM
Read Brent's post. He's dead on, and I don't mean DOA! :D