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View Full Version : Who Has The Widest Necks?


Robertt8
11-05-2004, 03:27 PM
I've got a buddy looking for a really wide neck...something like a classical guitar but with steel strings. Does anyone make a steel string classical, or who makes the fattest guitar necks for steel strings?

Thanks!

Yoder
11-05-2004, 03:39 PM
Do you want acoustic or electric? I know where there are some electrics, but no acoustics. :D

Jeff M
11-05-2004, 03:42 PM
I believe some Martins come with 1 7/8" necks, but I may be wrong. Send him over to the Martin web site and look at the guitar specs for the different models.
I know Martin has 1 13/16" necks, as my 00028GE has one as do the current production 00028VS's.

There is always the custom builder route to.

Robertt8
11-05-2004, 04:27 PM
talking acoustics here...

martin huh? i thought gibson had pretty wide necks...or is that just their electrics?

wthurman
11-05-2004, 04:27 PM
Powerlifters, generally... the ones in the Olympics have HUGE necks.

:D

Sorry, couldn't resist!

Jeff M
11-05-2004, 04:40 PM
talking acoustics here...

martin huh? i thought gibson had pretty wide necks...or is that just their electrics?

Now are you talking neck WIDTH which is measured at the nut from one side of the finger board to the other, or neck profile thickness-how FAT the neck is -(front to back thickness)? When people use the term "neck width" they are generally talking about the nut width.
Classical guitars are known for their 2" width at the nut, and I thought that was what you were referring to. They can be thin or thick necked-generally tending towards fatter necks.

Most Martins have either a 1 11/16 or 1 3/4" nut width. Most Gibsons, if I am not wrong, are sightly narrower than 1 3/4"

If you are talking about neck THICKNESS then Martin offers many different neck profiles, from their "Vintage V" which is a moderately full neck with a slight "V" ridge down the middle to their "low oval" profile. The old vintage Gibsons classically had a "baseball bat" neck, ie very full. Modern Gibsons have gone over to a "slim neck" profile (which I can't stand).
Taylors have their standard neck profiles-which are slim, of a "fuller profile" which I haven't had the chance to try yet.

Collings tend to have a nice medium full profile , basically a modified form of the Martin "V" to my hands. Goodalls and Lowdens have a full "D" shape to their profiles. SCGC medium full, a bit like Collings.

You can have a "wide" neck (ie 2' at the nut) with either a very thin, relatively flat neck or with a very fat rounded neck. Likewise you can have a very "thin" neck (such as 1 5/8" at the nut) with a very thin or fat neck.

I prefer a 1 3/4" nut width with a moderatly full neck. Many people like 1 3/4" nut widths with a skinny neck. Lots of folks like a narrower nut width (1 11/16" is common) with a fat full neck, many prefer it with a skinny neck.
It is about whatever feels most comfortable to the player.

Boiler
11-05-2004, 05:18 PM
Great analysis/comparisons among all the builders Jeff. I happen to respond more to THICKNESS rather than WIDTH, the thicker the quicker the cramping. Everyone is unique when it comes to hand size, finger shape, play alot of guitars to see what "fits" you best.

Jeff M
11-05-2004, 05:51 PM
..... the thicker the quicker the cramping. Everyone is unique when it comes to hand size, finger shape, play alot of guitars to see what "fits" you best.

Which is exactly the opposite of how my hands react.
Definately a matter of personal fit.

min7b5
11-05-2004, 08:13 PM
If youre after a classical feel, a 1 7/8th nut is the way to go. While a typical classical guitar is about 2 inches, the strings are also almost three times the size of a steelstring. A 1 7/8th steelstring will have just about the same sting spacing as a 2 inch classical.

For a long time my main guitar was a Taylor ordered with a 1 7/8th nut. The trick is making sure you order the guitar with a 2 and 3/8th bridge spacing. Otherwise the right hand wont notice the difference. Id argue that the right hand is where the money is in terms of a classical-ish steelstring. After about two years I went back to 1 3/4, though I do sometimes miss it.

studio_guru
11-05-2004, 10:39 PM
My Dove has a pretty wide neck. You might check out some old school Gibsons. Make sure you find one that sounds good though. From what I hear, older Gibsons are hit and miss as far as quality.

Sage97
11-05-2004, 10:42 PM
Powerlifters, generally... the ones in the Olympics have HUGE necks.

:D

Sorry, couldn't resist!
:D :D :D :D

Just like one of my neighbors!!

Bill Cory
11-06-2004, 06:16 AM
They're not luthier quality or Taylor or Martin quality, but Seagull guitars have 1 7/8 inch necks. I have a nice S6+ spruce I'm selling. Try www.seagullguitars.com to see.

mac1588
11-06-2004, 06:39 AM
Martin really doesn't make many models with necks wider than 1 3/4" nut size. There are currently three with 1 7/8" and three with 1 13/16" nut. All of these are 12-fret, slotted headstock models. This does not include the 12-string models, which are all 1 7/8".

I believe that the standard Seagull nut width is 1.8", which puts it somewhere between 1 3/4" (1.75") and 1 7/8" (1.875").

Mac Carter

cc407
11-06-2004, 06:53 AM
Generally, most Martins are 1 11/16. That's kind of a standard with a lot of steel strings. Some Martin's are 1.75 and wider
Garrisons are 1.7
Taylors, generally, are 1.75, a few narrower.
Tacoma, mostly 1.75, some narrower.

mac1588
11-06-2004, 07:17 AM
Actully, Martin does not make a guitar with a 1.67" (1 2/3") nut width. The standard size for Martin and many other makes is 1 11/16", which is 1.6875".

I got my information about Seagulls normally having 1.8" nut widths from Seagull's spec sheet, which is here:

http://www.seagullguitars.com/specs.htm

Othe than a couple of 12-strings and one specialty model at 1.9", all the rest seem to be 1.8". I don't see any 1.875" models.

Mac Carter

Robertt8
11-06-2004, 10:05 AM
Yeah, I'm talking width...as in across the frets. Pardon my ignorance, but when you say "at the nut" what is that? where the neck meets the body?

mac1588
11-06-2004, 10:15 AM
Robert,

Nut width is commonly referred to as the distance between the high E string and the low E string at the nut (not the width of the nut itself). The nut is the piece of plastic or bone where the headstock joins the fingerboard and which guides the strings onto and over the fingerboard.

The string spacing at the bridge is another important measurement, and it is normally considerably more than the spacing at the nut.

Mac Carter

meridian
11-06-2004, 10:17 AM
This does not include the 12-string models, which are all 1 7/8".

Mac Carter

Almost, Mac! ;)

My J12-40 has a 1 13/16ths neck

mac1588
11-06-2004, 10:45 AM
Joe,

Rats, you got me! I forgot about the J12-40 that Elderly gets in. Is yours one of them or an older one?

Anyway, to save a little face, all regular production Martin 12's are 1 7/8". ;)

Mac

Cellomangler
11-06-2004, 05:05 PM
Robert,

Nut width is commonly referred to as the distance between the high E string and the low E string at the nut (not the width of the nut itself). The nut is the piece of plastic or bone where the headstock joins the fingerboard and which guides the strings onto and over the fingerboard.

The string spacing at the bridge is another important measurement, and it is normally considerably more than the spacing at the nut.

Mac Carter

I'd have to disagree.... Nut width is the width of the nut, which should also be the width of the fretboard at the nut. Measure just about any nylon string classical guitar and the width of the fretboard at the nut is 2". String spacing is string spacing from lowest string to highest string, designated at the bridge or at the nut. I just received a new Epiphone Masterbilt EF-500RCCE with a 1.75" nut. It is wonderful. I'll have to make a posting just for it. It has a wider nut, and string spacing as well, than my Martin DM, which makes it easier to finger complex chords without those unintentional mutes or buzzes on strings by adjacent fingertips.

mac1588
11-06-2004, 05:27 PM
Cellomanger,

I stand corrected - you are absolutely right. The total nut width on my prewar Martins is 1 3/4" but the string spacing is only 1 1/2".

I always thought it was the string spacing but never checked it out. Amazing what a Martin guy can learn on the TGF!! :)

Mac

cominghome419
11-06-2004, 10:45 PM
Try the Lakewood A-32, which is actually grand auditorium shaped guitar with very classical dimensions. Very wide neck and fretboard, and even classical headstock. Sweet stuff.
http://www.lakewood.de/en/indexe.htm
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