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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Gary T Left handed instruments (25) RE: Left handed instruments 19 Feb 02

I'm left-handed and play a lefty guitar. A 10% surcharge for left-handed guitars seems fairly common among large companies. There are some makers who price them the same as right-handed instruments. And I've seen one who had nearly double the extra charge for one model--but not for other models. Didn't make sense to me.

I can only speculate as to why the charge. Perhaps it's more of disruption in an assembly line situation than for a solo craftsman. Perhaps there's a greater risk of unsold instruments when they're made for the general market rather than for a specific order. They may even be following some precedent without knowing the original reason.

Lefties find their choices in the marketplace are significantly limited. Some manufacturers offer a lefty option in only one or two out of a dozen or so models. Many intrument stores only stock a small handful--sometimes one or two--out of dozens in stock. And some stock none. (I even had one such store suggest I play a right-handed guitar, as it would be an advantage to use my dominant hand for the fingering--by which logic most guitars should be left-handed so that all those righties out there could have that advantage.) So lefties are in the position of sometimes feeling lucky to find a guitar at all, and aren't likely to complain if it costs a bit more than a comparable righty guitar.

I, of course, admire and appreciate makers who offer lefty versions of all their models, and stores that carry a fair number of lefty guitars in stock. If there is no surcharge, all the better.

I have never seen lefty versions of other instruments--banjos, mandolins, fiddles, etc.--in any store. I assume they would have to be made to order.

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