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Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?

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Subject: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Genie
Date: 11 Aug 02 - 08:00 PM

I have very short fingers (which also don't bend every which way like some guitarists' do), so I play much better on a thin-necked guitar than on ones with wider necks (ceteris paribus). I have a Martin 00018 that serves me well, but a friend of mine had a guitar with an even longer and thinner neck, and I'd be interested in acquiring one like hers if I could remember what it was.

It seems to me its name began with a "W" and was a short name, but I don't think it was "Washburn." I just don't remember.

Anyway, do any of you folks know of a (full size or near full size) acoustic flat-top guitar that has really good action and a long skinny neck -- something ideally suited to someone with very small hands?

Genie


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: paul0
Date: 11 Aug 02 - 08:29 PM

Try a Tacoma Roadking (RM6C). It's the thinnest neck that I've run across.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Genie
Date: 11 Aug 02 - 08:40 PM

Thanks for the tip, Paul.

Glad it's "Roadking," not "Roadkill!" ;- )

Genie


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 11 Aug 02 - 08:55 PM

Genie

I have a Wechter Pathmaker Elite that has an almost-electric-guitar-feeling neck. It is an unusual double-cutaway design, with the neck meeting the body at the 19th fret. The body is about 000 size (less the cutaways) with the depth of a dreadnought. Plenty of volume. Maybe this is the "W" guitar your friend has. If not, check 'em out anyway.

Wechter has recently begun importing less expensive "copies" of their own guitars from somewhere in East Asia (similar to what Martin did with the Sigma line) and are selling those for about half of what the made-by-hand-in-America Elite sells for. They just call them "Pathmaker". I know Elderly Instruments carries them, but there are probably a lot of stores that are giving them a try. They're in the $500.00 USD range.

Bruce


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 11 Aug 02 - 09:00 PM

Oops...I forgot... here's a BLUE CLICKIE for Wechter.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Peg
Date: 11 Aug 02 - 09:56 PM

I also have short fingers and I found a Tachamine was quite suitable (I had one of those lovely old "lawsuit" ones for a while--still trying to find another one if anyone sees one for sale)

peg


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Genie
Date: 11 Aug 02 - 10:23 PM

Peg, the Takamine I have is a Jasmine (nylon string acoustic/electric cutaway), and its neck is quite wide (like a classical guitar). What model is your Tak?

Genie


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: bet
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 12:25 AM

Wow! I just had this conversation with my daughter in CA. She's wanting me to play more and I find it very frustrating with these short fingers. Glad for all the info, I'm going to look into some of them. bet


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 02:01 AM

Have you considered playing the mandolin instead of guitar? The neck is thin and most of the chords are played with only 2 fingers, the only big reach is for F.john


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Genie
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 02:18 AM

Funny thing, John, but the smallness of the mandolin neck makes it even HARDER to play than the guitar, given my osteoarthritis in my left hand. In particular, my left index finger does not like to bend at the 2nd joint--which gives me a preference for barre chords (which I never played for the first 20 to 25 years I played guitar) but makes playing teensy-necked instruments harder. Classical guitars are easier in one way, given their nylon strings, but they aggravate the arthritis by making me "overstretch" to adjust to the wide neck.

As I said above, the 00018 is pretty comfortable for my hand. But a guitar with a neck that is slightly slimmer than that -- I'm talking total circumference here -- would be even better.

I am, however, considering learning the dulcimer or banjo (with the banjo open tuned) as a "side" instrument. Either that or maybe a lap-style guitar.

In any event, I'd like to find a really narrow necked guitar. I'm told that Bonnie Raitt designed (an electric) one for herself, because she couldn't find one on the market that was the right size for her.

Genie


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,John of the Hill
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 08:46 PM

Genie, Perhaps you could try a cittern, an octave mandolin, or a tenor guitar as an alternative instrument. John


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Genie
Date: 12 Aug 02 - 09:28 PM

No offense, John, but I've spent too many years developing my 6-string technique to even consider a 4-string instrument (except for taking to the beach, etc.). As for the cittern or the octave mandolin, I'm not familiar with them.

I do still want to play 6-string guitar, though -- and it's not like I CAN'T play it any more --, so my main focus is on finding one that fits my hand. (Dulcimer, lap guitars, banjos, etc., all require learning to play all over again -- just as alternative tunings on the guitar do (at least for the left hand).

Genie


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,mollificent
Date: 13 Aug 02 - 01:35 AM

Baby Taylors are really fun, if you don't mind a 3/4 size guitar. They've got a neat sound. The all-mahogany (top as well as back and sides) is my favorite. Under $300, too. :)

Moll


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: EBarnacle1
Date: 13 Aug 02 - 11:22 AM

Contact Nick Appolonio, he will make an instrument to suit your needs. At a fair price, too.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Genie
Date: 14 Aug 02 - 12:19 AM

How do you contact Nick, EB? Is he a Mudcatter?

Mollificent, I'll look into the baby Taylor. I have a 3/4 size Ibanez and it is easy to play. But I really want a full-size sound -- especially a sound that's not too trebly.

One thing I have been considering is learning to play the electric bass, in addition to standard guitar. That's one 4-string intstrument I'd consider.

In this thread, though, I'm mainly looking for info on standard-size guitars that have thin necks. In fact, if someone made a thin-necked dreadnought, I'd be interested.

Genie


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Gary T
Date: 14 Aug 02 - 02:09 PM

I'm not sure how thin a neck you want here. I have an old Yamaha with a thick neck, and a less-old Yamaha with a thin(ner) neck. I have a current model Simon and Patrick with a neck at least as thin as the 2nd Yamaha, and I would assume that Seagull guitars would have the same dimensions. Don't know how much thinner a neck could be without breaking. Are you finding that the majority of new guitars available have thicker necks than you want?


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Memphis Mud
Date: 14 Aug 02 - 02:34 PM

I have an Ovation. It has a nice thin neck. The action is close to an electric's. The rounded back can let the guitar slip when I'm kickin' back, playing with my feet up on the back of the couch. Otherwise, I like it a lot.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Genie
Date: 14 Aug 02 - 11:33 PM

Yes, Gary, most guitars--new or old--have necks thicker than my Martin 00018. That one has beautiful action and has a neck I can handle well, but I'm interested in adding another guitar with an even thinner neck but the same fret length.

Paradoxically, I once played a friend's D-35 and found it ALMOST as "user friendly" as the 00018. The neck is wider, but the action was superb. In other words, neck size is not the whole story.

Mud, I've tried Ovations, and they do play nicely, but even when I'm standing they tend to go "belly up," as though I were playing a lap guitar.

Genie


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: EBarnacle1
Date: 15 Aug 02 - 03:36 PM

Nick's phone no. is 207-236-6312. A secondary good side is that for a really custom instrument, you will get the pleasure of travelling to Maine so that he can be sure of what you need. Then, you can go again to check the fit prior to acceptance.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Mudlark
Date: 05 May 03 - 03:30 PM

Genie...Did you ever find the thin-necked guitar of your dreams. I'm on a similiar hunt, going to look at a Larribee tomorrow that the guy claims has a very small radius. My 016 Martin parlour guitar has a wonderful big sound and good action, but I have l. hand probs too and the thick radius makes stretches like G7, are getting harder to achieve smoothly. I also don't have much money to spend so I fear this is going to be a needle in the haystack situation.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,Perfesser Blue
Date: 05 May 03 - 04:22 PM

I have seen so many stubby people play so many finger breaking chords with stubby little nubs that I have but one suggestion:
Quit whining and practice.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: AKS
Date: 06 May 03 - 03:10 AM

Quit whining and practice

PB, you haven't met with Art Hritis yet, have you?


AKS


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST
Date: 06 May 03 - 07:34 AM

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


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Midchuck
Date: 06 May 03 - 07:43 AM

Do you mean thin or narrow? I. e. smaller back-to-front or smaller across?

I have fairly large hands but short fingers; and I don't really have arthritis except in the end joint of my left little finger, where I bent it backwards to finger a barred "A" form for so many years. But I now find it uncomfortable to play a neck narrower than 1 3/4" at the nut (1 11/16" is usually considered "standard" width).

Some authorities advise a wider neck for people who have trouble fingering due to small hands and short fingers. Check out all sizes.

Peter.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,Martin Gibson
Date: 06 May 03 - 11:48 AM

They are not full sized, but have fabulous thin necks and action. I'm talking about the Gibson LG series. Though they are out of production for a while, there are plenty of LG0, LG1, LG2, and some LG3s around.

These guitars are very sweet sounding and playing.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Cluin
Date: 06 May 03 - 11:54 AM

A lot of Gibsons have thinner necks. Emmylou Harris's guiar-of-choice is a Gibson J-200 which she says has a "real narrow neck that works so well for me".


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Mudlark
Date: 06 May 03 - 03:52 PM

Thanks for the Gibson input...I've never played one. And there is a diff. betwn thick and wide...too narrow and I cant bunch my fingers up enough! It is the depth that bothers me...once I get my hand around the chunkiness, I've less power now in my fingers.

Practice always in order but past a certain point it makes things worse, not better.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Bill D
Date: 06 May 03 - 05:02 PM

well, Norton1,(Steve) in Idaho, bought Ferrara's Gurian last year..it is a narrower, and I think, slightly thinner neck. I don't think you could get it away from him without an army, but there are occasionally Gurian's available.


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Subject: RE: Help: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 06 May 03 - 05:50 PM

Hi Genie. If it's your "work guitar" then nothing should get in the way of total comfort. Get a competant repair person to contour the neck to your specifications. My 0-18 had a very clubby neck. I had Bruce Dowd shave it down to where it plays like a dream!

About two hundred dollars.

Cheers

Rick


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Subject: sigma guitars?
From: GUEST,Allison
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 07:36 AM

has anyone here heard of sigma guitars?.any idea of sound.quality,playability etc?.i saw a pic of one the other day and drooled over it,a dr 41.can theese guitars be purchased in the uk/ireland?any help greatly appreciated.
                                        ALLISON.


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GLoux
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 01:53 PM

Thread drift, but what the hey...

Sigma Guitars are a line of guitars brought to market by Martin a few years ago when they were trying to provide entry level guitars at a lower price point than their traditional line. If I recall correctly, they were made to Martin specificatins in Japan with less expensive materials. It is not clear to me if they still carry them, though...but you could probably find a used one.

-Greg


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: kendall
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 07:25 PM

Taylor


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: DonMeixner
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 10:52 PM

Guilds, F-20 or F-30 or M-20 with the short scale (24 3/4" or there abouts).

Don


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Mark Clark
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 11:02 PM

I think the Bresh model by Leach has a thin neck. It's neck is a copy of the special neck Paul Bigsby built for Mrle Travis.

Bound to be an attentin getter.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: John Hardly
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 11:14 PM

Well, like peter, I too had heard that wider necks are often easier for shorter fingers to play cleanly. Has to do with angle of attack -- shorter fingers can't as easily come up an over -- they usually come across, thus the spacing allows for cleaner play.

But, like Don, my initial first thought was a Guild. Those Fs are comrotable in so many ways.

And, like Rick, who from the grave advised that a guitar can be modified -- even if not as drastic as a neck shave -- the "action" of a guitar is not a permanent condition. I would never buy a guitar for it's action -- it's not a shoe size. Action is a temporary, correctable condition. rejecting a guitar because of its action would be like saying you're not going to buy hamburger from the grocery store because it's not yet cooked.

And I agree -- mandolin is not a solution for arthritic hands. It's hell on arthritic hands.


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: John Hardly
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 11:16 PM


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: burntstump
Date: 26 Jul 04 - 01:41 PM

If you can find one an original Epiphone Texan, made in the USA, the best action and slimmest kneck you could wish for.


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,Ron R.
Date: 06 Aug 04 - 02:30 PM

I'm looking for a Travel Guitar that my son can take with him when he travels. Right now he takes his Gibson with him and he finds it a little combersome because its quite large.

He needs a travel guitar that has gret sound yet is a small package. Can anyone recommend a Great Travel Guitar? Doesn't matter if its custom mde or not. Price is secondary.

Also need someone who does great inlay work on a guitar.

Thanks

rrstudios@comcast.net


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,DMcF
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 05:30 AM

After 25 years of playing electric guitar in rock bands - then 'returning' to folk some four years back, I found far too many acoustic guitar necks too 'thick' for me (depth, front to back).
Our local guitar makers (Oakwood) here in Leeds (West Yorkshire, England) talked through my 'problems' with me, then made two guitars (based on a model of theirs where I liked everything BUT the neck) for me with neck specifictions of my own choosing.
I've ended up with two hand-made guitars with necks EXACTLY how I like 'em.
By working with a 'local' guitar maker, I believe I have superb quality and playability (to my specific requirements) at a slightly cheaper price than for similar quality materials and workmanship from the 'bigger name brands'.
I'm not on commision for Oakwood! - merely offering the suggestion that you can get as thin a neck as you desire - just go seek out your own 'local' luthier. Cheers! Duncan McFarlane


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Mark Clark
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 11:58 AM

GUEST,DMcF, I would be very interested in learning the dimensions of the neck you prefer and had built.
  1. What is the thickness, front to back, of your neck at the 1st, 7th, and 14th frets?
  2. What is the width of the neck, across the fingerboard, at the same points?
  3. What is the scale length, nut to bridge?
  4. What is the distance between centers of the two E strings at the nut and at the bridge?
  5. What is the radius across the fingerboard?
  6. What is the height of the strings above the 1st and 12th frets? And what weight/guage strings do you play?
  7. And, finally, what frets do you prefer? (i.e., thin, low, fat, high, etc.)
I'm very interested in people's neck and setup preferences and the sort of music they usually play.

I'm also interested in this same information from anyone else who knows and understands their preferences. Have people found commercially available instruments with necks that meet their desires and what makes and models meet them. How many people, if they could choose, would select a neck from one guitar and the body from another?

Thanks.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Nick
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 03:15 PM

Different price range to much of what has been mentioned above but...

I recently changed from playing a 30 year old Yamaha FG180 which had a neck that suited me. Tried various guitars which felt huge in my small left hand (my middle finger of left hand is about 3 3/8" from tip to palm). A friend lent me a Washburn which felt enormous, and I tried a number of Yamahas, a Martin 000M (I think) and others.

In the end I bought a Tanglewood TW28ST-Y which I was told was apparently one of 250 hand finished ones (could be salesman BS but don't think so - I can't however find info about the particular style on Tanglewood site or on internet). I have a friend who has a different model (a TW15ST) which feels totally different in my hand.

Mostly I bought it because I liked the feel of the neck in my hand - if anything it feels more like my electric guitar. Though it's measurements are not that different from the Yamaha it feels thinner. Both of them are about 5" across the fingerboard and round the back of the neck at the 7th fret if that makes sense - if anything the new one is perhaps slightly smaller (1/4"?).

Measurements -

Tanglewood TW28ST - Y

1 1st <7/8"
7th 7/8"         "
14th Unable to measure

2 1st 1 11/16"
7th 1 15/16"
14th 2 1/8"

3 25 3/4" nut to bridge

4 1 3/8"
2 1/8"

5 Unsure how to measure it!

6 Difficult to be precise 3/32" at 1st
                         3/16" at 12th
Light to medium strings

7 No preference

Yamaha FG180 by comparison

1 7/8" 1"
2 1 3/4"   1 7/8"    2"
3 25 1/4"
4 1 3/8"    1 15/16"
5 -
6 3/32" 9/32"
7 -

Strange to find out that the Yamaha was actually narrower and the strings closer together! The new one, however, feels smaller in my hand and is easier to play though I always found the old guitar had a very easy action and was little effort to play. The Yamaha has never been tinkered with and has kept it's neck pretty straight over the time I've had it.

The Martin I played was nice to the feel and had a nice sound but the additional hundreds of pounds were an off put!


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,DMcF
Date: 10 Aug 04 - 09:43 AM

Hello Mark C - I've returned a long explanation in answer to your questions by replying to the personal email you sent me.
Hope that'll do for ya. Cheers! DMcF


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,lowellkosak@hotmail.com
Date: 27 Aug 04 - 09:55 AM

I found a 1965 Gibson in South Bend, IN at Hoosier Dads a couple weeks ago. It may be gone. I don't know much about guitars but when I picked it up and played it I noticed the neck was much slimmer. Same length in the frets and dreadnought body. Not sure of the number. Beautiful sounding instument. I asked the clerk and he said that at that time Gibson made their 6 string acoustics and electrics with same neck width. I thought it would be good for people with short fingers but great for a full body sound. He want about $2000 for it. Great vintage guitar and I think rare.


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Nov 04 - 11:20 AM

hi..not enough time to read all previous replies..
so appologies if this has already been suggested..

Fender Stratacoustic or Telecoustic..

electro acoustic guitars with
very thin easy to play electric guitar necks..

very reasonable guitars for the budget price..
decent enough active EQ / underbridge pickup..

But factory set string action/set up is variable
so best need to audition as many as possible to find
one with low enough action..
also best to use lighter strings to minimise string tension on bridge/soundboard..

Fener also do high price better quality up market version
with electric neck..


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Nov 04 - 11:25 AM

oh..

not forgetting
Danelectro Convertible..

unique thinline acoustic with electric neck
and lipstick pickup..

the vintage 60's ones are collectors clasics
but the recently discontinued
pro standard korean reissues are excellent guitars
for all kind of music styles..


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: GUEST,Jim
Date: 12 Nov 04 - 11:35 AM

Easiest acoustic I've ever played (with my very short fingers) is my Norman ST68 - very comforatble all the way up the fretboard, with easy thumb-over Bass (though Barre chords are so easy to play on it).


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Terry Allan Hall
Date: 12 Nov 04 - 09:24 PM

In the mid-60s, Gibson made a lot of J-45s and J-50s with very slender, easy-to-play necks...A bit pricy sometimes, but they sure sound great!


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: mousethief
Date: 12 Nov 04 - 10:10 PM

Tacoma Chief


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: mousethief
Date: 12 Nov 04 - 10:42 PM

darn; link didn't work. Tacoma Chief


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Subject: RE: Thin-neck guitars -- recommendations?
From: Bert
Date: 12 Nov 04 - 10:44 PM

Oh GUEST! Telecoustic indeed. They may have a thin neck but they sound bloody awful!


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