You know you need a 640 scale when...

Ergonomics and Posture for Classical Guitarists, Aches and Pains, Injuries, etc...
AsturiasFan

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by AsturiasFan » Mon Sep 05, 2011 7:57 am

I just tried Bonita’s hand stretch comparison (left hand in back). I have much greater stretch in my left hand than the right hand. With p-m-a fingers aligned exactly my left index finger stretches well to the left of the right index finger and the left pinky finger stretches well to the right of the right pinky --even with maximal exertion of the right hand. I think a lot of players will discover this if they try it out.

From tracing.

Thumb to pinky: 22 cm left hand; 20.8 cm right hand;
Index to middle: 9.8 cm left hand; 8.5 cm right hand.

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LVR
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Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by LVR » Mon Sep 05, 2011 4:57 pm

This thread prompted me to measure my hands:
19 1/2 cm L hand stretch
19 cm R hand
That the left hand is functionally bigger on a right hand dominant person would indicate that guitar exercises and PT stretching work up to the limits of anatomy, but obviously no further. Oh yeah, a 630 scale...
The basic thing about playing the guitar is the pleasure you get from it. There's nothing wrong with pleasure is there?
Julian Bream

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lucy
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Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by lucy » Tue Sep 06, 2011 9:42 pm

........when you can't play certain sections proficiently, no matter how much practice you put in! :mrgreen:

I've just read this thread from beginning to end. Some people have posted the dimensions of their hands, so I thought I'd measure my left hand. If I've read the thread correctly, I think I have the smallest hands here, (of those who've declared their hand sizes).

Thumb to pinky = 18 cm
Index to pinky = 14 cm

Index = 6.8 cm
Middle = 7.2 cm
Ring = 6.4 cm
Pinky = 5 cm

Although I've played a 640 scale for many years, I've recently acquired a second 640, but with the added benefit of a string spacing of 42mm at the nut radiating to 50mm at the 12th fret to 58mm at the bridge. I find this makes quite a difference playing some chords on the lower frets. So, it's not just the string length that matters, but how close the strings are together.
“Keep your face to the sun and you will never see the shadows.” Helen Keller

Evangelos Skropidas

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by Evangelos Skropidas » Sat Sep 10, 2011 7:29 am

Hi,

I would like to ask what is the actual benefit of a 640 scale in terms of milimeters. I mean ok, I have a thumb to pinky stretch of about 23,5 cm, but how smaller would be the gap for the fingers in 640? I know it depends on fretboard position, but I am asking of some general guidelines to see if it would be worth it.

Regards,

Vagelis.

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James Lister
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Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by James Lister » Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:03 am

Changing from 650 to 640mm scale will gain you about 2mm between the first fret and the 5th fret. Not a lot, but it helps.

James
James Lister, luthier, Sheffield UK

AsturiasFan

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by AsturiasFan » Tue Sep 13, 2011 1:06 am

James Lister wrote:Changing from 650 to 640mm scale will gain you about 2mm between the first fret and the 5th fret. Not a lot, but it helps.
Assuming a linear relationship: 650 to 630 gains 4mm (not bad) ; 650 to 620 yields 6mm; and 650 to 615 gains 7mm which is quite a bit I guess.

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Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by Joe de V » Wed Nov 09, 2011 11:47 pm

Small-scale guitars with just the right neck width at the nut are not easy to find in the low-cost market. I did find one full scale (650mm) guitar with a Neck width at the Nut of 48mm. Surprisingly to me,I find it easier to play - considering the full size scale length - than a 640mm scale length guitar with a full ( 50.2mm ) size Neck width at the Nut. This tells me than the horizontal finger stretch is just as important as the vertical stretch. This guitar has a solid Sitka Spruce top with a cedar neck and a back and sides of Pau-Ferro/Morado. For this Brazilian-made Giannini Model GWNE-18,tThe last time I check it was selling for under $300. For those "experimenting" finding the right "fit" It is not an expensive investment.

Irene Tirtajana

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by Irene Tirtajana » Sun Dec 11, 2011 6:58 am

Gosh, looking at all these hand measurements is somewhat depressing. I'm a 160cm tall (?short) female with the following LH measurements at full stretch:

19cm thumb to pinky tips (about 7.5 inches)
15.5cm index to pinky tips
6cm thumb length
7.3cm index finger length
7.8cm middle finger length
7.4cm ring finger length
5.8cm little finger length
And fat finger pads to boot (13mm at the thickest, ring finger)

Looks like I need to get that custom order 630/640cm CG once I win the lottery. Anyone got a spare for me to borrow in the meanwhile?

I'm even having trouble with the CII full bar in El Negrito (the one with F# bass, is that a Bm chord?) and I don't think it's from lack of practice. Interestingly, the big stretch on second part of Romanza is doable. Developed a trick of stretching the hand flat against the fingerboard, with the thumb hardly touching the back.

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Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by ben etow » Thu Dec 15, 2011 10:56 am

Irene Tirtajana wrote: Looks like I need to get that custom order 630/640cm CG once I win the lottery. Anyone got a spare for me to borrow in the meanwhile?
Hi Irene,

You may settle for a señorita model made by Alhambra or another manufacturer. Kantare had a great 615 model but more aimed at children (the body was significantly smaller > less basses) and I think they did'nt make it anymore.

I have a wonderful 630 made by Jean-Luc Joie from Bordeaux, France. I now can play difficult pieces (Brouwer's Toccata de Pasquini or José's sonata - still need to work on them of course) without suffering very much. Although I also play 650 guitars for some purpose, I couldn't totally get back to 650 for solo playing. I'm about 174 cm "tall", but I didn't measure my hands/streches. No need to do it either, it is so obvious...

ceddia
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Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by ceddia » Wed Mar 07, 2012 5:39 pm

My stretch is only 5 inches and I play a 650 mm scale guitar with a 48mm nut width and radius fret. I am wondering if I could benfit a lot more from a 640 or 635 scale length guitar with the same not width. Time will tell.

AndreiKrylov

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by AndreiKrylov » Wed Mar 07, 2012 11:10 pm

Irene Tirtajana wrote:Gosh, looking at all these hand measurements is somewhat depressing. I'm a 160cm tall (?short) female with the following LH measurements at full stretch:

19cm thumb to pinky tips (about 7.5 inches)
15.5cm index to pinky tips
6cm thumb length
7.3cm index finger length
7.8cm middle finger length
7.4cm ring finger length
5.8cm little finger length
And fat finger pads to boot (13mm at the thickest, ring finger)

Looks like I need to get that custom order 630/640cm CG once I win the lottery. Anyone got a spare for me to borrow in the meanwhile?

I'm even having trouble with the CII full bar in El Negrito (the one with F# bass, is that a Bm chord?) and I don't think it's from lack of practice. Interestingly, the big stretch on second part of Romanza is doable. Developed a trick of stretching the hand flat against the fingerboard, with the thumb hardly touching the back.
250mm between pinky and thumb (it is funny on my right hand it is easily 260 mm)
190 mm between pinky and index
8cm little finger length

I love small guitars!
and small girls too! :)

soundknight21

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by soundknight21 » Sun Mar 11, 2012 2:35 am

Small hands, did you know that Aussie Scientists have discovered a link between hand finger length and the potential to get prostate cancer? Just thought i would throw that in there.
I dont have small hands but i have discovered that sitting with legs apart using an ergo support my back strength is diminished and this effects my stretch to the open position as well as giving me back pain after practice. Has anybody had experience with short scal 630 - 610 and high tension strings?

Beth F-R

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by Beth F-R » Sun Mar 11, 2012 5:32 pm

You know you need a short scale guitar when...
...you keep stealing your 10-year-old's 3/4 size guitar to play pieces with difficult stretches!

Not too worried about the prostate cancer thing, though, as I am a girl. :)

Still in search of a great 630,
Beth F-R

ben etow
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Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by ben etow » Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:45 am

Beth F-R wrote:You know you need a short scale guitar when...
...you keep stealing your 10-year-old's 3/4 size guitar to play pieces with difficult stretches!

Not too worried about the prostate cancer thing, though, as I am a girl. :)

Still in search of a great 630,
Beth F-R
I have a great 630 Jean-Luc Joie concert guitar. Tone is wonderful, even compared to 650 Joie guitars (Check Thibault Cauvin's Joie on YT - sold his Smallman for a Joie - you may not like everything he's doing, but the sound is stunning).
And I can play more difficult pieces with it.

Beth F-R

Re: You know you need a 640 scale when...

Post by Beth F-R » Tue Mar 13, 2012 1:15 pm

Thanks for the recommendation. I suspect the Joie is probably out of my budget range, though ($3K max).

Cheers,
Beth

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