String tension and curved frets

Choice of classical guitar strings and technical issues connected with their use.
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Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:59 am

String tension and curved frets

Post by Baloo » Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:21 am

I was thinking of getting a second guitar. I wouldn't want two the same and was thinking of going to the other end of the spectrum (my current guitar is very traditional). When I was looking at strings recently I discovered the jump in tension from the B to the E string. It looks as though the tension is generally pretty even but they have to make a compromise when it comes to the top string, because if they made it so that the tension was the same it would be too thin.

I was also looking at some curved fret systems. There is a guy who will make you a fingerboard to any design you like.

Maybe it's a whacky idea, but what is the relationship between tension and length? If I wanted to bring the tension of the high E down from say 8kg to say 6.5kg, how much shorter would it have to be? I'd like to figure out whether the difference is small enough to accommodate in a curved fret system.

Posts: 494
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2009 6:15 pm

Re: String tension and curved frets

Post by Kintla » Sat Jan 19, 2019 1:46 am

Interesting thought, try a 660 mm scale and see what you think. Longer scale length guitars are "said" to have higher tension, but they seem to play easier. I have three luthier built 650's which are nice guitars. The 660 mm (a vintage Takamine from 1977) plays easier, is equally responsive, and is louder. I would advocate against shorter scale guitars for multiple reasons. In general they are not easier to play, but just my experience.

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