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Guitar Resources > Left Handed Resources > Left Handed Guitar Background

Left Handed Guitar Background


As with most things left-handed, the answers are never as straightforward as one would wish. If you are thinking of buying a left-handed guitar, you will find that the choice is very limited indeed.

Whether it is acoustic or electric you are looking for, you may find there are no left-handers at all among the glittering display or, with luck, perhaps two or three may be tucked away behind the right-handers. As with expensive equipment for many other hobbies or activities the economics of guitar production and sales makes it impossible for most stores to supply the range of choice that right-handers enjoy.

Unfortunately, reversing the strings on a right-handed guitar is not sufficient, since the entire instrument must have all its parts reversed to produce an acceptable tone. We have only two options: to purchase from the few left-handed versions available, even if they are not entirely suitable or to order a left-handed version of a right-handed model you have seen.

The second option may seem a reasonable compromise, but actually carries a number of pitfalls. Firstly, assessing the merits of a right-handed guitar by playing it left-handed is far from ideal as you can get only a rough idea of its tone and action. As any guitarist knows, even two guitars of the same model can vary slightly. Secondly, and most seriously, most manufacturers insist that once a guitar is ordered by a customer to be specially made, the customer is then obliged to buy it, even if it turns out to be less than ideal. Bearing in mind the guitar in question may cost in the region of 3,000 if it is a top of the range model, this is a high-risk option.

So, not only can the left-hander not, in most cases, walk out of the shop with the guitar of their choice, they may also be obliged to wait anything up to a year before obtaining their purchase

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