Headless tuners in classical position, question.

Discussion in 'Luthiery, Modifications & Customizations' started by Ebony, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. Ebony

    Ebony Mr Sunshine

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    When you play a headless guitar in classical position, the tuners are digging into your thigh.

    The guitar is obviously going to move somewhat when you play no matter how still you sit, effectively meaning that you're going to massage the tuners with your thigh.
    This would presumably happen at both the end of the tuners and to some degree their sides.

    What is the "obvious solution" that keeps this from being a massive problem?
    Aside from not playing in classical position, obviously.
     
  2. laxu

    laxu SS.org Regular

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    Depends on the design of the guitar. This doesn't happen at least on Strandbergs.
     
  3. diagrammatiks

    diagrammatiks SS.org Regular

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    doesn't happen on strandbergs. It shouldn't happen at all if the guitar is properly designed.
     
  4. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    Are you thinking of a Vader? I just keep my strap high enough so it hands ~1-3mm above my leg, not actually on my leg
     
  5. Ebony

    Ebony Mr Sunshine

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    I was thinking in general, because the overwhelming majority of the designs I've seen has this situation with the tuners.
    One exception is the Masvidal-model from Strandberg, where a piece of wood hits your thigh before the tuners have a chance to do the same.

    Seems the answer to my question must be that the tuners are stiff enough to resist the minimal impact from rubbing against the leg.
     
  6. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    I have a strandberg and a vader. They definitely don't go out of tune when the tuners touch my leg, but I usually just keep it high enough so that isn't an issue. Do you use a strap?
     
  7. ixlramp

    ixlramp SS.org Regular

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    I'm sure this is referring to when not using a strap.
    This is a design issue that bothers me about many headless guitars.
    A solution often used is a tuner cutout that cuts only halfway through the depth of the guitar.

    I'm disappointed with this aspect of the Strandberg design. If you keep your legs very close together the right thigh will fit the characteristic 'extra cutout' but the guitar will be fairly horizontal unless you raise your left leg.
    It's much more likely you will want to keep your legs spread a little and keep them level, in this situation the right thigh will be very close or touching the tuners if the instrument is unplugged. Also bad, the output jack exits into the tuner cutout meaning your cable is (unconfortably) resting on your right thigh under sideways pressure, this may be the only thing stopping the thigh touching the tuners:

    [​IMG]

    Having different behaviours depending on plugged/unplugged is bad, players often want to casually play unplugged.

    The fact that tuners are usually stiff enough to not go out of tune from this is not really a comfort, they sometimes might, and there should not be any contact as a part of good design.
     

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  8. Ebony

    Ebony Mr Sunshine

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    My thoughts exactly. Tuning stability and balance are the two reasons I hear the most of when people praise the headless design.
    Having a design where you physically touch the tuners in classical position, and have to compromise comfort (and quite possibly balance) to avoid them seems backwards.
     
  9. ixlramp

    ixlramp SS.org Regular

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    tara8sm.png
    Mera Guitars has this lovely design, the right thigh fits into the cutout above the tuners.
     
  10. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire 8 string hoarder

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    the skerveten is probably my favorite design that mitigates this. They basically just route the wood so that the tuners can be accessed, but your leg isn't resting on the tuners, just the wood (the varberg from strandberg or the chris letchford model from kiesel has a similar concept).
    [​IMG]
     
  11. spudmunkey

    spudmunkey SS.org Regular

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    The Letchford Kiesel (did I just trigger everyone on this forum? ;) does something similar, albeit much less elegantly.
     
  12. Grand Rabbit

    Grand Rabbit SS.org Regular

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    All I'm gonna say: Klein guitars. They might not have the classic look, but they're highly original and highly functional guitars. I'd post a picture but my computer is so slow I can't even load a new tab let alone a picture, but really, look up Klein guitars. They're the 'other solution' to classical position: designing the guitar to sit in classical by default.
     
  13. sezna

    sezna undermotivated

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    [​IMG] interesting look for sure.
     
  14. diagrammatiks

    diagrammatiks SS.org Regular

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    I'm still confused how this problem even exists on something like the Boden or the skervesen shoggie.

    If you are in classical your legs should be that close together. To get the right amount of lift your other leg should be resting on the bottom part of the upper cutout right above the tuners.
     
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  15. laxu

    laxu SS.org Regular

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    When I had a Strandberg Boden OS 8 I never experienced any issues with this and when I play sitting down I usually have the guitar sitting between my legs. Just sit with your legs wider apart and not like the dude in ixlramp's photo.
     
  16. j3ps3

    j3ps3 SS.org Regular

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    Have most of you actually played these models? Just wondering, as I own a Strandberg and have had zero issues with it and I play almost exclusively with the classical position. Sure, the tuners touch my leg but I haven't had any tuning issues and it doesn't feel uncomfortable.
     
  17. diagrammatiks

    diagrammatiks SS.org Regular

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    Dunno why you would sit like that. If you are going to sit like that you should use the other cutout and put the guitar on your other leg. That's what it's there for.
     
  18. ixlramp

    ixlramp SS.org Regular

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    The Klein has the same issue of tuners being exposed.
    I guess you mean 'shouldn't'.
    The above 2 comments miss the point, which is you should have the freedom to have your legs apart by various amounts in classical position without tuner or cable contact.
    Even with you legs further apart the cable is still exiting directly towards your leg which is not ideal.
    Yeah tuner contact is not uncomfortable but not as nice as a warm curved wood surface.
    Tuner contact may not cause retuning most of the time, but it could if the tuner is particularly easy to rotate or if detuned to a low tension. However the point is good ergonomic design would obviously avoid contact.

    I've noticed that 'ergonomic guitar' is now often used in a way which implies a direct correspondance with a Klein shape, as if it is the ultimte and unimprovable. While it's good i think better is easily possible. I would like to see luthiers experimenting and doing better rather than stating 'i'm building an ergonomic guitar' and building a Klein copy.
     
  19. Soya

    Soya Not a musician Contributor

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    Unless you file the tuners down to a needle point, they don't sacrifice comfort (and definitely not balance). It's a non issue.
     
  20. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire 8 string hoarder

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    The boden is pretty comfortable in a classical position, way more comfortable than if you try to play it like most electric players do. I agree that the jack placement is the least ergonomic aspect of it next to the strap pin placement, which I changed on my boden 8. Having my leg rest against the tuners is a better angle for playing classical style than the lower cutout imo. The lower cutout makes the neck more horizontal unless I use my classical footstand, and even then, I prefer having my leg rest against the tuners.
     

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