Hey all, Please read before commenting! I have a LEFT HANDED 9 string guitar on order with a luthier of high quality, and I wanted to ask what peoples opinions are with some specific scale lengths I want to use and also pickup selector configuration. I have already paid money so this is a serious request for discussion, Thanks. Some specs from the order: Body material: Black Limba Top wood: Maple Burl Neck material. Outer Fillets, Centre Wenge/Flame Maple/Wenge Fingerboard material: Flamed Maple Bridge system: ABM Single Saddles Tuning: C1G1C2F2A#2D#3G3C3G4 also will feature a piezo system Prior acknowledgement, I use Daddario NYXL which sound the brightest for the longest with the 8 (eight) string sets with another single string added for 9 string tuned to Drop C1 because I refuse to use bass strings which sound dead almost instantly after installing and playing. and I don't like playing big tight strings. I like a gentler and fluid feel of strings similar to floating trem bridges and also the more conventional tone from smaller strings opposed to more round sounding bigger strings or bass strings. I also have a specific tone from my pick attack for optimal articulation, paired with the Bare Knuckle custom 9 humbucker set. So please, don't complain saying my strings will be too small and sound like ass. Because I'm not going to change my string set up and I have no issues with my tone using Dunlop Tortex TIII .050 picks (I bend the pick slightly with my grip to get more snap with my pick attack while picking lightly and not digging into the strings, which works well with my bare knuckle passive hum-bucker set, fractal amp modeling, horizon devices precision drive, graph-tech saddles). I want to discuss the scale lengths with the specific string sets disclosed below. As well as pick up selector options. For my build I would like to have my 9 string set up in drop C1 to have a scale of either 26.5"-28" or 27"-28 5/8th" (28.625") with the Dadarrio NYXL 8-string (eight string) set while adding a .010 and swapping the .0090 with .0080 on the highest string and .080 on the lowest string, or .084 when using the strandberg 8-string (eight string) set adding a .011 and swapping the highest string with .008. This is the cheapest way to buy NYXL strings for 9 string. I already use the .080 string set on a 30" scale Agile (non multi-scale) which works great but I'd like a more conventional feel from a shorter scale. On my new build i want to tune my highest string to G instead of F which is possible at 27" scale max. I have very long fingers so I will continue to use a 30" scale on my agile's after I receive my new build. Heres what I'm trying to decide on. The builder is recommending the longer scale length, yet I want to finalize scale lengths at 26.5"-28" so i can use the .084 .strandberg* set because the lowest string is tapered for 28". If the scale length is longer than 28" on the low side the string will not have as much string mass in the nut slot because of the tapered end. But the .084 string diameter will extend long enough to fret in the 1st fret position. The NYXL 8 string set with .080 on the low end is tapered at 30" so this issue is eliminated with this string set. I've tried the .084 set tuned in standard on my 2011 Schecter blackjack atx-c8 8-string with 26.5" scale and EMG 808x set (18v mod), tuning down to C#1 and I loved the new string tone i got with it, even with an old battery. So I think the .084 will work the best at 28". and also the 26.5" scale on the high side will be more optimal when tuning the highest string to G and all the other higher strings. The luthier is worried I wont be happy with the shorter scale particularly on the low end, yet I have plenty of reasons to choose this scale as I feel it will be long enough to use while having an audible tone. I use a dual amp and cab tone and am very happy with my current set up. I just want a more optimal playing 9 string model. Many artists have recorded albums using 27" 8 string's tuned to similar pitch and the results are more then acceptable. Yet I wanted to ask other's their opinion before confirming these spec.s. **THE BIG QUESTION** Will I loose resonance and sustain by having a string tapered before the contact point at the nut, or will there be any down side to using a string thats tapered so slightly to short for the scale on the low side? or will it just work regardless? and Is 28" really going to be too short while using a .084 or .080 string? As for pickup selector configurations while using the bare knuckle custom 9 humbuckers. I have the schematics of the Ibanez RG9 with the 5-way selector in mind which are set up like so below. I was wondering how it would sound having the bridge pickup wired in parallel. or should I just go with this set up? Does anyone have any suggestions? Or if this going to give me the best options a variety of tones for Rhythms, Leads, Cleans, Economy, Finger picking, or "Thumping"? Let me know! Thanks for your help in advanced!