View Full Version : Does a Hand Measuring Device exist for guitar necks?

12-20-2010, 09:40 AM
Does a Hand Measuring Device exist for guitar necks similar to a Foot Measuring Device for shoes? It could also be a program or a chart based on your hand measurements. Slow day today. Just wondering.

Remember the good old days when a great pair of dress shoes were made of leather & the salesperson would size up your foot with a measuring device & then you would try a few based on those measurements till you found the perfect ones & they were great & they were your favorite most comfortable shoes. They sure don't make them like that anymore.

Why couldn't you measure your hand & try the necks that fit your hand specs till you find the perfect fit & filter out the clutter. Too many guitars. Too little time.
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http://www.thegearpage.net/board/%3Ca%20href=%22http://s35.photobucket.com/albums/d159/noob450/?action=view&current=FootMeasuringDevice.jpg%22%20 target=%22_blank%22%3E%3Cimg%20src=%22http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d159/noob450/FootMeasuringDevice.jpg%22%20border=%220%22%20alt= %22Photobucket%22%3E%3C/a%3E

12-20-2010, 09:55 AM
for mass produced guitars? i doubt it.

i know i've read some small builders who build guitars for client will take measurements or people will request a certain shape (D, V, C, etc)
and PRS does their variations, wide-something, something...

i think this is why for so long, the vintage guitars of the 50s, a lot of people didn't like them, the necks were very thick-almost an 1" thick and very round (i guess this would be called the very rounded "C" shape neck).
that's why in the late 50s when the les paul came out w/ a slimmer neck, people really liked those-i think it's the jimmy page model that he preferred.

i think this is also why when you pick up a guitar or different guitars, some will feel "right" and others you don't like. i know it's how i gauge guitars...if the neck doesn't feel right, why continue to play it?
good luck

12-20-2010, 09:57 AM
Wouldn't work, and your hand is your best measuring device anyway.

12-20-2010, 10:00 AM
Interesting concept. However, the correlation between a "comfortable" guitar neck and a particular size is different from a shoe that fits. I have relatively small hands but I love a big 58 Les Paul neck. So how do you decide what "fits"?

12-20-2010, 10:09 AM
I agree that your hand is the best measuring device. Once you find the perfect fit what if you measure your hand & the neck specs. What if we measured all the guitar gods hands & their preferred neck specs & came out with an algorithm for a program. Just a thought. Not every one has access to many guitars to try before they buy.

12-20-2010, 10:10 AM
I've thought about a concept like this, and I came to the conclusion that it wouldn't work. There are too many variables like fret sizes, where you like your action, etc. It would be great though if I could just take a few quick measurements and figure out what neck I've been searching for the last 10 years :).

12-20-2010, 10:18 AM
I find, give a little time and you adjust and can actually prefer most any neck. If not getting cramps or anything from too big or too small, there really is not "fit" like for shoes. It's just what you're used too.

12-20-2010, 10:19 AM
How about just focusing on neck shape & size relative to palm & finger length ratio. You could have small hands but big palms & short fingers & like fat necks for example. Fret size & string height would just be preferences or things to consider.

12-20-2010, 10:21 AM
I agree that you do have to adapt to the instrument.

12-20-2010, 10:30 AM
Too many variables... not like a shoe at all, methinks. Different folks like differing fingerboard radiuses, different neck carves, nut spacing, etc. Some of us have no particular preference (I think I'm in this category) and enjoy adapting to different guitars and their respective feel/vibe... whereas some of us are very specific as to what feels proper in our hands. It's not about a correct fit per se, it's about you being comfortable.

12-23-2010, 02:13 PM
Maybe I should have renamed this post "Hand Size VS Neck Size For A Perfect Fit for Online Shoppers.

How about a Hand Size vs Neck Size chart of famous guitar players.
Choosing what type of neck your guitar should have is dependent on the size of your hand. Aside from other determining factors.

Just food for thought.

I found this on the net:

Profiles: A "C," "U," or "V?"
Neck profile (the "shape" of the neck) is probably the most personal element of a guitar. It affects how your hand and fingers "fit" the neck and how easily you can move from fret to fret. From early on acoustic guitars employed some variation of a "C" shape. Electric guitar makers have experimented extensively and a variety of profiles have evolved with the preferences of players. Jeff Beck's favorite Fender Stratocasters had a very fat "C" shape; current models of Fender's Custom Artist Jeff Beck Signature Strat have a smaller "C" to be more player-friendly.
Similar to the "C" is the oval neck profile. This offers a less pronounced curve at the back and has its followers. On the other side is the "U" - an almost-rectangular shape that appeared on many Fenders - perhaps best for players with long fingers. And Eric Clapton has favored a "V" neck that provides a comfortable groove down the middle. A variation on this is the "inverted V," that is thicker on the bass side and thinner on the treble side.
Width is as much a factor in the neck profile as shape, leading some guitar makers to abandon the letter analogy and begin describing profiles as "wide-fat" or "regular-thin" and so on, in which widths are "wide, regular or narrow" and depths range from "fat to regular to thin." This often provides a clearer description of the profile and can help you when you're shopping for guitars online. Parker and Paul Reed Smith use these types of descriptions.

12-23-2010, 02:29 PM
I think that most of the answers on this thread say the essentially the same thing, which is that neck size preference is not a function of hand measurement, it's just personal preference. You might be able to find trends if you could poll and measure a large group of guitar players, but too many exceptions to conclude that is a rule, or create a guitar buying guideline chart of some sort.