Flipping the nut

lhallam

Platinum Supporting Member
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17,369
My boy wants to learn gtr but alas I cannot readily find and 3/4 left handed gtrs. I'm toying with buying a right handed one and just flipping the nut.

Does this sound viable?

If so, how do I take out and reinsert the nut?
 

Chiba

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
7,830
Easy enough to do - but you need a guitar with a 'captive' nut like a Fender Strat or Tele.

Sometimes they're glued in, other times they're just press-fit. Take something with a bit of a flat end, press it against the nut on one side of the fingerboard, and tap it with a small hammer. I've done this several times to 'convert' right- or left-handed Strats with no problems.

--chiba
 

gregc

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,924
Why make him learn left-handed? Big mistake, IMO. I'm a lefty. I play righty. The majority of lefties do. He'l get his fingering down easier. The strumming/picking will come. Let him learn to play a standard guitar.
meant in the best possible way...:)

gregc
 

Ron Thorn

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
2,636
I just converted a 3/4 Mini-Strat from righty to lefty for a good friend's 9 year old.
I had hoped to just flip the nut until I realized the slots were filed at a slight downward angle towards the tuners. By flipping it, the angle would be reversed placing the string's breaking point at the back of the nut...no good. I had to cut a new nut.

I also added a matching third strap button to the shorter horn since moving just one of them left a hole in the horn.

A black sharpie gave "replaceable" side dots on the lefty side of the neck.

Lastly, the intonation screws on the high E and B were longer. Those had to be swapped for the low E and A once converted, then re-intonated of course.

"Reversed" pots wasn't an issue since he has no prior knowledge of the correct rotational direction. I just popped the knobs and centered "10" TDC.

It ended up taking about an hour total.

Ron
 

Chiba

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
7,830
Originally posted by Ron Thorn
By flipping it, the angle would be reversed placing the string's breaking point at the back of the nut...no good.
Excellent point, Ron. Could be that the few I've done were older - I know my personal lefty-to-righty conversion was on an early-80s Strat.

--chiba
 

John Phillips

Member
Messages
13,038
Originally posted by Ron Thorn
"Reversed" pots wasn't an issue since he has no prior knowledge of the correct rotational direction. I just popped the knobs and centered "10" TDC.
Just out of curiosity, does it annoy you that Fender wire their left-handed guitars 'left handed' but use normal right-handed knobs (so the numbers read backwards) and normal Log pots so the taper is useless?

It annoys me, and I'm not even left-handed! This is one of the most common complaints I get from lefties though, usually wondering why their controls act like switches.

You'd think that a company with the volume of production that Fender has (even on left-handed guitars) could source the proper parts to do the job really right, wouldn't you?

Originally posted by Chiba
Excellent point, Ron. Could be that the few I've done were older - I know my personal lefty-to-righty conversion was on an early-80s Strat.
Or maybe the lefty had a flipped righty nut on it in the first place...
 

Chiba

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
7,830
Originally posted by John Phillips
Or maybe the lefty had a flipped righty nut on it in the first place...
That's possible, but I don't think so - I had to sand lacquer off the edges of the nut to get it out in the first place. In my case the nut slots weren't angled at all - straight flat across.

--chiba
 

lhallam

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
17,369
Originally posted by Ron Thorn
I just converted a 3/4 Mini-Strat from righty to lefty for a good friend's 9 year old.
I had hoped to just flip the nut until I realized the slots were filed at a slight downward angle towards the tuners. By flipping it, the angle would be reversed placing the string's breaking point at the back of the nut...no good. I had to cut a new nut.

I also added a matching third strap button to the shorter horn since moving just one of them left a hole in the horn.

A black sharpie gave "replaceable" side dots on the lefty side of the neck.

Lastly, the intonation screws on the high E and B were longer. Those had to be swapped for the low E and A once converted, then re-intonated of course.

"Reversed" pots wasn't an issue since he has no prior knowledge of the correct rotational direction. I just popped the knobs and centered "10" TDC.

It ended up taking about an hour total.

Ron
Hmmm, what takes you an hour will take me 8 hours and probably a crummy job in the end. I'm going to have to put some thought into this.

In the meantime I got him a ukelele, we'll see if he sticks with it.

Thanks guys, much appreciated.
 




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