:::Did I Make A Mistake Buying A Strat (Big Hands?)
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    Default :::Did I Make A Mistake Buying A Strat (Big Hands?)

    I am kicking myself in the ass, for not coming on here first, to get advice.

    For my 47th birthday, a bunch of relatives/parents/wife pooled their money together to get me my very first guitar. I got a Wolfgang Standard.

    My Dad plays accoustic only, is unfamiliar with the floating bridge setup, and while trying to tune the guitar, he didn't loosen the nuts by the bridge, so he snapped a string. This got me looking into the mechanics of a floating bridge, and I didn't want the hassle, so I traded the Wolf in for a Fender Strat.

    The main thing that I focused on when getting a guitar was tone, and comfortability (in my lap). I never thought that my hands would be too big for the neck.

    I love my Strat (Fender MIM); my ring finger is size 13.5. I started with Justin Sandercoe's video series today, and I had a problem fingering a chord.

    Question: I have very large hands, and although my fingers are large, they aren't unusually fat, given the size of my hand. Like I said, I take a size 13.5 ring.

    Will I grow into the Strat? Is my difficulty simply a result of inexperience (this is my **very first time** playing), or is the Strat a poor fit? I love the guitar in every other way. I didn't want to get a cheaper guitar, as I love the Strat's tone, and I thought I would grow into it. Plus the Strat is very easy to maintain.

    Now I am kicking myself in the ass for not coming on here first. I had to order the Wolf, and then I exchanged it for the Strat HSS (MIM) - that was back ordered, and when they finally got it to me it got damaged in shipping. So then I (finally) got another Strat on sale at a fantastic price...I don't wanna exchange the guitar that I currently own. I hope I can work with this?? Can I? I watched a few videos online, and they show a variety of tricks of using one finger on several strings. That's not what I want to do; I want to learn how to play properly. Unfortunately, my Dad is living at his other house 800 miles away, and I won't be seeing him for another 90 days...I have relied on his experience up until this point.

    Thanks so much for your time and advice.
    Last edited by NDL; 11.21.19 at 11:25 PM.
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    The Wolfgang bridge shouldn't have been floating, it is supposed to rest flat on the body. That'll often happen when inexperienced shops try to "set them up" before sale.

    I think the strat is actually wider at the nut than the Wolfgang is, giving you more space than you would have had with the Wolfgang.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaminub View Post
    The Wolfgang bridge shouldn't have been floating, it is supposed to rest flat on the body. That'll often happen when inexperienced shops try to "set them up" before sale.

    I think the strat is actually wider at the nut than the Wolfgang is, giving you more space than you would have had with the Wolfgang.
    I appreciate your reply, and yes, when I checked the specs, it looks like the Strat is wider than the Wolfgang.

    Would you say that the Strat is perfectly acceptable for people with big hands?
    "If only Eddie, Alex and Wolfgang had as much enthusiasm about Van Halen as Dave, Sammy and Mike do Ö " - I Coulda Hada VH

    "I don't think he owes us, and I think few if any do. What we would like is for him to release music, since he is our favorite musician. It's a wish and a hope, not a critique." - Dave's Dreidel

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    Yes I would say so. It's a good guitar for you!

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    Plenty of dudes with big hands master playing with Strats. SRV comes to mind. You'll get used to it.

    Yaminub is totally right that you're probably better off with a wider nut width than a Wolfgang anyway.

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    I think it's mostly inexperience, Ed has pretty big hands for a smaller guy.

    You just haven't developed the muscle memory so anything you do is going to be hard and clunky.

    Just practice, practice, practice. Don't get discouraged and eventually it will come.

    And you'll be grateful for the large fingers, there's stuff I physically cannot play because my fingers aren't long enough. The intro to CGTSNM is a great example, I physically cannot stretch my fingers wide enough to play those chords and there's no alternate way to do it.
    The only genre I really know is Van Halen.

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    Jeff Beck thinks a Strat is playable... therefore you're good to go.


    ------
    Don't even worry at first about learning proper chord fingerings...

    Just start with bar chords and easy 5th chords (Google them if needed)... work on getting the basic timing of playing simple rock guitar rhythm parts.

    Do this for 2 years.

    Especially CRITICAL is buying a drum machine, or downloading a drum machine app to your smart phone. This is important because you need to feel the difference between upbeats (the 2 & 4 snare hits) and the downbeats (the 1 & 3 bass drum hits) when you are playing rhythm parts.

    Start with "Unchained", and play to the drum machine with a basic 4/4 time drum beat so you learn to know/feel where you are in the 1234 measure. This is the most important thing to do when yo learn to play rock music at first. Again don't worry about exact chord fingerings, esp open position stuff... total waste of time for a beginner.

    And just learn 50 basic melodies to start. Stuff like The Star Spangled Banner. The simpler the better.

    It takes a lot of time to learn to play guitar... you just keep at it, and you will be amazed how you realize little improvements week by week.

    Good Luck

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    Default :::Did I Make A Mistake Buying A Strat (Big Hands?)

    I donít think you need to worry about anything right now but learning to play. Iím sure the guitar is just fine for you itís a Strat. You donít know how to play yet, itís a whole big process and I think youíll see how your hand works as you get to play more.

    I donít think you need to worry about specs or anything like that, just learn to play my friend.

    A lot of us learned on cheapo crappy classical $50 acoustic guitars. I could barely finger that thing it was so frustrating but you learn to make it work for you. Youíll be fine, just keep playing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NDL View Post
    I appreciate your reply, and yes, when I checked the specs, it looks like the Strat is wider than the Wolfgang.

    Would you say that the Strat is perfectly acceptable for people with big hands?
    Jimi Hendrix would say so.


    Look how big that motherfuckers hands are. Fingers as long as tree branch.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaminub View Post
    Yes I would say so. It's a good guitar for you!
    Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jedi McFly View Post
    Plenty of dudes with big hands master playing with Strats. SRV comes to mind. You'll get used to it.

    Yaminub is totally right that you're probably better off with a wider nut width than a Wolfgang anyway.
    Thanks Jedi...I feel better now

    Quote Originally Posted by Get The Show On The Road View Post
    I think it's mostly inexperience, Ed has pretty big hands for a smaller guy.

    You just haven't developed the muscle memory so anything you do is going to be hard and clunky.

    Just practice, practice, practice. Don't get discouraged and eventually it will come.

    And you'll be grateful for the large fingers, there's stuff I physically cannot play because my fingers aren't long enough. The intro to CGTSNM is a great example, I physically cannot stretch my fingers wide enough to play those chords and there's no alternate way to do it.
    Many thanks for your encouraging words...I feel a lot better about my purchase now

    Quote Originally Posted by noise next door View Post
    Jeff Beck thinks a Strat is playable... therefore you're good to go.


    ------
    Don't even worry at first about learning proper chord fingerings...

    Just start with bar chords and easy 5th chords (Google them if needed)... work on getting the basic timing of playing simple rock guitar rhythm parts.

    Do this for 2 years.

    Especially CRITICAL is buying a drum machine, or downloading a drum machine app to your smart phone. This is important because you need to feel the difference between upbeats (the 2 & 4 snare hits) and the downbeats (the 1 & 3 bass drum hits) when you are playing rhythm parts.

    Start with "Unchained", and play to the drum machine with a basic 4/4 time drum beat so you learn to know/feel where you are in the 1234 measure. This is the most important thing to do when yo learn to play rock music at first. Again don't worry about exact chord fingerings, esp open position stuff... total waste of time for a beginner.

    And just learn 50 basic melodies to start. Stuff like The Star Spangled Banner. The simpler the better.

    It takes a lot of time to learn to play guitar... you just keep at it, and you will be amazed how you realize little improvements week by week.

    Good Luck
    Thanks for your encouraging words; a little encouragement goes a LONG way, and I likewise thank you for the sound advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brett View Post
    I don’t think you need to worry about anything right now but learning to play. I’m sure the guitar is just fine for you it’s a Strat. You don’t know how to play yet, it’s a whole big process and I think you’ll see how your hand works as you get to play more.

    I don’t think you need to worry about specs or anything like that, just learn to play my friend.

    A lot of us learned on cheapo crappy classical $50 acoustic guitars. I could barely finger that thing it was so frustrating but you learn to make it work for you. You’ll be fine, just keep playing.
    Brett: thanks man, for taking the time to reply. I appreciate your words of encouragement about playing, and about my guitar selection.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyler_279 View Post
    Jimi Hendrix would say so.


    Look how big that motherfuckers hands are. Fingers as long as tree branch.

    Appreciate the reply; I always assumed that Hendrix, etc., used custom necks on their Strats. Apparently not; I feel a lot better about my purchase now.
    "If only Eddie, Alex and Wolfgang had as much enthusiasm about Van Halen as Dave, Sammy and Mike do Ö " - I Coulda Hada VH

    "I don't think he owes us, and I think few if any do. What we would like is for him to release music, since he is our favorite musician. It's a wish and a hope, not a critique." - Dave's Dreidel

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    Quote Originally Posted by NDL View Post
    Appreciate the reply; I always assumed that Hendrix, etc., used custom necks on their Strats. Apparently not; I feel a lot better about my purchase now.
    Hendrix used to get them from Manny's Music in New York, and would just restring them, flip 'em over & play. I agree with Brett, once you get going, and can get around the neck, you'll be just fine....THEN you can get a Wolfgang as your 2nd guitar!
    "People ask me how far I've come. And I tell them twelve feet: from the audience to the stage." - David Lee Roth

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    Quote Originally Posted by KS 5150 View Post
    Hendrix used to get them from Manny's Music in New York, and would just restring them, flip 'em over & play. I agree with Brett, once you get going, and can get around the neck, you'll be just fine....THEN you can get a Wolfgang as your 2nd guitar!
    Incredible! And now that we're talking Hendrix, I gotta revisit some of his work.

    I think that I have passed on the Wolfgang; EVH's humbucker goes for $150. Once I get much better, I might opt for that route to ensure that I get EVH's tone.

    Thanks for writing, and for the encouragement
    "If only Eddie, Alex and Wolfgang had as much enthusiasm about Van Halen as Dave, Sammy and Mike do Ö " - I Coulda Hada VH

    "I don't think he owes us, and I think few if any do. What we would like is for him to release music, since he is our favorite musician. It's a wish and a hope, not a critique." - Dave's Dreidel

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    "If only Eddie, Alex and Wolfgang had as much enthusiasm about Van Halen as Dave, Sammy and Mike do Ö " - I Coulda Hada VH

    "I don't think he owes us, and I think few if any do. What we would like is for him to release music, since he is our favorite musician. It's a wish and a hope, not a critique." - Dave's Dreidel

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    If it becomes apparent that your hands really are too "big", and you'll know, at least with a strat you'll have many options to change out the neck to a wider one. I've known several players that actually have huge hands, and usually a wider neck is the remedy.
    I've seen them in 1 3/4", up to 2 1/4" widths.

    I recently change a neck to 1 3/4" on my Telecoustic,, and I really like not feeling all cramped in a small area.

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    Quote Originally Posted by turnbuckle View Post
    If it becomes apparent that your hands really are too "big", and you'll know, at least with a strat you'll have many options to change out the neck to a wider one. I've known several players that actually have huge hands, and usually a wider neck is the remedy.
    I've seen them in 1 3/4", up to 2 1/4" widths.

    I recently change a neck to 1 3/4" on my Telecoustic,, and I really like not feeling all cramped in a small area.
    I hope you're enjoying your new neck.

    As for my strat, I think that it's a lack of experience that had me concerned, although it's nice to know that I can swap necks.
    "If only Eddie, Alex and Wolfgang had as much enthusiasm about Van Halen as Dave, Sammy and Mike do Ö " - I Coulda Hada VH

    "I don't think he owes us, and I think few if any do. What we would like is for him to release music, since he is our favorite musician. It's a wish and a hope, not a critique." - Dave's Dreidel

 

 

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