View Full Version : My experiences from taking E and A string out from my classical guitar

07-31-2018, 02:38 AM
And about fretboard scales too.

The purpose was to check at first the low G tuning. I have a classical guitar Shubb capo, which I put on my 5th fret. I noticed that it was somewhat lacking in high notes like maybe too mellow and a somewhat booming when strumming, but totally nice if fingerpicking that I seldom do with my ukes. The capo is as nice as I think a one can go, but we don’t really need capos with ukuleles if we know our chords ;)
The guitar sounds mellower because of a much bigger box I think? It is an over 40 year old Yamaha G-55A.

The scale from 5th to bridge is about 49 cm. Now the tenor scale is according to wikipedia is 43, concert 38 and soprano 33 cm. My soprano is a maybe a bit longer than what is the standard according to wikipedia but not much.

Anyways what I can tell because my hands are not big, that 49 cm is fine for me, so certainly also a tenor scale. I have a concert and a soprano, tenor might need from me a strap though even for just strumming though to hold. But anyways it is still a small scale instrument too.

I’m not sure how long the wound lowest string can take my strumming, the D string of a guitar is always the weakest and now it is exposed to my strumming without the protection of 6th and 5th strings.

Without the capo the tuning is of course DGBE. Same as in a baritone ukulele’s.
The scale measured is something like 65-66 cm. Notice it is much longer than baritone uke’s which is 48 cm according to wikipedia. Much shorter than a classical guitar scale.

I always had troubles in guitar with small hands. Though much can be compensated as we have seen with other players like me and playing well. In general I played Dm chord (Gm in our ukes) the x00231 with my pinky in 3rd ftet instead 3rd finger. With smaller scale ukes this is not needed for me :)

When the wound D string breaks from my strumming, I am concidering putting a guitar high E-string there to have to have a re-entrant 4 string baritone, in which I might learn to play despite my finger handicap. Or not :)
I have a lots, maybe 4 sets of cheap Thomann about 3 euro nylon sets to go.

Eventually I will go most likely back to a 6 string setup.

You are all welcomed chime in your experiences and opinions :)

08-21-2018, 09:03 AM
Well, no one chimed in to my classical guitar baritone conversion. It ok I understand.

Just wanting to tell that it has been fun playing songs in the same key as with my GCEA ukulele. The tuning being a fourth lower I have needed to learn a lots of "new" chords. Many are of course same as with guitar, like D, D7 or Dm and Am.
Of course the G and C also in some ways and F of course.

But a guitar player would never play a chord like Cm the same way as with ukulele or maybe also something like F7 if a camp fire player.

I do think a baritone can be a helping instrument if someone wants to move to a guitar. The notes on upper 4 strings and also if the bigger scale is fitting for fingers.

Same time, if someone, like me, wants to move "down" to an ukulele, lots of new chord names need be learned. I learned all in GCEA regular tuning. And yes need memorize again in DGBE tuning when I want some songs played with my new "baritone". Bit of a brain exercise too ;)
Helps knowing what the degree 1 4 5 major chords and minor chords 2 3 6 are in finding the chords, the roots not so obvious sometimes but can help too, that knowledge.

I like ukulele for the reason I can just strum all the strings and able to play without capo in so many keys also.

Patrick Madsen
08-21-2018, 09:52 AM
Pretty easy to replace a single string. It may be the strings you're using. I use The T. Infelds CF35 for my baritones and use a heavy Bill Stokes pick. I've never noticed any wear.

Good thinking on finding the scale length you like. A chord shape is a chord shape. Once you get used to the conversion change, it'll fall into place.

I play a Cm bari chord shape on my guitar. I just use the top four strings when strumming it. There's really little difference between a bari and guitar, so it'll be quick. If anything, the bari will teach you how to play the top four strings really well. You have it Jarmo, play around with chord shapes. I don't know the most of the names up the neck shapes I use; I just know the shapes of a key i'm playing.

Have fun!

12-13-2019, 09:22 AM
The best way is to take the top string and bottom string off. That leaves you with the middle 4. ADGB which you then tune down an octave to GCEA. And of course it's in linear tuning with a low G. So any guitar can be Uke'd in this way.

12-14-2019, 12:58 AM
The best way is to take the top string and bottom string off. That leaves you with the middle 4. ADGB which you then tune down an octave to GCEA. And of course it's in linear tuning with a low G. So any guitar can be Uke'd in this way.

I don't think so, retuning the middle strings even lower than in guitar or baritone, it will leave us empty of the muting with thumb, or what I use rarely with 4 string uke in muting the highest string, but I do use sometimes. Just my opinion.

I just have not tried that, but I think tuning a whole step + 4rth lower (= fifth ) than baritone, might be too low, it is an octave lower than ukulele. Low note chords don't sound that good with guitar either if only just middle strings. Of course your idea gets better fingerings, but a whole tone down?