Are They Playable?

I am constantly asked if these baritones are too long or too narrow to be playable and if they are intended to be a novelty item. My answer is that they are definitely intended to be played! Guitar players are far more versatile than they have been led to believe. I have fairly large hands and I  think I could play a 38 inch scale guitar if I could find the strings to fit and a bass guitar that big to convert. Take a look at some of my customers playing their guitars here - Customer Videos

I am a mediocre guitar player and find the longer length with light or medium regular guitar strings actually easier to play and much more expressive than a shorter scale baritone with those extra heavy strings. The narrowest nut widths of any of my baritones is 1 5/8 inches. The most common nut width I use by far is 1 11/16 inches - the same as a Martin D-35 if I recall.To me it seems like current production acoustic baritones are a compromise -  a short scale and stiff strings to compensate for it. To me it seem like this is the size and scale where baritones naturally belong. Many people I have met that bought an acoustic bass were hoping that it would come close to sounding like a stand-up bass and were horribly disappointed. Raise the pitch a 5th and they come alive. If you don't believe me, prove it to yourself - put 4 regular acoustic guitar strings on an acoustic bass, take a listen, and play around with it a bit and let your imagination do the rest..

Think of it this way: If an ideal guitar is 25 inch scale and an ideal bass is a stand-up with a 41 inch scale, what would a 34 inch scale instrument be? Answer: a baritone guitar. You are not going to are not going to get that sound naturally by putting heavy strings on a 27 inch scale regular guitar - that is just compensating for a lack of proper length.  I know very little of luthier mathematics but it seems to me that logically a 33 inch scale would be ideal for tuning down a 5th to an A – A tuning and a 31 inch scale would be best for a B – B tuning. This matches fairly close to what I have observed in making these guitars.