#1
I have just started learning in the last two days and am wondering if I should have the cheapo guitar I picked up at the pawn shop converted to a lefty since I am indeed left handed.

I'm thinking I would be better off since I would (or should?) have better precision with my left and could therefore strum better. But, since I am a noob, I am not sure what takes more precision: strumming or fingering.

The only downfall is I wouldnt be able to pick up a random guitar at a friends house and start playing in the future.

Thoughts/Suggestions?

Thanks!
#2
I am left handed and play left handed. I dont think it matters too much in the long term, you should try holding a guitar and plucking some notes on both a righty and left and see if one seems more natural or comfortable. If both seem equally un-natural then just stick with the guitar you have.

Another consideration is that there are significantly less left handed guitars available, and they are usually a bit more expensive. Thats the most annoying thing about being left handed.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Last edited by Hydra150 at Mar 30, 2012,
#3
Quote by Hydra150
Another consideration is that there are significantly less left handed guitars available, and they are usually a bit more expensive. Thats the most annoying thing about being left handed.
Well, I think you could probably dial that back to, "there used to be a lot fewer left handed guitars available".

While you're absolutely correct in what you've said, the situation now, is infinitely better than in years past.

Today I can easily find desirable left handed instruments, in quantities abundantly more than I can possibly afford.

Jus' sayin', the availability of left handed guitars today is such that it shouldn't discourage someone who wants to learn as a lefty, to go ahead and do so.

For a budding electric player, Rondo Music has lefty beaters starting at a hundred bucks, right off the rack: http://www.rondomusic.com/electricguitarleft.html In packages, no less...!
Last edited by Captaincranky at Mar 30, 2012,
#4
Quote by Captaincranky

Jus' sayin', the availability of left handed guitars today is such that it shouldn't discourage someone who wants to learn as a lefty, to go ahead and do so.


Jus' sayin', it is the most annoying thing about being left handed, for me at least. It is pretty much the only downside that I have experienced, other than not being able to jam on other peoples guitars.

Perhaps it is slightly better in America, but I have often found the model of guitar that I lust after is not made in left handed. Several times I have found that they did not make the colour I wanted in left handed (in one case it was a deal breaker, in another it was a slight change that i learned to love). Ibanez offer 104 right handed (solid electric) models and only 5 left handed models (from my quick survey of their site). If you want a left handed PRS you can either shell out £3500 for one of the limited run from '11 (their first run in five years) or scour ebay for used as they pretty much ceased production of lefties years ago.

Sure, there are left handed guitars available, but if you have specific requirements in a guitar you will have to compromise.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Last edited by Hydra150 at Mar 31, 2012,
#5
^
QFT.

I learned righty because I had no desire to worry about the logistics of buying a lefty guitar and because it put my dominant hand on fretting. That's been a huge boon to me, but it's all down to preference.
#6
That's not to say I regret learning this way, I like being the wrong way round, its good to be different - you are instantly more interesting. Besides, I do have plenty nice guitars (although not the same ones I would otherwise have bought) so I can hardly complain. Cant afford any new guitars anyway (though that doesnt stop me browsing shops and youtube reviews longingly).

And my dad was a lefty so I got a guitar and bass from him, and he bought me my first crappy acoustic anyway so the choice wasn't really mine...

And I forgot to mention, you may be able to find a reasonable number of guitars that a shop will order from a dealer for you (theyre less likley to have it in stock - I had to wait well over a month before they got my Hagstrom Viking delivered), but you will have a significantly harder time when looking for a bargain in a pawn shop or ebay.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Last edited by Hydra150 at Mar 31, 2012,
#7
Quote by Hydra150
Jus' sayin', it is the most annoying thing about being left handed, for me at least. It is pretty much the only downside that I have experienced, other than not being able to jam on other peoples guitars.

Perhaps it is slightly better in America,
Sorry for not looking at your location. It isn't slightly better here in the US, it's way, way better!
Quote by Hydra150
Ibanez offer 104 right handed (solid electric) models and only 5 left handed models (from my quick survey of their site).
Ibanez is a tad nasty toward lefties! As near as I can figure, they make a run of a particular LH model of "xxx" quantity, sell out, and don't replace it. I have 3 Ibbys, 2 AE, and a low end Les Paul knock off , (ART100), and they've all been, "discontinued" in the 2 years since I purchased them. In the case of their better electrics, they seem to be pretty much sold at the same time they hit the website.
Quote by Hydra150
Sure, there are left handed guitars available, but if you have specific requirements in a guitar you will have to compromise.
Here in "the colonies" we have several high end manufacturers that build LH, no extra charge, Martin, Jackson, and Carvin spring immediately to mind. Plus the Rondo guitars I linked earlier. Their "Agile" electrics enjoy a relatively good reputation.

Warmouth offers most of their custom bodies and necks LH, right off the rack, if you're a hankerin' for a DIY LH project: http://www.warmoth.com/ (Pissed me off though, when I found out their Telecaster double neck body was RH only). Double necks & pedal steels are the only 2 things I don't recall seeing, "backwards".

And Dennis, (owner) of "Adirondack Guitar" has a number of Crafter models custom built LH for stock! You can check out his left hand stash here: http://www.adirondackguitar.com/lefty/LHMenu.htm

You're probably aware of them but, "Left Hand Bear" is in your neck of the woods: http://www.lefthandbear.com/ If you're in the market for any kind of folk oriented instrument
Last edited by Captaincranky at Mar 31, 2012,
#8
If I were to order a guitar from Rondo, Adironack or Warmoth I'd be paying waay too much in shipping for it to be worth it.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
#9
Quote by Hydra150
If I were to order a guitar from Rondo, Adironack or Warmoth I'd be paying waay too much in shipping for it to be worth it.
Yeah, excess shipping charges. Isn't that why they stopped flying the Concord? Can you imagine today's sticker shock, on a "fill 'er up, and check the oil", with an SST? Afterburners you know, their fuel "economy" is measured in gallons per mile, not miles per gallon.

I feel your pain, and I'm not trying to be a boor, but I can call Adirondack before noon, and have a guitar in my hands the next day, by 6:00 PM, free shipping. That's only because they use FedeX. If they used UPS, I'm pretty sure I'd have it by noon.

So yeah, it's way, way better over here for us "backwards guys".
#10
The picking hand needs a lot more precision and has a bigger influence on how good you sound. Plus it has the most important task of playing guitar: playing in time. You will sound much better with an average fretting hand and an amazing strumming hand, than the other way around.
Obviously the best option is to develop both to a good level, I'm not saying anyone should neglect their fretting hand practice.

So yeah I think it makes sense a lefty handed person should play a lefty... but it's up to you to decide
#11
Quote by Guitarra_acores
The picking hand needs a lot more precision and has a bigger influence on how good you sound. Plus it has the most important task of playing guitar: playing in time. You will sound much better with an average fretting hand and an amazing strumming hand, than the other way around.
Obviously the best option is to develop both to a good level, I'm not saying anyone should neglect their fretting hand practice.

So yeah I think it makes sense a lefty handed person should play a lefty... but it's up to you to decide

Nah. Fretting hand is equally important and your dominant hand is naturally more dexterous and stronger. That means that chords are easier to play earlier, barre chords are less problematic, you can play legato more easily, you can perform more complex legato and muting techniques, sweeping is easier because of the emphasis on left handed muting.....

The list goes on, but the argument could be made for either side. And it's not as if the non-dominant hand is absolutely weaker, just that the dominant hand is stronger (if that makes sense).
#12
I'm a lefty who chose to play righty. I am very glad for this. Every guitar I see in a store or at a friends house I can play. And playing guitar is ambidextrous, sometimes your fretting hand will need work (chords, stretches, shred scales, etc) and sometimes your picking hand will need work (gallops, pinch harmonics, palm mutes).

Also, like hydra150 pointed out, many companies just don't make lefty guitars. One of my favorite guitars is my black PRS custom with a white trim. It's beautiful and for years it gave me a slash-like tone in the neck pick up that I loved. I would not be able to get it left handed.

Also, I bought a schecter c-1 classic before they stopped making them, beautiful rose inlay with great jazz pick ups for a variety of sound (lots of bite in bridge PU and lots of mid in neck PU). Also, does not come in left handed versions, or at least didn't at the time.

I think you should stick to right handed unless you really just want to be different for the sake of being different.
#13
Thank you all for the the quick comments and insight! I think I will continue on the right handed path. It feels natural holding the guitar this way.

Thanks again.