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Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by garrett, Aug 26, 2016.
Why has pie been invoked?
I am VERY sensitive to scale length.
To my hands the 594 scale seems very slightly shorter than a modern Gibson Custom shop, which I believe to be 24.625", even though they say 24.75". My b3 SL's say they are 24.625", and it feels EXACTLY the same as a Les Paul.
The Knaggs Kenai and the rest of the "Influence" Series states a spec of 24.75". I believe that to be accurate, it feels slightly longer than a Les Paul.
When I had all 24.5" PRSi, I found it difficult to switch back and forth between the PRSi and Gibsons and other 24.625/24.75" guitars. Now with the 594, I find it MUCH easier! Thus the b3's and Knaggs in the current collection.
( I don't even bother with playing 25.5" scale guitars. They feel like Baritone guitars to me. I keep at least one in the collection for the principle of the matter, and pick it up every few months or so to dust it off.)
So based on that personal experience, I feel the 594 is slightly shorter than the Gibsons (now completely out my lineup, but overlapped with my GOM) and my b3's (had 6, down to 4 now, have A/B'ed extensively with the 594's), and the Knaggs is a little longer than the Les Pauls.
That said, if Paul says the 594 is the same as the actual '59, that sounds good by me! This scale length sure feels amazing, and sounds great too!
My 2 cents, based upon the feedback my hands give me.
Yeah, what Pete said...
Scale length, schmale length. How Gibson measured and built their 1950's guitars may not be the same as they are doing them now. I believe Paul based his scale length for the 594 on his past experience with vintage Gibsons he had worked on, and with his relationship with Ted McCarty, and the information Ted gave him.
The neck carve on the 594 is based on a 1953 Les Paul, which Paul had spent time with. I believe I read somewhere on this forum that the neck was worn from the player's technique, and the underside of the neck had been very slightly worn down, giving the guitar neck it's asymmetrical feel.
If Gibson is basing their historic Les Paul models on vintage specs, then these, as well, will have a possibly different scale length then a standard production LP.
In a blind test, I don't think anyone would be able to tell the difference, unless they knew and were playing a vintage Les Paul, and could ID the guitar by it's feel and other attributes..
Now that I have learned this, do I need to relearn how to play?
Yes. You have to learn how to play 50's style, historically correct. Otherwise you won't develop tone and mojo.
Meanwhile, the rest of us hacks will play guitars with widely varying scale lengths, and never know the difference.
All I know is that I love shorter scale guitars. The scale length on my SE 245 (24.5") is fantastic. This is the one reason that I am not a huge Strat fan as I can tell a big difference between the two. My new S2 is also has a great feel at 25".
About all I can say is that I have both a 66 reissue Strat and the 594 - & I like them both a lot. So I guess I like both short and long scale guitars.
I find this thread to be very informative actually, and it further stokes my interest in a 594.
I am not scale length sensitive. I like 25", 25.5" and whatever Gibson is. The stiffness/feel of a guitar and how it plays has much more to do with how it is set up than its scale length. I do think scale is a factor in sound and response, however, but they all have their pluses and minuses.
I may not be as sensitive to scale as Pete but I definitely have a preference and have trouble with certain scales. A 25.5 scale is very hard for me, they are just too stiff for my weak, small hands. Even my 305, which is the best Strat style guitar I've ever played, is difficult for me because of this. I do like my SC58's 24.5 scale because it feels slinky and bends so easy but it seems a 25 scale is my sweet spot. I'm sure a lot of that is because I've played that scale so much more than the others.
Having said that, I would love to try a 594 but I worry the neck will be to large for me.
I presume your SC58 has a 'pattern' neck profile? If so, I'd be surprised if you felt that the 594 neck was too thick/large for your comfort.
I went to 9.5 - 42s one my 305 and I love it ( 10s on everything else )
The pattern carve is as big as I think I would want and took some getting used to for me. The 594 description says "slightly bigger front to back" compared to the pattern carve which is why I was concerned.
I understand. I would definitely give it a shot before ruling it out, though. The asymmetric carve may just put that heft in the right places to make it comfortable for you!
Rider was referring to my 305 with the 25.5 scale.
I did try 9's on it once. I think it loses a bit of tone but it was easier to play. In the past few years I went from 9's on everything to 10's on everything so I'm getting better. And when I first tried a W/F it felt way too big, now I don't mind it too much. I still think the Al Di carve (which I think is similar to a pattern regular) is the best felling and allows me to play my best. But we digress.....
I have small hands and feel pattern shape perfect for me. Pattern vintage feels the same but fills the carve in your hand better. It's not a bigger-fatter feeling but better accommodated. If it serves as a reference, wide fat necks feel wider-bigger than pattern. You won't be surprised with a vintage.
Sorry to bring up and old post but.......
Out of curiosity I read a bunch of internet crap on Gibson scale length. It seems like Gibson was reporting a 24 9/16 scale length in the 50’s but it seems like most people who have actually measured ‘59 Gibsons report either 24 9/16 or 24 5/8. Both are of course less than 24 3/4.
Interesting that 24 19/32 (24.594) is smack dab in the middle of both. Sort of like “whatever let’s have both”. Adjustments of your saddles would make the difference in 1/32” totally negligible, so who gives a rip?
2nd edit: inspiration for my search came from another well-known guitar manufacturer introducing their take on the vintage Singlecut instrument