Wednesday, April 15, 2009

How To Convert A Right Handed Guitar For Left Handed Playing

Don't be confused by the title of this post. This is not a "how to restring your guitar to play left handed" directions post and has nothing to do with switching your guitar strings around. That would be too much work, and to the inexperienced may require a skilled luthier or repairman because it would require changing the bridge and nut.

If you play or plan to learn to play left handed and not use a left handed guitar there are only a couple of modifications that you would need to make with your guitar, and they aren't really necessary. First is the guitar strap button located on the heel of the guitar. That is on the back where the neck joins the body. If you hold a right handed guitar in the left handed position you will see that the strap button is probably located on top of the heel. That can be awkward if you use a strap because the strap can easily slip off possibly causing you to drop the guitar. Remove the strap button by unscrewing it with a screwdriver if it is the screw-in type. Replace it either to the back of the heel or the bottom of the heel. This way the strap will hold firmly on the guitar.

Another modification that a left handed guitar player playing a right handed guitar may want to make is with the pick guard. As you hold the guitar in the left handed position the pick guard will be located on top of the sound hole. It should be on the bottom. Again, this may require a repairman to do the job but if you prefer, you can buy a pick guard for a left handed guitar and glue it on yourself, but a repairman can insure that it won't come unglued or curl up. If you strum a lot like most beginners do you may want to install a pick guard onto the bottom of the sound hole to avoid scratching up the guitar. I don't use a pick guard on the bottom because I mostly pick the strings and consider the few scratches that I do have as battle scars. Again these aren't requirements but the changes that you make will customise the guitar for the left handed guitar player playing a right handed guitar upside down. This method of left handed guitar isn't dominated by any style of music or type of guitar. It can be used with an electric guitar as well, with a few further modifications. I use an acoustic because I prefer it. You can play any style of music from Celtic to hard rock.

3 comments:

  1. Hey this is a very good idea for guitar blog. Hats off to you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hey Sarge, thanks for your service to the community. I hope this site helps. Ben

    ReplyDelete
  3. But restringing the guitar is still a must though, right? To play it correctly? Im getting a right-handed, acoustic bass guitar and just plan on restringing it, and switching the strap holder screw over too, like you said, but yeah, would I have any problems with my guitar being right-handed? Should I flip the little bridge behind your hand that supports the strings? And the one at the top of the neck? I appreciate any help dude, thanks

    ReplyDelete

Ben Willis demonstrating the "left handed upside down guitar method".


A chord

B Chord

C Chord

D Chord

E Chord

F Chord

G Chord

B Barre Chord

D Barre Chord

Contact Info

E-mail Ben Willis at
bwillismusic@gmail.com