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TrickyFish

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Dec. 7 2018
 

String height above soundboard? 

I have seen high-quality luthier-made flamenco guitars marketed as having a string height above soundboard at the bridge of only 8mm. I’ve never played a guitar with such a setup.

I have a Cordoba F10, which is a good factory-made guitar marketed as a flamenco guitar. Its string height above the soundboard is 13-14mm which is a little higher than the 12mm to 13mm string height of my classical guitar.

How important is the string height above the soundboard? Does a lower height make some techniques easier?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 19 2023 6:06:19
Guest

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

At least this golpe technique is similar easy to do with a classical and a flamenco setup. Cheers.



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 19 2023 12:03:52
 
orsonw

Posts: 1934
Joined: Jul. 4 2009
From: London

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

quote:

How important is the string height above the soundboard? Does a lower height make some techniques easier?


Yes it makes a difference. Many useful discussions on the foro here:

http://www.foroflamenco.com/searchpro.asp?topicreply=both&message=both&timeframe=%3E&timefilter=0&top=300&criteria=AND&minRank=10&language=single&phrase=string+height+
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 19 2023 12:21:00
 
johnnefastis

Posts: 631
Joined: Jan. 10 2012
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

I think its pretty personal. But I have come to realise for me at least its important. I just sold a nice guitar as I always felt it was a bit high (around 9mm) at the bridge and bigger near the sound hole. I am much happier with the set up of my ricardo sanchis which is super low (7-8 mm) and pretty consistent across the soundboard.

The guy I sold the other guitar too is a great player and not bothered by the extra height.

Here is a pic of my most comfortable guitar set up wise.



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Attachment (1)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 19 2023 13:23:07
 
estebanana

Posts: 9352
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

I aim for 10mm high action when I build classical guitars, even 12mm is outside my idea of classical action. 13 to 14 mm is way too high. It’s close to twice as high as it should be.
Maybe you could have someone look at it.

Anywhere between 7 and 9 mm can be playable for flamenco, but 7 to 8 mm is usually what players want.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 19 2023 18:20:40
 
estebanana

Posts: 9352
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

El Kabong is here

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 19 2023 18:22:08
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14818
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

This is what happens with 10mm height at bridge:



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 19 2023 19:22:29
 
TrickyFish

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Dec. 7 2018
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

Thanks all for the feedback. Attached is a pic of my Cordoba F10. I will try to get this addressed, but its never going to be 7mm!



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 20 2023 10:36:45
Guest

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

I remember I filed down my first one myself. Man the bone powder stank... Do it, but do it outside ;-)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 20 2023 10:55:22
 
RobF

Posts: 1611
Joined: Aug. 24 2017
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to Guest

quote:

ORIGINAL: OkFlamenco
I remember I filed down my first one myself. Man the bone powder stank... Do it, but do it outside ;-)


Doesn’t really matter where you do it, as long as you do it right, right Doit?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 20 2023 23:44:57
 
johnnefastis

Posts: 631
Joined: Jan. 10 2012
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

There will be more info in the other threads but remember for every 1mm you take of the saddle you get half that distance off at the 12th fret action. So worth figuring that out too. I would maybe aim for 3.5mm between the 12 fret and string and then see if you can gradually get a bit lower without too much fret buzz from there.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 21 2023 0:10:03
 
RobF

Posts: 1611
Joined: Aug. 24 2017
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

Actually, I want to apologize for responding earlier without taking the time to look at your picture.

Johnnefastis is correct. In this case you should be working at adjusting the action at the 12th fret and then the action at the bridge will have to fall out of that. What you have is an extremely high action at the bridge, which could point to a possible neck set issue. If that is the case, some degree of adjustment can be made to correct it by adjusting the fretboard thickness, which would require a full refret, but this still might not get you to where you want to be and it probably doesn’t make sense to go to that extreme on this particular guitar.

It might be more economical to change instruments rather than trying to bring this one into standard flamenco setup territory. As it stands, to lower the action at the bridge much below 9mm, the bridge itself would have to be adjusted, which may not be practical if the neck angle doesn’t support it. In other words, to achieve a ‘flamenco’ action at the bridge, you could end up with a too low action over the frets, and the guitar will either buzz horribly or more likely will just fret out.

Part of this depends on the current action at the 12th, of course. If it’s currently set to a ‘classical’ action of 4mm at the twelfth fret, then you might be in luck as you can probably get away with shaving 2-3mm off the saddle, which would bring your action at the bridge closer to 10mm, which might be good enough to work with. Still high, but a darn sight better than it is now.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 21 2023 3:13:10
 
Fawkes

 

Posts: 104
Joined: Feb. 11 2015
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

There's also considerable angle between the strings and the top which may reflect some other problem, like the top being quite dished from the extra leverage on the bridge. I presume it's beyond contemplation that the angle is from something going on with the neck?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 21 2023 4:13:19
 
Pgh_flamenco

 

Posts: 1506
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to Fawkes

quote:

ORIGINAL: Fawkes

I presume it's beyond contemplation that the angle is from something going on with the neck?



There’s not much the average person can do about it. Did Stephen do a thread about a neck reset? I thought one of the Foro luthiers did...

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 21 2023 7:56:11
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14818
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to Pgh_flamenco

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pgh_flamenco

quote:

ORIGINAL: Fawkes

I presume it's beyond contemplation that the angle is from something going on with the neck?



There’s not much the average person can do about it. Did Stephen do a thread about a neck reset? I thought one of the Foro luthiers did...


Fingerboard can be planned, the bridge filled down, and finally the new saddle. There are limitations to all three of those, and factory guitars never warrant the cost of this work.

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 21 2023 13:12:46
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 3023
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

I recently did a fingerboard replacement on a '90s J.L. Postigo, to take the action down from 5mm to 2.5 with no room at the bridge. It was expensive but sometimes the guitar is valuable enough to the owner to justify it. It was caused by the infamous two cracks next to the fingerboard allowing the whole neck and that portion of the top to rotate forward over time.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 21 2023 23:56:34
 
Fawkes

 

Posts: 104
Joined: Feb. 11 2015
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

Which makes me wonder: of the various strategies for reinforcing that area, what fails and what works?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 22 2023 0:08:09
 
JasonM

Posts: 2055
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to RobF

All these subliminal references to former foro members is freakin me out, Frank
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 22 2023 18:07:02
 
RobF

Posts: 1611
Joined: Aug. 24 2017
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to JasonM

Oh oh. I don’t know who Frank is

I was just responding to all the clues he’s been scattering around the place like so much confetti…

Frank??? Ahhh… this is going to be bugging me all day….
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 22 2023 19:32:11
 
Andy Culpepper

Posts: 3023
Joined: Mar. 30 2009
From: NY, USA

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to Fawkes

quote:

Which makes me wonder: of the various strategies for reinforcing that area, what fails and what works?


It's a good question. I think the most important thing is building in a humidity controlled environment (with well seasoned wood) and keeping the guitar well humidified. You can also glue the fingerboard only down the center in the portion over the top to give the top a little extra wiggle room to expand and contract underneath. On the Postigo, that portion of the top was able to separate and move forward even while still being glued to the upper harmonic bar and the support bar under the fingerboard. Definitely some glue creep happening there.

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http://www.andyculpepper.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 23 2023 3:38:39
Guest

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

As a rule of thumb. A cigarette should not fall through.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 23 2023 10:41:44
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14818
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to RobF

quote:

ORIGINAL: RobF

Oh oh. I don’t know who Frank is

I was just responding to all the clues he’s been scattering around the place like so much confetti…

Frank??? Ahhh… this is going to be bugging me all day….


El Kabong was a different guy that used to be on here. You are correct it is Doit.

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 23 2023 17:19:50
 
JasonM

Posts: 2055
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to RobF

Frank is just a guy who’s name begins with an F, and me be confusing. Needed an F name to complete the sentence Former Fraudulent Flamenco Foro Fellas Freakin me out…
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 23 2023 19:36:48
 
RobF

Posts: 1611
Joined: Aug. 24 2017
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to JasonM

Alliteration is always appreciated, Alan
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 23 2023 21:10:51
 
estebanana

Posts: 9352
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

In 2014 I showed a guitar with spline neck joint. I have the the guitar through a complex series of trades and new guitars to a customer. It’s my guitar now. Two years ago a person came up behind me and startled me causing me bump into a folding table which had the guitar on it. The guitar used the inclined table as a launching ramp to fling itself on the cement floor at high velocity and give the top four big ass cracks and separate the top for the glue blocks for 6 inches.

I glued it back together that afternoon and never bothered to put cleats on the cracks ( it mine why bother?)

Now the guitar is scheduled for a new top as soon as I find myself a new beach guitar.
I’d just as soon make a clean top as save the old one. Because I’m after all a guitar mangler, ah maker.

The neck angle is still perfect.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 24 2023 7:49:04
 
estebanana

Posts: 9352
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to TrickyFish

Didn’t mean to anthropomorphize the guitar by alluding to it having four asses and therefore 4 ass cracks, I simply meant the cracks are big freaking cracks.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 24 2023 7:52:09
 
Doitsujin

Posts: 5078
Joined: Apr. 10 2005
 

RE: String height above soundboard? (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

El Kabong was a different guy that used to be on here. You are correct it is Doit.


El Kabong Creative name... So no more confusion. Escribano fixed the account problem. Hi all! Lets move on.. and, I have to reopen the best flamenco guitar CDs since 2013 thread since it got closed because of my account fix..
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 24 2023 12:45:15
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