I’m currently working with a ¾ size electric guitar for my daughter. The problem I have is putting the right strings on it to get a stable standard E tuning (EADGBE). The person I bought it off said he could only get it to tune to ADGCEA, which is like playing with a capo on the 4th. Reading online, I’ve found that ¾ size guitars are notorious for tuning difficulties and many ¾ guitars are actually recommends to be tuned to ADGCEA. This makes sense, I suppose, as you’re effectively losing 1/3 of the string length, which takes you down to the 3rd or 4th fret. The most common solution I’ve read for this is to use heavy gauge strings, as these will hold tune better when tuned down. I don’t really like the idea of this though, as you’re dropping 5 semitones to get what you need. So I was wondering if another solution was possible: move the strings.
Can you move all the strings down one? So the E string becomes the A string, the A becomes the D, etc., and lose the high E string. In theory, this should allow you to tune to standard E at about the correct tension.
If 1 is possible, can you take a string from a bass set to replace the missing low E?
If 2 is possible, which string do you use? I don’t know much about bass strings, but it looks like the best bet would be to use the A string, as this gives a D at the 5th fret and I’d only need to tune up two semitones. The other alternative being the D, which is G at the 5th, requiring tuning down 3 semitones. I suppose the decider would be thickness of string versus stability of the up/down tuning.