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Are there six-string, regular scale guitars (acoustic or electric) with strings ranging from low B to high B?

This is not a baritone as it's standard scale but has strings: B, E, A, D, G, B.

If not what are the potential problems with filing the nut of an E to E acoustic?

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    Wouldn't that G be F#? Having M3 between top two strings is odd. – Tim Sep 29 '19 at 8:13
  • @Tim Why would that be odd. G and B are from same tuning as Standard Tuning. – Randy Zeitman Sep 29 '19 at 16:20
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    I think it is odd, as the strings are tuned in 4ths on a standard guitar, except 3 and 2, tuned M3. You want 1 and 2 to have that M3, and 2 and 3 to be a 4th. That's odd. Making the 2nd string F# will keep everything the same as far as playing chords, and fingering generally! – Tim Sep 29 '19 at 16:40
  • @Tim if you want to have your standard shapes work on a b instrument you are going to have to tune the G down a semitone. I do that to my 7-strings so that all the usual shapes work on them. – Neil Meyer Sep 30 '19 at 10:10
  • @NeilMeyer - that's what I'm saying! On a 7 string, the top 6 are usually as standard, and the low B string is no. 7. Don't tell me - tell Randy! – Tim Sep 30 '19 at 10:48
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Not that I know sold as standard. But quite do-able using an ordinary guitar. No problems with the nut slots - and maybe those on the saddle. Strings would need swapping up, so the 2nd becomes the 1st, and so on. Then something like a .052"/.056" for the low B.

Tension would be similar, so no more strain on the neck. The intonation could be problematic, though. You notice how each string needs to be a little longer as they go lower. The bridge would be the decider here.

I did similar with a bass, and it's strung BEAD. no problems at all, but the saddles were all adjustable.

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  • Yes, re: intonation but that's a small price to pay for what could be a very minor compromise about the 12th fret. What do you mean when you say no problem with the nut. – Randy Zeitman Sep 29 '19 at 16:21
  • Nut slots will all be, if anything, a little too thin. Open up if needed. – Tim Sep 29 '19 at 16:37
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A competent luthier would be able to set up the nut and bridge contours after adapting this instrument. Good setup and intonation requires a total system approach, which takes into account nut and bridge height where each string touches them, string tensions, neck angle and neck relief, fret height and fret dress. Remember, when you fret a string, either individually or when chording, the string pitch will be going sharp compared with that of the strings which were tuned without pressing down on them. A proper setup is needed to even out the differences in how each string interacts with the neck and frets, and much more. To go at this haphazardly will leave you chasing single problem issues, which more often than not will just make things worse. A proper overall setup should prevent any problems for a long, long time. And you would be getting the most out of your custom guitar right away. It's the important investment. Should not be too expensive when you've chosen the right luthier. Best of luck in your project, sounds creative indeed.

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  • "Should not be too expensive when you've chosen the right luthier." Ok, how much? (There's a reason acoustics don't often have adjustable saddles.) – Randy Zeitman Sep 30 '19 at 14:31

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