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Thread: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

  1. #1

    Default Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    Is it just me, or is it a little harder to get nice even double stops on a radiused fretboard than a flat fretboard? Ergonomically, it seems that your right hand has to angle differently, especially on double stops on the A and E strings.

  2. #2
    Registered User sblock's Avatar
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    Well, writing for myself, I do not find it harder to execute double stops on a radiused fretboard.

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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    Quote Originally Posted by sblock View Post
    Well, writing for myself, I do not find it harder to execute double stops on a radiused fretboard.
    +1 I have both flat and radiused and find them both just fine for double stops. I use them a lot.
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    Registered User Glassweb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    unless a board has a really extreme radius it should just be a matter of time before you get used to making those double stops on the curve...

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    Registered User Billy Packard's Avatar
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    It's you.


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    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    Double stops originated on bowed orchestral stringed instruments - violin, viola, cello, etc. These fingerboards are much more radiused than any mandolin you'll ever find. Yet players have been executing double stops on them for centuries.

    I have more flat than radiused fretboards on my various mandolin-family instruments. Like nut width and other things that matter a great deal to some players, I never notice or even think about it until asked.

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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    Hmmm? Sounds like it's me.

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    perpetual beginner... jmagill's Avatar
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    I find everything easier on a radiused fretboard.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    I think the right hand is a tiny bit easier on flat boards with all the strings on the same plane. Left hand prefers a radius.
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    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    I find it harder on a radiused fretboard to do anything that involves one finger pressing down two courses at once. Luckily very few of the double stops I use involve only one finger, and even if the other note is on the same fret I can usually get a second finger in there, and prefer it.
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    Maybe its not the radius but the string spacing or action that is causing the issue.
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    Confused... or?
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    Quote Originally Posted by Victor Daniel View Post
    Maybe its not the radius but the string spacing or action that is causing the issue.
    That was my first thought.

    A radiused board should effectively give you more "finger-room" between otherwise-equally-spaced courses but, IMHO, that would primarily apply to fretting a course in between two outlying courses, where the radius provides room for the fretting finger to overhang those adjacent courses. In the case of double stops... well, maybe you're avoiding touching the adjacent non-played strings as well? Touching them, or even inadvertantly fretting them, should make little difference.
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    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    I use barre chords a lot, including for double and triple stops... And I have a flat fingerboard F-style and a radiused fingerboard F-style. I would have thought that barre chords would be tougher on one of these than the other, but in reality I really don't notice any difference.

    I would think that fret height differences between mandolins could result in more felt difference than the subtle radiuses that are usually found on mandolin fingerboards.
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  15. #14

    Default Re: Double Stops with Radiused vs. Flat Fretboard

    The radius seems to help with reach more than anything. It's 14" scale length with a 1+ " nut.

    Fender guitars with a 25 1/2 " scale length commonly have a 9.5" radius and some have a 7 1/4" which helps with chording.

    I like a 12" radius on everything I play. I switch instruments a lot and that familiarity is there, so I adjust to the scale lenght.

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