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I think the Fender J Bass might be too narrow for my huge hands.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by SalmonKing, Jan 3, 2012.

  1. SalmonKing


    Apr 28, 2011
    I bought a J bass about six months ago, and am starting to think I'd be better off with a much thicker neck. I have the biggest (well, longest) hands of anyone I've ever met, and feel like I'm pinching a piece of paper when I play that thing. Has anyone in my situation gone for a thicker neck, and had good luck? Thanks.
  2. Lee H

    Lee H

    Nov 30, 2011
    Redding CA
    I like the radius of a J bass, but like you, I find that it is a little too small for comfort...
    I am gravitating toward 5ers, because of this
  3. steamthief


    Jan 25, 2006
    Mentone Beach
    I've been through four Jazz basses, the neck doesn't work for me, either. Have you considered getting a P neck, if you like everything else about the Jazz?
  4. I play a J so I know what you mean about that, but you need to be clearer about what you mean by "thicker." There are several dimensions at play here:

    - width of the neck at the nut (1.5" on the J, which is narrow)

    - neck radius, which is a measure of curvature - mine is 7.25" which is quite curved, but other Js differ

    - thickness of the neck as curved, i.e. is it more like a baseball bat, a slab or an upright neck?

    I'm interested in the subject too.
  5. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    to me, it's whatever you're comfortable with, but keep in mind that Jimi Hendrix had super long fingers, played a strat, and it didn't seem to hamper him at all ;). nor did it hurt Stanley Clarke's playing a short scale alembic with his long fingers.

    again, though, it's whatever is most comfortable to you and what neck inspires you to play your best.
  6. RyanJD


    Apr 19, 2011
    I'm the opposite, I had a Squier J bass, and upgraded to a Fender P bass, I find the string spacing to be too far apart for me to play as fast as I want comfortably.
    My hands are pretty good size, I mean I'm 6'. Either way, I need to get a J neck on my P bass soon.
    I do have a 5 string Warwick. That works nicely for me.
  7. While the Jazz bass has a narrower neck, the string spacing is the same.
  8. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    not at the nut it isn't.
  9. I second what John said. Play a few different basses and find what is comfortable for you. For me, I play just about anything.
  10. Mike M.

    Mike M.

    Feb 14, 2010
    Do you find it too thin from front to back? The neck on my old '73 Jazz went bad and I got a Warmoth Jazz replacement. Got the Standard taper as opposed to the Slim taper (which was on the '73) and I like it much better. The width at the nut is the same but it's deeper from front to back.

    Old neck, measured front to back between the nut and the first fret: .812

    New neck, measured front to back between the nut and the first fret: .888

    Rock solid and for me it's much more comfortable. Just a thought if you go this route.
  11. If you find a store with a good selection of J-basses, Fender, Squier, others, you will notice that there's no standard size, they all are different. Same with Precisions. Sometimes even the low-end necks of the same model have slightly different characteristics. Which makes finding a good bass really fun, you hunt and hunt and by luck or an extended search you find the neck you like.
  12. Get a master built instrument! :)
  13. Alright, fair enough.
  14. BassGen


    Mar 15, 2011
    Ontario, Canada
    I've got fairly large hands and my J is a Geddy. The neck is very thin and narrow but I find it quite comfortable. I had to spend a long time getting used to a P at all. It never felt comfortable. But then again I used to play guitar and I have a Strat so maybe I'm just used to it.

    But if yours isn't working for you, please feel free to send it to me!:hyper:
  15. vince a

    vince a

    Jun 13, 2006
    Modesto, CA
    I have rather large hands too . . . and I also play a 4 MIA Jazz, as well, as 5 and 6 strings . . . . . no problems with the Jazz . . . and I'm an older dude, so it SHOULD bother me!
  16. Broadstbully22


    Dec 5, 2011
    I think the 4 jazzes are to small, 5s are perfect.
  17. RyanJD


    Apr 19, 2011
    I can tell you without measuring that the spacing is way different.
    And yes, at the nut, not the bridge. :p

    Now that I'm down to my Fender 4 P and a Warwick 5, it's a good match because they force me to get used to narrow and wide spacing and I'm forcing myself to become comfortable with both.
    More versatility in the long run I suppose. :bassist:
  18. Since string spacing is measured at the bridge, that's why I made that comment. Honestly when I play I notice the difference in neck width much more so than the string spacing.
  19. RyanJD


    Apr 19, 2011
    Wasn't aware of that. Thanks.
  20. I have fairly large hands, yet ultimately I've been able to get on with most necks on most basses. Sure, there are necks that don't feel great but nothing that has ever made me think I wouldn't own a bass. Often, these issues with neck size are more in your head than they are in your hands! :atoz:

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