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Thursday, July 25, 2019

The Curse Of being Left-handed

The Curse Of being Left-handed
I hate stringing my guitars.  I do a sloppy job.  It comes out OK, but it does not look very good.  They will string them for you at the Guitar Store, but they charge like $15 plus the $7 stings.

If your going to play the guitar, you need to be able to do your own strings.  They show you how to do it on the internet, so I knuckled under and decided to learn.

My first guitar, I followed the directions and took my time.  It took about an hour (I said I took my time) and they looked pretty good.  I was very proud.

Then I did my good guitar, the Mahogany Martin.  This was not so easy.  This guitar has slotted pegs.  The internet instructions were not for slotted pegs.   It should not make any difference, but being left-handed I was confused.
Standard pegs on right, slotted on the WAIT, it is the other way around.  See what I mean.

I am not an ignorant person, I graduated from a fine College, I survived 40 years in the work force, I have trouble with clock-wise and counter clock-wise…go ahead, laugh if you must, it is a result of doing some things right-handed, and some things left-handed.

I always turn a screw the wrong way.  Whether to tighten or loosen, I always start the wrong way.  I have the same issue with stringing my guitars.

For most guitars, it is obvious that you have to string them counter clockwise or the strings will overlap.  This is less true for the slotted tuners, especially for the highest “E” string, the first string on the pegs.

So, I strung the Mahogany Martin 000-15 SM, and was very pleased with myself.

When I went to tune it correctly the last string would not tune properly.  When I tightened it, the tone went lower instead of higher…WTF?

Somehow I managed to string that last string clock-wise, instead of counter clock-wise…the curse of being left-handed.

Chances are, if I re-wrapped that string it would be a mess.  There was nothing really wrong with that string being wrapped wrong, so I did not change it.

When my future step-son-in-law visits, he sometimes plays with that guitar.  He is an actual skilled musician and guitar player.  I wonder how long it will take him to figure out that last strings was wound the wrong way.

Probably about three seconds.


  1. That sounds difficult, no matter what hand you are!

  2. Being the only right handed person in a family of left-handers, i know exactly how hard it is to learn to do things left handed. The only way i taught my children anything was to do it in front of the mirror and tell them to follow the mirror image, not me.

  3. I had my hubby read this post. He told me a few things like is your bridge set up to be playing your guitar left handed? If not, then things won't stay in tune. He also mentioned the wrapping around the posts. He said 1-2 wraps were all that were needed to then get them locked into place. Lesser wraps, more in tune. You probably know all this. He also said he could probably help more but talking on the phone would be his mode of "doing business" to see what he could offer in assistance. He is like your SIL but with over 45 years of experience :)

    My nephew is left handed. We always have to compensate for where he sits at family meals :)


  4. My son Genius is a lefty, and it took a few years of elbow-jabbing before we learned to seat him at the proper end of a table. He also wreaked havoc with the twist-ties on the bread wrappers. He adapted pretty well, but scissors with the molded handles were sometimes his undoing, along with a manual can-opener.

  5. There's a lot of left-handedness in my family. My father could draw with his left hand, but wrote with his right hand. I can do a lot of things with my left hand, for instance most pouring of liquids is done left handed, even boiling water into my coffee cup. My stepsister was left handed, sister-in-law, brother-in-law and first husband, all left handed, oldest grand daughter, also left handed.

  6. i wish i can listen some tunes by you dear Joe

    i agree that one must know how to fix most of the stuff at home ,it saves money indeed but the pleasure it gives is something special

    don't know that what hand you are but trying is never bad :)

    delicate jobs like this one need patience for sure ,but you did it at the end

  7. My left hand is mostly for decoration and symmetry. Never realized how difficult it must be for a left handed person in a right handed world. Now if you were a ballplayer--.

  8. My brother Brian is left handed. My son Brian is left handed. And they both play the guitar. I've seen your struggle first hand. :)

  9. My husband is left handed. Seems really gifted people, are left-handed.

  10. $15 for stringing? That is way steep.

  11. For those things that are difficult for us ~ we need to be retired so we can take all day. I am so waiting for that! I agree it's worth it to do it yourself no matter how long it takes.

  12. I have experience here. Always tune the guitar so that your thumb is pushing forward.
    The three strings closest to your chin are tuned counter-clockwise. The three furthest from your chin are tuned clockwise.
    Or at least, that’s how I remember it.

  13. I use both hands, but for different things... I never realized most people didn't for a very long time. But there are some things I'm not adept at with either hand... that would likely be one of them!

  14. No advice from me, but my youngest son is left handed. We always congratulate him on National Left-Handers Day.

    Do right-handed people have a special day like that? No....