Kids’ first electric- scale question

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by ifallalot, Sep 11, 2019.

  1. ifallalot

    ifallalot Tele-Afflicted

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    I’m going to buy a Squier for my son who will be 9 in December. I showed him pics and he likes the Bullet Mustang better probably because it’s blue but I he was interested in the Mini Strat as well

    The question is, what do you think is better for a 9 year old beginner, the 24” of the Mustang or the 22.75” of the Squier Mini?
     
  2. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I think the mini stat would be better, if he sticks with it he will be ready for an upgrade in a couple years anyway and he can move up to a full size guitar then.

    I started at around 13yo with a full sized dred with a tough action and heavy strings. It made life very difficult for the first year or two.

    I'm also biased because I want a mini strat for myself.
    I played one a few months ago and it was a lot of fun.:)
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019
  3. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Friend of Leo's

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    I'd recommend the Mustang. It will scale well into teen years and adulthood. It looks like a grown-up guitar while the mini-Strat looks like a kids guitar. Also, setting intonation is tricky on the 22.75" scale.
     
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  4. IronSchef

    IronSchef Tele-Holic Platinum Supporter

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    I would also go w/ the bullet mustang
     
  5. beagle

    beagle Friend of Leo's

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    The size of the body and the weight are more important than the scale length to begin with.
     
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  6. Ricky D.

    Ricky D. Doctor of Teleocity

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    Not a big difference in fret spacing between the two, if you capo the first fret of the longer scale you have virtually the same scale as the shorter. Trivial difference, not suggesting you actually do that. I'd let him make his own choice
     
  7. LowCaster

    LowCaster Tele-Holic

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    I recently bought a Duo-sonic which is the same size and shape as the Mustang. Those are very cool guitars regardless of age and experience, and certainly perfect for a teenager... 9 years old may be a litte bit too young though, if he is not really tall. The scale may be "short", but the guitar is not, it is lightweight but the overall length is exactly the same as a regular stratocaser (a hair longer ), because the body is longer. So it could be cumbersome for a kid.

    Even if he still can't play he should be allowed to see and hold those guitars in real life before making this first choice. Visiting a guitar store (while they last) is a great experience for a kid.
     
  8. blille

    blille Tele-Afflicted

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    I have a 9 yr old, a mini (for her) and a duo Sonic (for me).

    I would go for a mini. Just put 11s on it.
     
  9. beagle

    beagle Friend of Leo's

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    I don't put 11s on for the kids either. 9s are just fine for little hands, they don't hurt quite as much.
     
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  10. blille

    blille Tele-Afflicted

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    The point of 11s is mostly to keep the guitar in tune and compensates with the shorter scale. Thinner strings "cut" more, but of course YMMV etc
     
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  11. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

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    +1 Squier Mustang.

    Also, do you have a gaming console in the house? Look up the game Rocksmith, find a used copy for $5 and a used cable for $10 and get the kid learning something instead of just playing video games. The game also seems to work better with humbuckers so the mustang would be a better option here too.

    .
     
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  12. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    The squier minis can vary. You need to try a lot to find a good one that intonates well.

    Daughter went through one really quick.
     
  13. 57fenderstrat

    57fenderstrat TDPRI Member

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    I started playing when I was 12 on a Squier affinity strat. I got a epiphone les Paul when I was 16 or so but returned to playing the Squier as my number one guitar until I got a fender av57 in my early 20s. I loved that Squier. My uncle was a player and he picked it out for me and he stressed that the most important thing to help a beginner guitarist is to give them something that is easy to play. He talked about trying to learn how to play on an old silvertone acoustic that had strings two inches off fretboard. I think the neck was bolted on via my grandfather. Something that is hard or hurts to play makes it ten times harder for anyone to learn on. My uncle also said that all guitars are different even if they are the same model, how important it is to play it in the shop and compare them. It’s cool that you are a player and can give your kid something nice and give him the best chance at enjoying it and sticking with it.
     
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  14. ifallalot

    ifallalot Tele-Afflicted

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    Oh man that's a really good idea. I had forgot about that.

    He loves video games so I'd love to have him doing that instead of Fortnite/Roblox/Minecraft

    The other key about the Squier Mustang is that if guitar doesn't take I can use it as a mod platform

    I also have my old 90s MIM stashed away in the closet when he gets a little bigger
     
  15. urbandefault

    urbandefault Tele-Meister

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    I put 10s on my grandson's Strat Mini, because it wouldn't quite play in tune with 9s.

    Now he's over a year into playing and more enthused than ever, so I built him a full size T style for his birthday. :cool:
     
  16. RoCkstAr256

    RoCkstAr256 Tele-Afflicted

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    Squier or Fender Mustang. Try 10 gauge Daddario NYXL, they are the softiest of all
     
  17. POS Guitars

    POS Guitars TDPRI Member

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    I think it depends on if you think your kid will stick to playing.

    Mustang Pros:
    - Great guitar
    - You can keep it for a while
    - Short scale
    Mustang Cons:
    - More expensive
    - You will be stuck with it, if the kid quits

    Squier 3/4 pros:
    - Cheap
    - Proportional size

    Squier 3/4 cons:
    - Harder to keep in tune, especially with lighter strings
    - Lower quality than Mustang

    On a side note, I picked up a mini Squier last year on CL for $30. It needed the same set up as a brand new one ($130).
     
  18. ifallalot

    ifallalot Tele-Afflicted

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    There's a Squier Mustang Affinity that's only $20 more than the Squier Mini
     
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  19. beagle

    beagle Friend of Leo's

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    Thinner strings don't cut more as they need less tension. There's no problem intonating or keeping them in tune on a Squier Mini or any other guitar, or not for me anyhow. I use 8s on my own guitars...
     
  20. blille

    blille Tele-Afflicted

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    Like I said YMMV. You can use 6s, be my guest.

    Thinner things cut more than thicker things. That's why you have paper cut and not trunk cuts or why knifes are sharp and used on the thin side to cut, not the thick side. I mean, seriously. More tension makes it harder to play, sure.

    I'll stop arguing but for the OPs sake: there are many threads about people not being able to keep short scale guitars in tune. Many spend money on the tuners, nut etc. You just need to increase the gauge.
     
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