I am going to build my first 8 string CBUke - (4 pairs of strings). The G & C will be tuned an octave apart / the E & A in unison. I would welcome advice on string spacing. I am planning to come in 1/8th from each outside string to the fretboard edge. But what about the spacing inside each pair,and then the distance between one set to the next? I am hoping to keep the nut width to 1 11/16 max.Any advice will be much appreciated! Thanks in advance. Will

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Hi Will,

I made an 8 string guitar a while back and found it difficult to get an answer. The discussion on this site asking about 8string Ukes suggests 6mm between double courses at the nut and 9mm at the bridge. The final comment at the end says there is a large variation between different makers (which also seems to be the case with guitars)

Attached should be a photo of 4 strings originating from the same point and expanding at the same rate. For a 4 string instrument you hold it against the nut and decide the width you want on the nut of the two outer strings. Fold the paper at this point and you can use it to mark evenly the position you want the four string slots to be on the nut. From the information above if you add 4 more lines 6mm (if you decide this is the gap you want) to the right of the four strings marked you can use it in the same way to mark the 8 slots.

Good luck,
David L.

Thanks so much - I really appreciate the info!

spend a few minutes at your favorite instrument store playing an 8 string mandolin, and a 12 string guitar. Functionality comes before rules, so you want the doubles 'juuuuuust' far enough apart to be able to play one or both, and just enough space between sets for YOUR fingers to fit so you can play a fingered chord without a fingertip overlapping to the next set...

Good advice... I have owned a couple of 12 string guitars - that can be a real issue. Thanks!

Try googling mandolin string spacing

Thank you - I think I have it figured out now.


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