SG Bass scale length

Hello! I was curious if anyone had a short scale Gibson or Epiphone SG style bass.
Short Q: Gibson is 30” scale but the bridge is closer to the center of the body than a P. Does this make it feel larger?
Long Q: I got used to playing a giant 34” classic P bass, and had a 30” P bass built. The 30” feels absolutely microscopic to me even though I have small hands. I’m wanting an SG style bass, and am curious how the size feels compared between a mustang and full P bass. Thanks!

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These are the two basses for comparison. I dont think my primary issue is the scale length but how small the instrument feels on the body


Here’s an old pic of my old Jazz bass vs my Gibson SG for comparison, @mpops1990

To answer your question: NO it does not make it feel any larger . . . in fact, I would very strongly recommend that you try one out in person before you plunk down a lot of cash on something you may be very disappointed in.

This was something which I did not do myself . . . :roll_eyes:

Don’t make the same mistake I did . . . and welcome to the Forums.



Welcome to the forum.
I have five short scale electric basses and they all feel, and play different.
My EB3 was made to the layout of the first 18 months of production (the neck joins at the 17th fret) so the bridge is closer to the centre of the body, and the strap button had to be put on the back of the heel to stop it neck diving. The subsequent EB0 layout sorted the neck dive but getting to the 22nd fret needs long fingers.

A p-bass hangs better on a strap but weighs 25% more. The EB3 is easier to play sitting down.


Here is s photo of my Epiphone EB-0 next to my Fender P Bass. The EB-0 definitely feels smaller. It is also a lot lighter. I agree with @Jazzbass19 that you should try one out before you buy it. I really like my EB-0 but how a bass feels in your hands is obviously very subjective.


Thanks everyone for the support! I’ve been looking around to try one out, but I can’t seem to find any within 4 hours of me. The photos have definitely helped; I’ll be going on vacation next month do hopefully the other side of the country will have one!
Happy holidays!

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Here is my Gretsch Junior Jet next to my Squier PJ and Ray 4. The Junior Jet has similar bridge placement and overall dimensions to an SG.

It definitely feels smaller - it feels more like a guitar (and indeed resembles a Les Paul Jr.)

I don’t find this to be a negative - in fact the little guy is a blast to play! The weight reduction is also nice.

I don’t have any issues with switching back and forth from the Gretsch and full size basses.

As always, ymmv.


Everyone with a Jr Jet says the same thing, a blast to play.

Gotta try one at some point.

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Guys I hope this fits in the thread.

I’ve just got back from a vigorous discussion with the sales guy in the local guitar shop. Briefly, my Hofner officially has a 30" scale but the length from the ball at the end of the string to the nut is 32.5". Hence I need medium-scale strings (right?). So I asked the sales guy for medium-scale strings and he referred me to medium-gauge strings. A spirited exchange then ensued in which I tried to explain what I wanted, implied he didn’t understand bass strings etc. and told him I was going to search online.

Two questions:

  1. Am I the cranky old man here?
  2. Can I use long-scale strings in a medium-scale bass (by trimming down the ends)?
  3. Can anyone recommend Hofner (ignition) strings other than Labellas? I know Labellas are meant to be the best, but they are a nightmare to find where I am…

Horner’s are a completely different bird, and outside of custom sets, they generally take strings designed for them and them alone.
You can monkey other sets onto them I guess, but why?
Hofner sells strings (flats and tapes), which are Pyramid strings branded by Hofner, as well as Pyramid selling the same types (flats and tapes - these are the tapes seen in Get Back), from what I read they all play differently and are not the same, some preferring one over the other.

I’ve got the LaBella’s on my cheapie Hofner, and am on the hunt for a better Hofner, at which time string comparing will ensue. I have read the LaBella’s are a bit brighter than the others.


Yes, you are correct there is a difference between medium scale (length of the string) and medium gauge (diameter of the string). A bass with a tail piece needs slightly longer strings (short scale between bridge and + the distance between bridge and tailpiece).
I have used Hofner bass tuners on a bass I made, and if your tuners are like mine you need to buy the correct length because the string passes through a hole on the tuner (like a guitar tuner) so the winding must stop before the tuner (or it won’t pass through the hole).


Yep, that is the 'odd bird" part.


Aha! I’ve now found (and ordered) some pyramids :+1: :grinning: :+1:. Let’s see how they perform… I was thinking about splashing out on some rotosound 88 trubass but they’re quite heavy gauge and I’m not sure that the Ignition could take the tension. Apparently the German Hofners are more sturdy with some extra reinforcement on the neck…


This is what I was thinking - the gauge really increases after a couple of inches. I’d better stick to the recommended scales…

Yes, you need strings with a longer winding length for the Hofner than other short scale basses. The La Bella “Beatle Bass” Strings work perfectly for the Hofner.

This site — — is a great resource to find the right length strings for any bass. You have to look for the Technical Resources link hidden near the bottom, where you’ll find he’s listed the actual winding length (not just the scale length) for every string brand. And the is quite a variation even for strings sold as “short scale” or “long scale.”

I am not surprised at the lack of knowledge you encountered at the store — guitar players think you just cut strings to fit, because that generally works for guitars.


Thanks for that - definitely worth digging into!

That could have been the problem. He did give me the impression he believed this was my first rodeo. Most music stores seem to be staffed by guitar players and keyboardists after all (at least in my area) - the bass is really seen as a lower level instrument…

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For anyone here that doesn’t know, is an online store specializing in bass and guitar strings, run by one guy who gives personal service and offers virtually every brand. I have a medium (32 inch) scale Squier Jaguar, and it’s very hard to get strings elsewhere that fit. So I try to buy all my strings from him, for all size basses (I also have 30 inch and 34 inch basses).


Digging up this discussion for those of us mad enough to have a Hofner - mad because the strings are a law unto themselves.

I have a 1963 Artist bass (solid body), and I did the scale measurement as per every advisory: - nut to 12th fret - and came up with the number 30 (inches, of course), so imagine my surprise when the short scale Ernie Ball flats I ordered were too short.

I grabbed the bass and double checked: still 15" nut to 12th fret! But wait, what about overall length… WTF? The nut to bridge length is 33.5" - that’s not double the nut to 12th!!!

So I start looking for medium scale strings, only to discover that they’re generally at the 32" mark, so still too short.

How about long scale? Well as you’ll have noticed, they are too long because the winding would have to go through the tuner peg - which isn’t a problem to install, but turning the winding around the peg is going to destroy the string.

So am I correct in assuming that the ONLY strings I can use are branded by Hofner?

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Not at all - I prefer to use the official Hofner strings personally because they’re cheaper and do a pretty good job but the other Hofner heads here with deeper pockets use Labella Deep Talking Bass Flats or D’addario Chromes.

I’ve just checked my Club and the 12th fret is halfway from the nut to the floating bridge, which is I guess 30 inches in total (I don’t have a tape measure on me…); however, you do have to take into account the extra length either side of the scale (i.e. to the tuners / the tailpiece). Still, medium-scale strings should be ok: the Labellas etc above are usually labelled as ‘Suitable for B bass’ or suchlike.

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Thanks for the extra info. I’ve suddenly found that medium scale strings will probably do the job as long as the I check the taper starting length. It looks like there are a few options. Can’t believe I didn’t find them before.

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