So, I finally got myself a so called Shredneck. The Shredneck is a short scale guitar practice neck, not more and not less. It’s not meant to be a substitution for a real guitar, that’s an important realization and I will explain that in more detail in a little bit. Additionally, in my Shredneck review video below I’ll give you a full demonstration of the device with all its Pros and Cons.
I frequently travel for my job. And sitting in my hotel room at nights, I do miss my guitars. So I always contemplated about getting myself a traveler guitar. The problem is, these made-for-travelling instruments are still guitars and even though they might be fold-able, smaller and/or lighter, they are still pretty bulky. The thought of bringing such a guitar on a plane and dragging it around all over the place didn’t make sense to me. After all, all I need was a something to lay my hands on a fiddle around a little bit. That’s when I started looking at the Shredneck guitar practicing and warm-up tool. Long story short, last week I ordered and received my Shredneck Dreadneck from Amazon.
My Dreadneck is 16.25 inches long and weighs about a pound. It’s an 8 fret rosewood neck, and speaking of frets, the first fret is scalloped to allow for the use of a plectrum. The built is sturdy, yet smooth. I read online that some people complained about sharp edges, however, I can’t confirm that. The edges are super smooth. The Shredneck comes stringed, however, you can replace the strings just like on a regular guitar if they get too worn or if you want to try a different gauge. They tuning keys and strap knobs are made of golden hardware and strictly aesthetically speaking, the Shredneck Dreadneck looks pretty cool.
Now, as I mentioned before, the most important aspect to understand is that the Shredneck is not meant to replace a guitar. You can’t make music with the device, it’s just not possible. Which brings me to the question: “How to tune the Shredneck?” Again, since you won’t be able to use the device as a real guitar, the tuning really doesn’t matter. Rather than trying to tune the strings into a certain pitch, I recommend that you bring each string to the same degree of tension that you like to use on your real guitar.
The first fret is scalloped which is good. Nonetheless, it requires some time to get used to using a pick on the Shredneck. Which is actually true in general, the tool takes some time to get accustomed to. First of all, you will have to hold it upside down, so you can comfortably place the headstock on your thigh. The frets are on the bigger side, which makes sense. The tuning keys work well and seem to be of good quality (I only had my Shredneck Dreadneck for a little over a week, so time will tell how the hardware holds up over course of time).
In sum: the Shredneck is an interesting and – in my opinion useful – guitar practicing device, but it can’t substitute a guitar. You can’t make music with the Shredneck, irrespectively how you tune the strings. It will always sound ‘wrong’. Which is something that takes time to get used to. Because with a guitar, you always know when you don’t hit a note/chord the right way – you don’t get that kind of ‘feedback’ from the Shredneck. The device is ideal for travelling purposes, because it’s small and light. It allows you to build dexterity, flexibility, muscle, endurance, etc. in your playing hand. The price of $60 (as of September 2015) is reasonable. It’s a great guitar practicing neck for people who are willing to accept that it can’t replace a regular or travelling guitar. The device comes in different versions, including a Zakk Wylde Shredneck model.
If you have any questions or if you want to share your experience with your Shredneck, please leave a comment below.