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Choosing a Hanika Customised Classical Guitar

Armin Hanika is in my opinion one of the world’s leading guitar makers. In a small family firm, a very enthusiastic team of highly skilled luthiers combine modern technology with traditional craft skills of the highest order to make a wonderful range of classical/nylon strung instruments.

Apart from its build standards, what makes this company so special are the custom options offered on all its models; this means you can order a guitar built to your exact requirements at a price unmatched elsewhere.

  • Choose a basic model – standard classical body shape, cutaway or flamenco
  • Decide soundboard wood 
  • Decide scale length (long as well as short scales available)*
  • Decide neck width (wide as well as narrow options)
  • Decide fingerboard profile – flat or curved (“radiused” in steel-string guitar language)**
  • Decide neck profile – D or C shape, standard or minus 1mm or minus 2mm
  • Decide action

Other options include

  • Left-handed
  • Nickel free frets
  • AER and Shadow pickups/preamps
  • Matte, gloss, French polish finishes (depends on model)
  • Pickguards
  • NoWo intonation correcting scale

We have been partners with Hanika for some time now and are very happy to advise on how to combine the various options.

Please note that not every option is available on every guitar, although most are.

Typically 3 – 4 months build+delivery time on customised models.—–

* A note on scale length.

Hanika will provide shorter scale lengths between 620mm and 640mm and does so on full-sized bodies. This is important because it means you do not get the same loss of volume and tone which results from the smaller bodies found on the majority of shorter-scale guitars.

** A note on curved fingerboards.

A curved (“radiused”) fingerboard can offer the greater ease of play enjoyed by steel string and electric guitarists. Classical guitar purists may not approve but those finding that bar chords are holding back their enjoyment may feel quite otherwise! The size of the radius can be selected (although it is not advisable to have too much of a curve). Hanika recommends a curve which at the 12th fret menas that the fret ends are 1mm below a straight line drawn across the top of the centre of the fret. (this represents a quite large “radius” in acoustic/steel string guitar terms).

Hanika 56PC Classical Guitar - soundhole.

“My custom Hanika 58PF arrived three weeks ago… I have to say that I am delighted and I have no doubt that I have made a very good investment. The guitar has an elegant, simple design and soon displays its craftsmanship to any casual inspection. It has effortless power and volume and purity and clear separation in its tone. The first piece I played on the instrument was a Dowland pavane for lute and it was as if the guitar was made for this music. Even in the few weeks I have owned it the sound has matured and sweetened, the thought that it will continue to improve for years is the icing on the cake. I consulted you before ordering, as surgical reconstruction to my left hand and wrist following a climbing accident meant that playability was a key requirement. The resultant formula ( 64cm scale, radiused fingerboard and low action) was delivered immaculately by Hanika and this is without doubt and by some margin the most comfortable guitar to play that I have ever picked up. Thank you for your sound advice and my highest congratulations to the craftsmen and craftswomen at Hanika for their superb work. I know that I am at the start of a long love affair with this guitar and I look forward to making music together for many years to come.”
Best regards, Mike Kiely. 12/12/2010

Hanika 58PC guitar built with 63cm scale, 50mm nut width, and radiused neck - nut.
50mm nut and radiused neck on a Hanika 58PC guitar.

Hanika 58PC and 50MC guitars built with options - scale, neck width, neck profile.
Hanika 58PC and 50MC guitars built with options: the 58PC has 63cm scale, 50mm nut width and radiused fingerboard; the 50MC has 64cm scale and 50mm nut width