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Guide to Chapman Sticks

Chapman Stick : What is it?

Chapman Sticks

Invented by Emmett Chapman in the 1970s, the Chapman Stick is a musical instrument designed to be tapped by both hands. It is the larger and wider version of an electric guitar fretboard, consisting of eight, 10, or 12 strings intended to be tapped instead of strummed or plucked. It can produce many different notes at once compared to the other string instruments.

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Types of Chapman Sticks

Chapman SticksChapman Sticks

Kinds of Chapman Sticks include the following:

The Stick

  • The Stick is made with 10 strings (five for the melody and five for the bass) attached to a stereo fretboard.
  • It has adjustable components that cane be easily set-up and detached.
  • It is usually made of exotic hardwood laminate.
  • It has pickup configurations, string gauges, and an optional MIDI interface.

Grand Stick

  • The Grand Stick is made with 12 strings (six for the melody and six for the bass) attached to a stereo fretboard.
  • It has a wider fretboard.
  • Its strings are set closer together than those in the Stick for a more comfortable playing.
  • It features an optional MIDI interface.

Stick Bass

  • The Stick Bass is made with eight strings (four for the melody and four for the bass) attached to a stereo fretboard.
  • It is ideal for bass players.
  • The width of its fretboard is the same as in the Stick.
  • It has fewer strings positioned wider apart.

NS/Stick

  • The NS/Stick is made with eight strings that can be strummed, plucked, and tapped.
  • It uses the techniques in two-handed tapping and in conventional guitar and bass playing.
  • It has a switchable mono/stereo output for one set of eight strings or two sets of four strings.

Stick XG

  • The Stick XG is a variation of the Stick.
  • It is made of structural graphite with a continuous strand of carbon fiber.
  • It is available in eight, 10, or 12 strings.

Alto Stick

  • The Alto Stick is made with 10 strings (five for the melody and five for the bass) attached to a stereo fretboard.
  • It has a shorter scale length similar to guitar ranges.
  • It is made of structural graphite with a continuous strand of carbon fiber.

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Choosing Chapman Sticks (Buying tips)

Materials used: For extra durability, choose a Chapman Stick made of solid and laminated hardwood. If you want a lighter instrument, look for one made of laminated bamboo or graphite.

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