Abel Armrest Original - Armauflage - for classical or acoustic guitar
[Abel Armrest Original]


By: Melvin Hughes Date Added: 11/01/2014
I ordered an Andreas Abel Armrest in mid-June. I had seen it being discussed on classical forums but wanted to try it on my acoustic steel string guitars. I believe that the idea of an armrest to keep the arm free of the sound board as well as to ease the angle between the guitar top and side has great merit. But I have been hesitant to glue an armrest onto my instruments. Also, since I had several guitars, I wanted something that might be transferrable to all or at least most of them.

I play three acoustics regularly. Two of them have a rear bout depth of 4 5/8". The third is 4 7/8". The Abel Armrest as it is delivered has a adjusting screw that allows the armrest to accept guitars from 3.75" - 4.625" deep. I found that it would also work on my deepest bodied guitar if I removed the screw before trying to fit the armrest on it. Once the armrest was in place, I could re-engage the screw. But it did not thread very deeply. Later, I found a mention of a longer adjusting screw on Andreas' German site for the armrest. This longer screw would allow the armrest to fit on guitars up to 5 1/8" deep. I wrote to Andreas directly. He advised me to contact Stringsbymail as they had the longer screws available. I had overlooked the listing on Stringsbymail's site under Guitar Supports- "Guitar Support Parts." I got a longer screw and now the support works flawlessly on all three instruments.

The only area I can see for possible modification in the future might be the surface of the armrest. My skin is very sensitive to textures. The Andreas Abel Armrest is in no way abrasive or uncomfortable. My experience with it indicates that the plastics used are very inert. But I find that for me, it is more comfortable to use over time with either a sleeve or a long-sleeved shirt. I wonder if something like a thin leather cover might improve my sense of the plastic. But then the costs might be prohibitive.

*** This armrest exceeded my expectations. It is very comfortable to play on. It transfers effortlessly between instruments. It lifts the arm slightly off the soundboard, placing it in a very optimal position for all types of guitar playing. It is such a pleasant feeling to realize that my right arm has not been creased by the sharp angle between the guitar top and side after playing for any length of time. Especially with the very deep guitar, it has made my playing position much more comfortable. I was also greatly impressed with Mr. Abel's rapid responses to my very poorly written German request for assistance. He is committed to helping people play their instruments as comfortably as possible. I think he has designed an extremely versatile aid for that purpose.
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