Electric guitars come in many profiles. Each has a variety of different kinds of wood and hardware. But how much does an electric guitar weigh? Maybe you want to buy one, but you’re not sure how comfortable it will be hanging from your shoulder. A few hours of practice can really add up!
On average, electric guitars weigh 8 pounds, but they range anywhere from 6 to 12! Solid Body guitars made with mahogany wood like the Gibson Les Paul can be quite heavy. But depending on the shape, they can get quite light, like the Gibson SG at 6 pounds.
In this article, we will take a look at how the weight of electric guitars is affected by their profiles. We will also take a look at some popular models and how much they weigh, as well as discuss how they can impact the sound.
How Much Does an Electric Guitar Weigh?
To give you an idea, we have created a chart to look at the differences between some of the more popular models. We will then look at why these guitars vary in weight.
|Gibson Les Paul||9-12|
|PRS Custom 24-08||9|
|Gibson Flying V||7|
|Gretsch Duo Jet||7.5|
We touched on the weight of a few popular electric guitars, but now we will look closer at the details. We will start with some popular fender guitars!
The Fender Stratocaster is a comfortable guitar that weighs about 8 pounds. This is pretty average for a guitar with this body shape and build. Thanks to the thinner body and alder or swamp ash wood. The Stratocaster can be worn on the shoulder for long periods comfortably.
The neck material is maple, which is a bit of a heavier wood, but it doesn’t add enough to be an issue.
The Fender Telecaster is also made from alder or swamp ash and weighs 8 pounds. It features a maple neck and light hardware, which keeps it pretty standard. The Telecaster is well-balanced and is a comfortable guitar.
The Jaguar is made from alder tonewood and weighs 8 pounds. Fender likes to use alder for their guitars, as you would have noticed by now. The Jaguar has a shape that is like the Stratocaster but is a different profile that keeps it light.
Gibson makes guitars of all tonewoods and body profiles. This gives their guitars different weights. Here are a few popular models.
The Gibson Les Paul is one of the heavier guitars on the market and weighs between 9 and 12 pounds. They are known for their weight. Many guitarists can attest to this by the sore shoulder they get after an hour of practice. This is because the Gibson Les Paul is made with dense woods like mahogany throughout.
Gibson began chambering the Les Paul bodies to remove some material to make them lighter. But they are still in the heavy category.
Want to learn more about guitar body chambering? Click here!
The Gibson SG is another popular guitar that is much lighter than most at 6 pounds. This is because the body is very thin with a small profile, and so there is less wood material than most. The guitar is made from mahogany, but being on the smaller side makes it very comfortable.
This is an interesting guitar with a unique body shape. The flying V weighs in at 7 pounds and is made of mahogany. This shape is good in the sense that it doesn’t need a lot of wood, so the weight is much lower than a Les Paul, for example.
Squier guitars are made as cheaper Fender models, but some of them do come in weighing less.
The Squier guitars are normally made from basswood or alder and weigh about 7 pounds. They feature the Stratocaster double cutaway body and are light and comfortable. The hardware is pretty minimal and so there isn’t much that is adding more weight.
The squier Telecaster is also made from basswood or alder and is only 6.5 pounds. It’s half a pound lighter than the Strat primarily because of the body size and light hardware. Not only is it affordable, but it’s light and sounds good too!
PRS Custom 24
PRS Custom 24 has a great body profile, but because they are made of mahogany, they weigh 9 pounds. By no means is this a dealbreaker. The extra pound over what is standard is not very noticeable and can be worn for extended periods.
The neck is also made of mahogany, which contributes to the weight, as well as some robust hardware. It’s a great guitar and so dealing with the extra weight is well worth it.
Factors that Affect Guitar Weight
There are several things that contribute to the overall weight of an electric guitar.
- Body profile
- Body design
There are a wide range of electric guitars. It’s important to know these things when selecting one based on the weight.
There are many kinds of woods used to make guitars based on construction, weight, and sound. Cost does play a role when a manufacturer builds for a specific price point. But in most circumstances, it’s low on the requirements.
Because the density of each kind of wood differs, guitars have different weights. Sometimes even two of the same model might have been made with a different kind of wood and do not have the same weight. This is common when certain kinds of wood are not readily available.
Check out our article on guitar tone woods, click here!
|Wood Material||Weight (lbs/ft3)|
Are you considering how much an electric guitar weighs? The profile is also a large contributing factor. Many shapes dictate how heavy an instrument will be once the wood is selected. The overall outline will also play a role here and is one of three main points:
Some guitars have a cutaway or area removed that makes an instrument lighter. Some headless models have creative shapes that look great. But also weigh in lighter because of the smaller profile.
When considering a guitar for its weight, always make sure to compare it to other models. Make sure they have the same features. But pay close attention to the profile. As one might be a lot thinner than the other, making it lighter and more comfortable.
The kind of electric guitar body will fall into one of three main categories.
- Solid Body
- Semi Hollow Body
- Hollow Body
Each one has a different sound and is selected normally because of its music genre and style. But each one has a significant weight difference.
Solid-body guitars are the heaviest of all three versions. This is because they are made from one piece of wood or a combination of two different kinds glued together. The weight is different depending on how much wood is used and the kind that is selected.
Sometimes manufacturers will use a method called chambering. This creates pockets in the solid guitar body. This is a method used to reduce some weight from the body when they are quite heavy. It makes them lighter, but also changes the tone to a degree.
The Gibson Les Paul is known to be one of the heavier guitars in history. But there is also a chambered version that was made to help with the weight. By looking at them, you would not know there is a difference until you put it on your guitar strap and wore it for a few hours!
Semi-hollow guitars are made from two pieces of wood that make up the structure. This includes a solid center block with a chambered area around it, covered by another piece of wood. This makes the guitar lighter and helps with the sound because it’s not as solid as a fully hollow body.
The Epiphone Casino is a popular semi-hollow guitar on the market today. It has great tones for blues and jazz players, but also can rock out when needed. Because of its construction, it’s a lighter-weight guitar. It can be more comfortable for playing for long periods of time.
Hollow-body guitars are the lightest of all three kinds, although some look very bulky. There will be a lot more air inside to make them resonate better with the strings. They play great on clean tones. But they also distort very well because of the natural overdrive that comes with them.
The PRS SE hollow body 2 Piezo is a popular guitar. Its simple design and construction make it a favorite for those who want to focus on their playing. And not have to worry about how heavy the guitar might be.
Another thing to consider when assessing the weight of a guitar is the hardware. There are some parts that add weight, like a Floyd Rose bridge. Granted, the hardware isn’t nearly as heavy as some of the other parts we have looked at, but it does add up.
Considering a guitar for its weight? Then make sure to take into consideration all the options onboard. If it’s loaded, it might add an extra half-pound or more to the weight. Negligible at best, but still worth looking into.
How to Weigh a Guitar
If you have a guitar that is a bit rough on your shoulder, perhaps you might want to measure the weight. If you are selling one and need to know for shipping purposes. Then this method can also help get the information you need quickly.
Most people have a bathroom scale collecting dust that will now have a great purpose! That’s right, this is all you need as long as it’s somewhat accurate.
The process is simple:
- Weigh yourself by standing on the scale
- Repeat the process by standing on the scale with the guitar in your hands
- The difference between these two measurements is what your guitar weighs
An example of this is if you weigh 180 pounds and verify it on the scale. Then, with the instrument in your hands, you get a reading of 188 lbs. This will tell you that the electric guitar weighs 8 pounds. You can do this with anything that weighs over 4 to 5 pounds, granted your scale has some accuracy.
Light Vs Heavy Guitars
Many guitar players will choose a model based on how it feels and sounds to them. Some people like a heavier weight and others prefer something lighter. The main reason here is how comfortable you feel when playing. Especially for long periods.
You are going to need to decide how much the comfort level means to you as compared with the tone of the guitar. Find one that feels and sounds great. But if it hurts your shoulder after a short while, you are more likely to be distracted when playing.
There are many options out there, and they don’t all have to be expensive. The next time you are at your local music store, pay attention to how each one feels on your shoulder. Judge it in comparison with how it sounds. You might find a great instrument that is also lightweight and comfortable to play!
When you’re looking for a guitar, the weight is important to consider. Especially if you need a comfortable model that doesn’t fatigue your body. But if you are basing your sound on weight, you might be disappointed. It’s far better to research the material that is used to make the instrument to get the one that is best for you.
Does the weight of a guitar matter?
Yes, the weight of your guitar matters. For some people, comfort is very important. Especially if you play for long periods of time and don’t want a sore shoulder. Discomfort can distract a guitarist, which will affect their playing. The sorer it gets, the more you want to rush through the set.
For others, weight means a certain tone. And while a more dense guitar will project a different sound, it’s also the way it feels on them when they play. So when selecting an instrument, make sure the weight is right for your comfort and play style.
What is a good weight for a guitar?
Always aim for something that is comfortable and is able to match the sound you are going for. Weight is based on the kind of wood that was used to make it. Each kind of wood has a different tone and will work better for certain styles of music.
So if you can find a model that is comfortable, then you have found a good weight for a guitar!
Do Lighter Guitars Sound Better?
The answer to this question depends largely on the sound you are seeking from your guitar. If you are looking for a full sound that isn’t quite as warm, then a lighter body is your best choice. If you’re seeking a warmer, dark tone, then a lighter guitar might not be what you want.
This all depends on the kind of material that is used to make the body. Poplar, being a cheaper material, doesn’t sound as good as others to some guitarists. So judging your sound on light or heavy is not a good idea. It’s better to research the material and make a decision based on that.