I made an electric 5-string viola for my daughter.
The body, bridge, and shoulder rest are made out of maple. The fingerboard and tailpiece are Macassar Ebony.
The tuning pegs are geared with a 1:4 ratio.
The pickup is a piezo and we are still trying out different options.
The fifth string is a low F and is very thick. It is more typical that the fifth string is a high E like on a violin. My daughter wanted the low F instead. It was a challenge finding the string but it works really well on an electric instrument.
The scroll was a fun little detail to honor the traditional but also state that this was a modern electric viola.
I love the grain of the Macassar Ebony tailpiece. I would have purchase a 5-string tailpiece if I could have found one. I ended up making it and it was very fun.
The saddle is made from a Tagua Nut and looks and feels a little like ivory.
This was the first musical instrument I completed and it will not be the last.
3 thoughts on “Electric 5-String Viola”
Hi Eric — that’s a lovely instrument! Did you use the sensicore low F?
Thanks! Yes, it is a Sensicore Viola low F String. We got it from https://www.electricviolinshop.com. That low F really booms through an amp.
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Great! Thank you for the reply and the info.