Examples of an interplanetary and the bow shock illustrate the small relative size of the electrostatic layer relative to the scale of the magnetic fluctuations in quasi-parallel shocks. While both examples are supercritical, the interplanetary example is marginally so, showing a thickness in absolute and convected ion larmor radii units that is thicker (approximately 13 U/omega sub ci) than at the bow shock (approximately omega sub ci). The fluid speed changes abruptly in the quasi-parallel shock on this shorter scale. The increase in electron and ion random energies also is clearly seen on this shorter scale. In the interplanetary example the scale of the electric layer is certainly less than 1/60th that of the up or downstreams magnetic fluctuations. The thickness of the earth's bow shock deceleration layer is dramatically narrower than any domain of upstream waves as controlled by reflected, intermediate, or diffuse ions.