Is there a smaller red stemmed Japanese maple? I'd like to espalier it under a tree and the sangu kaku would just grow into the lower branches that start at about 8-10 feet.
Acer palmatum 'Fjellheim'would be one to consider. It look more compact and bush like unless you prune it to look like a small tree.
Winter Flame is another red-stemmed JM that is smaller in size.