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are Gretsch's really plywood?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Lee Harvey, Mar 25, 2012.

  1. Uma Floresta

    Uma Floresta Tele-Holic

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    lol wut?
     
  2. Glen W

    Glen W Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    "That Great Gretsch Sound" for what - about 6 decades? Who knew?
     
  3. Larry Mal

    Larry Mal Tele-Meister

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    Besides, the reason folks on here aren't letting you have your way with your rant is that, plain and simple, you are putting forth the proposition that laminate guitars are poorly made- I think you compared them to something that marihuana enthusiasts would ramp on while skateboarding.

    You have heard that you aren't correct, and that laminate wood construction has been used in some of the best known guitars of all time and those guitars have been played by some of the best known guitarists. Your assertion that this represents poor quality has been shown not to be correct, no matter what you or the marihuana enthusiast who works at Guitar Center told you.

    No one cares how you spend your money... but the point of this forum, and ones like it, is to spread information, not to let people rant about things they don't understand.
     
  4. TeleToTheRain

    TeleToTheRain Tele-Holic

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    Funny you mention this.... I was at Home Depot the other day and a guy was struggling with a 4x8 sheet of plywood. I offered to help and asked what he was using it for and he said he worked for Gretsch and they just ran out of material... I promptly went home and destroyed my G5122!

    Kidding aside, it's not the same thing, don't worry. It's a stretch, but with this kind of reasoning you could say that any guitar made from more than one piece of wood is plywood.

    Love my Gretsch, don't be turned off by this, you might miss out. I wouldn't presume to tell anyone how to spend their money and maybe I missed something but I didn't see anyone else here doing it either.
     
  5. stantheman

    stantheman Doctor of Teleocity

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    TGAFDB...wow.

    Lee, don't buy any Gibson ES-5's, ES-175's, 225's, 330's, 335's, 345's, 355's, Lucille's and any and all of the variants of the aforementioned offered by other companies as well because they're all - you guessed it Lee - PLYWOOD.:D
     
  6. Jeff R

    Jeff R Tele-Holic

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    Wood "moves". Plywood = dimensional stability. I wonder if I build a thinline out of marine grade....will it be waterproof?
     
  7. gitold

    gitold Poster Extraordinaire

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    Paul Gilbert had Ibanez make him a guitar out of builders grade ply with the stencils still on it. A very cool guitar. This is the only picture I could find and it doesn't do it justice. The f holes are painted on.
     

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  8. ZZRyder

    ZZRyder Tele-Meister

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    As an ex maker of high end furniture I can say we used "ply" as a base on many pieces. we normally covered the ply with a high grade veneer and we used it for a couple of reasons. The first is strength as the various layers of the "ply" has the grain running north - south on one layer and east - west the next with north - south on top. This gives the ply a huge amount of strength and flexibility. The 2nd reason is pure economics. If your using something like padouk which costs and arm and a leg it makes it cheaper to use a veneer in some areas. Everything else is just snobbery!
     
  9. Nick JD

    Nick JD Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    That said ... Shhhh, I've been known to buy a CNC carved spruce top plate or two before. :D

    But still - for a decent grade of wood you're looking at $500+ just for raw materials for the front and back before the CNC is even woken up.

    I wouldn't get out of bed for a $3000 archtop :twisted:.
     
  10. Muddslide

    Muddslide Friend of Leo's

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    There's absolutely nothing at all intrinsically wrong with a guitar made of plywood simply because it's made of plywood.

    I've owned some plywood guitars that played and sounded great.
     
  11. minmei

    minmei TDPRI Member

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    lol, call it plywood and its cheap

    call plywood laminate and its marketability go up many notches . . .


    this thread is a good case on human perception . . .


    if a luthier knows what they are doing, even with laminate / plywood they can make something with awesome tone.

    and if gretschs sound good (I like them) and quality is good (most I've seen are good) then :confused:


    i'll bet a million that blind fold most people and play a gretsch and say its solid, then play the same gretsch (amp cable same etc) and say its plywood, they'd think the the first 1 sounds much better.
     
  12. Shepherd

    Shepherd Friend of Leo's

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    Plywood must be alot cheaper in China, only $350 from GFS. ;)

    [​IMG]
     
  13. camatillo

    camatillo Tele-Meister

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    I agree, also if one wants to get technical about biology, if you look at the alternating layers of late wood and early wood in a cross section of solid wood, you will see natures version of plywood. That's right, I said it , all wood is plywood except for maybe evergreens which seem to be homogeneous throughout the cross section. Get Bruce Hoadleys All About Wood book and you will become very informed about this stuff we build guitars from. Nature uses glue to keep all the cells together and the layers are also glued together with natures glue ~ Lignin. So while I also love solid wood, once you get down to the cellular level it's much less clear what is or isn't so solid.
    Of course my favorite wood is Osage Orange which is deciduous, but the grain is so interlocked its like woven rope. Not sure why it's not used more often for necks. That wood is virtually unbreakable! I bet you could reduce a drum kit to dust with a neck made of the stuff, even when it cracks, good luck tearing the pieces apart. The wood always springs back to it's original form, That's why Bow makers use it.
     
  14. chrisj1602

    chrisj1602 Tele-Meister

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    They guy is ignorant and rude. The complete opposite to most people on here, who are still adding helpful and informative replies! Has he been back? Has he thanked anybody?
     
  15. DeepDrummer

    DeepDrummer Former Member

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    Oh well.
    I love my Maple Laminated G5122 DC.
    It is still actually my best guitar....for now.
    If you call the 4 maple plies over the two walnut plies of my drum kit or my maple Gretsch plywood again...
    I have owned plywood instruments in years gone past. There IS a difference.
     
  16. musicalmartin

    musicalmartin Poster Extraordinaire

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    troll methinks:twisted:
     
  17. bigp7099

    bigp7099 Tele-Holic

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    these kinds of threads are the best way to get interesting information. nothing brings out good information from knowledgeable people like an ignorant doofus
     
  18. mabley123

    mabley123 Friend of Leo's

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    i would love to have any of the better es models.

    gibson does make a solid maple top es336. it is aboout 3300 us dollars. here is some info.

    The Custom Shop CS-336 — Orville Gibson's Dream
    Gibson's Custom, Art, Historic division provides an atmosphere for a select group of inspired artisans to carry on Gibson's century-old tradition of creating exquisite, investment quality instruments that represent the highest standards of imaginative design and masterful craftsmanship.

    The Gibson CS-336 represents the fulfillment of a goal set forth over 100 years ago by Orville Gibson. The mahogany back, sides and centerblock of the CS-336 are tonally carved from a single block of wood (this single-piece construction was one of Orville's original goals) and, when joined to the carved maple top, create a guitar with unsurpassed resonance and woody tone. Its scaled-down body size and slim-taper neck allow for more comfortable playing with no compromise in tone.


    Gibson CS-336 Features:
    Color: Vintage Sunburst

    Body Type: Semi-hollow

    Neck Wood: 1-piece mahogany

    Neck Shape: 1960 slim taper neck profile

    Top Wood: Figured solid maple top

    Back Wood: Tonally carved mahogany

    Side Wood: Tonally carved mahogany

    Machine Heads: Vintage tulip tuners

    Fingerboard: Rosewood

    No. of Frets: 22

    Scale Length: 24-3/4"

    Position Markers: Pearloid dot inlays

    Pickups: '57 Classic humbucking

    Controls: 2 volume, 2 tone,

    Pickup Switching: 3-way selector switch

    Bridge/Tailpiece: ABR-1 bridge, stopbar tailpiece

    Hardware: Nickel

    Case: Custom Shop case, (certificate of authenticity, custom care kit)
     
  19. JBennett

    JBennett Tele-Afflicted

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    My favorite cobbled together piece of plywood crap...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  20. nadzab

    nadzab Friend of Leo's

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    ^^ That's a beauty.
     
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