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Rawness of the wood factor... (fingerboard choice rant)

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by PetarA, May 12, 2019.

  1. PetarA

    PetarA TDPRI Member

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    Contemplating about the instrument i am going after brought me to interesting conclusion...
    Over the years, i had mostly rosewood fingerboards, which i always enjoyed...sometimes maple, on a few Ibanez RGs...and, in recent years, MiM Tele and Strat American Standard...
    As always on this topic, there is sound/feel/looks criteria which overall come as preference...

    Sound-wise, i consider i am able to perceive the difference very well, at least most of the time... yet, it has no much weight to me...no major differences and both are fine, just different...matter of mood or application....by no means determining factor

    Looks..it is important...not rationally, but plays huge roll... like with the woman where there is no animal drive, it is crucial for initial spark in order to pick it up for, at least, a spin... yet, there are no rules... overall, what i universally do not prefer is dark fingerboard with darker finishes...but still, its very loose and per subject...

    Feel... well, this one is the main one... and where i am most surprised what i have concluded today... differing from usual rosewood/maple/ebony/whatever debate (i had guitars with those three so far), i have actually came to realize that, at least for me, seeing things like this, is missing the point...

    what got me thinking is my experience with maple... overall, i really like the way it looks...but lets talk about the feel...since i had it on several occasions on different instruments in different periods, i can make some rough comparisons...
    My first guitar, Marathon strat copy...well, i have no ****ing clue...it was nice...or not..it served the purpose:D
    Now onto more relevant comparison..
    RG550 Ibanez...i had a few with maple..teh more used, broken in felt much much nicer....had one similar model rg505, fluoroscent yellow, like new...it feel was always too plasticky, so to speak..
    Strat USA Standard...circa 1997...used, but not too much...i really tried to bond with it, and it was cool that it was exactly the same as my first guitar, or it is vice versa, all black on maple strat...but, no cigar...felt too plasticky again...
    Tele MIM, once again...same thing...

    Ok, so quite uniform opinion... but what through interesting spin was Road Worn 50s Tele...well, that one was out of this world on all aspects, expect playability, probably due to poor setup+7 25 radius....but to the point, neck and board, felt like a glove...

    FFW to today... out of many reasons i decided i am after a tele...simplicity and design, even the heritage...it is perfect...
    concerning fingerboards, concerning the looks, i mostly always visually see Teles with maple boards as a default Tele... rosewood ones in rare situations... natural body+ rosewood do look beautiful, but not so often available stock...
    Than again, thinking about the aforementioned experiences, it seems very irationall to take maple one, since i am not going for Road Worn (from several reasons)...
    and than it struck me, crucial thing which made me always enjoy the rosewood, ebony and only that Road Worn out of maple ones...is actually the amount of finish on the fingerboard -> the least the better...!
    So, that is all i wanted to share, really...

    Since i am out of principle and on purpose taking an expandibility (easy replacibility, that might describe my idea better) of guitar as a factor, i have come to conclusion to absoultely stay with rosewood (or whatever alternatives available today legaly)

    S, long story short of my finding is written in bold, and that is it...
    If my becomes useful to someone, great...
    Cheer...!
    Peace!
     
  2. tessting1two

    tessting1two Tele-Holic

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    Also consider roasted maple since it requires no finish.
     
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  3. Zepfan

    Zepfan Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    I haven't been able to tell a difference in sound/tone between Maple or Rosewood fingerboards. I do prefer the feel of Rosewood or even Ebony over Maple FB's.

    I have used Red Oak for fingerboards and necks in a few of my guitar and CBG builds, they have a smooth feel to the touch and a bright tone like Maple. Very hard like Maple too.

    I have to say that I can tell the difference in tone of a Maple neck over a Mahogany neck in a couple of guitars that I have. The Maple has brightened the tone to my ears.
     
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  4. Zepfan

    Zepfan Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    I agree that Maple feels better to the touch when unfinished.
     
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  5. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Doctor of Teleocity

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    "ANIMAL DRIVE".......band name alert!!!!!!
     
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  6. PetarA

    PetarA TDPRI Member

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    Your band..?
    I actually know of the band with that name, has fantastic vocalist from this part of the world, Dino Jelusic..Check him out... Killer vocalist overall..Coverdale, Jorn...absolutely extraordinaire !


    Well, from my knowledge, it is not as wide available for sure...
     
  7. tessting1two

    tessting1two Tele-Holic

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    I can't speak to its availability in Europe but here in the USA virtually all the major neck manufacturers now offer roasted maple as an option. It's my neck wood of choice even with different fingerboards.
     
  8. PetarA

    PetarA TDPRI Member

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    Thank you for the information on that...
    Actually, havent tried it so far...
    truth is, from reasons specific to me, i want to remain within the range of worldwide availability of teh instrument of choice, which translates to stock Squier/Fender line...
     
  9. netgear69

    netgear69 Tele-Afflicted

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    For me although the dust is nasty it has to be Ebony sanded up to a high grit and polished with lemon oil like glass it feels great and it looks great with most body colours
     
  10. ladave

    ladave Tele-Holic

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    Interesting conclusion. And understandable as well. I seem to be stuck on a strong preference for gloss finished necks which I can only attribute to starting with classical guitars that had them.

    Gloss maple fretboards felt odd as well at first for the same reason. But now I honestly can't say which I prefer, maple or rosewood.

    Although I do appreciate the way a satin finish feels it can be difficult to break away from what I think I like.
     
  11. PetarA

    PetarA TDPRI Member

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    Yes, it is interesting...
    Will see when thoughts and feelings settle which one will win...:)
     
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