1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

What's your favorite fretboard material?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by TeleBluesMan, Sep 30, 2020.

What's your favorite fretboard material?

  1. Ebony

    66 vote(s)
    25.8%
  2. Rosewood

    89 vote(s)
    34.8%
  3. Maple

    84 vote(s)
    32.8%
  4. Pearloid

    1 vote(s)
    0.4%
  5. Richlite

    3 vote(s)
    1.2%
  6. Pau Ferro

    4 vote(s)
    1.6%
  7. Other

    9 vote(s)
    3.5%
  1. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    91,252
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2009
    Location:
    Austin, Tx
    1 Ebony
    2 Rosewood
     
  2. Jerry_Mountains

    Jerry_Mountains Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    549
    Joined:
    May 10, 2014
    Location:
    Old Mexico
    Rosewood for me I like to grab some grain, maple its too slippery for me but looks great on teles.
     
    brookdalebill and Riversider like this.
  3. Novak

    Novak Tele-Meister

    Age:
    69
    Posts:
    214
    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2017
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    I don't think the choice of fretboard wood is that cut-and-dry. There are different grades of all woods for musical instruments (AAA, AA A, etc.). I don't know if this applies to fretboards, but, for example, some of the rosewood fretboards I've seen for low-end Les Pauls are almost tan in color, while the rosewood on my telecaster is a dark-chocolate brown. I'm pretty sure that one way to cut costs of guitars is use a lower-quality grade fretboard wood.
    I was surprised to learn that rosewood is typically harder than maple, but I'll bet a high-quality maple sample is harder than a low-end slab of rosewood. One measure of the quality of hardwoods is the Janka Hardness. Greater hardness implies greater density, more resistance to wear and tear, and higher quality. Nicaraguan rosewood has a JH of 1210, less than Birdseye Maple, which has a JH of 1450. However, Amazon Rosewood has a JH of 2620, which is higher than even some ebony types.
     
    El Tele Lobo likes this.
  4. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    54
    Posts:
    1,384
    Joined:
    May 23, 2018
    Location:
    Lake View
    I was spoiled and lucky when I was 19.

    I was working at JCPenney part time while in college and made enough $$ to buy my first guitar... ordered a brand new Ric 360/12v64. Ric used, until recently, Bubinga, and it was finished, like Fender Maple.

    Then the following year I was able to purchase a 1967 County Gentleman for cheap. It has an Ebony board.

    Then I bought an American Strat with a rosewood board.

    Then I inherited a '40s J45 with Brazilian Rosewood.

    Now my most used guitars are maple necked Teles; a Nashville configuration SSH does almost everything.

    Without a doubt the ebony gets the least thought from me, which, now that I think about it, is because it requires nothing. It doesn't get sticky, it doesn't dry out, it hasn't shrunk, it always feels the same.

    The Gretsch mostly sits in its case now that it's 53 years old, but whenever I do take it out it's always ready to jam.
     
    Jerry_Mountains and rangercaster like this.
  5. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    8,501
    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Knoxville TN for now
    I like Richlite myself ...


    Besides being lighter than granite, it is environmentally friendly ...


    I struggle with neck-heavy guitars when I have to play standing up...


    On the couch, it's not an issue ...
     
  6. golfnut

    golfnut Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    60
    Posts:
    2,721
    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    Both my tele's have maple both my martins have ebony.
    I played teles with rosewood necks exclusively from 1980 to 2003 after having a bad experience with a sticky maple neck before 1980. I thought all maple necks must be sticky. After playing a big nocaster u neck with maple I was hooked and thats the type of neck I've preferred since.
     
    Phrygian77 likes this.
  7. tery

    tery Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    11,706
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    Tennessee
    For me Maple is easier to play .
     
  8. idjster

    idjster VERY grateful member Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    5,398
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    Location:
    Saskatchewan, Canada
    I had to choose 'other' because I have, or have had, guitars with all the various woods and haven't found, other than aesthetically, that there's any real difference to me. While ebony or rosewood can look good so can maple, it all depends on the guitar. Call me undecided I guess.
     
  9. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    9,308
    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2007
    Location:
    Manassas Park, VA
    I have been playing guitar forever, but not really ( owned or even played) a ton of guitars- not really enough to have an opinion.

    I voted ROSEWOOD just as my two longest-played and favorite guitars a '93 Martin and a '97 Tex-Mex Stratocaster have Rosewood boards. But not really the reason I got them.

    Have owned some wonderful maple-board Teles and (1) Strat too.
     
  10. Sparky2

    Sparky2 Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    61
    Posts:
    3,600
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2017
    Location:
    Harvest, Alabama
    It's mostly visual/aesthetic, but I like ebony and maple about the same.

    I can tolerate rosewood, as long as the wood grain is interesting and flawed.

    :)
     
  11. SomeGuyNamedRob

    SomeGuyNamedRob Tele-Meister

    Age:
    44
    Posts:
    225
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2020
    Location:
    Ottawa, Canada
    Roasted maple.
     
    P Thought, Phrygian77 and Telecentric like this.
  12. naveed211

    naveed211 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,937
    Joined:
    May 16, 2009
    Location:
    wisconsin
    Maple. I love it. May have that exclusively for electrics from here on out.
     
  13. Tommy Biggs

    Tommy Biggs Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,674
    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2010
    Location:
    Northern NJ

    Yeah I was going to say that the Fender choices were more of a starting point for me...
    I sure would like to have ‘one of each’!
     
  14. jvin248

    jvin248 Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    10,035
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2014
    Location:
    Lions & Tigers oh Mi !
    .

    Maple. An all single wood species neck and fretboard is more stable through temperature and humidity swings, the normal finish on maple retards humidity even more.

    The other fretboard options are an environmental catastrophe. So much baggage.

    .
     
    PhredE likes this.
  15. NightOwl

    NightOwl Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    434
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2016
    Location:
    Somewhere out there...
    I'm an ebony fan all the way. Ebony just adds a touch of class. Anything else just seems like a substitution to me. JMHO
     
    oyobass likes this.
  16. Tele Jr

    Tele Jr Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    691
    Joined:
    May 15, 2004
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    The Fender one piece maple neck on a flat pole blackguard.
     
  17. 39martind18

    39martind18 Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    70
    Posts:
    2,294
    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Location:
    Spring TX
    My avatar has an ebony board, also on my H 550, pretty much rosewood on everything else, for me.
     
  18. thankyouguitar

    thankyouguitar Tele-Meister

    Age:
    39
    Posts:
    256
    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2020
    Location:
    Dearborn, MI
    I've also been liking laurel!
     
  19. MLHull

    MLHull TDPRI Member

    Age:
    64
    Posts:
    89
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2020
    Location:
    TX
    I have always liked rosewood. Never tried richlite but I like the idea of a maintenance free, environmentally freindly alternative.
     
  20. G.Rotten

    G.Rotten Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,454
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2010
    Location:
    CoolsVille
    I like Ebony, Rosewood & Maple. Each has its place for various reasons.

    I've never had a Fender style guitar with an Ebony fingerboard. Someday I'll rectify that.

    Other materials I guess I don't like the idea of. There's nothing wrong with Pau Ferro but I generally don't like the way it looks. Richlite on a toy guitar sure. But if I'm forking out big money for a high end guitar there better be wood holding in the frets.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.