Why no ebony boards?

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Fatcat211, Feb 17, 2012.

  1. Fatcat211

    Fatcat211 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    244
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
    Location:
    Nyc
    Hey everyone,

    I'm in the process of my first build and have started to think that I might want to make my own neck for it. Ps, Jack cautioned that I wouldnt be able to build just one guitar.... so I'm still good (for now) :p

    Anyway Ive done a TON of build reading here and don't remember any ebony fretboards. Any reason besides their not traditionally on teles?

    I really love the look and feel of ebony boards and I think that's what I'll be using on my 2 pc neck build.

    Here's the link to my build if you want to check it out.

    http://www.tdpri.com/forum/tele-home-depot/307439-ive-read-months-first-build-time-your-thoughts.html
     
  2. twangster2

    twangster2 -----------------------

    Posts:
    992
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Location:
    hell
    G&L do ebony boards..

    Just saying.

    :)
     
  3. MonkeyKing

    MonkeyKing Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    423
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2011
    Location:
    Detroit
    I`ve heard people say it`s too bright, tho I can`t imagine it`s alot brighter than maple
    -give us a soundbite when ya get it built!
     
  4. mobaar

    mobaar Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    287
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2011
    Location:
    Urbana, IL
    Hey there,

    There's nothing wrong with using ebony, and just about every manufacturer has used it at some point. Think maple hardness with dark rosewood looks.

    However, it's one of the more dangerous woods to inhale so I imagine a lot of folks avoid it because a respirator is recommended.

    ~Mo
     
  5. adirondak5

    adirondak5 Wood Hoarder Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    8,897
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2009
    Location:
    Long Island NY
  6. Laurent Brondel

    Laurent Brondel TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    93
    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2011
    Location:
    West Paris, ME - USA
    It's probably not traditional in a Fender way, and ebony has more internal damping than rosewood, for what it's worth. Holdsworth had his strat refitted with a neck w/ ebony board and had his Charvels built with ebony boards as well back in '70s and '80s. Every ebony is harder and more abrasion resistant than Brazilian, EIR and maple. Weren't the Elite series fitted with ebony fretboards?
     
  7. Berndizzle440

    Berndizzle440 Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    845
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Location:
    Newark, NY
    [​IMG][/IMG] One of the ones i built has an Ebony board :D couldn't be any happier :D
     
  8. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    18,871
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    Who in their right mind would build a T-style guitar with an ebony fretboard?

    [​IMG]

    I've got two more on the bench right now I am about to finish.
     
  9. bubba01

    bubba01 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    147
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    Here's mine. Curly anigre and ebony with clay dots. I like the way it plays and feels.[​IMG]
     
  10. AutoReverse

    AutoReverse Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    160
    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2012
    Location:
    BC Canada
    A lot of Carvin guitars have ebony boards. I had one once and loved it.
     
  11. Fatcat211

    Fatcat211 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    244
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
    Location:
    Nyc
    Looking good Colt! Love the big fret marker dots! Abalone?

     
  12. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    18,871
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    Tucson, AZ

    Thank you

    They are 5/16" gold MOP. I think they just soak MOP in dye to give them color, because if you sand the outer portion away after installing, the gold color goes away.
     
  13. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    7,889
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2008
    Location:
    Manheim Pa.
    I have used ebony and like it much . For the feel , I am partial to Madagascar rosewood but supplies of that wood are pretty much at an end with Lacey .
     
  14. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    18,871
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    My favorite thing about ebony is I don't have to polish lacquer between frets!
     
  15. wshelley

    wshelley Tele-Holic

    Age:
    32
    Posts:
    727
    Joined:
    May 1, 2009
    Location:
    Oxford, MS
    I plan on using it on my build ("assembly") right now. I think they're a lot more common on acoustics...I played a friend's Alvarez acoustic with ebony board and its one of the smoothest best feeling necks I've ever played.
     
  16. jipp

    jipp Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    4,761
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Location:
    apache junction az
    i like the ebony when it has lighter streaks in it.. but most company's dye it black so its uniform. i want to try several different materials for fretboards.. first on my list is going to be some bow wood of the god.. also known as osage orange. i come from a bow making back ground.. which is funny because you be surprise how much transfers over. most good bow wood is also good for music too. LOL.

    im thinking a black walnut neck with maybe a mexican boccot figured fingerboard. that be pretty i think with abalone dots.. i love the look of abalone dots. just a hint of class while not being in your face and all im a yuppie fretboard deal with it. haha. black walnut and osage orange would look good too as the osage orange when it ages it will turn this great brown color which would compliment the walnut perfect.. sigh. need to wi the lotto so i can get all the tools i need.
    but i should be able to give this a go in a few months.. then ill be asking all kinds of dumb questions.. hopefully till then i can keep reading and learning from all you guys. before signing up i lurked on several guitar forums.. and lets just say most of them were to one branded or you not in the club.. and usually had to be the high end model too.. but here it seems if its guitar related its all cool with in reason, which i think is cool.. and shows a sign of respect for the guitar, which it has earned in my heart and soul.

    build on man.. be careful with any exotic woood dust.. so far the worst effect i had which landed me in the hospital was working with IPE pronounced EPP.. making a riser for a take down long bow.. anyhow. lesson learn there. i always wear a paper mask will get a good one one day if i ever get into painting for now i plan on hand rubbed finishes so paper masks should be good enough for the exotic wood dust. also ebony is brittle so use sharp tools.. and keep some super glue handy t o stabilize and hair line cracks ou may find.
    and so far for the best feeling fretboard iv ever felt was not even wood. some kind of plastic used on the fretlight guitars.. that fretboard is to die for. at least the one i tried in the store. was amazed.. was like ebony on steroids.. would love to get some. :eek:)
    chris.
     
  17. Laurent Brondel

    Laurent Brondel TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    93
    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2011
    Location:
    West Paris, ME - USA
    It's probably Abalam. Few vendors sell solid shell anymore, but rather "laminated" shell. Usually one face has the desired shell (abalone, paua, gold or black pearl etc.), and it can be very thin on some, and the rest is just plain shell (usually a low grade pearl).
     
  18. tnt423

    tnt423 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    451
    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    Location:
    StLouis area
    Here is one, used overwound pickups and chambered the body to counter the brightness. Sustain is very good and it really likes overdriving most amps clean channels.
    I highly recommend a good quality dust mask when cutting any wood, not just exotics.
     

    Attached Files:

  19. P Thought

    P Thought Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    9,992
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Location:
    Plundertown (Gasville) OR
    I like ebony boards a lot.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Fatcat211

    Fatcat211 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    244
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
    Location:
    Nyc
    Alright, thanks for all the posts and advice. Dust mask, noted. Ill start my hunt for some neck materials including a nice piece of ebony. I'm really having a great time with this project. It's mostly because the discussions and information here are so enjoyable.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.