A question about materials.

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by CrazyTwoKnobs, Apr 11, 2003.

  1. I think that Mr. Hoepfinger may want to answer this one, but I am also eager to hear comments by everybody else.

    I currently own an Ibanez EDA900, and I was wondering if there is anything I should know about the material they used in its construction (fragility, temp. issues, H20 issues?). The material is called "luthite" which is not only embarassing to say, but i can understand that it may be embarassing for those of your profession, and I'm sorry for bringing it up if it is. If there is another name for this material, I would much rather use the proper name. I noticed that under the paint (which seems unusually thick) the material is yellow.

    Also, is there anything I can do to improve my tone/versatility with this instrument that i couldn't/wouldn't do with a wooden instrument?
    Do you recommend this material over wood?
  2. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder
    This material is a plastic/resin composite, very similiar to the clear "lucite" Dan Armstrong guitars and basses from a few years ago.

    The only things you can do which would affect the sound of the bass would be to change the pickups and/or electronics and the strings.

    Luthite is supposed to be similar in sound and construction characteristics to wood, but I've not worked with it so I cannot say first hand.

    I am also not familiar with how the Ibanez basses that use this material are made, ie: whether they are injection molded or machined from a block of the material.

    I cannot say whether or not I would recommend it over wood. Tradition says no, but who knows what might catch on in the future?

  3. Thanks for the advice, are you an actual luthier? I AM looking for a new pickup, but I have no idea what I want, any way I could find out without buying one?
  4. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    it depends on what sound you want. Smooth and creamy would be bartolinis. Even and high-output would be EMG. Fat punch, Seymour Duncans. I like Barts best myself.
  5. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    I have a buddy with an ibanez EDB series bass. Thats the more traditional looking luthite series. I think the one major drawback of that bass over a wood body of similar size is that it is HEAVY. One great thing about luthite is that the builder can give the bass a highly sculpted body rather easily. I think in order to do this and save cost over wood it is probably injection molded versus CNC machined. Thats my manufacturing/design classwork speaking. The tone was nice and thick, very deep, made a great rock n roll bass. I would agree that changing the pickups would have a huge effect on the tone of the bass. I'd personally go with barts too.

    I'm no luthier, just thought I'd chime in. Tradition says that luthite is an abombination, but I think for the price it was a great bass, sounded and played excellent, just heavy. Sounded heavy though, which is always nice IMO.
  6. Yep, it's heavy. But the EDA is lighter than the EDB and the EDC (discontinued). Anybody have problems with pieces breaking off?

    On another note, Which of these two amps better suits the EDA?
    Peavey Nitrobass 450w
    Ampeg SVT3 450w

    What about with the bart, same amp?