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Fingerboard Wood

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Lance Jaegan, Jan 2, 2001.


  1. Lance Jaegan

    Lance Jaegan

    Dec 23, 2000
    Illinois
    So, what kind of wood do you like on your fingerboard? Does it really make a difference? Does pau ferro sound different than ebony? Maple your shtick? Love that rosewood? In your opinion, does it change the tone much? Do fingerboards on a fretted bass really matter? What's your fav fretless wood?
     
  2. I personally like the rosewood on my fretted instruments. IMO gives it a warmer tone. Definitely ebony on fretless, if not for any other reason, just for durability. It's a very hard wood that stands up to wear and tear very well.
     
  3. rllefebv

    rllefebv

    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    I'm in the process of making a few basses using Purpleheart as the fingerboard wood. Conklin is the only name bass that I know of that uses it in this manner. Several years ago, while making another bass using Purpleheart as a facing wood, I noticed that it was pretty hard, (definitely took it's toll on my tools!!!), and thought that it might serve pretty well as a fingerboard.

    While shopping for wood for these basses, I came across some nice Maple for the necks, but the cost of Ebony or Rosewood was more than I wanted to spend at the time...Saw a nice piece of Purpleheart for really cheap and picked it up. The only fear that I now have is of the wood checking as I cut and plane it to size...Wish me luck!

    -robert
     
  4. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    I like maple for fretted and ebony or polyester/epoxy coated whatever for fretless.

    I really dislike rosewood, but I will take it with a thick poly coating for fretless(like a Pedulla Buzz).

    I also like wenge and purpleheart, almost as bright as maple, with a less pronounced warmth than rosewood.
     
  5. Monkey

    Monkey Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Dayton, Ohio, USA
    I like the warm sound of rosewood, but I'd probably use maple if I slapped a lot. I play fretless, and I have 2 with ebony and one with rosewood. I love the durability, feel and look of ebony, but sometimes it can be a bit "clacky" sounding to me. Rosewood sounds a little warmer, but is much less durable, so I will stick with the ebony.
     
  6. i have always played rosewood, tried maple a little while ago for "better slap tone" and sold the bass 6 months later.