graphite vs. composite

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by nate 0 jt, Mar 25, 2002.

  1. I hear a lot about each of these and I am not 100% sure what they are. I know Zon's and Modulus's websites say composite while status says graphite. What are each and how are they differant? Thanks a lot
  2. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    It's more or less the same thing, every manufacturer has his own individual way of manufacturing composite graphite (the full name) necks.
  3. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Composite and graphite are different materials, but both tend to have similar strenth, stiffness, and tonal qualities.

    Composite is "composed" of several different materials, often including plastic, among others.

    One thing that Status and Modulus share in common is their use of graphite in their construction. If you look at the back of the neck in either bass, you can actually see the graphite fibers.

    The interesting quality about graphite is that it's incredibly stiff lengthwise, but incredibly flexible in the other. When Geoff Gould designed Modulus graphite necks a while back, he was constantly frustrated by the incredible rigidity of the necks in one direction, but incredible LACK of rigidity in the other. What he ended up doing was to cut the graphite fibers into small pieces and laying them in random fashion into the neck mold to make the necks consistently rigid. Status' method is similar, in that Rob Green uses very small graphite fibers and weaves them together.
  4. petch

    petch Supporting Member

    Mar 25, 2001
    Medina, Ohio
    "Graphite" is an unfortunate term. In bicycles this material is used for forks and sometimes frames and it is called carbon fiber.:eek:
  5. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    "Graphite" is really "carbon fibre reinforced composite", either in epoxi or urethane resins (usually)

    "Composite" really means "material consisting of different materials". Wood is a good example....
    What is usually ment, though, is fibre reinforced plastic blends. E.g. "graphite", glassfibre reinforced, or other mixtures.

    Plastic is always plastic, and no plastic mixture will ever sound like the other!:rolleyes: :D
  6. I'll try to be exhaustive:

    Composites are broadly known as "reinforced plastics".
    Specifically, composites are a reinforcing fiber in a polymer matrix.
    Most commonly, the reinforcing fiber is fiberglass, but you'll find high strength fibers such as aramid, kevlar and carbon. The polymer matrix is most often a polyester, vinyl ester or epoxy resin.

    When talking about bass, you'll hear about status graphite, modulus graphite or moses graphite.... But, youare also familiar with graphite as being a very common substance. Graphite has long been a component of pencil lead, and is used as a basic lubricant.

    Could graphite be both a hi-tech and low-tech material? Could we take a bunch of pencil leads and epoxy them together into a cutting edge bass neck?
    Answer is NO.Pencils leads break far too easily to provide a strong frame. We can tell that there are two different kinds of graphite. When vendors market "graphite fiber" products they are usually selling a "carbon fiber" product. Carbon fiber is the correct name for the fibers used in all strengthening and reinforcing applications. However, this is not only a term misconception because graphite and carbon fibers do appear to be indentical, on the atomic level!

    We could say that graphite and carbon are two states of a same material...The biggest difference between carbon fibers and graphite is that graphite is flaky and breaks apart very easily while carbon fibers are strong materials that do not break until much more force is applied.

    Well, do you want a graphite or a carbon neck now???


  7. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    I wouldn't mind trying a graphite neck...:D

    Just one note....:D :D
  8. well what kind of necks are on a modulus Q? a zon legacy elite? Thanks

  9. I thought my explanation was great :(

    from modulus web site:

    "Genesis and Quantum Necks
    Modulus instruments feature two types of composite necks, depending on the model. Our original Quantum bass neck is a lightweight, ultra-rigid "D"-shaped shell made from dozens of layers of hand-formed aerospace-grade epoxy-impregnated carbon fibers. With an amazing strength-to-weight ratio and a resonant peak far above the range of the notes on a bass, it is an ideal neck for producing crystal clear, even tone. Because carbon fiber telegraphs attack more quickly than conventional wood necks, the Quantum neck aids articulation and is dynamically very sensitive.

    The Genesis guitar and bass neck incorporates a carbon fiber spine reaching from the tip of the headstock to deep inside the body. Wrapped with a solid piece of lightweight, resonant tone wood, the Genesis neck combines the best elements of composites and wood. All string tension is held by the composite central structure to eliminate warping and twisting. Because the carbon fiber is handling the stress of the strings, we're able to use soft woods like red cedar, alder and soma to add warmth and character to the crisp attack characteristics of the composite spine. It's the right neck for players looking for organic, woody sound with the added brilliance of composites."


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