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Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Hambone, Feb 5, 2005.
It'd be pretty hard to go unnoticed playing one of these:
Langcaster bass Langcaster bass
What is it?
Some kind of Burl?
Figure? or ... ? My guess is stump wood. Not my taste at all, at least from the photos.
I remember seeing that... it's some kinda 1000 year old wood that was dug up from the ground... err... well, at least that's what I remember it to be
I agree with you both. Not my style either. I have heard about this moon stone? He said it had rocks in it He thought it was wonderful! I have a guy that wants me to find some of this to build him a bass with. Homey don't play that :scowl: ..t
Hey KS, what's your take on those graphite necks? isn't that made by pressing carbon fiber and epoxy?
The 4 or 5 months I worked along side a violin maker was a great time... I learned a lot and the craft that goes into the old world type of instruments is inspiring. (He wasn't my teacher or anything, we just worked in the same shop and I would watch him work.) That being said one my favorite bass sounds ever was a homemade ALL METAL bass played through a weird homemade tube amp. That whole band sounded great in fact and I don't think there was a splinter of wood between 3 or 4 guys.
My point exactly. A bass can sound very good with 'not-just-wood' materials. Seems like a double standard on KSB's part since he posted on another thread that they DO use graphite in their necks, but it's also not ok to use epoxy to strengthen 'not-so-structurally-perfect' wood.
My God! The Humanity!
Ken, IF the point of your objection to this material is that it isn't a tone wood and it's being used where a tone wood would traditionally be desirable and that there is something wrong with this, I disagree.
In this wide wide world, there is plenty of room for different takes on everything - even this. I see this as only an alternative body material and with no philosophical difference from Rockwood from Greg Curbow, Luthite from Cort and Ibanez, high pressure laminate from Reverend, or acrylic from whoever is doing that. And none of these materials are called "tone woods" or even mistaken for them. The fact that there is some 35,000 year old wood mixed in there with the epoxy is interesting and certainly a marketing device but it doesn't devalue the legitimacy of the attempt at all.
Don't worry, your basses will continue to compete with the others at the top of the heap.
Some like the sound of epoxy and graphite.......
I had a Reverend Rumblefish made from counter top material and it was one of the best sounding basses I've played.
I'm sure there were plenty of people who thought playing an "electric" bass was the end of civilization as we know it.
Oh well, I'm just glad the Key-tar hasn't made a big comeback.
Some acoustic builders are hesitant to even use epoxy as a pore filler. Since electric instruments don't rely SO much on the sound as the acoustics I don't see any harm in using epoxy to stabilize wood.
And remember, Jaco used epoxy coating on his fretless. And it's the sound that even after 30 years is till being immitated.
But if you get right down to the theory of the resonance of wood, then Ken is right. I'm sure that the difference in sound and/or resonance will come out in a lab. In practice, the story is different.
It's 35.000 year old swamp Kauri.
Oh good lord, here it comes again...
Of course you will express your opinion, as you always have, and I will listen and ponder with the respect you deserve, as I always have. And, in this case, I will disagree, like I sometimes do around here.
I simply wonder how someone can politely disagree with you on any subject and not get blasted for denying you the opportunity to express your opinion?
if it sounds good and you like it, go with it.
some guys like hefty women, some like skinny... who's to say who's right? just don't try and pass the skinny ones off as fat, or vice versa.
i for one am tired of big companies listing a "spruce soundboard" when what they really have is a piece of plywood with spruce veneer on the top. in this case, they're being dishonest with the customer in an effort to bring in the sale. the two materials aren't remotely the same, and if they were honest, they wouldn't sell half as many guitars.
Seems to me if people were worried about the acoustic resonance of tone woods in a solid body instrument, then they would not coat a piece of tone wood with 1/16" of lacquer, make odd-shaped holes in it, or insert various synthetic/man-made materials into these holes (i.e. pickups, screws, circuit boards, etc.) Doesn't anybody believe that this would change the resonant frequencies of a flat, untouched block of wood as much as an ounce or two of epoxy? Each of these items has its own frequency at which it resonates that could interfeer with the sound of the original wood. This is not to say that there aren't differences between the sound of various tone woods. I am, however, attempting to make the point that even the most natural of guitars has its natural tone affected by interruptions in the sound wave travel through tone wood by the insertion of unnatural materials....
Yes, I see your point, so my short answer would be: basically agreed. All these things certainly change the resonant reponse of the object. But, also consider that
- you're making an instrument body, not a xylophone key. I don't think the object is to have the body sound the same after completion as it did when it was an unmodified rectangle. As a matter of fact, if it did, the results might actually be quite poor.
- the finish thickness is probably on the order of .001-.010", not .063", and I am one of those who don't believe that any finish beyond a light nitrocellulose completely dampens the response.
- the most major change to what you hear when knocking on the rectangular blank compared to what you hear when knocking on the finished body will be caused by the addition of a long beam off of one end of it (the neck).
I'm of the opinion - not bourne out by experience, which others certainly have more of - that a few dots of filler in a few burl holes in a 1/4" top probably have little effect; but that the 1" of bark clear through the body I see in those Langcaster guitars should have immense effect on both tone and structural soundness.