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US Swamp-ash soft?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by *Munkeh*, Apr 6, 2006.

  1. *Munkeh*


    Apr 16, 2005
    London, UK
    Hi all,

    I've been reading a thread on another bass forum discussing US Swamp-ash is a very soft wood and is prone to easily getting it damaged.

    Just like to ask, if i get a warwick US swamp-ash corvette in laquer, would this solve the problem of the wood prone to easy damage or would it be the same?


    I have a Yamaha RBX374 made from Alder, it's taken some knocks here and there, but when i look at the place it got knocked at, there is no chips or dings. Would this be the same for a laquered US swamp-ash or is it more prone to damage compared to other woods even though it is laqured and protected by gloss?

    Thanks all. :bassist:
  2. ebe9


    Feb 26, 2006
    South Africa
    Both my basses have swamp ash bodies (not neccessarily US Swamp Ash) and thus far I have not had any problems, then again I am very careful.

    The only complaint I have is the finish on the one, satin oil, and it is very prone to damage as it (the finish) is very soft, I have 3 nicks/dents after only 2 months.
  3. Pete skjold

    Pete skjold

    May 29, 2004
    Warsaw Ohio
    Hey Man ,

    If you get swamp ash you will want to go with the hardest finish you can . It is a very soft wood and is prone to scuffs and wear when only an oil finish is used .

    Best of luck ,

    Pete Skjold
  4. The back of my Thumb bass is a very thin satin coat over US Swamp Ash.

    My nephews belt buckle gnarled a nice bit of it with imprints after playing it for 5 minutes.

    Luckily, I prefer to get unpainted rough looking body woods for this specific reason.

    But yeah, if you want it looking nice, get the hardest finish you can, the stuff indents like balsawood(exaggerated but you get my point).
  5. my US Swamp Ash Warwick Corvette is very soft, and even a sharp fingernail can indent the wood. The plus is, if you get a simple natural oil finish, like i did, when u do ding it, or scratch it, you can restore it to new with a bit of light sanding. Mine looks spotless if you take care with it, and don't mind doing some small sanding repairs. The wet cloth/soldering iron trick works well too!
  6. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    I used to own one of the higher end Washburn XB900s made of swamp ash. It was super light -- 7 lbs and change, but very durable. The hard finish is key to protection.

    As anarchyok notes, if you ding an unfinish piece of swamp ash, you can sand or steam the ding out.

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