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Are rosewood fretboards a thing of the past?

Crate love

Member
Messages
343
Hey all,

I noticed a new Gibson Les Paul with a fretboard made from Richlite. What do you think - Rosewood is no longer an option for Gibson pending the seizure last year of their wood supply? Hmmm....:huh
 

EelEye

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
1,056
I still don't get why this isn't an easy fix.

Why can't Gibson just send a CNC machine to India with a couple people to operate it (and train the locals). Then they could buy the rosewood locally and ship it to the US in "final" form with all the fret slots cut and frets installed. Is it that big of a deal to just have the fingerboards finished in India?

This could actually be a business opportunity...they could establish a JV with Fender, PRS, and LMI and everybody could source their rosewood directly from India without breaking the rules. I can't imagine it is that difficult to have a CNC machine programmed with the specs for each of the different manufacturers.

I am a bit of a neophyte on this, so maybe I'm missing something here.
 

EADGBE

Senior Member
Messages
12,339
I don't understand why they can't just import rosewood from India. They've being do so for decades.
 

Crate love

Member
Messages
343
I still don't get why this isn't an easy fix.

Why can't Gibson just send a CNC machine to India with a couple people to operate it (and train the locals). Then they could buy the rosewood locally and ship it to the US in "final" form with all the fret slots cut and frets installed. Is it that big of a deal to just have the fingerboards finished in India?

This could actually be a business opportunity...they could establish a JV with Fender, PRS, and LMI and everybody could source their rosewood directly from India without breaking the rules. I can't imagine it is that difficult to have a CNC machine programmed with the specs for each of the different manufacturers.

I am a bit of a neophyte on this, so maybe I'm missing something here.
Agreed and what you propose makes sense and is a simple fix, yet would the material then be considered an import subject to a possible future tariff? I can't understand this whole crackdown thing at all. Aren't there more important economic issues?
 

rjsc5

Member
Messages
387
I am not spending the big $$$ on a Gibson that does not have rosewood, and I think a lot of other people will feel the same. What a shame this has become for this company.
 

Rumblur

Member
Messages
750
Do you really think for a minute, the Chinese will abide by any 'moratoriums' or other sanctions that civilized countries do? Nope... So to answer your question - rosewood will be here till it's extinct.
 

budglo58

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,871
I am not spending the big $$$ on a Gibson that does not have rosewood, and I think a lot of other people will feel the same. What a shame this has become for this company.
As with most Gibson Fretboards its Rosewood and plastic(inlays). The plastic inlays account for almost 40 percent of the board, slightly more on a custom.If you truly want rosewood on your fretboard ,demand they make them with just the dot inlays. As far as the alternative fretboards,Martin does it and with great success.
 

JB6464

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,969
I am not spending the big $$$ on a Gibson that does not have rosewood, and I think a lot of other people will feel the same. What a shame this has become for this company.
Better buy a Historic LP then.
Seems like that's the only way you will get a Rosewood or Ebony fretboard in the future from Gibson.
 

JB6464

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,969
Or the wonderful mismanagement of Gibson and their purchasing staff...
 

Average Joe

Member
Messages
11,826
Or the wonderful mismanagement of Gibson and their purchasing staff...
More like this. It seems that other big manufacturers have no trouble getting legal rosewood and getting it through customs with the proper paperwork. Seems to indicate that the problem is at gibson's end
 

SW33THAND5

Senior Member
Messages
5,081
i remember seeing something about them using florida rosewood now ????


can anyone expand on this?
 

buddastrat

Member
Messages
14,690
swamp rosewood?

Look at all the dye jobs even on USA guitars. ebony colored fingerboards on new strats. Even strats back in the 60's and 70's did not have boards that dark when new. It looks cheap when they dye it black. It's even on high end stuff Sorry, I'm not paying $1600 for a Wildwood Fender thin skin strat with a dye job! I know the Historic's rosewood were quite a bit lighter colored around 10 years ago, and then it started getting very dark. I hope they wouldn't dye those! I think a used guitar from at least 10-15 or more years old would be safe for getting good rosewood. I'm sure some companies still manage to find some. Hopefully it's not close to being extinct.
 




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