Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Husky, Jun 30, 2011.
It's also not a issue only affecting the USA.
Seems to me the issue affects people who need to transport their tools in order to practice the musical trade.
I want to get in here for a question, since I'm currently fairly clueless on the whole CITES thing.
I recently got a neck that's all rosewood. I was considering buying a body to put it on that's also all rosewood...but I notice the guy who made the body is in Sao Paolo and I'm in Texas.
Is this now illegal?
Take with a grain of salt - this is just one person's experience - but I recently bought a guitar (Mayones) while traveling in London and carried it back with me on the plane (Virgin Atlantic) to the US. No one at any point, including when I was doing my VAT refund paperwork at Heathrow, or at customs in the US, asked about the guitar at all.
Not surprised, but also would not be surprised to have some customs person suddenly decide to check, and even hold a guitar that had no CITES wood in it. Appears they can assume you are guilty until proven innocent
If a person has Brazilian rosewood that's been in the US since before the Lacey act was enacted, can they use the lumber to make instruments? Say I find an antique made from rosewood that was built in the 1800's. Can I use the reclaimed lumber from it?
Sure, I don't think there is any restriction on using the wood (as far as I can tell) but the kicker is transporting it across your border. Brazilian Rosewood is now in the category of ivory and tortoise shell as far as movement across borders.
I wish the laws were more clearly defined. There is so much misinformation out there as to the legality of using Brazilian rosewood. I had a person confront me on Facebook about selling a piece of Brazilian. He said "I'm sure you are familiar with the new laws on Brozilian rosewood!" I didn't respond, but I figured I shouldn't take legal council who thinks the rosewood comes from Brozil.
Yep, mere possession of Brozilian Rosewood warrants the automatic death penalty.
If you look back through the links provided in this thread you should be able to find, if not solid answers, at least the framework for restricting the trade of Brazilian Rosewood. I don't travel with my custom acoustic guitar that has B/R back and sides, but I've taken my old '70s El Degas that has B/R fingerboard and bridge through US customs and so far no consequences.
Ha! El Degas. There's a name you don't hear often. They had some pretty cool guitars. I love 70's & 80's mij brands. Especially Daion and Yamaki. I've always wondered if there was an El Degas/Yamaki connection.
I'm not sure if there is a connection - there is a B&J mark on the inside sticker, so wherever they were made it was a contract build. Still sounds great, but the fretboard is pretty road worn even with all the sanding and fretwork I did to it.
Apologies if redundant.
CITES began moves at Dec meeting in Geneva to loosen restrictions on cross-border movement of musical instruments containing rosewood, but certainty may await the next meeting in 2019 ...
I knew this law was about preserving rosewood. I actually did not realize how far it went.
Found a guitar in Japan (Fender Strat mfg. date 1997 per neck & body date codes) and I have a very good friend going to Japan soon....
How do I get the guitar through US Customs at LAX??
To the best of my knowledge, the regulations only affect commercial shipments. Personal packages and traveling borders with completed instruments are exempt if memory serves. Unless you're carrying over 10 kg, or something.
See some updated news elsewhere on TGP ...
I would hope that most people agree that the strip harvesting of the rainforests causes profound ecological damage and should be stopped.
I am not surprised that China is the biggest violator with millions of metric tons being consumed in that country. Compare that amount with a large instrument manufacturer like Martin who uses 50 metric tons.
With that said, like most bureaucratic fixes, the burden seems too be brunt by the little guy. The millions of tons flooding into China are not going to be affected by some zealous custom’s officer confiscating an old guitar that might have Brazilian Rosewood in it, Frankly, that this would even enter the equation given the scale of this ecological atrocity is ridiculous. But again why would bureaucrats in Switzerland excercise better judgement than their counterparts in Brussels or the US for that matter.
So the assault goes on, the new Asian Rober Barron and elite political class will decimate a rainforest to ensure their guests can dance on the finest Rosewood floors while instrument makers and musicians have to wade through a multitude of red tape to try to ascertain if their instrument would be at risk of being confiscated.
Why not focus and commit resources on the large traffickers and make the punishment for these violators as severe as drug trafficking. I don’t think confiscating a guitar at an airport or raiding Gibson USA will get it done while in some corners of the world 20000 sf mansions are being paved with the stuff.
Seems to me that if you own a brand name instrument that may have used Brazilian Rosewood (etc.) in its construction, then the burden should naturally be on the manufacturer to ensure that the materials are not so restricted at the time of manufacture.
Can you imagine having your 1938 Martin D28 confiscated at the airport as you try to come home from a gig (or a family gathering for that matter)? Given that no restrictions were on the materials at the time of manufacture (and you can prove the manufacture date) there should be some sort of restriction exemption there.