why so few Alder/maple Strats ?

Discussion in 'The Small Company Luthiers' started by gitman, Apr 12, 2008.

  1. gitman

    gitman Member

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    or so it seems .... alder bodies are most often joined to maple necks with some sort of rosewood board, ash bodies more often than not come with a maple neck/maple board. the pairing alder body/maple neck is relatively scarce - is this then considerd a sonically less attractive wood combo ? AFAIK there was a time when Fender made their early Strats like this and didn't Hendrix prefer
    his (late 60's, alder bodied) Strats with a maple neck ?
    i have just bought a Suhr Classic Strat with this combo and am wondering now whether i made the right decision, having imagined a bright but non-the-less balanced and deep, vintage flavoured Strat sound ... please enlighten me !
     
  2. jiml

    jiml Supporting Member

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    I'm building a partsostrat with alder/maple, I think that it's not as rare as you think..
     
  3. Trebor Renkluaf

    Trebor Renkluaf I was hit by a parked car, what's your excuse? Gold Supporting Member

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    Actually imo there are lots of Alder bodied maple necked strats. Most if not all of the custom colors are shot over alder. There are just too many to list.
     
  4. Aardvark

    Aardvark Silver Supporting Member

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    Whatever you do, don't follow the example of other alder/maple players like Hendrix, Trower, Clapton, Eric Johnson. Actually, it's a great tone. The best sounding Suhr I ever played (and still own) is an alder/maple Classic.
     
  5. oscar100

    oscar100 Member

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    thats what im on teh look out for
    :BEER
     
  6. matte

    matte Senior Member

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    mid "56-early "59:
    alder body/one piece maple neck (skunk stripe)

    on and off throughout the "60s:
    alder body/maple neck with round lam maple board (no skunk stripe)
     
  7. diego

    diego Member

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    I think the alder body/maple neck telecaster is less common.

    Alder body/maple neck strat is a great combination... amazing neck pick up sounds and a more immediate attack on the note in my exp.
     
  8. dougk

    dougk Silver Supporting Member

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  9. oscar100

    oscar100 Member

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    anyone selling a suhr one - get in touch:bow
     
  10. K-Line

    K-Line Gold Supporting Member

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  11. DaveukRN

    DaveukRN Member

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  12. gitman

    gitman Member

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    oops, thanks guys ! looking at the Suhrs that are for sale at the various internet dealers i just did not find more than a 2 or 3 in that combo and got to thinking .... Andersons sem to be more common and of course Fenders also.
    i guess it's also a trend phenomenon like with so much other gear... the gout-du-jour is constantly changing ! i feel a resurging interest in Kahler floating trems is imminent ....
     
  13. Guitarzan

    Guitarzan Member

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    Best guitar I ever played was a 57 Strat Alder/Maple. My next Chapin is that combo going for that tone.
     
  14. Terry McInturff

    Terry McInturff 40th Anniversary of guitar building! Gold Supporting Member

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    gitman,

    I am sympathetic with your inquiries.

    IMO, there are no rights-and-wrongs for you to worry about, if you love the sound of your guitar. I will bet that your guitar sounds great!....regardless of any little trends that may have you wondering.

    As for the Kahler trems....I built many guitars ( for myself most often) using them "back-in-the-day...the 80's...

    I never could say that I really "liked" the sound of that bridge...and they do impart a rather strong "color" to the guitar's tone and response.

    I have not bothered to look at the new ones, but the originals were very well made..very well made (except maybe for a cheaper one that they came out with..I am referring to the original design which came in flat mount and in stud mount). Almost infinitely adjustable...and I thought...at that time...that that was an advantage. Now I know that there were too many moving parts for good tone.

    I chose to use them because I moved around alot when I played, and the Kahler would not go sharp when I palm muted.

    But I did not care for the tone...not at all. Very soft overall, and the biggest problem being an attenuation of sustain in the 12th-16th fret area. Kind of "plonky" sounding. Sounded like a mild boost @ 900Hz overall, along with those rubbery sounding notes all over the 12-16 fret region. Especially the D and G string..big time.

    I built maybe 15 guitars with them, and did maybe 200 shows playing them. They were a good tool, dependable and solid. But the tone suffered notably. I had to make the choice to improve my playing/performance technique in order to use better sounding bridges. It took awhile to adjust.

    Most do not know that towards the end of the original Kahler organisation, they released what I think was the best floating "Floyd Rose" style bridge ever....(I liked the Schaller version that Hamer was using too except for the fixed 10" radius). They must be rare. I built one gtr that used one. Good bridge...if you really need that double-locking thing....alot of coloration tho....no sustain probs, really...just the usual "Floyd Rose" type of tone...if you can dig that....but a bit warmer... (not my cuppa tea)...well made.
     

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