What are folks thoughts on Ebony vs.a Rosewood fingerboard on a dreadnought? And besides stew mac, where else can you get them? Thanks
Ebony is traditional but it's just personal preference. There's lots of other woods besides those two. LMII and many others sell fretboards. LMII will slot and radius too. Just search Google for "fingerboard blank."
I use rosewood my self altho- it has been said that ebony has better resonace then any other --
I cant tell the difference
I really like the looks of a nice rosewood finger board. If its getting fancy inlay, I prefer the ebony.
Personally, I don't think the size/style of a guitar lends itself to any particular species of wood for fingerboards. Like so many others, I'm partial to Ebony but that's based on look.
I've read material written by many different builders that has convinced me that the materials used in a guitar of much less importance than the skill in building anyway so unless I could build "the" guitar, I'd probably consider price/availability and looks over sound production in a fingerboard anyway.
I pick up nice rosewood & ebony fingerboard cast offs from Martin Co,. on ebay from various sellers. Fully radiused & slotted , some with dots drilled, some not, some cut for binding, some not. They have have the 2 holes in the bottom for lining up on a martin neck and gluing.
They are 2nds from the factory. If you dont mind spending 2 minutes filling a tiny pinhole or building up a little nick on the edge with sawdust and CA they are otherwise 100%. From the number out there for sale typically and the number i have in my storage, I figure about 25% of cost of every guitar must go to pay for these rejected parts!
What's the bridge material of choice? I'm personally looking for repetition of shapes, design, form, and wood species when I select my materials.
There is another choice now for fret boards and these are superbly made offerings with the most accurate fret spacing that I have ever seen. Andy Birko is offing CNC "faux-bound" boards in scale lengths and materials of your choice. He does wonderful work, the boards are competitively priced, service is as good as it gets, and again if you are a stickler for accuracy in fret spacing Andy has this nailed too.
We ordered a board from him for a 40's resonator that needed board replacement and what we received was way better than the original especially with the fret spacing.
You can reach Andy here: CNC Fret Boards, Bridges, etc.
Quote: "What are folks thoughts on Ebony vs.a Rosewood fingerboard on a dreadnought? And besides stew mac, where else can you get them?"
It's all a matter of Design and Styling.
I like Rosewood Fingerboards on Gibson Style Dreadnoughts.
And Ebony on Martin and Taylor Style Dreadnoughts. Many other Brands of Guitar will fall into these broad camps, and my preferences for those, tend to follow suit.
Some Guitar Design Styles have a strong physical character and presence. They may be impressively striking lookers, and woods with a fiery nature suit this type of Guitar to my mind.
Other Guitars are Classy, Quiet, Dark, they do not shout their presence at you, even if they have distinctive ornamentation. They are Understated, yet their Sheer Class is all the more Clear for that.
I think you have to look at the Overall Design Parameters of the Instrument, the Top, the Back the Sides, and it should then be completely clear to you what Wood should be the obvious selection for the Fingerboard and Bridge.
All these elements are closely related, and should be considered independently, but with regard to the Instruments Overall Design, and the Selected Woods for the Body and Neck as a Whole. To the Eye, the End Product should work cohesively as a Perfectly Ordered Conception and Design Aesthetic.
Not all Modern Instruments, even those Manufactured by Top Brands.
Seem to be able to manage this Design Artistry.
However Complex or Simple it is.
The Design must Work.
As a Whole.