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ShatnersBassoon

So....Sapele

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This wood seems to get a tough wrap from woodworkers I have spoken to in person (admittedly not guitar builders). They generally tut and look skywards upon hearing the species. It seems that it is generally thought of as quite a poor quality wood, often referred to as 'bastard mahogany'. However to me its a very nice looking wood! I suppose the grain structure is at the route of most peoples gripes? Thoughts? It seems to be quite widely used amongst guitar builders these days! Is it all just silly snobbery?

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Yep, mostly silly snobbery. Sapele is fine wood and gets some gorgeous ribbon figure when quatersawn. Interlocked grain is what causes that and it also makes it subject to tear-out on perimeter routes. 

SR

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Just snobbery. It's prone to tearout when routing, but IMO it is a very tonally "dark" wood. It makes a great guitar with a very deep sound. Use slightly bright pickups to add some treble... the Gibson 500T or something similar.

 

I have hundreds of pounds of it. Mahogany is becoming increasingly scarce, and sapele is a much better alternative than most.

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