The Acoustic Guitar Forum

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Custom Shop

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 05-24-2016, 06:19 PM
xeroid xeroid is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 48
Default Sustain

What is it in the build process that contributes to an acoustic guitar having a good sustain?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 05-24-2016, 06:45 PM
jessupe jessupe is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Marin Co.Ca.
Posts: 721
Default

It usually starts with wood selection.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-24-2016, 06:47 PM
dekutree64 dekutree64 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Kansas City, Missouri
Posts: 1,263
Default

I like Ervin Somogyi's concept of "type 1" and "type 2" sustain.

Type 1 is like a solid body guitar, where the soundboard is too heavy/stiff to move much, so the guitar is quiet but sustains for a long time as the energy remains largely confined to the string.

Type 2 uses the back as a flywheel to absorb some energy from the soundboard and feed it back over time. Without this, a highly efficient soundboard converts the whole string energy to sound in a short time (loud, but short sustain). Low damping back wood has a big advantage here.

And a third thing is to minimize losses, for example by making the neck and sides heavy so they won't move, keeping all vibration confined to the soundboard and/or back. Surface hardness of the back/sides may have an effect as well.

There seem to be 3 main schools of high-end building.
1. Light everything. Low to medium type 1 sustain depending on soundboard stiffness, medium to high type 2 sustain depending on back wood, medium to high losses depending on woods.
2. Light soundboard, heavy everything else. Low to medium type 1 sustain depending on soundboard stiffness, low type 2 sustain, low losses.
3. Light and loose soundboard and back, heavy sides/neck. Low type 1 sustain, high type 2 sustain, low losses (provided low damping back wood is used).

Last edited by dekutree64; 05-24-2016 at 06:53 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-26-2016, 06:36 PM
MC5C MC5C is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Tatamagouche Nova Scotia
Posts: 993
Default

what is good sustain for an acoustic and how do you measure it? I play an open chord (usually C) and count until I can't hear it - but this is not very repeatable or scientific...

brian
__________________
Brian Evans
1935 Dobro model 25 resonator
1943 Paramount (made by Kay) mandolin
1946 Epiphone Zephyr electric archtop
1957 Hofner Senator archtop
1962 Gibson Melody Maker electric
1963 National Dynamic lap steel
1996 Landola jumbo
1998 Godin Artisan TC electric
1998 Epiphone SG electric
2010 GoldTone PBR-CA resonator
2015 Evans electric archtop
2016 Evans archtop
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 05-26-2016, 07:07 PM
rick-slo's Avatar
rick-slo rick-slo is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: San Luis Obispo, CA
Posts: 14,007
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MC5C View Post
what is good sustain for an acoustic and how do you measure it? I play an open chord (usually C) and count until I can't hear it - but this is not very repeatable or scientific...

brian
Notes that stick around long enough to get their say in and then vamoose.
__________________
Derek Coombs
Website -> Music -> Tabs -> and Youtube
Guitars by Mark Blanchard, Albert&Mueller, Paul Woolson, Collings, Composite Acoustics, and Derek Coombs
Woods hands pick by eye and ear
Made to one with pride and love
To be that we hold so dear
A voice from heavens above
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Custom Shop

Thread Tools





All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:45 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=