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  #16  
Old 05-21-2019, 11:40 PM
gmel555 gmel555 is offline
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I actually love the fretboard, but agree the sapwood not showing on both outside edges of the back bass bouts -while not a blemish- is not as attractive as it could/should be. If I liked the tone and playability I'd try to negotiate an extra 10% or so based on the back not being booked particularly well. (or have them throw in a full set-up) Either way I don't consider it blemished. If I thought it was a tone monster then I'd buy it regardless and eventually appreciate just how unique the back was.

PS: I had an Ovation Adamas with a walnut fretboard for almost 40 years. No issues, but I did use a quality fretboard oil on it once or twice a year.
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  #17  
Old 05-22-2019, 02:36 AM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is offline
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Mercy, usually Iím in agreement with your posts but have to disagree with you about the long term viability of walnut fingerboards. Gmel mentioned Ovationís use of walnut fingerboards before I could, but they werenít the only company to use it. Iíve owned a couple of 1920ís vintage Ludwig banjos that were made entirely out of walnut, including the fretboards, and still own a pre-WWII National resonator mandolin with a walnut fretboard.

All of the instruments mentioned in that last paragraph, including a couple of Ovation guitars I owned for a while, had fully functional fretboards. All of them were used when I got them, and all of them got played a lot while in my possession.

Now, I have seen rosewood fingerboards with deep runnels dug into them by owners who apparently never trimmed their fingernails and maybe allowed skin oils to accumulate (or perhaps oiled their fingerboards way too often and softened the wood as a result.) If the same lackadaisical attitude toward instrument maintenance and personal hygiene is used, there could definitely be similar damage done to walnut fingerboards, as well.

But if reasonable care is taken - keeping your hands clean, keeping your nails trimmed, avoiding the temptation of slathering the fretboard with oil every time the strings get changed - thereís no reason at all why walnut canít be used for fingerboards. I know that for a fact because Iíve got an eighty year old National mandolin in my music room that Iíve played a LOT.

From what I can tell, both it and its walnut fingerboard will still be fully functional in another eighty years.

Hope that makes sense.


Wade Hampton Miller
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  #18  
Old 05-22-2019, 02:45 AM
DownUpDave DownUpDave is offline
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Sorry but that sap strip in the back is not centered properly. No real luthier would ever orient the back so the sap stripe is so far off set from the center line, use heel cap as reference. Have a look at the sap wood on the right lower bout. Notice there is nothing on the left side. Gibson just tried to make use of this piece of wood on this guitar and they shouldn't have. It might have been a better fit for the L-00. I like the use of sap wood but this was not well done. It won't effect the tone or stability but it is unacceptable to me. Just my 2 cents but you asked.
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Last edited by DownUpDave; 05-22-2019 at 02:52 AM.
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  #19  
Old 05-22-2019, 04:36 AM
elasticman elasticman is offline
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now to throw another twist in here...

There is this 2019 J45 "Sustainable". Other than the beeswax finish and richlite fretboard, isnt this basically a J15?

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  #20  
Old 05-22-2019, 05:02 AM
lowrider lowrider is online now
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To get back to the original question; I think it looks really cool. If I was a lefty, I'd grab it!
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  #21  
Old 05-22-2019, 05:19 AM
JakeStone JakeStone is offline
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I don't think it's a blem or anything.

I don't mind the back.. Looks cool!
But I am not a fan of the fret board.
I prefer a more uniform coloration/look.
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  #22  
Old 05-22-2019, 07:24 AM
erhino41 erhino41 is offline
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After you book match a piece of wood with sapwood, any additional thicknessing and sanding will typically reveal more sap wood on one side and remove some sap wood on the other, depending on how close to perpendicular it is oriented. Look at some very expensive guitars using sap wood and you will see a similar asymmetry, sometimes.

When book matching in general, the more figured the wood the less likely a "perfect" book match will be.
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  #23  
Old 05-22-2019, 07:40 AM
jdto jdto is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DownUpDave View Post
Sorry but that sap strip in the back is not centered properly. No real luthier would ever orient the back so the sap stripe is so far off set from the center line, use heel cap as reference. Have a look at the sap wood on the right lower bout. Notice there is nothing on the left side. Gibson just tried to make use of this piece of wood on this guitar and they shouldn't have. It might have been a better fit for the L-00. I like the use of sap wood but this was not well done. It won't effect the tone or stability but it is unacceptable to me. Just my 2 cents but you asked.
The photo is taken on an angle. I'd have to see a straight-on photo of the back before deciding it was not centred.
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  #24  
Old 05-22-2019, 07:49 AM
DownUpDave DownUpDave is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdto View Post
The photo is taken on an angle. I'd have to see a straight-on photo of the back before deciding it was not centred.
Yes I agree about the photo being taken on an angle. I noticed that before I made my comment.

The finger board looks cool to me. I love color and pattern in a finger board, makes it interesting.
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Ukuleles....way too many to list

Last edited by DownUpDave; 05-22-2019 at 08:01 AM.
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  #25  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:00 AM
elasticman elasticman is offline
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bought it
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  #26  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:02 AM
DownUpDave DownUpDave is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elasticman View Post
bought it
Awesome.....Congratulations those J15s have such a great sound, enjoy it
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Taylor 512e 12 fret,
Martin 000-15M,
Eastman E100-LTD, 12 fret
Larrivee L-01
Taylor GS Mini walnut
Cordoba C10 crossover
Cordoba Cadete
Ukuleles....way too many to list
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  #27  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:05 AM
Paddy1951 Paddy1951 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elasticman View Post
bought it
Hey, good for you! You now have a unique, one of a kind great sounding instrument.
Nobody will ever be confused as to whose intrument it is.

Enjoy it! Play it like crazy.
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  #28  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:25 AM
jdto jdto is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DownUpDave View Post
Yes I agree about the photo being taken on an angle. I noticed that before I made my comment.

The finger board looks cool to me. I love color and pattern in a finger board, makes it interesting.
Indeed, the fingerboard is quite striking. I think congratulations are in order for @elasticman on the new purchase. I look forward to seeing an NGD thread.
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  #29  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:30 AM
rokdog49 rokdog49 is offline
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Don't know why...can't see the pictures.
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  #30  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:48 AM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elasticman View Post
or is it just a unique grain pattern? I would not call the back bookmatched.

I'm considering this very instrument (I'm a lefty and beggars cant be choosers) - but would you pay full retail for this PARTICULAR instrument? Not the J15 in general.
The back is book matched, but, as others have noted, there can be some differences in appearance as the wood is thinned, particularly with flat-sawn wood.

Beyond the question of using flat-sawn walnut, versus quarter sawn walnut, whether or not that particular piece of wood is a good choice for a guitar back is a question of aesthetics. It is not a "blemish" per se. Ditto for the fingerboard. If you like the appearance, it is a good choice: if you don't, it's a bad choice.

For my sense of aesthetics, it isn't an instrument I'd want to own. Unless it was an inexpensive instrument, walnut is a poor choice for a fingerboard: it isn't hard enough to withstand decades of playing. Black walnut is plentiful, and domestic, and is readily available in quarter sawn material. There is no practical reason - but cost savings - to use flat sawn walnut on a guitar. I'm not fond of sap wood, but that's just my preference.

For some reason, I couldn't see the pictures using Safari as a browser, on either desktop or phone.
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