I’ve decided, I am going to buy a new guitar, I’m almost certain that I want an Alhambra Classical (probably a 7P) but I’m sure I’ll have to spend a bit more time deciding on the right model. After all, the fun of spending all that money in in the trying out of different models.
But then I got to thinking about the wood which is used for making guitars and the impact it is having. Specifically the hardwoods such as Mahogany and Ebony which are used to make the neck. They are used specifically because it provides better sound as the notes vibrate up the strings and neck.
So I got to looking at some of the endangered species of wood. Particularly Mahogany as I thought it was endangered. Hardwoods take much longer to grow and are often taken from forests, as opposed to timbers like Cedar and spruce which are usually farmed.
I looked into where else these woods are used, one major use for them is
in boats, particularly the older type you see on rivers. (see picture) where I assume that traditional materials are often used, especially when they are renovated. Their use must involve literally tonnes of timber in a single boat, whereas a guitar has very little in each one. Although on the flip side of that, how many of these boats are out there compared to the number of guitars which must be made every year.
So I got to doing a bit of research. It turns out that the term Mahogany actually refers to quite a few different species of tree. Some aren’t even Mahogany at all, the rainforest relief website has a load opf information on what should and shouldn’t be used. So now I just need to go back to the manufacturer to find out exactly what they do use.
Who’d have thought buying a new guitar would become such a deep dive into the rights and wrongs of wood! Oh well, I’m feeling more enlightened now 🙂