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SteveFord

Ebony on new models

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Either I'm losing it or Gibson did the old switcheroo in the middle of the night when nobody was looking:

 

The SG HP now has Richlite

https://www.gibson.c...KU-H2SGS19U8CH1

 

and the SG Custom is ebony

https://www.gibson.c...PA862/SG-Custom

 

Les Paul HP is Richlite

https://www.gibson.c...erformance-2019

 

Les Paul Custom is ebony

https://www.gibson.c...Les-Paul-Custom

 

Explorer Custom is now ebony

https://www.gibson.c...Explorer-Custom

 

as if the Firebird Custom

https://www.gibson.c...Firebird-Custom

 

The weird white Lucille still gets stuck with Richlite, poor thing.

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That’s nice that they decided to do this. I personally have no issues with Richlite at all. I did decide a while back to pull the trigger on a 2015 LP Custom that has this fretboard material and it is a killer guitar. I am not a traditional guitar guy though so being that I didn’t get an ebony fretboard on my expensive azz LP Custom hasn’t made me feel like I was screwed over or anything. IDK guitars are a personal thing to the player and if fretboard material makes or breaks it for someone than they are entitled to their tastes. Just saying that Richlite doesn’t make a guitar any worse or better to me. I have guitars with ebony, rosewood, maple, and this LPC with Richlite. Richlite looks nice and dark and I shouldn’t have to worry about weather changes and such since this material will exist for a very long time.

 

On the contrary I could see why the Gibson base has had severe issues with the Custom and other models like the BB not having the traditional construction and jacking up the price could piss someone off... I just don’t get why some people get bent out of shape with a Richlite fretboard - like ebony is the remedy to fixing some tone issue - which I think would be a poor argument. I also believe that a guitar player will always sound like themselves (on a functional guitar) no matter which guitar they pick up.

 

Either way I do like the transition and think that Gibson realizes that they will sell more Custom guitars with this fretboard material. Gibson has an interesting customer base that’s for sure, haha! I guess when you are an iconic guitar maker, it’s going to go that way. Cheers!

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You hit the nail on the head, it's tradition.

You pay that amount of money and you want the traditional material not a modern substitute (which I'm sure works just as well).

 

Remember when everyone (myself included) flipped out over No Nibs?

It turns out my best guitar is a Nibless Wonder, ha, ha.

 

 

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There is another material called Rocklite, I think is made in UK.

 

https://www.rocklite.co.uk

 

From the website and taking a look to the pictures and specs it seems more appropiated material than Richlite, I think.

It should be a good alternative for not expensive guitars.....

Andy

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I am not forking over that kind of cash for compressed resin particle board. I do not understand why in the world that all of the other USA and Japan companies can offer Ebony as a fretboard material but since the "Wood Raid" gibson cannot do it now. So how is that?

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... You pay that amount of money and you want the traditional material not a modern substitute (which I'm sure works just as well) ...

I think Gibson has figured out the above quote is exactly right which (it seems) why Gibson is putting Richlite on the HP models. That being that HP buyers are likely more open to these type of "new fangled" changes that Gibson considers improvements, as compared to the old-school traditionalists that want everything just as they did in 1959-1961. Just a thought...

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I think Gibson has figured out the above quote is exactly right which (it seems) why Gibson is putting Richlite on the HP models. That being that HP buyers are likely more open to these type of "new fangled" changes that Gibson considers improvements, as compared to the old-school traditionalists that want everything just as they did in 1959-1961. Just a thought...

I’m in agreement.

 

I would get the new HP LP and the fact that it has Richlite wouldn’t make me feel like I’m losing out on anything. I like traditional LPs but I also like the improvements with the electronics and materials, etc. I don’t really care what the fretboard is made of so long as it works and looks great. In this case you are still getting a legit Gibson and it will be a great guitar. Any Gibson will cost a lot because it is a Gibson regardless of the materials involved in construction.

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1549152916[/url]' post='1975688']

I think Gibson has figured out the above quote is exactly right which (it seems) why Gibson is putting Richlite on the HP models. That being that HP buyers are likely more open to these type of "new fangled" changes that Gibson considers improvements, as compared to the old-school traditionalists that want everything just as they did in 1959-1961. Just a thought...

1549117109[/url]' post='1975606']

You hit the nail on the head, it's tradition.

You pay that amount of money and you want the traditional material not a modern substitute (which I'm sure works just as well).

 

......

 

 

Exactly, which is the only reason why I don't have a 2019 Blueberry Fade SG HP right now. No Richlite composite fretboards for me!!

Edited by arcticsg

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Yeah when it comes down to Richlite vs ebony, 10 times out of 10, you’re going with Richlite haha!

 

😝

 

Nah just messing. It would be in Gibson’s best interest to not pay attention to what I just said - I.e it’s not true

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Phwooahhhrrr... Yes please :)

 

YKaYh1U.png

 

 

That's nice in the sunburst with binding...like it a lot. [thumbup]

Edited by jdgm

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That's nice in the sunburst with binding...like it a lot. [thumbup]

The most beautiful issued in the last years....

Andy

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Ebony is cool but IMO it is wasted on guitars like an LP Custom were the inlays cover 40%+ of the fretboard.

 

I just polished the Ebony fretboard on my V using a micromesh pad and slighlty oiled it and it looks simply great.

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Ebony is cool but IMO it is wasted on guitars like an LP Custom were the inlays cover 40%+ of the fretboard.

 

I just polished the Ebony fretboard on my V using a micromesh pad and slighlty oiled it and it looks simply great.

Yeah I like it too.. On the last build I did I used Ebony... I sand it up to 1200.. But if you keep going it can look almost glass like to the touch.

 

MJfZ837.jpg?1

Edited by Rabs

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I need a Strat with an Ebony board. Olympic Pearl. mmmmmm...

 

rct

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My V has an ebony fretboard and I didn’t know it until someone told me.

 

I like the look of maple on Fender’s, but most of mine are rosewood.

 

So I guess I’m not a connoisseur of fretboard material or tonewoods.

 

I wouldn’t turn my nose up at richlite.

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If it was priced right I could see Richlite on a guitar.

Not for their upper crust traditional models, though.

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If it was priced right I could see Richlite on a guitar.

Not for their upper crust traditional models, though.

Well I may be wrong, but the upper crust models are the reissues and historical and such. Those cost a pretty penny. As much as Gibson has jumped around making classics and standards and traditionals all sorts of different ways for a given year I guess the latest customs are just some kind of performance, durable, whatever they were thinking kind of guitar for a series. It’s going back to good ol ebony though probably because they’re getting smart... Put it this way, just look at Wildwood Guitars and you’ll see guitars that cost a heck of a lot more than the GC run of the mill Custom LP. Those WWG gits are near $10k and there’s definitely not Richlite on them bad boys. All Gibson’s are more cost than what they give. It’s like a Cadillac... I could get away with a Malibu, but I bought a Caddy. You don’t need to spend Gibson cash to get a good guitar, but when you do damn is it nice 😁 Either way I don’t care what others think really about Richlite because it’s a stupid argument and it usually comes out as an unintelligible contented thread. Don’t want to go there, but Gibson’s “best” guitars are not the Custom, but Gibson did start putting Richlite in their near top of the line guitars. They haven’t on the guitars that really matter ever... and again the world is safe, they’re putting ebony on the Custom so hopefully that sells them more guitars. Anyhow with all that blabbering, Gibson never really did put Richlite on their upper crust traditional models, they just went historic. That’s just my take though and if you disagree that’s cool. This just made sense to me. Crap is expensive today and if you can buy a Gibson you’re doing ok.

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BB King $5499. Richlite. Made in I believe the Custom Shop. That seems pretty upper crust to me. They have had Richlite since around 2010 (I know cause I have an '09 King with an ebony board and SteveFord has one too with an ebony board) till they stopped making them a few years back and now Richlite again on the White BB Kings.

 

Yeah, 5500 is a lot to spend on a guitar. Simply stating that there are Gibsons that cost much more than that as I described per the last message, and I considered these to be the upper crust guitars they make. I guess it depends on how much money you have and that makes you put more or less weight on the price tag. Hey, people blow through tons of money every day. Bad choice, good choice for the company to decide to put Richlite on guitars at that price point is their call. In retrospect when you take all the guitars Gibson makes and you list the prices from high to low, you might find that the 5500 guitars for instance fall right in the middle price-wise... No direct evidence I can present other than I look at a lot of guitars and I can find a bulk of guitars much more than that, and I can find many beneath that price point. You are most likely not going to find Richlite on a guitar that costs in the range above the most current LP Customs (around this 2010 decade we are in now). And Gibson pulled the trigger on producing this 5500 price range of guitars with Richlite and of course it will disappoint many long time Gibson players that the traditional aspects have disappeared. With Gibson, it's definitely about traditional ways and such. That is the sought after model, and we will pay for it. My opinion is that Gibson didn't introduce Richlite correctly being that it was rolled out on high-end guitars - not their very best, but high end.

 

I want to emphasize this because this is the point I am making here is that I was thinking that they decided to use this 5500 price line as a sacraficial lamb of sorts to see how well it was taken by the public. I have also read points in vast threads on the web that Richlite should have been introduced on lower-end guitars because of its artificial nature. Whatever on that, I'm digressing here. I don't know what Gibson was thinking over the years. All we can conclude is what are the current models and their specs.

 

The decision to put Richlite on a LP Custom or BB in this case definitely turns a buyer like you and probably many others - I get that. Your BB you shared pics of is a very cool guitar indeed, and it is great that you have a guitar that you enjoy as much as that with all of its nice aesthetics you appreciate. I also share your sentiment with the current build because you are obviously a fan of the BB, and it would be nice indeed if they had a fingerboard of your desired material at a price you find reasonable - of course price comes into play. It stinks that there are guitars going back to ebony fretboard construction, yet a BB at that price point is not traditionally built. So despite all the latest improvements by Gibson, there is room for more improvement. I mean, you and many others do make a good point. Basically, if they continued to always use ebony on their guitars, no issues. But again, they introduced this nearly forcedly on the new guitars which is bad for business. Richlite is a nice option, not something that should be "forced" so to speak. Anyhow, time will tell how well received these latest guitars are and what decisions become of the sales data.

 

I just hope no one NGDs a white, Richlite BB, haha! I can't say for sure if this is a trigger or not, haha!

 

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I need a Strat with an Ebony board. Olympic Pearl. mmmmmm...

 

rct

 

That would look sweet!! Maybe binding on the neck?

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I got mine from MF in 2010 and it was a floor model and I paid 3k less than what they are asking now. I'm sure at 5.5k they are not going to fly off the shelf.

 

I don't think Bozeman uses any Richlite, and does (did) Bozman put ebony on any models unless you order a custom shop job?

 

 

 

You got a good deal on your BB. Many would like to run across something like that. And there is no dispute there that the BB's today aren't going to fly off the shelf and no dispute from me that Gibson shouldn't have forced these changes on their new LP Customs and the like (I talk about the LP Custom a lot because that is the guitar I am a fan of). What Gibson decided to do was of no consequence of our actions. Back when Gibson started to use Richlite, they just pulled the rug out from underneath and said, "here you go, Richlite LP Custom!" and for many of their guitars that people did not expect to see this material on the fretboards as I have said - and observed. Well, they can put whatever they want on the shelves - ill-advised or not - and we vote for what we like with our dollars. When they make you sting with their moves, you are pushing back when you aren't forking over the dough. They need to keep paying their employees and sustain a business, so hopefully this is Gibson's motivation for satisfying its customer base.

 

I guess it comes down to there seem to be some improvements, but some glaring things that still need improvement for the people who voice their opinions here and multiple other forums on what they expect to see on certain high end models. Honestly, it seems like 2019 is a good year to buy a Gibson in some respects.

 

As far as acoustics, I have no knowledge here to comment on. I do not own an acoustic guitar.

 

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That would look sweet!! Maybe binding on the neck?

 

No, them aren't bound, only the EJRW at the moment. Ever. Except the one that Sonny Landreth has that Leo and Forrest built.

 

rct

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....Anyhow, time will tell how well received these latest guitars are and what decisions become of the sales data.

 

The decision is at the other end, cost and supply, not revenue. As long as people are willing to pay them more for what they used to put on them for one price, they'll continue to put the cheapest, easiest to acquire material on them. Their filing would indicate some pretty intense supplier bridge fires behind them, so in a sense they can't be choosy without seriously tacking on the mark up.

 

I don't understand why people don't understand that of the major guitar manufacturers, only one has had materials "problems" like this. That makes it fairly simple to figure out.

 

rct

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