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Thread: Early CE fretboards, Brazilian or Indian Rosewood

  1. #1
    Member CE-man's Avatar
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    Early CE fretboards, Brazilian or Indian Rosewood

    I posted this question on the forum and thought I would give it go here as well. I've read somewhere that in order to make early CEs affordable the rosewood used for fretboards was all East Indian Rosewood instead of Brazilian Rosewood as used on the Customs of the time. I've also read that the only rosewood PRS used at the time was Brazilian, therefore every guitar built prior to 1991 would have a Brazilian board. I see early CEs for sale all the time stating that the guitar has a Brazilian fretboard. Is there anybody out there that can set the record straight, once and for all, as to which rosewood was used?

  2. #2
    All I have ever heard is the Brazilian was never used on CE's.

  3. #3
    Member CE-man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by _pete_ View Post
    All I have ever heard is the Brazilian was never used on CE's.
    This is what I've heard/read too but there seems to be no end to the people professing to have a CE with a Brazilian board.

  4. #4
    I think Paul mentions in an early video that was posted here that the CE started out with an IRW board.

    It's unfortunate that so many people just haven't got a clue when they post ads, isn't it?
    If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your short-wave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV.
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  5. #5
    Jump to 4:13.

    Last edited by ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! ; 08-17-2013 at 07:03 PM.
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  6. #6
    Occasionally Onery Member CantankerousCarl's Avatar
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    I hear it, I see it, I believe it...but I swear that the fretboard wood on my 92 is different.

    Three of my four CE's (90,91,97) have nearly identical-looking fretboards, definitely with some "lighter" bands that I associate with the EIRW.

    The board on my 92 is visibly darker, the color variation is absent, the grain just looks different.

    Don't know what it is, but it's different...I have taken some poor photos in an attempt to demonstrate below:

    91, 92 & 97 side-by-side:


    91:


    92:


    97:


    I did not post pics of the 90 but it looks almost identical to the 91 & 97. I ain't no wood-ologist, but the 92 looks like its different.
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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by CantankerousCarl View Post
    I hear it, I see it, I believe it...but I swear that the fretboard wood on my 92 is different..
    It's just a darker board.

    I have an IRW board on my Sig Ltd that is as dark as ebony. It's not BRW. It's not ebony. It's just very dark IRW. In fact, it's darker and more uniform in color than yours, with very small pores.

    Doesn't mean a thing. Still IRW.

    Same with yours.
    Last edited by LSchefman; 08-17-2013 at 11:57 PM.
    If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your short-wave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV.
    -- Homer J. Simpson

  8. #8
    Member CE-man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! View Post
    Jump to 4:13.

    Thanks Hans, that same video was posted as a reply on the other forum. That certainly sets the issue straight when you hear it from the man himself.

  9. #9
    Wait, that looked a lot like a factory...

  10. #10
    All those pores in the wood are a dead give-away. East Indian Rosewood. Besides, Brazilian was phased out by '91.

    Last edited by ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! ; 08-18-2013 at 10:01 PM.
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  11. #11
    Not that there's anything less desirable about IRW, in my opinion. BRW is a little different perhaps, but it's a very subtle difference. If the guitar sounds good, it IS good.

    The source of the rosewood isn't a big deal, at least on a fingerboard, IMHO.
    If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your short-wave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV.
    -- Homer J. Simpson

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by LSchefman View Post
    Not that there's anything less desirable about IRW, in my opinion.
    Agreed. My interest in the discussion is historical accuracy, nothing more.
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