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I like mahogany

Image from: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MahoganyThe two most common traditional tonewoods for the back/sides of guitars are mahogany and rosewood (with nods to maple, koa, walnut, etc). Typically, rosewood was the more premium and prized of the two; for example, Martin's flagship models like the D-28 and D-45 are rosewood, compared to the "entry-level" D-18. I've gone through my share of guitars, and I expect to go through many more, and I'm coming to realize that I'm a mahogany guy.

Two koa guitars have come and gone (Taylor 414K and Larrivée parlour in koa), three rosewood guitars are in new homes (1978 Larrivée L-11, Taylor 420R, Collings OM2HA), and a maple guitar (1977 Taylor 915) has moved on. Of course, a fair share of mahogany guitars have been traded/sold away (1995 Larrivée LS-05, 1990 Lowden S7c, 1976 Guild D-40SB, a Collings D1VSB, a 12-string Takamine N-10, Guild 12-string....I think it was an F-212 or similar) as well, but all of the guitars that are still around, except for one, are mahogany.

(read more about these guitars, and others, in my in-progress personal guitar history: Part 1 | Part 2)

I'm no good at describing tone, but there's something about the warmth and clarity of mahogany suit me. That doesn't mean I've totally sworn off other tonewoods, but if I had to wager on it, the next one will be mahogany!

Maybe next time we'll talk about sitka vs. adirondack spruce tops...Hint: I like both.

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