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SurfGuitar101 Forums » The Shallow End »

Permalink Hang onto your Strats, Teles and other Swamp Ash guitars

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An interesting article:

Politics aside (Being something of a Stoic - I could care less, anyway), it seems floods and beetles are badly impacting swamp ash. Fender isn't going to make their guitar bodies from this wood anymore according to the article.

I have to think our (now) older swamp ash Strats, Teles, etc. are going to go up a bit in value.

To present and future guitar Newbies -
Maybe it's time to look at carbon fiber axes.

I'm just the messenger -
J Mo'

I had not heard that news yet, even though the announcement by Fender was back in April. Fortunately, I just bought an Fender MIM ash strat body for cheap for my next project. So I'll see if it makes any difference once I'm done refinishing it.

PS - this seems like the sort of thing that would go in the Gear forum rather than The Shallow End.

Gear forum, Shallow end.. I took my point of view.. regardless, it gets listed on the Home page and bubbles off if not read by forum members..

J Mo' Hmmm

I'll never sell my 78 swamp ash strat but it's not my favorite player. Very heavy.

The Kahuna Kings

This has been coming down for several years now. Huge dead Ash trees all over our state due to the emerald ash borer.

As a luthier who is involved in the tone wood supply chain, I don't feel that your current ash guitars will be notably worth more money moving forward. You will however likely experience price increases on any new ash guitars you buy or commission in the future.

Sad days! Everyone is scrambling to find the next best alternatives these days.

The old ash body guitars won't appreciate but new ones will cost more??
Makes no sense to me but your opinion is your opinion. I have to think a light weight ash bodied guitar with good resonance and sustain will definitely appreciate.

As for Stratdancer's "very heavy" swamp ash Stratocaster:
Well that's the 'crap shoot' the buyer takes part in with ash bodies. The bottom of the ash log (as in near the ground) has more moisture content and the wood is more dense. This makes for a heavy axe - but you do get better sustain. The 70's Strats were notorious for this.
If the ash body is cut from the top of the log, you generally get better resonance and the body is lighter in weight. So the best compromise ash body guitars come from the ash log's mid section.

Do you have any control over that? Not much. Hence trying out the axe is preferable so you don't end up with a Stratocaster boat anchor - even after it's been routed out to hell for that dopey tremolo contraption..

Me - I skip the whole headache - mostly - with a basswood body Mosrite.

All MHO, of course.
J Mo'

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