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Mahogany used in Historics between '07 - '11

Tim Plains

Active member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
759
Is there a ballpark estimate on how many 2007s were made with Honduras? I can't help but laugh after reading CD's post because of how many times people have posted claiming 2007 was the good wood year. Just goes to show that people don't know squat.

I have an R9 from 2009 that has MRW I bought late in the year ,so ..... Beautiful piece of RW too
How can you tell for sure that it is Madagascar?
 

delawaregold

Active member
Joined
Jun 27, 2005
Messages
1,672
Tim,
Apparently history has been rewritten. This is what appeared on the Gibson
Website in 2008. The information is now scrubbed, but I have provided the link
So that perhaps those interested can find the posting preserved on the Wayback
Machine.

The following is from Gibson Lifestyle, the Gibson Online information service.
The link to the article is below. This was published on April 22, 2008.

LINK:
http://www.gibson.com/en-us/Lifestyle/ProductSpotlight/GearAndInstruments/Gibson_s%20Commitment%20to%20Sustain/

Gibson Salutes Earth Day:
Our Commitment to Sustainable Tonewoods
Dave Hunter | 04.22.2008

Guitarists’ hearts beat with the round, resonant thump of fine tonewood.
The sounds of our dreams emanate from warm mahogany, snappy maple,
throaty rosewood, silky ebony. Without carefully controlled and managed
foresting, however, and consideration from the manufacturers who use
them—guitar makers included—some of these noble woods could vanish
forever. Rather than acquire and horde all it can and crank it out on high-
priced instruments until supplies simply dry up, Gibson is determined to do
something about it. Great traditional tonewoods can be raised and harvested
in a sustainable, earth-friendly way, and exciting new alternative tonewoods
can be found to complement them. And when a leading guitar maker like
Gibson puts its weight behind both ventures it’s a win-win situation for
players and the earth alike.

Gibson’s promotion of sustainable wood sources makes its way to the guitar
market in a range of guises, some obvious, some less so, but always with a
maximum effort to source wood from Rainforest Alliance Certified supplies*,
and never from endangered or illegal wood stocks (as determined by the
CITES list, drawn up by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered
Species). Gibson first introduced a SmartWood Les Paul Standard back in
1996, then upped the ante in 1998 with a six-pack of Les Paul Exotics,
made with carved tops of certified Paraguayan curupay, taperyva,
cancharana, peroba, banara, and ambay guasa, backs of certified mahogany,
and fingerboards of curupay. Currently, the Les Paul SmartWood Studio is
a proud and prominent declaration of the beauty and viability of alternative
tonewoods. Made from an ever-changing supply of exotic tonewoods,
the model currently features gorgeous Central American muira piranga.

Less obvious than the up-front promotion of alternative tonewoods is,
according to a Gibson corporate mandate, the use of as much traditional
tonewood from certified sources as can be acquired. Managed forests in
North America, primarily in the northeast, are yielding sustainable sources
of maple that is perhaps of better quality than ever before, while the
most-used Gibson tonewood, mahogany, comes primarily from certified
forests in Honduras and Guatemala,
where trees are harvested on an
18 to 20-year cutting cycle with strict regulations regarding size restrictions
and sustainable forestry.Since 2005, for example, Gibson has been buying
large shipments of mahogany from foresters in the Río Plátano Biosphere
Reserve in Honduras. The mahogany is extracted from this protected area
with minimal impact on the natural forest, and Gibson’s relationship with
the reserve foresters not only helps to ensure the availability of these great
woods in the future, but makes a significant economic contribution to this
impoverished region of Central America.

Thanks to Gibson’s pursuit of certified wood stocks, the Gibson plant in
Nashville is currently using more than 50% certified wood, an impressive
figure for any major manufacturer. Where certified stocks are not available,
Gibson acquires the next best alternative, known as “Controlled Wood,”
from other suppliers that are known to maintain well-managed forests.
In short, Gibson knows where all its wood is coming from, and resolutely
refuses to use endangered varieties such as Brazilian rosewood, which some
other makers will still employ in guitar manufacture when they can get it.
Instead, for example, as on the J-185 True Vintage or Legends Series
1937 L-00 Gibson uses exotic and beautifully grained Madagascar rosewood.

On the whole, nothing has changed in the quality and sources of Gibson’s
great tonewoods, and the guitar maker is still getting its stocks from the
same parts of the world where the best tonewoods have always been grown.

But today, with the help of the Rainforest Alliance, Gibson is also ensuring
that those supplies are considerately managed and ethically harvested,
in a way that will ensure their availability for generations of great instruments
to come. Check out a great Gibson guitar made from the world’s finest
tonewoods, and be assured you’re plugging into both kinds of sustain.
 

Tim Plains

Active member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
759
Artie, thanks. You are 'da man' as far as I'm concerned when it comes to wood debates :salude but don't put much faith in gibson.com. There was a time where gibson.com stated 50th anniversary R9s had weight relieved bodies and that the 2012 laminated fretboard were a structural improvement over single pieces or rosewood.
 

CDaughtry

Les Paul Forum Co-Owner and Moderator
Joined
Jul 16, 2001
Messages
12,646
That actually could be entirely consistent with what Edwin told me. Edwin sources wood for the Custom
shop only. Gibson USA does its own thing. Edwin is way more weight conscious than USA and he did say that the Honduras, in general, was heavier. This, and I'm speculating a little here based upon our conversation, it appears that the since the majority of wood he picked in 2007 was Figi, the selection was based on all the criteria he deemed important..
 

cmatthes

New member
Joined
Nov 1, 2002
Messages
12
I've heard the exact same thing as CDaughtry. Everything since around 2007 has been exclusively Fiji Honduras mahogany.

The Fiji Honduras mahogany is actually very sought after and from many luthiers I know is very comparable to the old growth South American Honduras mahogany. Don't let the hype fool you that the only killer wood is the wood not being used anymore. The Fiji Honduras mahogany is some really kick ass wood.

What is "Fiji Honduras Mahogany"? That sounds totally made up, especially since Honduras is in Central America and Fiji is an island THOUSANDS of miles away, and actually closer to Australia. Two totally different species of wood if you're talking about Honduras/Honduran Mahogany and Mahogany harvested from Fiji.
 

marshall1987

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 30, 2005
Messages
3,270
CD thanks for the inside scoop on the wood Gibson sources and procures for the Custom Shop. Do you have any idea on how old the mahogany trees are (on average) when they are cut down in the sustainable forest plantations? My guess is 30 to 40 years old, but I may be off.
 

CDaughtry

Les Paul Forum Co-Owner and Moderator
Joined
Jul 16, 2001
Messages
12,646
What is "Fiji Honduras Mahogany"? That sounds totally made up, especially since Honduras is in Central America and Fiji is an island THOUSANDS of miles away, and actually closer to Australia. Two totally different species of wood if you're talking about Honduras/Honduran Mahogany and Mahogany harvested from Fiji.


I may not be getting this story entirely right, but Edwin told me that back in the WW2 era, seeds from Honduras Mahogany were brought to Fiji and that is what now makes up the majority of their forests. But you are correct, the climates are significantly different. Edwin says the wood grows faster in Fiji because of the climate there.
 

CDaughtry

Les Paul Forum Co-Owner and Moderator
Joined
Jul 16, 2001
Messages
12,646
CD thanks for the inside scoop on the wood Gibson sources and procures for the Custom Shop. Do you have any idea on how old the mahogany trees are (on average) when they are cut down in the sustainable forest plantations? My guess is 30 to 40 years old, but I may be off.

I do not. I didn't ask him that, and he didn't volunteer it.:jim
 

Scottg32

New member
Joined
May 10, 2022
Messages
11
I may not be getting this story entirely right, but Edwin told me that back in the WW2 era, seeds from Honduras Mahogany were brought to Fiji and that is what now makes up the majority of their forests. But you are correct, the climates are significantly different. Edwin says the wood grows faster in Fiji because of the climate there.
What are the tonal differences between Honduran Mahogany and Fiji?
 

Gino753

Active member
Joined
Jan 26, 2018
Messages
176
What are the tonal differences between Honduran Mahogany and Fiji?
I would say, that the subtle differences, lend to specific tastes..like in the culinary world, there are eel farts, and eel farts with mint lemon grass jelly

The latter has mellow earthy notes, with a sharp bite…(Fiji grown mahogany) and Honduran mahogany is ..well…just plain …ie..plain eel farts

Hopefully that helps
 
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