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Thread: Conversation on Torrefied Wood Tops (NMC)

  1. #1
    Registered User Al Trujillo's Avatar
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    Default Conversation on Torrefied Wood Tops (NMC)

    I held a Collings A with a Torrefied top today and tonight was poking around the net hoping to find more examples. I found this video from Nigel Forster, a guitar builder and though the video isn't specifically about mandolins I think the conversation is pertinent to those thinking of torrefied woods on their mandolins. Hope you enjoy it!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGUebpRaVBM

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  3. #2
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversation on Torrefied Wood Tops (NMC)

    Thanks for posting that Al, hadn't seen that clip before! I have a guitar on order (Pre*War Guitar Co.) that is going to have a torrified top, so it was interesting to hear Nigel's take on the process - what a beauty of a guitar in that clip as well!
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  4. #3

    Default Re: Conversation on Torrefied Wood Tops (NMC)

    I have a few Collings A models with torrified tops, and have several guitars using torrified tops. If you are looking for the old wood sound, torrified wood does not produce the same dry tone players covet, at least not to my ears and experience. To be honest, the torrified sitka top MT comes the closest to "old wood" tone of all the instruments that I have played. On guitars, as well as mandolins, to my ears, the torrification process adds a bit of zing (or vibrancy) to Adirondack. However, every builder has their own way of building with this wood. The torrified top on the Ellis Tradition F5 model I played gave it a more modern (or Collings) tone.

    While many believe the torrification process pushes an instrument towards a more vintage tone, having played a lot of vintage guitars over the last 6 months (while shopping for a replacement for an instrument that was stolen several years ago) I'd have to say there is no way to absolutely reproduce vintage tone. Don't get me wrong, I love the torrified top instruments that I have owned, the ones that I still own, and all the ones that I have had the opportunity to play, but they are what they are. If you are looking for vintage tone, there is really only one way to get it. Buy vintage (which in itself is another quandary).
    Good Advice: Play before you pay, and know your product and your market.

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