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Thread: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

  1. #26
    Registered User HappyLife's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    Seems germane to the discussion - Technology used to solve a problem with musical instrument consistency and make it reproducible. Banjos, I know, but the use of technology is there all the same.

    http://infohouse.p2ric.org/ref/16/15968.htm

  2. #27
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    I would love to see a carbon fiber bowlback. Because the structure would be fundamentally different. If I understand it correctly, you can make a carbon fiber one piece bowl. No ribs.

    I would wait in line money in hand for one of those.
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  3. #28
    Registered User Hendrik Ahrend's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    My future nutrition will hopefully never consist of pills, and I will hopefully never present my wife with a bouquet of plastic flowers.

  4. #29

    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    I am the proud owner of a Mix A4 (the one in my avatar), and am delighted with my purchase. It has great sound, fine tone, tons of volume - and is totally immune to the vagaries of living in an environment where temperatures are routinely north of 40 degrees C and humidity in the 90s is not in the least unusual. With all that and a great Schertler C-Dyn installed internally, I got a great custom instrument at a very reasonable price.

    ron

  5. #30

    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    Quote Originally Posted by blueron View Post
    I am the proud owner of a Mix A4 (the one in my avatar), and am delighted with my purchase. It has great sound, fine tone, tons of volume - and is totally immune to the vagaries of living in an environment where temperatures are routinely north of 40 degrees C and humidity in the 90s is not in the least unusual. With all that and a great Schertler C-Dyn installed internally, I got a great custom instrument at a very reasonable price.

    ron
    hey i know this is tough, on the 'silent' internet LOL


    but id love examples or comaprisions to other known bench mark mandos for volume in particular or even your subjective perceptions

    id particularly like to know if you have ever played side by side with a rigel a (i know yours is a A4, so not really apples and apples)

    be curious too about bass response

    and id like to know if youve ever played a mix F 5

  6. #31
    Registered User Keith Newell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    New mix coming in a week or so. Been almost a year but will give you the details soon. Black and beautiful and so long coming I just am bubbling over with anxt...spelling?,.....

  7. #32
    Registered User bruce.b's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    I love the beauty of wood. Some luthiers are using CF for braces. I could see this becoming common but personally I wouldn't buy an all CF instrument. The durability isn't a factor for me and since I'm not a pro musician nor do I travel with an instrument so the consistency in changing weather conditions doesn't much matter. Louder isn't important to me since what I have is already loud. A more beautiful tone or being easier to play would matter. If CF someday beats wood on those points I might reconsider but I doubt it. Even then it would at best be in addition to my wooden one(s).

  8. #33

    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    angst
    we all get this with an instrument on the way
    not only paying for it, but damage, will it be as great as i hope,
    or, the ultimate angst, explaining it to she who must be obeyed "SWMBO"

  9. #34

    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    Quote Originally Posted by stevedenver View Post
    hey i know this is tough, on the 'silent' internet LOL


    but id love examples or comaprisions to other known bench mark mandos for volume in particular or even your subjective perceptions

    id particularly like to know if you have ever played side by side with a rigel a (i know yours is a A4, so not really apples and apples)

    be curious too about bass response

    and id like to know if youve ever played a mix F 5
    Unfortunately I don't have access to other good mandolins to do comparisons, and have to be content with what I have. But Cafe member and respected blues mandolinist Bert Deivert used my A4 for a couple of live shows while he was visiting, and speaks highly of my Mix. I don't know anyone who has played an F-model Mix, but I don't think there will be much difference between it and my A, any more than there is much difference between comparable wooden A and F models.

    Oh, and Steve - that key on your keyboard marked 'shift' would help the rest of us read what you write, if only you'd use it. :-)

    ron

  10. #35

    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    For home furnitures, I love woods, although they are more generally expensive and demand more care.
    I could not stand the view of glass / metal / plastic materials, I feel no warmth in these materials.
    For mandolins / guitars, I also love the sound of wooden instruments.
    But .... if CF instruments can sound good (I say "can" because it also depends on my playing skills) and can be made available much cheaper to large number of people, I will not hesitate to buy them.
    Imagine a CF mandolin (for 200$ when produced in high volume) with the quality of a (1000$-2000$) traditional mandolin, I could not resist this. Too bad, they are still too expensive at this time.

  11. #36
    Notary Sojac Paul Kotapish's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    I recently played a very nice Mix carbon-fiber F-5 and was sorely tempted to buy it. If I were touring constantly, facing a bunch of summer music camps and festivals, or were planning to live in a hot, humid climate, it would have been a no-brainer.

    The thing was plenty loud and had a very pleasing, balanced tone across all four courses. Lots of punch and clarity in the highs and mids and a warm , dark bark on the chops.

    I would be pleased with that tone on any F-5 style mandolin, and to my ear it compared very favorably in every respect with solid-wood instruments in the same price range ($4K–$5K). I doubt I could have picked it out as "the plastic one" in a blind sound comparison.

    There's no getting around the aesthetics of the thing, though. The shape and details and general fit-and-finish are all really well executed, but I'm not much of a fan of that carbon mesh look--in any color.

    Still, if my needs had justified it, I would have happily overlooked that aspect in favor of a great-sounding, super-stable, quality instrument that would be reliable and consistent in any weather conditions.
    Just one guy's opinion
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  13. #37
    Unfamous String Buster Beanzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    Right behind JeffD in that queue for a CF bowl-back but I'd be glad to see carbon fibre cases become affordable as a starter.
    Eoin



    "Forget that anyone is listening to you and always listen to yourself" - Fryderyk Chopin

  14. #38
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    Since the question was specific, it deserves a concise answer: No.

    CF has its uses, and we may find more, but it's difficult to work with, destroys your tools, and you don't want to breath the dust. There are also issues of materials-compatibility (wood fretboard vs. CF neck), and repairability. So, as components, sure, but I don't expect fully CF mandolins to ever replace the sound, aesthetic, character and pure mojo of wood.

    Joe
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  15. #39

    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    Quote Originally Posted by joec View Post
    I don't expect fully CF mandolins to ever replace the sound, aesthetic, character and pure mojo of wood.

    Joe
    So what's up with those cellos?
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  16. #40
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonZ View Post
    So what's up with those cellos?
    A Loar-era Gibson or a Stradivari violin is musical, artistic, historical and cultural phenomenon. They're singular, rare, and even modern science can't fully explain their musical and cultural impact. When you play or study one of these great violins or mandolins, it changes you.

    I just don't see CF instruments reaching that broad and deep level of success--that's the measure, not simply whether CF can be made into a viable or professional-grade instrument.
    Last edited by joec; Jun-21-2013 at 3:36pm.
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  18. #41

    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    I will grant you that a new instrument cannot have historical significance. Nor can readily available instruments be rare. The question to me is whether CF instruments may one day have THE SOUND. For some people, THE SOUND will always be "approximating a Loar", but maybe not always for everyone. Some people seem to be liking what they are getting from CF.
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  19. #42
    Oval holes are cool David Lewis's Avatar
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    Seems to me that new technologies in music are first disparaged. Or at least in the 20 th century. It will take a musician or two to find what the carbon fibre works best at: look at Monroe with the Loar, Charlie Christian with his guitar, muddy waters, Luther Perkins etc. someone may pick one up and find exactly what it's best at. I'll go further to say it will be someone we've not heard of yet. Look at the moog synth as well. (Many if you hate synths, that's fine but it gets used a lot).
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  20. #43
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    I wonder if they had this discussion when Loar tried to make electrically amplified instruments...
    Musica mulcet ad animam.
    Musica placet aurium.
    Musica aedificat corda

  21. #44
    Luthier Tom Haywood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Will the next Loar be carbon fiber?

    The Rainsong I mentioned sounds perfect for bluegrass in the hands of someone else, but when I played a couple of them I didn't particularly care for the sound. It was good, but it lacked overtones that I wanted to hear. Kind of too clean a sound. Reminded me of how my ears didn't like the clean sound of CDs for years but preferred the noise and inconsistency of vinyl records. But, of course, that preference changed over time.

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