Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops - Jemsite
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops

Hi Guys,

Just had a question I've always wondered. It's pretty self explanatory on what a real maple top is. However I've wondered what exactly the vaneer tops are and how they are made.

For example, the "quilted maple" on my RGT42FXQM, or the SZ520QM, or the flamed maple on the SZ720FM, to list just a few in Ibanez's lineup.

Does anyone have some good pictures of an unfinished guitar that shows the process or what it looks like, or can write a good description?

Thanks.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 01:52 PM
 
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Re: Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops

I don't know about guitars exactly but if you google "making veneer" there are good links and images on the first results page. Not trying to be a jerk in telling you to google it, but the answers you want are there.

Basically they rotate a log against a sharp blade and shave it off like toilet paper coming off of a roll.

Peace

Mike
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 02:30 PM
 
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Re: Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops

A veneer top is very thin, usually no more than 5mm, and has no noticable impact on the sound of the instrument.

When people refer to a "Real" maple top, they usually mean a thicker maple cap, 20mm or more, which has enough mass and makes up enough of the finished instrument to have an effect on the sound.

Generally speaking, a veneer top is for looks only, a real top will change the tone.

The usual combination is Mahogany back (Warm, thumpy, midrangey), and Maple top (Bright, snappy, trebly). The combination of the two yields a guitar with good tonal balance, not too muddy and not too thin.

There are of course plenty of other woods you could use for tops and bodies. Basswood and Maple seems to be getting more popular recently, as does Koa+Walnut.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 02:44 PM
 
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Re: Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops

you'll find most veneers that you'll buy nowadays tend to be around 0.6mm! which makes them really easy to sand through if your not careful!

they can be added to your current body basically as is!

if you get one of the 5mm(ish) tops, then it wont have any noticeable effect on tone, but you'd need to shave 5mm off ur body thickness first.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 07:31 PM
 
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Re: Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops

My experience with working with Veneer - although relatively inexpensive its a pain the neck to get it flat even with a ton of weight on it, believe me I've tried. Better to spend a little more money and get a 1/4 thick piece. The thicker piece will be much easier to sand and glue down flat. (Try Fraser Valley Woods, they have nice stuff). Of course you need to plane down your body otherwise it will be too thick.

You can google how to apply veneer but the real trick is to use a vacuum bag process.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 07:40 PM
 
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Re: Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops

Quote:
Originally Posted by GuitarBizarre View Post
A veneer top is very thin, usually no more than 5mm, and has no noticable impact on the sound of the instrument.

When people refer to a "Real" maple top, they usually mean a thicker maple cap, 20mm or more, which has enough mass and makes up enough of the finished instrument to have an effect on the sound.
I think your numbers are off. 5mm would be a pretty nice maple top. Veneers would be 1mm or less.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 08:26 PM
 
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Re: Quilted or Flamed Maple top vaneer vs. real maple tops

Quote:
Originally Posted by Takin' a Ride View Post
I think your numbers are off. 5mm would be a pretty nice maple top. Veneers would be 1mm or less.
5mm would be a thick veneer, and the visual effect would be good, but its nowhere near thick enough to affect the tone, which was my whole point.
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