Question for Gibson SG wood Guru

Discussion in 'Tone Zone' started by CCSpecial, Sep 17, 2018.

  1. CCSpecial

    CCSpecial New Member

    Sep 17, 2018
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    Hi, I own and constantly play my 2008 Gibson SG Special (Heritage Cherry) and I am in love for life. It is truly a "Special" model because it is autographed by Robby Krieger!!!

    Okay, here's my question (2-part)...

    I am so into my SG (SN# 011280342), I would love to know:

    A. where the wood came from? (state?, county?, forest?, area?)
    B. how old the wood is? (the trees the wood was cut from)

    Thank you, CCSpecial
  2. jtees4

    jtees4 Well-Known Member

    Nov 11, 2014
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    No idea. Maybe someone else will chime in with some info. But I personally love SG Specials...I currently have two. I have owned a few Standards over the years, but I like the specials better. I usually add chrome pickup covers, I just like the look. This is my 2011 (I've had much older ones in the past).

    cerebral gasket likes this.
  3. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

    Sep 29, 2009
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    Tucson AZ
    Check this out:

    Ten years ago, Gibson was buying mahogany from plantations in
    Honduras, and rosewood from sources in Madagascar
    and Indonesia, I believe.

    I don't really know, but have read a number of guitar books, so that's what
    I remember from my source books. Gibson may have owned the Honduras
    plantations at that time. I don't know if they still own them. I doubt it.

    You can learn more by googling "Gibson's trouble with the Federal Government..."
    Gibson was raided twice by Government officials who were accused Gibson of
    buying black market Ebony and Rosewood. Reading about the case might inform
    you of Gibson's sources for SG materials.

    If your guitar was made in 2008, then it might have been made of Black market
    wood. It might not! Gibson buyers scour the world for acceptable wood to use
    for guitars. So do all the other makers, Fender, Paul Reed Smith, Gretsch
    Epiphone etc.

    They buy whatever they can find that meets their standards.
    Political conditions in third world countries are often dicey and changeable.
    Madagascar suffered a coup d'etat such that no one was paying their forest rangers
    or export inspectors, so they didn't go to work.

    Trying to get accurate information about Gibson's wood sources might be
    difficult. The Government certainly tried, and how well they succeeded is debatable.
    I believe Gibson got slapped with some hefty fines, and then the wood supplies that
    the Government had confiscated were returned. Google "Gibson Les Paul Government
    Model" and find out about the guitars Gibson built out of the wood that was
    confiscated and then later returned.

    I don't know how long Gibson seasons their wood before bringing it to the
    plant and carving guitars out of it. That info might give you a clue about when the
    Mahogany and Rosewood in your SG was bought.

    I have a 2012 Gibson SG special that I am also in love with.

    Mine has a mahogany body, a maple neck and a fretboard made of "Baked Maple."
    Gibson was forced to use the baked maple because the Government had confiscated
    much of their stock of Rosewood. They only made guitars with baked maple fretboards
    for one year: 2012. I don't know where they got the baked maple, but figure it was
    North American. That's only a guess.
    arcticsg likes this.
  4. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

    Jan 13, 2017
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    Well said.
    SG Specials are also my favorite.

    Last edited: Sep 29, 2018
  5. jtees4

    jtees4 Well-Known Member

    Nov 11, 2014
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    I had a 2012 LP Special with a baked maple board. I liked it alot!!! I currently have an SG with a granadillo board, love that too. I had an LP with an obech fretboard, was fine. I have had steinbergers with graphite boards, as well as Parker Fly's. Loved them all. I also have maple, and ebony. I generally can love any board if it is on a guitar that just feels right.

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