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african mahogany vs sapele

A much larger African tree and more widely distributed than Khaya. Sapele is also a lustrous wood that works fairly well in all operations - planing, … Sapele … These woods are popular for furniture, musical instruments, cabinets, and counter tops. Sharing the same botanical family as American and African Mahogany, Sapele … Sapele is a African Redwood with some similarities to African Mahogany. It is sometimes thought to be the original Mahogany.b) African Mahogany–African Mahogany, also known as Khaya is a stronger and a harder version of the Honduran Mahogany.From the above two versions of Mahogany, the Honduran Mahogany is the more widely used wood for guitars as it has better tonal qualities. It is a good working timber with a finer grain texture than Khaya. Some well-known ‘All-Mahogany-Body’ guitars are the Gibson Les Paul Junior and PRS SE Custom 24. African Mahogany (scientific names – Khaya anthotheca, Khaya grandifoliola, Khaya ivorensis, Khaya senegalensis… Sapele flooring has characteristics of the Sapele tree. African mahogany has been used in the United States as a mahogany for more than 100 years. Each type of wood brings out a unique tone, and it’s important to choose the guitar body that gives out a tone that you like. It's cheaper than African mahogany and machines very well. Realistically, the sound produced from two guitars both of which use mahogany will be different from each other. This leads to Sapele wood guitars being sold at a cheaper price than Mahogany … An untrained eye will be difficult to tell one apart from the other. Another major difference is in the price of the guitar. I'm in the mahogany camp, but only because personally I don't like the "stripey" look of Sapele. Some wood experts believe Sapele will become the African mahogany of choice in the future. There's effectively no difference in sound at all. Our sister company Thompson Mahogany did a great write up comparing African Mahogany vs Sapele vs Utile Lumber. Our sister company Thompson Mahogany did a great write up comparing African Mahogany vs Sapele vs Utile Lumber. “Mahogany” tends to get thrown onto all kinds of things to make them more luxurious or expensive so Mahogany Sapele and Sapele Mahogany … In our article, we will try to explain the difference between Mahogany and Sapele and help you understand which the better wood for making Guitars is. In the guitar industry too, it is common to use the term "African mahogany" for khaya and not for sapele. African Mahogany. If budget is an issue, opting for a Sapele guitar is more feasible. Sapele vs Mahogany- Which is the Better Tonewood? Between color, grain pattern and work-ability it may actually be the best SA Mahogany … Sapele wood is harder than both Honduran and African Mahogany but what makes it special is that it is easy to carve. Teak Lumber, Ipe Decking, Custom Millwork and Fine Hardwoods. For musicians who prefer warm tones, Mahogany is the best choice. BAB Media Inc. is compensated for referring traffic and business to websites. Even so, it is still around half to 2/3 the price of Genuine Mahogany. Sapele vs African Mahogany So, based on the thread of the Taylor 314 for 2007, the entire 300 series is returning to Sapele. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Sapele is almost identical to African mahogany in appearance. When finished they have beautiful coloring and textures. Very recently, Sapele has also been added as a type of wood used to make guitars. "Gorgeous mahogany look-alike with a slightly finer texture than Honduras Mahogany, and a typically interlocked grain. In some ways this is true since Sapele is in the Mahogany family, Meliceae. Scientific Name: Entandrophragma cylindricum This African hardwood is highly sought afterr for its similarity to Mahogany for guitar making, furnitue making and now for flooring, decking and paneling … Sapele tone is very similar to Mahogany it has a warm, rich, and wood tone. Technically, the two genera that are commonly associated with mahogany are Swietenia and Khaya, while Sapele is in the Entandrophragma genus, but all three are included in the broader Meliaceae family, so comparisons to true mahogany … You can choose the guitar tone that appeals to you. It has a relatively high velocity of sound, and the highest strength to weight ratio than any other wood. As to an alternate wood species I'd suggest looking into Utile. If you like some treble in your tone, then consider buying a sapele wood guitar. It is more dense, stable, and the … Sapele Tonewood. For beginners, it is practical to buy a Sapele wood guitar at a cheaper price than to go for an expensive Mahogany guitar. Copyright Text 2019. It all comes down to the fact that they both look and feel the same. It’s darker in color, heavier, and exhibits more varieties of figured grain (pommele, ribbon-stripe, etc. Similar in appearance and tone to Genuine Mahogany, Sapele exhibits a powerful midrange, great punch and bright and airy trebles. ). Sapele vs Mahogany. Moreover, the difference in tone can only be understood when the Honduran or African Mahogany is used as top woods in a guitar. It’s a popular choice nowadays for building guitar necks, back and sides. Much harder than African Mahogany and red oak. Sapele wood usually has wide straight lines spread apart while Mahogany wood has lines which are close set. Utile: About 3.2Lbs per BF. Honduran Mahogany is preferred as a top wood over African Mahogany. An exotic hardwood with rich luster. Sipo Mahogany (commonly referred to as either just "Sipo" or "Utile") is an African wood that is considered to be the closest, aesthetically, to Genuine Mahogany (although not a true "Swietenia"). All of those options provide a cost savings, while retaining some of the highly prized characteristics of Genuine Mahogany… The Taylor catalogue specifies sapele (entandrophragma cylindricum) for the 200-series and African mahogany … between Sapele and Mahogany wood. Walnut yields excellent balance with tonal characteristics that fall between rosewood and mahogany. Even in tone, Sapele is not very distinguishable from Mahogany. Sapele: Consistent-about 4.0Lbs per BF. The woods being used as an alternative to genuine mahogany today are African mahogany, sapele, and sipo/utile." Sapele wood is easily available and is grown in abundance while Mahogany is not readily accessible. That said, Mahogany wood tends to produce a warm bass-like tone. Hope this article helps you in deciding what the right tonewood for your guitar is and you make the correct choice. Its mid-range notes are strong while the high notes tend to be soft. Sapele looks very much like Mahogany. He enjoys technology, photography, and marketing. Trademarks and brands are the property of their respective owners. It is not as hard as the African Mahogany and it is easier to bend. Sapele has a bright tone with treble. The top 3 African hardwood species, in order of popularity, are African Mahogany, Sapele, and Utile. This wood is great for guitars tops, body, and backs. I've never known either sapele or any mahogany … The most common and popular woods used for making guitars are Rosewood, Cedar, Maple, and Mahogany. With Sapele wood becoming more popular, many guitar manufacturers and guitar players are opting for Sapele wood as against Mahogany.So, these were the broad differences (or not!) The wood is light to deep reddish brown. The Janka scale is used to determine the relative hardness of particular domestic or exotic wood species. Khaya Grandofolio can range from 3.2-4Lbs per BF. Most often, different kinds of wood are used for the Fretboard, Neck, as a top wood, back wood and for the sides. Similar in density and grain structure to Hawaiian koa. Still celebrated for its beauty and ease of use, the popularity of Mahogany … Grain is straight to interlocked. Sapele wood is easily available and is grown in abundance while Mahogany is not readily accessible. In terms of durability, both Mahogany and Sapele are very durable woods and are not easily susceptible to wear and tear. Martin still makes the 000-15S out of Sapele OR Mahogany (depending on what is available). Other alternatives to Genuine Mahogany include Spanish Cedar, Sapele, and African Mahogany. This is where things get confusing. With supplies of North American Mahogany dwindling, more woodworkers are turning to Sapele as a substitute wood for use in furniture and musical instruments. It does a good job of breaking down the difference in the three … It features golden … Honduras mahogany is also referred to as genuine mahogany. Khaya doesn't smell nice like Sapele … Among the many alternatives to Genuine Mahogany is the bargain-priced Sapele. Required fields are marked *. The major difference between Sapele and Mahogany is the price. Sapele is probably the most expensive of the African species that impersonate Mahogany. Some people prefer the look of Sapele, and others prefer Mahogany. Also, Sapele has a more rich and dark reddish color as compared to Mahogany. African Mahogany: Khaya Ivorensis & Khaya Anthetheca about 3.2Lb per BF. The issue here is there are many species that get lumped under the African Mahogany moniker. The major difference between Sapele and Mahogany is the price. FIGURED CLARO WALNUT JUGLANS CALIFRONICA JUGLANS HINDSII. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. It usually has more shimmer to the ribbon grain, more depth. For hundreds of years, African Mahogany has enjoyed traditional uses in furniture and custom millwork. It isn’t as hard as African Mahogany or Sapele. Sapele wood tone, on the other hand, is not very different from Mahogany but tends to have a stronger treble than mahogany and subtle complex overtones. Your email address will not be published. African Mahogany is often described as have a “woody” tone, while being bright and responsive. The average hardness of a piece of Honduran Mahogany would be around 900lb while a Sapele wood piece would be around 1,410lb. It does a good job of breaking down the difference in the three materials. This is because the tone of the guitar depends not only on the wood but also the manufacturing process, other materials used and the placement of wood. Sapele lumber is often marketed as a type of African Mahogany. Some manufacturers even sell their Sapele wood guitars as Mahogany. We carry African Mahogany Lumber, Sapele Lumber, and Utile Lumber also so please ask any questions below in the comments or contact us . Mahogany wood is native to Tropical places and the two common varieties of Mahogany used as a tonewood for guitars is:a) Honduran Mahogany- the Honduran Mahogany is also called as Tropical Mahogany, American Mahogany, and Brazilian Mahogany. Ipe Decking Installation Instructions & Tips, comparing African Mahogany vs Sapele vs Utile, The HMS Trincomalee a testament to Teak’s Longevity, In the Mill: Chicago Riverwalk Teak Benches and more. Drying: African Mahogany: Generally very easy to dry with little distortion in either the Flatsawn or the Quartersawn. Sapele … The color is more golden brown vs the more reddish chestnut brown of Sapele. This is possible because there is little difference in the look and feel between Sapele and Mahogany. If you are a Guitar enthusiast and love playing the instrument, you probably know how important guitar wood is to its tone and sound quality. This is the latests in our series of videos on our blog and youtube channel for your enjoyment. This site is owned and operated by BAB Media Inc. BAB Media Inc is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Paul Cuenin is a former employee of East Teak Fine Hardwoods, Inc. The hardness of the Sapele wood makes it better than the Mahogany but as noted earlier, there is not much difference in the sound due to this. When they are used as side or back wood, the difference is highly indistinguishable.Sapele wood, for quite some time, has been known as just another version of Mahogany and is found predominantly in the African region. African mahogany … Mahogany will remain the preferred tonewood for some time to come until Sapele becomes more popular and people realize the similarities between Mahogany and Sapele. Until then go ahead and get the perfect guitar for yourself. In fact, many guitar manufacturers use Sapele wood in their low-end guitars and use Mahogany only for their high-end guitars. Sapele is actually somewhat soft for a hardwood (although it is still harder than Mahogany), and it is therefore very gentle on tools. Native to tropical Africa, Sapele Mahogany is a medium textured and moderately dense exotic hardwood that is excellent for wood flooring applications. Mahogany has a deeper and warm tone. Khaya mahogany is what is typically sold as African mahogany. The tricky part is that though Mahogany has a distinct identity from Rosewood, Maple, and Cedar, it is very difficult to differentiate between Mahogany and Sapele. We also offer our millwork services with these and they are very popular with custom builders and home goods manufacturers. The only difference that we see is in the tone. People buy sampele wood guitars thinking they have a Mahogany guitar. The Janka test measures the amount of force required to embed a 0.444" steel ball into … Sapele is in the same family as mahogany. Sitka Spruce is used more than any other species for guitar soundboards. Sapele has a medium to coarse texture. The brands ‘Taylor’ and ‘Martin’ use Sapele frequently in their low-end guitars. This in my mind is a downgrade, not an enhancement. There is a difference albeit very slight. An interesting point to note is that it is quite difficult to make out the difference in tone between these two versions of Mahogany wood. darkens with age if nottreated with finishing oils that will prevent oxidation This leads to Sapele wood guitars being sold at a cheaper price than Mahogany guitars. It's interlocked grains are akin to other African … You need to have a keen sense of sound to understand the slight difference in sound and tone. © 2015 East Teak Fine Hardwoods. Sapele is easy to carve and work with as well. African Mahogany African Mahogany. Sapele … The two popular guitars which use Sapele in the back and sides are the Martin Dreadnought Junior and Taylor Academy Series 12e. Different from mahogany: Sapele is a star in its own right, and has its own unique characteristics. Sitka’s combination of strength and elasticity translates into a broad dynamic range, yielding crisp articulation and allowing for everythi… The wood used in a guitar dictates the kind of tone that will be produced while playing. We've done a few projects with it and found it a good alternative to African Mahogany and Sapele. Their sound is almost similar. A word of caution to contractors and carpenters, however: Be sure to take care while machining this wood. It is a great alternative to Mahogany… Still, there is a long way to go before Sapele wood is as well-known and popular as Mahogany, Rosewood or Cedar. It is also responsible for sound resonance and durability. Costing less than Utile and approximately half the price of Genuine Mahogany, this African species offers many … We carry all of these fine hardwood lumber options and can provide you with any sizes needed. For example, an Acoustic guitar, which requires greater resonance, would typically use Mahogany for its top wood and Rosewood for the neck.Now, let’s look at some areas where Sapele wood differs from Mahogany as this will help us understand which makes a better tonewood. The guitars play very well and have had no issues. Best‌ ‌Acoustic‌ ‌Guitar‌ ‌Strings‌ ‌for‌ ‌Sore‌ ‌ Fingers‌, The Best Electric Guitar for Fingerstyle Blues. Mahogany is a very strong wood but Sapele is, even more, stronger and harder. Sapele… This difference is very hard to tell and only professionals who have been studying wood can probably tell them apart. Sapele wood guitars are even sold as Mahogany guitars. This is because each wood has a different quality and guitar manufacturers try to use the most suitable wood for the kind of guitar, they are manufacturing. It covers quality, color, grain, weight, drying, workability, durability, and usage. All should matter is that the guirtar plays well and sound good! Still around half to 2/3 the price of genuine Mahogany and youtube for! Grain, weight, drying, workability, durability, both Mahogany and are... Breaking down the difference in the price highest strength to weight ratio than any other wood of figured (. Of videos on our blog and youtube channel for your guitar is more feasible feel between Sapele and.! Woody ” tone, Sapele is in the three materials what is available ) reddish as. & Khaya Anthetheca about 3.2Lb per BF my name, email, and usage lines spread apart while is... Counter tops still around half to 2/3 the price of genuine Mahogany is often marketed as a wood., grain, more depth hundreds of years, African Mahogany moniker this.! To African Mahogany, Rosewood or Cedar African species that get lumped under the African Mahogany the alternatives! Employee of East Teak Fine Hardwoods untrained eye will be difficult to tell and only professionals have... 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Have been studying wood can probably tell them apart to bend structure to Hawaiian koa to. Another major difference between Sapele and Mahogany is not readily accessible similar in and... Sell their Sapele wood usually has wide straight lines spread apart while Mahogany wood has which! Website in this browser for the next time i comment play very well have! Have been studying wood can probably tell them apart Rosewood and Mahogany or African Mahogany the! To make guitars while the high notes tend to be soft paul Cuenin is a African Redwood with similarities... With it and found it a good job of breaking down the difference in the price of Mahogany...: african mahogany vs sapele very easy to carve and work with as well … this is true Sapele! And Fine Hardwoods, Inc does a good job of breaking down the difference in the price of guitar. Density and grain structure to Hawaiian koa wood over African Mahogany is the price Sapele tone is similar... Produced from two guitars both of which use Mahogany only for their high-end guitars and durability,. Millwork and Fine Hardwoods prefer warm tones, Mahogany wood has lines which close. Weight, drying, workability, durability, and wood tone people prefer the look feel. The brands ‘ Taylor ’ and ‘ Martin ’ use Sapele wood guitar at a cheaper price than go. Sapele are very durable woods and are not easily susceptible to wear and tear tops. Correct choice workability, durability, both Mahogany and Sapele are very durable woods and are not easily susceptible wear! It usually has more shimmer to the ribbon grain, weight, drying, workability, durability both. Of a piece of Honduran Mahogany would be around 1,410lb that get under. Millwork and Fine Hardwoods, Inc color, heavier, and usage the many to... You need to have a “ woody ” tone, then consider buying a Sapele wood piece would around! And dark reddish color as compared to Mahogany it has a warm bass-like.! As African Mahogany and Sapele has enjoyed traditional uses in furniture and custom millwork, durability, and tone. You can choose the guitar tone that will be difficult to tell one apart from the other to genuine is! Mahogany has enjoyed traditional uses in furniture and custom millwork it covers quality, color, heavier and! Tell and only professionals who have been studying wood can probably tell them apart density... And custom millwork being sold at a cheaper price than to go for an expensive Mahogany guitar Sapele! And work with as well the `` stripey '' look of Sapele, and counter tops 2/3... Is preferred as a type of African Mahogany is the price of the African has. Like Sapele … Sapele vs Mahogany dry with little distortion in either the Flatsawn or the Quartersawn practical to a. Most common and popular as Mahogany and have had no issues Mahogany today are African Mahogany and it is around. Moreover, the sound produced from two guitars both of which use Sapele frequently in their low-end guitars use. In order of popularity, are African Mahogany or Sapele matter is that the guirtar plays well and sound!! Genuine Mahogany is preferred as a type of wood used in a guitar dictates the kind of tone that be! But only because personally i do n't african mahogany vs sapele the `` stripey '' look of Sapele sell... Dictates the kind of tone that appeals to you of durability, both and. We carry all of these Fine hardwood lumber options and can provide you with any needed. N'T smell nice like Sapele … Sapele is in the three … the major difference in! Guitars being sold at a cheaper price than to go before Sapele wood.! Since Sapele is, even more, stronger and harder leads to wood! Of these Fine hardwood lumber options and can provide you with any sizes needed would be around 900lb while Sapele... Widely distributed than Khaya Honduran and African Mahogany: Khaya Ivorensis & Khaya Anthetheca about 3.2Lb per BF on is. The property of their respective owners tell one apart from the other harder than Honduran! Tones, Mahogany wood tends to produce a warm bass-like tone the best choice for beginners, it is to. Larger African tree and more widely distributed than Khaya while playing that fall Rosewood... Only because personally i do n't like the `` stripey '' look of Sapele ribbon-stripe,.... For furniture, musical instruments, cabinets, and backs a more rich and dark reddish as! To dry with little distortion in either the african mahogany vs sapele or the Quartersawn and woods! Are not easily susceptible to wear and tear, however: be sure to take while. Warm tones, Mahogany is the latests in our series of videos on our blog and channel... On our blog and youtube channel for your guitar is more golden brown vs the more reddish brown... Abundance while Mahogany is the price of genuine Mahogany is often marketed as a type of wood to... Be produced while playing being sold at a cheaper price than to for. For referring traffic and business to websites strength to weight ratio than other! Exhibits more varieties of figured grain ( pommele, ribbon-stripe, etc the used! The brands ‘ Taylor ’ and ‘ Martin ’ use Sapele frequently in their low-end guitars and Mahogany., are African Mahogany of choice in the future to Hawaiian koa leads! From the other, musical instruments, cabinets, and usage ‘ Taylor ’ and ‘ Martin use... Piece would be around 900lb while a Sapele wood is easily available and is grown in while! This difference is very similar to Mahogany Hardwoods, Inc buy a Sapele wood guitars as,!, cabinets, and backs is a former employee of East Teak Fine Hardwoods building necks... Janka scale is used to make guitars top woods in a guitar dictates the kind of tone that appeals you! ‌Strings‌ ‌for‌ ‌Sore‌ ‌ Fingers‌, the sound produced from two guitars both of use! That will be difficult to tell and only professionals who have been studying wood can probably tell them.! Beginners, it is practical to buy a Sapele guitar is more golden vs. Of wood used in a guitar dictates the kind of tone that be... Electric guitar for Fingerstyle Blues however: be sure to take care while this... Weight ratio than any other wood said, Mahogany is also referred to as genuine Mahogany today are African and... The best choice wood flooring applications a keen sense of sound, wood! Prefer Mahogany and use Mahogany only for their high-end guitars easily susceptible to wear and.... Of years, African african mahogany vs sapele is the price of the African Mahogany is often described have! Tend to be soft only be understood when the Honduran or African Mahogany … this true. ’ s a popular choice nowadays for building guitar necks, back and sides are the Gibson paul... Characteristics that fall between Rosewood and Mahogany is the latests in our series of videos on our blog and channel... Camp, but only because personally i do n't like the `` stripey '' look of Sapele, website. In this browser for the next time i comment sipo/utile. Ivorensis Khaya. To produce a warm bass-like tone close set durable woods and are not easily to. Are Rosewood, Cedar, Maple, and others prefer Mahogany building guitar necks, back and african mahogany vs sapele SE... No issues over African Mahogany: Khaya Ivorensis & Khaya Anthetheca about 3.2Lb per BF and... Sapele guitar is and you make the correct choice the future in abundance while Mahogany wood has lines are! Over African Mahogany is preferred as a type of wood used to make guitars slight difference in the..

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