As to an alternate wood species I'd suggest looking into Utile. Sapele is almost identical to African mahogany in appearance. I've never known either sapele or any mahogany … The Janka scale is used to determine the relative hardness of particular domestic or exotic wood species. “Mahogany” tends to get thrown onto all kinds of things to make them more luxurious or expensive so Mahogany Sapele and Sapele Mahogany … The issue here is there are many species that get lumped under the African Mahogany moniker. African Mahogany (scientific names – Khaya anthotheca, Khaya grandifoliola, Khaya ivorensis, Khaya senegalensis… Another major difference is in the price of the guitar. Sapele … For beginners, it is practical to buy a Sapele wood guitar at a cheaper price than to go for an expensive Mahogany guitar. Our sister company Thompson Mahogany did a great write up comparing African Mahogany vs Sapele vs Utile Lumber. It has a relatively high velocity of sound, and the highest strength to weight ratio than any other wood. 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. That said, Mahogany wood tends to produce a warm bass-like tone. Sapele wood is easily available and is grown in abundance while Mahogany is not readily accessible. We carry all of these fine hardwood lumber options and can provide you with any sizes needed. The Taylor catalogue specifies sapele (entandrophragma cylindricum) for the 200-series and African mahogany … Honduran Mahogany is preferred as a top wood over African Mahogany. The only difference that we see is in the tone. Our sister company Thompson Mahogany did a great write up comparing African Mahogany vs Sapele vs Utile Lumber. Sapele is a African Redwood with some similarities to African Mahogany. BAB Media Inc. is compensated for referring traffic and business to websites. There is a difference albeit very slight. Sitka’s combination of strength and elasticity translates into a broad dynamic range, yielding crisp articulation and allowing for everythi… Drying: African Mahogany: Generally very easy to dry with little distortion in either the Flatsawn or the Quartersawn. The Janka test measures the amount of force required to embed a 0.444" steel ball into … Sitka Spruce is used more than any other species for guitar soundboards. Sapele vs Mahogany- Which is the Better Tonewood? He enjoys technology, photography, and marketing. Similar in density and grain structure to Hawaiian koa. In some ways this is true since Sapele is in the Mahogany family, Meliceae. People buy sampele wood guitars thinking they have a Mahogany guitar. The woods being used as an alternative to genuine mahogany today are African mahogany, sapele, and sipo/utile." Sharing the same botanical family as American and African Mahogany, Sapele … This is the latests in our series of videos on our blog and youtube channel for your enjoyment. Even in tone, Sapele is not very distinguishable from Mahogany. The most common and popular woods used for making guitars are Rosewood, Cedar, Maple, and Mahogany. Khaya doesn't smell nice like Sapele … 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. Paul Cuenin is a former employee of East Teak Fine Hardwoods, Inc. Sapele: Consistent-about 4.0Lbs per BF. It usually has more shimmer to the ribbon grain, more depth. Sapele … 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. Copyright Text 2019. African mahogany has been used in the United States as a mahogany for more than 100 years. 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 … 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"). Sapele is easy to carve and work with as well. 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 … Sapele Tonewood. Until then go ahead and get the perfect guitar for yourself. Even so, it is still around half to 2/3 the price of Genuine Mahogany. Sapele flooring has characteristics of the Sapele tree. This is where things get confusing. Costing less than Utile and approximately half the price of Genuine Mahogany, this African species offers many … "Gorgeous mahogany look-alike with a slightly finer texture than Honduras Mahogany, and a typically interlocked grain. Hope this article helps you in deciding what the right tonewood for your guitar is and you make the correct choice. Still celebrated for its beauty and ease of use, the popularity of Mahogany … In terms of durability, both Mahogany and Sapele are very durable woods and are not easily susceptible to wear and tear. between Sapele and Mahogany wood. These woods are popular for furniture, musical instruments, cabinets, and counter tops. African Mahogany: Khaya Ivorensis & Khaya Anthetheca about 3.2Lb per BF. There's effectively no difference in sound at all. 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. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. 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. This difference is very hard to tell and only professionals who have been studying wood can probably tell them apart. It does a good job of breaking down the difference in the three … 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. African Mahogany. It is more dense, stable, and the … This leads to Sapele wood guitars being sold at a cheaper price than Mahogany guitars. Its mid-range notes are strong while the high notes tend to be soft. It’s a popular choice nowadays for building guitar necks, back and sides. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Native to tropical Africa, Sapele Mahogany is a medium textured and moderately dense exotic hardwood that is excellent for wood flooring applications. darkens with age if nottreated with finishing oils that will prevent oxidation 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. African Mahogany is often described as have a “woody” tone, while being bright and responsive. All should matter is that the guirtar plays well and sound good! A much larger African tree and more widely distributed than Khaya. We carry African Mahogany Lumber, Sapele Lumber, and Utile Lumber also so please ask any questions below in the comments or contact us . Trademarks and brands are the property of their respective owners. Still, there is a long way to go before Sapele wood is as well-known and popular as Mahogany, Rosewood or Cedar. The major difference between Sapele and Mahogany is the price. 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. It is a great alternative to Mahogany… The color is more golden brown vs the more reddish chestnut brown of Sapele. You need to have a keen sense of sound to understand the slight difference in sound and tone. An exotic hardwood with rich luster. Khaya mahogany is what is typically sold as African mahogany. In the guitar industry too, it is common to use the term "African mahogany" for khaya and not for sapele. Walnut yields excellent balance with tonal characteristics that fall between rosewood and mahogany. African mahogany … The wood used in a guitar dictates the kind of tone that will be produced while playing. Sapele has a medium to coarse texture. Much harder than African Mahogany and red oak. 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. Moreover, the difference in tone can only be understood when the Honduran or African Mahogany is used as top woods in a guitar. The average hardness of a piece of Honduran Mahogany would be around 900lb while a Sapele wood piece would be around 1,410lb. I'm in the mahogany camp, but only because personally I don't like the "stripey" look of Sapele. 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 is a good working timber with a finer grain texture than Khaya. 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. For musicians who prefer warm tones, Mahogany is the best choice. Teak Lumber, Ipe Decking, Custom Millwork and Fine Hardwoods. Mahogany has a deeper and warm tone. The two popular guitars which use Sapele in the back and sides are the Martin Dreadnought Junior and Taylor Academy Series 12e. It all comes down to the fact that they both look and feel the same. For hundreds of years, African Mahogany has enjoyed traditional uses in furniture and custom millwork. Between color, grain pattern and work-ability it may actually be the best SA Mahogany … Sapele lumber is often marketed as a type of African Mahogany. It's cheaper than African mahogany and machines very well. Sapele looks very much like Mahogany. Some manufacturers even sell their Sapele wood guitars as Mahogany. Sapele vs Mahogany. Some well-known ‘All-Mahogany-Body’ guitars are the Gibson Les Paul Junior and PRS SE Custom 24. Sapele is actually somewhat soft for a hardwood (although it is still harder than Mahogany), and it is therefore very gentle on tools. If budget is an issue, opting for a Sapele guitar is more feasible. Other alternatives to Genuine Mahogany include Spanish Cedar, Sapele, and African Mahogany. Also, Sapele has a more rich and dark reddish color as compared to Mahogany. This is possible because there is little difference in the look and feel between Sapele and Mahogany. Honduras mahogany is also referred to as genuine mahogany. Sapele is also a lustrous wood that works fairly well in all operations - planing, … 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. Different from mahogany: Sapele is a star in its own right, and has its own unique characteristics. The major difference between Sapele and Mahogany is the price. Sapele has a bright tone with treble. A “ woody ” tone, Sapele has a relatively high velocity of sound, and backs to... 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