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Author Topic: L-02s with Mahogany bracing?  (Read 837 times)
rosborn
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« on: April 02, 2018, 10:36:43 PM »

I’ve never heard of this but two people are claiming it is so. What sez the forum members?


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ducktrapper
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« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2018, 01:16:26 AM »

Not normally but it could be, I suppose. Jean's tried lots of different things.
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AZLiberty
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« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2018, 02:19:54 AM »

I'm in the "pics or I don't believe it" camp, but some folks on the AGF are pretty adamant.

Hopefully Matt or John Jr. will weigh in.
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« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2018, 02:29:09 AM »

Somewhere I think walkerman ask Jean and posted an answer but I can't remember the thread.
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« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2018, 02:31:51 AM »

OK found the thread on page two and yes Jean stated that he use it on some 02's.The thread is "mahogany brace's".
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rosborn
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« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2018, 04:08:29 AM »

OK found the thread on page two and yes Jean stated that he use it on some 02's.The thread is "mahogany brace's".

I guess that solves that mystery.

Thank you.


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JOYCEfromNS
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« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2018, 06:18:39 PM »

Is there a Pro/Con to hog-bracing 
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« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2018, 11:52:07 PM »

Is there a Pro/Con to hog-bracing 
At the same thickness, I'd imagine it would dampen a bit more. But, there are so many variables with bracing depending how you shave them, placement, etc. In the guitars I've owned, the ones with thinner braces have had greater volume and bass. Most of my Larrivees have had very similar bracing, regardless of size.

I'm curious what they liked about the mahogany braces in the 02s.
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« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2018, 01:21:01 AM »

Always a balancing act between stiffness and the whole thing exploding. 
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wrench
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« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2018, 11:00:45 PM »

I'm the guy with the hog-braced L-02 who asked if anyone else heard one in an earlier thread - maybe around Christmas. I A-B'd this guitar against a used L-03 before I realized it had hog braces. I've been trying to become a Larrivee owner for about four years, but every one I tried seemed more high-strung than a French Poodle against my flat picking style. When I pounded this L-02 with a pick the first time it said "is that all ya got?". Then I said "where's the case?". I didn't realize this guitar had mahogany bracing until I put it in the case to go home. I don't think the store I bought it from even knew it.

The tone of these two guitars is nearly identical, and under gentle finger picking they sound just about the same. When you start digging in with fingers though, the -03 responds the way all Larrivee owners know it does. The -02 doesn't respond in volume the same. But when I switch over to a pick, I find I way too easily overdrive the -03, but the -02 responds cleanly.

I think BOWIE hit the nail on the head with the dampening theory. Specifically, I normally use thick beveled picks because they have a soft attack (low string acceleration), but they sound really dull and anemic on the L-02. I find the best sounding picks on the L-02 to be medium or heavy, low included angle, little side radius, and relatively sharp points; in other words, a Fender celluloid 351 medium. This is a pick that when used on a Seagull or other bright guitar, will drive me to earplugs. A Fender heavy 346 shape literally will hardly make a sound on the L-02. But the 351 medium seems to provide just the right attack to launch the top and that familiar Larrivee tone.

I think I just used too many words to say a heavily flat picked L-02 sounds a lot like a heavily finger picked L-03, and I am not at all disappointed in this instrument. But I also think anyone who is mainly a finger picker would be very disappointed with its lack of responsiveness.
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George
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« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2018, 12:39:48 AM »

I find the best sounding picks on the L-02 to be medium or heavy, low included angle, little side radius, and relatively sharp points; in other words, a Fender celluloid 351 medium. This is a pick that when used on a Seagull or other bright guitar, will drive me to earplugs. A Fender heavy 346 shape literally will hardly make a sound on the L-02. But the 351 medium seems to provide just the right attack to launch the top and that familiar Larrivee tone.


Hard to beat a good celluloid pick.  To me they sound most like a real tortoise pick of old, as best as I can remember them anymore... I too prefer that 351 style celluloid in a medium...
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George
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« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2018, 01:15:35 AM »

I'm sorry, I can't believe the material used to brace a top has a huge effect on tone. Comparing one guitar to another and attributing the difference in tone to the bracing is pretty unscientific. Seems to me, other than the top itself, the shape and positioning of the bracing is a much larger factor than the material. Besides, if mahogany made a huge, positive impact on the sound of the guitar, you'd think a luthier of JCL's ability would hear it and continue to use it. 
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mike in lytle
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« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2018, 01:50:45 AM »

I A-B'd this guitar against a used L-03 before I realized it had hog braces. I've been trying to become a Larrivee owner for about four years, but every one I tried seemed more high-strung than a French Poodle against my flat picking style. When I pounded this L-02 with a pick the first time it said "is that all ya got?". Then I said "where's the case?". I didn't realize this guitar had mahogany bracing until I put it in the case to go home. I don't think the store I bought it from even knew it.

The tone of these two guitars is nearly identical, and under gentle finger picking they sound just about the same. When you start digging in with fingers though, the -03 responds the way all Larrivee owners know it does. The -02 doesn't respond in volume the same. But when I switch over to a pick, I find I way too easily overdrive the -03, but the -02 responds cleanly.

I think BOWIE hit the nail on the head with the dampening theory. Specifically, I normally use thick beveled picks because they have a soft attack (low string acceleration), but they sound really dull and anemic on the L-02. I find the best sounding picks on the L-02 to be medium or heavy, low included angle, little side radius, and relatively sharp points; in other words, a Fender celluloid 351 medium. This is a pick that when used on a Seagull or other bright guitar, will drive me to earplugs. A Fender heavy 346 shape literally will hardly make a sound on the L-02. But the 351 medium seems to provide just the right attack to launch the top and that familiar Larrivee tone.

I think I just used too many words to say a heavily flat picked L-02 sounds a lot like a heavily finger picked L-03, and I am not at all disappointed in this instrument. But I also think anyone who is mainly a finger picker would be very disappointed with its lack of responsiveness.

I A-B'd this guitar against a used L-03 before I realized it had hog braces.
How old was the L-03, was it mahogany or rosewood back and sides? String condition? Do you still have it? Your post makes it sound like it is still available to you.
I didn't realize this guitar had mahogany bracing until I put it in the case to go home.
How was it you found out about the bracing just before taking it home?
but every one I tried seemed more high-strung than a French Poodle against my flat picking style.
It is possible your style is not compatible with the L-body mahogany Larrivee guitar. In my humble opinion, people who HEAVILY PICK Larrivee guitars seem to be disappointed in the sonic result.
EDIT.. In my humble opinion, modestly offered, the only good way to A-B two similar Larrivee mahogany L-bodies is if they have been built within a couple years of each other, and have identical strings put on them at the same time and then compare them after a couple weeks.
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skyline
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« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2018, 04:13:12 PM »

I'm sorry, I can't believe the material used to brace a top has a huge effect on tone. Comparing one guitar to another and attributing the difference in tone to the bracing is pretty unscientific. Seems to me, other than the top itself, the shape and positioning of the bracing is a much larger factor than the material. Besides, if mahogany made a huge, positive impact on the sound of the guitar, you'd think a luthier of JCL's ability would hear it and continue to use it.  

I suspect JCL did notice the difference, and as it didn't fit in the parameters of the sound profiles he liked, he stopped using it.

You know when you play instruments that are the same model, woods, grains, years, and strings, and yet they sound radically different - I always thought that had to come down to too much glue - highly unlikely - or more likely a difference in the braces.

Braces act both as support for the top and as transducers for the string vibration, and their function is also effected by elasticity and density. It's just as likely for the brace-wood to have an effect as the top wood. Braces probably have a bigger impact on the tone than the side and back woods. I would think exploring the relationship between the mass of the braces and the mass of the top sounds like a pretty good application of the scientific process  blush

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Walkerman
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« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2018, 06:50:53 PM »

I suspect JCL did notice the difference, and as it didn't fit in the parameters of the sound profiles he liked, he stopped using it.

You know when you play instruments that are the same model, woods, gains, years, and strings, and yet they sound radically different - I always thought that had to come down to too much glue - highly unlikely- or more likely a difference in the braces.

Braces act both as support for the top and as transducers for the string vibration, and their function is also effected by elasticity and density. It's just as likely for the brace-wood to have an effect as the top wood. Braces probably have a bigger impact on the tone than the side and back woods. I would think exploring the relationship between the mass of the braces and the mass of the top sounds like a pretty good application of the scientific process  blush



Agree ... Jean has a tremendous curiosity when it comes to wood.  The most excited you will ever see him is when he is showing you a new stash of wood.
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #15 on: April 10, 2018, 07:58:38 PM »

I suspect JCL did notice the difference, and as it didn't fit in the parameters of the sound profiles he liked, he stopped using it.

You know when you play instruments that are the same model, woods, grains, years, and strings, and yet they sound radically different - I always thought that had to come down to too much glue - highly unlikely - or more likely a difference in the braces.

Braces act both as support for the top and as transducers for the string vibration, and their function is also effected by elasticity and density. It's just as likely for the brace-wood to have an effect as the top wood. Braces probably have a bigger impact on the tone than the side and back woods. I would think exploring the relationship between the mass of the braces and the mass of the top sounds like a pretty good application of the scientific process  blush



I was referring to comparing two guitars not thousands. Coming to the conclusion provided using the former is what I was referring to as unscientific. Yes, I suspect he did notice the difference which was also my point. Braces more important than the top wood? I suppose, however, regardless of shape and positioning, I was assuming the braces were not an inferior material. Steel, for instance might not work so well. Am I speaking Canadian here?    
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skyline
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« Reply #16 on: April 10, 2018, 09:17:59 PM »

Braces more important than the top wood? I suppose, however, regardless of shape and positioning, I was assuming the braces were not an inferior material.

For traditional steel-string guitar designs, the top wood will probably still have the greatest influnce on tone and response. However, some musicians love guitars made with mahogany tops, because they provide a different tone or response, so you're right - mahogany is not an inferior material - just a different material. It's totally within reason that mahogany might have as much effect on tonality and response when used as a brace-wood as it does when used as a top-wood - though, as we agree, that response and tonality is probably not what JCL is usually looking for.

But I suspect it is something many other people look for, especially those who drool over 50's Martin 0-15's (I wonder if anyone has ever verified what their braces are made of . . .)

Steel, for instance might not work so well. Am I speaking Canadian here?  :smile

Don't know about steel - but there was a company called Garrison who made some headway with non-wood bracing. There are definitely many companies that speak Canadian by trying to find ways of providing better instruments at more affordable prices . . . Norman challenged the problems of costs and climate extremes with bolt-on necks and alternate tone woods, Lado went with focused workmanship, reliable woods, and great hardware . . . some upstart named Jean chose to put actual thought and quality into steel string guitars when everyone else was just stamping on a logo . . .
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #17 on: April 10, 2018, 09:49:21 PM »

For traditional steel-string guitar designs, the top wood will probably still have the greatest influnce on tone and response. However, some musicians love guitars made with mahogany tops, because they provide a different tone or response, so you're right - mahogany is not an inferior material - just a different material. It's totally within reason that mahogany might have as much effect on tonality and response when used as a brace-wood as it does when used as a top-wood - though, as we agree, that response and tonality is probably not what JCL is usually looking for.

But I suspect it is something many other people look for, especially those who drool over 50's Martin 0-15's (I wonder if anyone has ever verified what their braces are made of . . .)

Don't know about steel - but there was a company called Garrison who made some headway with non-wood bracing. There are definitely many companies that speak Canadian by trying to find ways of providing better instruments at more affordable prices . . . Norman challenged the problems of costs and climate extremes with bolt-on necks and alternate tone woods, Lado went with focused workmanship, reliable woods, and great hardware . . . some upstart named Jean chose to put actual thought and quality into steel string guitars when everyone else was just stamping on a logo . . .

I played some Garrisons. They were awful and heavy. They aren't being produced anymore. That pretty much says it all. I've been here a while (nearly 12,000 posts). I've been playing guitar for over 50 years. I have owned a lot of them including many Larrivees. I'm not going to get into the bolt on controversy. My opinions are pretty well known on that. 
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