Torrefied Maple - OB Shafts

JusticeNJ

Four Points/Steel Joints
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Did anyone else get the email from Seyberts about the new OB torrefied shafts?

In the acoustic guitar world, torrefication is available on some (usually higher end) guitars and supposedly provides a very dry, aged, woody tone that isn't available on wood that isn't aged for decades. Its often called "thermally aged" wood instead of the more technical "torrefied."

I personally have a sweet custom shop Gibson J-45 with a torrefied Adirondack spruce top. Compared to the Hummingbird and Martin HD-28 I have with just regular sitka spruce tops, it definitely has a much drier, older sounding tone. How much of a difference in tone and whether the price difference is justified is up for debate, but there's definitely a difference in tone that isn't just due to the shape, construction/bracing, and type of wood (the HD-28 in particular being rosewood back/sides; the other two being mahogany back/side).

I hadn't really thought about torrefying maple shafts. I'd be interested in buying one in regular maple. Does anyone know if there's a cuemaker that sells or has the ability to torrefy maple shafts? Hadn't really thought about it, but it seems like it would sell. "Here's a relatively new shaft that looks and plays like its 70 years old."

Edit: here's the wikipedia page for torrefaction, for those interested. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torrefaction

Edit 2 Electric Boogaloo: Explainer from a guitar perspective: https://thehub.musiciansfriend.com/g...-in-depth-look
 
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mikemosconi

AzB Gold Member
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isn't that the same shaft wood that we called "OLD GROWTH" - I have heard about wood like this being used for shafts for many, many years now. I also remember shaft wood that was somehow submerged in water for many years and then dried out and cut at intervals- not sure what they called that wood.
 

JusticeNJ

Four Points/Steel Joints
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isn't that the same shaft wood that we called "OLD GROWTH" - I have heard about wood like this being used for shafts for many, many years now. I also remember shaft wood that was somehow submerged in water for many years and then dried out and cut at intervals- not sure what they called that wood.

I don't think so, but I could be wrong since I'm not an expert. I think torrefaction basically "thermally ages" newer wood so that it becomes like old growth, without actually being old growth or petrified wood, though apparently they become similar on a molecular level. I always understood old growth to actually be old wood.

Edit: somewhat of an explainer: https://thehub.musiciansfriend.com/guitar-reviews/torrefied-guitar-tops-in-depth-look
 
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PDX

AzB Silver Member
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Torrification or baked woods is when it is heated in an oxygen free environment causing the excess moisture to evaporate. It does do wonders for guitars, giving them that 50 year old sound in a new guitar.

I would think that the baked maple would be better for a forearm.
 

mikemosconi

AzB Gold Member
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Seems like it would make the wood much lighter since all the moisture is removed- I think baseball bats on a pro level are dried out to the point where they are so light and crack easily. I would prefer- for a cue shaft- the old method of cutting the wood and hanging it in the proper environment between cuts - until it is naturally "cured". That method always used to produce shafts that you could have for a lifetime since they were so rock hard that they resisted checking and denting. They were never snow white- in fact they were darker as time passed. I never thought the "sound'" or resonance from cue came from the shaft- more from the forearm and joint. The shaft, to me, was more about actual playing characteristics of a cue in terms of how it moved the cueball. That's why I only use the shafts that come with my custom cues- I just want to feel the cue as the custom cue maker intended for it to feel and play - not knocking all the high tech stuff, just not interested in it and quite frankly, doubt it would matter after 55 years of playing without it.
 

newby9

Registered
I bought one, 3/8x10, 12.3mm, 29". It weighs 3.6 oz, and is extremely stiff. It hits well, with very low deflection, but has a "tink" sound. I went back to my cynergy. Will sell at a discount if you want to try it.
 

ShootingArts

Smorg is giving St Peter the 7!
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Always seeking better!

What's wrong with plain maple shafts, don't cost enough?


A very good old growth maple shaft is amazingly consistent radially. They are pretty pricey too. Then there is the race to supply the latest and "greatest"! I did decide to stimulate the pool economy and bought a Cynergy CF shaft. Going from wood to CF didn't excite me but once adjusted to CF, I won't ever go back to wood. A case where new and improved really is. Helped my game a little, didn't turn me into a world beater! First time in decades that I don't index a cue though. I still try to sometimes, old habits!

I like the stiffness of the hit without an obnoxious noise. So far, after a month or so I like the CF. One thing I am interested in from turning shafts, I think that profiles can be designed in CF that just don't work in wood.

Hu
 

JusticeNJ

Four Points/Steel Joints
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What's wrong with plain maple shafts, don't cost enough?

Torrefied maple would be regular maple, just torrefied. The email for the OB shafts just made me think about it since it’s quite popular with acoustic guitars. But I mean there is something to seasoned, aged wood. The torrefied red spruce top on my J-45 really is something else compared to a regular spruce top

For reference, my regular player is a ‘65-68’ Ginacue with the original shafts. It is noticeably resonant and stiff, which I like in a cue - I’m a “ping” kinda guy. I went back to regular maple and have been running balls as well if not better than when I used a 314. I bought a Revo and haven’t used it really. I just couldn’t get used to it, but I liked how clean and smooth it stayed.
 
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JusticeNJ

Four Points/Steel Joints
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I bought one, 3/8x10, 12.3mm, 29". It weighs 3.6 oz, and is extremely stiff. It hits well, with very low deflection, but has a "tink" sound. I went back to my cynergy. Will sell at a discount if you want to try it.

Thank you for that generous offer - I unfortunately don’t have any 3/8 x 10 jointed cues.
 

evergruven

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I'm curious about the balance/weight distribution of torrefied wood shafts- butts?
I can envision the "tink" sound tho..don't like that
 

BadEnglish

Registered
Torrefied maple would be regular maple, just torrefied. The email for the OB shafts just made me think about it since it’s quite popular with acoustic guitars. But I mean there is something to seasoned, aged wood. The torrefied red spruce top on my J-45 really is something else compared to a regular spruce top

For reference, my regular player is a ‘65-68’ Ginacue with the original shafts. It is noticeably resonant and stiff, which I like in a cue - I’m a “ping” kinda guy. I went back to regular maple and have been running balls as well if not better than when I used a 314. I bought a Revo and haven’t used it really. I just couldn’t get used to it, but I liked how clean and smooth it stayed.

Torrefied maple is very popular with electric guitars as well. A number of builders are using it for necks as it tends to be more dimensionally stable due to the lower moisture content. I would imagine that cue shafts might be less prone to warpage with torrified maple. I'd be curious how it affects the hit.

The downside of torrefied maple, at least for guitars, is that you need to be more careful when working it, specifically drilling for tuners or refretting. It's more likely to split and crack, again due to the lower moisture content. This probably wouldn't factor in much with general use on a cue shaft, but could factor if you needed to change the ferrule or any other repair work. But that's just a guess, I am sure there are actual cue makers here that could chime in with real world experience.
 

gregnice37

Bar Banger, Cue Collector
Silver Member
When I 1st saw these shafts I immediately thought of Diveney's keilwood shafts. And also the Tsunami shafts by the dude in Brooklyn.

The best person to get info from would be Justin Bergman I believe. He was using Diveney's keilwood before he got sponsored by OB and is shooting with the OB Phoenix now.
 

JusticeNJ

Four Points/Steel Joints
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Silver Member
When I 1st saw these shafts I immediately thought of Diveney's keilwood shafts. And also the Tsunami shafts by the dude in Brooklyn.

The best person to get info from would be Justin Bergman I believe. He was using Diveney's keilwood before he got sponsored by OB and is shooting with the OB Phoenix now.

Thanks everyone! I emailed Rich Hsu over the weekend and were going to work out a torrefied maple shaft for me. I’ll post an update later. I’m *not* a LD kinda guy, I just like experimenting. I usually go back to regular maple, so I’m curious how this will play since it is regular maple.
 
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