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View Full Version : horn or ebony for black nut and saddle?



SpaceForRent
03-24-2019, 10:07 AM
For one of the kit builds that I'm planning, I'm going to want a black nut and saddle to tie the look together. I know I can get them in either ebony or black buffalo horn.

Can anyone here compare the two materials for me vis a vis this particular application? I hear horn is soft - would it just mellow the sound a bit, or might the shape actually deform over time? Would ebony be the better choice? Is ebony harder? I've never worked with either material. Is there another choice in a black material I'm overlooking?

Osprey
03-24-2019, 10:12 AM
I have a Tenor with an Ebony nut and saddle. Looks and sounds great.

70sSanO
03-24-2019, 10:18 AM
You’ll probably get the most responses to use a black graphtech nut and saddle. That said, I have 2 ukuleles that have ebony nut and saddles and one with a horn saddle. Supposedly, ebony is not a good material because it deadens the sound. I have not found that with my ukuleles.

I have one ukulele that came with black horn nut and saddle. I swapped them out for bone, but I re-purposed the saddle to use in my KLOS ukulele to mellow it out a bit and to me it seems to be a good match.

The ebony definitely seems to be harder.

John

Edit added: I didn’t take the poll because it depends on the uke.

Swamp Yankee
03-24-2019, 10:33 AM
Supposedly, ebony is not a good material because it deadens the sound. I have not found that with my ukuleles..

Agreed. There are a whole lot of vintage Martin owners out there that would laugh at the notion that ebony deadens their sound.

Patrick Madsen
03-24-2019, 01:02 PM
I put other. Brian griffin of Griffin ukes, uses the lower leg of a buffalo. He gets them from a buffalo ranch close by.

EDW
03-24-2019, 01:04 PM
I can't really compare the two. I have had instruments with ebony that have sounded terrific, but have no experience with the other.

SpaceForRent
03-24-2019, 03:43 PM
You’ll probably get the most responses to use a black graphtech nut and saddle.

This is exactly why I love these forums. I was probably looking in the wrong places, so never saw that TUSQ came in black.

Kenn2018
03-24-2019, 08:33 PM
Yep, my solid Mahogany Martin T1 IZ tenor came with a black TUSQ saddle.