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Unread 08-18-2012, 05:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Micarta or richlite?

Hi, I have a 2005 D-16RGT that I absolutely love. It's nothing special to look at, but god does it sound great! This guitar has made me a Martin acoustic player for life.

Question: I thought I remembered reading once that my fingerboard was "black micarta." In fact, I know I did. I recently looked up the D-16RGT and am now reading that the fingerboard is "black richlite." Elsewhere on this forum I read that Martin replaced micarta with richlite only a couple of years ago. So could the specs that say that my guitar uses richlite only apply to newer models? Do they even produce that model anymore?? Mine is 7 ys/o so could it actually be micarta? It isn't a big deal as I realize that they are very similar composite materials. It just bothers me that I don't know for sure.

Here are the specs from Martin's website: D-16RGT Again, I KNOW I read, in a couple of places, that my fingerboard was micarta. Here is a forum post where some people are talking about it: Martin d16rgt in the house!(Micarta)? - The Acoustic Guitar Forum so I know I'm not slipping with age! lol

Please steer me straight. Thanks everyone!
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Unread 08-19-2012, 09:20 AM   #2 (permalink)
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My impression is that Richlite is similar to Micarta, but that Richlite is a more recent development and is considered a more "Green" material and that it is FSC approved. According to wiki, Micarta has been around since 1910 and is a trademark of the George Westinghouse company. I believe that Richlite is a resin/paper combination while Micarta may use other types of substrates such as fiberglass, etc. Even though Micarta and Richlite produce similar looking and feeling final products, in the current ecologically sensitive marketplace, I would think that Martin would want to distance themselves from Micarta in favor of Richlite.

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Originally Posted by AstralStatic View Post
Hi, I have a 2005 D-16RGT that I absolutely love. It's nothing special to look at, but god does it sound great! This guitar has made me a Martin acoustic player for life.

Question: I thought I remembered reading once that my fingerboard was "black micarta." In fact, I know I did. I recently looked up the D-16RGT and am now reading that the fingerboard is "black richlite." Elsewhere on this forum I read that Martin replaced micarta with richlite only a couple of years ago. So could the specs that say that my guitar uses richlite only apply to newer models? Do they even produce that model anymore?? Mine is 7 ys/o so could it actually be micarta? It isn't a big deal as I realize that they are very similar composite materials. It just bothers me that I don't know for sure.

Here are the specs from Martin's website: D-16RGT Again, I KNOW I read, in a couple of places, that my fingerboard was micarta. Here is a forum post where some people are talking about it: Martin d16rgt in the house!(Micarta)? - The Acoustic Guitar Forum so I know I'm not slipping with age! lol

Please steer me straight. Thanks everyone!
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Unread 08-20-2012, 07:06 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the quick response Blackville. Yeah I guess it doesn't really matter. It just annoys me when I don't know something with absolute certainty. ;-)
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Unread 09-30-2012, 06:03 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Micarta and Richlite

Micarta: Micarta fretboard in The D28 Lounge Forum
and Micarta - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Richlite: Maintenace for Richlite fingerboard in Technical Info Forum
and Richlite - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I know it's a lot of info but it's Sunday and I wanted to know the difference myself. Hope someone is interested.
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