Miscellaneous Rumbles

Rosewood Fretboards Legal Again?


If I understand this right, CITES is allowing fretboards to be made out of rosewood again.

Fender fans had been upset over this Pao Ferro business.

See this


For the most part CITES wasn't (isn't) a matter of being able to use rosewood for instrument construction. The hassle CITES created was (in this case) movement of instruments with rosewood across national boundries.

It also largely only affected commercial shipments and the instrument needed a certain percentage of its content to be rosewood, which meant that pretty much any guitar with just a rosewood fretboard also was NOT captured by CITES.

The real swindle of course was that even though it was obvious that a guitar wasn't touched by CITES, one still had to have a certifcate saying as much from (in the USA) the Dept of Fish and Wildlife because of fear of seizure. So it was the hassle of paying a hundred bucks or so for that and having to do the paperwork which had a chilling effect on the music industry.

Another joke is "rosewood" is a very generic term, like "car". One would have to be a botanist to know what subspecies of rosewood were actually listed in the schedules of the woods covered by CITES. Otherwise you can't tell and thus, once again, were effectively compelled to get the certificate from DFW. And even if you knew what subspecies of rosewood was on an instrument, that was no guaranty the customs officer on the other would know that. So even there, people were driven to have to get the certificate as a CYA measure.

The upshot is that a company like Fender just says to hell with the hassle and moves to e.g., pau ferro instead.


Reverb has something about it

"Last week, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in Geneva, Switzerland voted to exempt finished musical instruments, parts, and accessories from the restrictions on rosewood species that have been implemented since 2017.

According to NAMM, the exemption for musical instruments will take effect in late November 2019.

Part of what makes Reverb special is the ability to reach potential buyers in areas of the world that might not have easy access to a wide range of gear otherwise. Because prices on Reverb tend to be 20-40% less than typical retail prices in the U.K., Japan, or Europe, there's a large demand overseas just waiting to be met.

What does all that mean for me as a Reverb seller? It means that unless you’re shipping the rare Brazillian variety of rosewood - or another regulated material like ivory - you’ll once again be free to easily sell your gear worldwide without needing any special permits.

Why should my Reverb shop ship internationally? Good question.

How can I open my listings up to the world? • Buyers will only be able to see your listings if you have set a shipping price for their locale. Create a Shipping Profile to easily add standard rates to all of your listings. • You can use our Shipping Label Estimator to determine rates for our top selling territories. • For more in-depth instructions, take a look at our international shipping guide.

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