So what is the difference between a Sitka Spruce top and Alpine Moonspruce top? Guitar Gallery compares the Larrivee D-40R and the Larrivee D-40R Moonspruce models.
We spoke to our friends at Larrivee to learn more about Moonspruce:
It comes from a very limited region in Europe known as the black forest. It’s only from a 50sq mile region right on the border of Austria, Switzerland, Italy, and Romania. The species of the tree is Picea Abies. The term Moonwood actually refers to a forestry practice that is 300+ years old. The trees in question are grown at high altitude, right at the tree line, if you drive up a mountain to the top, you reach a point where trees no longer grow around 8000 feet. The climate is very stable at this level and the trees grow very even and straight. The trees are felled during a particular lunar cycle where the tree will have the least amount of moisture in it. The tree is then left on the forest floor over the winter to dry at alpine (remember it really doesn’t rain up there). It is then hauled down in the spring and processed. The wood is then air dried for a period of between 1 and 50 years. Most of what we use is 5-10 year aged. From a guitar making perspective the wood is EXTREMELY stable. It’s an absolute joy to work with. There are a few difference between wood between the 3 countries, but primarily we use wood from Austria and Switzerland.
Also, it’s the exact same spruce the famed Stradivarius instruments are made from. It comes from the same region using the the same forestry practice.