Tusq vs Bone Saddle: What’s The Difference

tusq vs bone saddle
tusq vs bone saddle

With all these different types of stringed instruments out there, you certainly need to understand that there is much more to them than what you can see and each part has to play its role in getting you the perfect tones as you might be seeking out of it. With all that being said, the nut is simply one of the most important parts of any stringed instrument.

You can just not get wrong no matter what your needs might be, or what instrument you are looking for. Overall performance, playback, tones, and clarity depend on the nut of your instrument and that is especially very important on different sorts of guitars that we are getting these days out in the market.

So, you will need to make sure that you are not messing it up for any reason. While you get some plastic Nut in most of the guitars that you can buy out there. Yet, two such natural materials that are widely used for the nut and you must know about since those will be enhancing your overall experience with your guitar are Tusq and Bone. A few key differences to know about them both are:

Choosing Between Tusq vs Bone Saddle


TUSQ is a synthetic material that is a very high-quality polymer and was created by Dave Dunwoodie in the 80s. While bones and ivory were being widely used for exotic guitars and people all over were loving the idea to get their hands on some guitars that can not only play better but also allow you to have a feeling of luxury that real ivory or bones of some rare animals have been used in your guitar.

It was the case with some famous jewelry and other ornaments in that era. TUSQ however, is completely synthetic and in some guitarists’ opinion even better in performance and that should be something everyone must consider if they are looking to get their hands on better nuts for their guitars. The best thing about using Tusq for your guitars is that it is completely synthetic.

So, all the features and characteristics on your nuts are designed surgically to ensure that they are perfect and there is no lagging point in them at all that would certainly allow you to enjoy a far better and stable experience with the TUSQ since there is nothing to be worried about such as soft spots on bones or any other problems that might be appearing on the bones or ivories.

Moreover, the wear and tear can also be contained since that has to happen on your saddle nut on the guitar no matter what you can try on it. So, the wear and tear on TUSQ will be uniform and since it is made of polymer, it will be much lesser than the ivory or bone. That means, it is going to be consistent in terms of tones and you are bound to get just the perfect experience that you might be seeking out of it at all times.

It will truly enhance your overall playing structure and the tones you plan on playing on your guitar. Of Course, TUSQ is the name that makes you think it might be ivory and it replicates the same characteristics in terms of looks as well and you might mistake it for real ivory as well at times.

Yet, that is another cool thing about using the TUSQ on your guitar since it will not go bad, look dull, or catch any yellowish shade over time so that will be the best thing for you to be enjoying on your guitar and you are certainly going to have the right experience out of it no matter what your plans for the guitar might be.

Bone Saddle

While many people are going eco-friendly and they are advocating the TUSQ and other synthetic materials to be used for guitars and other applications, some guitarists still have the opinion that natural materials such as bones are still the best thing that you can get on your guitar to enjoy a rich and better playing experience with different sorts of tunes and you just need to make sure that you are picking the tones right.

While a wide variety of bones have been used on these guitar saddles in the past. The most common of these bone saddles that are being used these days is from a Chinese cow or ox since it wears slowly, and has better resonance when installed on the guitar as well. Yet, there are some drawbacks that you must understand about using the bone saddle on your guitar.

You will need to ask yourself if you are comfortable with getting those on your guitar. Since bones are a natural material, the wear and tear are certainly not consistent and that means it will be deteriorating at different parts. That is not only with the dynamics of the bone saddle, but since the wear will not be uniform, you can also expect to face other such problems.

This includes things like inconsistency on the tones and more such problems that might be something for you that you don’t want to have on your guitar. There are certainly some benefits as well that you get on using the Bone Saddle and it is simply better than any other material that might be used and that dense structure on the bone make them a perfect choice for you to pick the richer tones in a deeper and better manner.

There is no such problem that they might have to face with picking the right tones. Speaking of tones, the bones density is thicker at some points and it might not be constant across the saddle.

That means you might have to face certain problems with the consistency of tones and that is certainly something that you will need to be careful about while you are dealing with the Bone Saddle, and it is only recommended for you if you are a pro guitarist.

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