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Need wood info (weight, Janka, etc)

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Frank Martin, Feb 24, 2006.


  1. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Hi!
    Anyone got any simple datasheets or good links regarding this? Most I found contained just one, some had conflicting information, or had no means of seeing some data together to compare.

    I'm thinking about making a fretless replacement neck for my Corvette using woods available locally from lumber stores. There's a huge collection of both local and exotics. I plan on making the neck lighter than the current ovangkol/wenge combination, as the bass has some neckdive.

    Help is welcome!
    Thanks!
     
  2. tribal3140

    tribal3140 Banned

    Nov 9, 2004
    near detroit...uh
    I swear I'd never give these *-holes any business but they have some good data sheets attached to the wood species

    go to righteoushardwoods.net and check out thier spec sheets
    BUT DO NOT BUY ANYTHING FROM THEM.
    they are rude wood nazis and supporting thier business is just wrong.

    Everyone who deals with them ends up hating them.I have not bought one single thing there ever because they are so self" righteous"


    What do you have at your local yard over there maybe the local builders here could be of assistance.
    I also know a little bit about woods properties and play bass as well.
     
  3. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
  4. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Thanks guys! :hyper:

    I was just thinking and trying to make up my mind about which woods to use. Maybe I'll try european mountain maple with ovangkol or wenge.
    There are hardwoods that grow in Europe and many exotic like afromosia, afzelia, jatoba, bubinga, merbau, ovangkol, paduak, wenge, etc. (of course most are called a different name, but their colour and figuring gives them away :) )

    The fingerboard will most probably be ebony. Though, heavy as it is, I might change my mind. (Alternatives, anybody?)
    Tone I'm looking for is growly, but with a bit more clarity and openness than that Corvette sound.
    Neck will also have graphite bars.
     
  5. tribal3140

    tribal3140 Banned

    Nov 9, 2004
    near detroit...uh

    Excellent source
    but I cant find any ebony other than
    .spp or black african

    I was looking for,
    brown arginitinian, black and white surasian, celebica and perreri.
    or
    dalbergia congestiflora
    among others

    any other lists that may have them?
     
  6. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
  7. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
    The only properties I have been able to find for diosyros other than the general "spp." is for D. virginiana.
    Nothing on congestiflora.

    I've got a few numbers on a few other dalbergias, but they are from before I started recording the source links.

    A wikipedia search on dalbergia could help (following the links from there). Also googling "dalbergia properties" or "dalbergia modulus".
     
  8. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Now I'm thinking of a maple/merbau/wenge/merbau/maple neck.
    I've seen a certain member named M_A_T_T say good things about merbau (Intsia Acuminata), but has anyone else tried it? I think the colour would go great with the others, and has very good specs (MOE 2020-2320, Janka 1500-1925).
     
  9. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maryland
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    I have visited Righteous Woods many times and have never found them to be rude wood nazis. I've always found the main exotics guy Steve to be quite friendly if a bit nutty. In fact they were a good source for me when I was in MA. Your mileage may vary, especially if you are a wood dealer yourself.

    Frank - merbau is about the same in density as wenge. Maple is on average about 10% less dense than ovangkol. Let us know how it goes in any case as I doubt many here have used merbau. If published numbers are to believed I would think you might look at makore, MOE ~ 2.0 and SG ~ .58

    Janka is probably not so important to necks as it is to fingerboards and flooring.
     
  10. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Thanks, Matt!
    I'll be sure to report back. I can't find makore, however, so I think I'll go with merbau.
     
  11. One trick with Merbau - it likes to split. Take precautions like predrilling holes.
     
  12. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Thanks! I predrill holes anyway, but it's good to know that this is a tough case like wenge, which also likes to split...
    We'll see how it works out, and whether I can find a piece good enough.

    Edit: should I rather try doussié (afzelia), jatoba, or the super-dense and heavy ipé?
     
  13. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
    If you look at another thread here, you'll see Wilser's post that he made a ipe-jatoba neck, that came out so stiff that not only the strings don't bend it, the trussrod cannot bend it. It is permanently dead flat, with no relief.
     
  14. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Yes, I just saw that before reading this...
    Well, I hope this won't turn out to be like that... if it does, then I can still sand a fretless board, as I had to with my abg :smug:
    I think he made it with just ipé and jatoba; mine will be maple (20-22mm) - something (10mm) - wenge (20-22mm) - something (10mm) - maple (20-22mm); and this will be a 6stringer, with high-tension strings.
     
  15. tribal3140

    tribal3140 Banned

    Nov 9, 2004
    near detroit...uh
    Makore, is like
    Bosse
    Red Cedar
    or even redwood... in cutting, glueing etc.

    Pretty soft stuff and very easy to work with.
    Some people have a nasal reaction.

    Often has figure in it like a rope curl or mottle.
     
  16. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Unfortunately I don't see makore in the catalog... so it looks like one less option, but still plenty more...
     
  17. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maryland
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    Finding numbers on the internet is about as reliable as throwing darts at a dartboard. Here is a nice, full table of numbers, but I'm not sure I trust them.

    http://www.worldwideflood.com/ark/wood/timber_list.htm

    Makore seems tougher to me than redwood and red cedar. As I understand redwood there's a pretty big variance of densities but the stuff I have used/seen is pretty light and not very tough. I have not used makore for a neck so I can't vouch for it but its numbers seemed interesting from Suburban's (I think it was his) spreadsheet.

    The above table (if you can believe it) seems to indicate that sassafrass is pretty stiff. I wonder if that would make a good neck wood. The stuff is fairly low density.
     
  18. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Oh and by the way, what are your opinions on more traditional woods that are widely available in Europe, like elm, oak, birch, acacia, cherry, European walnut, European ash, European mountain maple, etc?
    Just curious for future projects :)
     
  19. tribal3140

    tribal3140 Banned

    Nov 9, 2004
    near detroit...uh
    I havent built anything with makore but it cut like cedar and redwood.

    Most like Bosse.

    I dont think I'd recommend it for a neck , seems too soft.
    it is denser than redwood and cedar, but If you havent used bosse its kinda in a league of its own.
    Its soft but not too soft its a very light hardwood.
     
  20. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maryland
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    I just found more reliable numbers on sassafras and it would appear to be a Crappy neck wood. Just so no one runs out and makes a sassafras neck. ;)