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Wenge for a body?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Wolak, Sep 11, 2005.

  1. I'm "thinking" of building a 6 string bass with a bubinga top and wenge body. Besides the weight, is there any reason I shouldn't do it? Would the hardwoods produce too much of a sharp snappy sound? The neck would also be wenge/purpleheart with a wenge fingerboard.
  2. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    You might need a back brace or one of those rupture girdles like people wore in the 1930's.
  3. LajoieT

    LajoieT I won't let your shadow be my shade...

    Oct 7, 2003
    Western Massachusetts
    +1 on the weight, but if weight's not an issue I'd say go for it. Warmoth has made some all wenge gecko bodies and they have run a bit over 7 pounds (for just the body wood...) while most of the standard woods typically run from just under 4 to the low 5 pounds. So you're looking at not quite double the weight of a typical wood (like Alder, Mahogany, lighter Maples, etc.)
  4. tribal3140

    tribal3140 Banned

    Nov 9, 2004
    near detroit...uh
    I will let you all know how it sounds when I get it whenever that maybe..........................
    29 months and counting, but I got pictures last month, bodys roughed and "soon " to be finished.
    xxf ziricote back wenge mid, xf cocobolo top. maple wenge purpleheart neck thru.
  5. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    I recieved a wenger with bub stripes and ebony fb neck for my custom 6er a few days ago, and let me tell you, if you go all wenge, it will be very heavy. Just this neck is heavier than my acoustics...
    There was a wenge-bodied Benavente at NAMM last year, IIRC. There are even some clips around of it. Those who played it said it was one of the best sounding basses they played, but it was so heavy they could only play it sitting.
  6. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    The classic Le Fay models are Wenge with a Padouk neck, but they're not especially heavy.

    www.lefay.de (they're remodeling the website, so no English and the photo gallery is missing)
  7. Lo end PUNCH

    Lo end PUNCH

    Jan 28, 2005
    What about chambering it to shed some of the weight? I'm not a luthier but I'm sure it would work. I've heard of other builders doing it.
  8. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    I am working on a mostly purpleheart 6 I will let you know when it is playable and you can check it out......t
  9. Rene


    Mar 8, 2004
    A way to heavy, extremely hard to work with and very
    difficult to finish well good only for fingerboard or laminate for neck
  10. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    Doesn't Wenge kind of split/crack easy.. And that's why Warwick stopped using them for necks?
  11. tribal3140

    tribal3140 Banned

    Nov 9, 2004
    near detroit...uh
    Not a crack! anywhere. warwick stopped using wenge as the primary neck wood because of COST!!! ovankol is cheaper and lighter for shipping. I love wenge, its an excellent neck wood , I have 7 basses with primarily wenge necks and they never need adjustment! And i live inMICHIGAN, where one day its 99 and 90% humidity and the next its 55 and dry as a bone!

    long live WENGE..

    I also like maples
    I dont mind heavy its usuall only a pound or 2 from 8 to 9 or 9 to ten.