All go today. The wood was “hung sawed and quartered”. Giving me more stock than I know what to do with….but we have dreams….dreams about all types of guitars.
My wood supplier, Tim, came up trumps with the cuts he made. Walking you through what we have……First the Elm, (right).
This was a really big slab with the most amazing close grain pattern. One end will be used for electric guitar tops and acoustic backs for a couple of bouzoukis I have in the pipe line, and another of the arch top style we are currently constructing. Below is one of the examples of the book matched pieces I will be using for the curve in the grain pattern. The other end is almost perfectly quarter sawn so I might try one set as a sound board experiment from the end. I could get two guitar back or tops from each piece of this stuff. Obviously I will be cutting away the knot at the center…or maybe not. This is only the start of the pile I bought from Tim. I got some lovely Larch and spalted maple, along with some square billets of beech and some beautiful cedar, which I will try and get some sound boards out of, (all pictured below). The grain is close and even…if not quite as dense as the text books say is necessary. All in all, along with a couple of planks of close grained maple cut as neck blanks, it was a great days wood buying. This stock is added to some high end cedar sound boards and mahogany and paduk backs and sides I purchased recently. I have stacked them carefully for future projects. I have some more straightforward, standard guitar projects for those, when I find some appropriate neck material. I would like some cedar for the necks of those two guitars, one I plan to be a flamenco and one a steel strung. ( see below ).
Below you can see the Larch and cedar stacked on top of the Elm, with MDF guitar body stencils for spacers……I ran out of sticks for spacing. Middle pick is the spalted beech and the lovely coloured cedar is on the right.
But this was not all! No, the bending iron arrived from England, so I had to give it a try. With the current build I am thinking about the sound hole decoration. I don’t want a fancy rosette….mainly because I am not that interested in marquetry, but also my honest taste leans toward simplicity. I plan to just go for a couple of plain rings in the same material as the bindings, Ebony. Yes, I am going to do binding after all…more on that in future posts. I bent a fairly good circle from some of the binding material, and might bend one more to thicken the circle. Next blog will be all about sound hole inlaying and practice on the iron, in preparation for bending the sides.
Below are some shots of my first wood bending endeavor. Below that again are some shots of the fine joinery work I have had the satisfaction of obsessing over, during the last week.