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Old March 25th, 2013, 05:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Cedar

Since I recently finished my last build thread I'm in that gray space without a project. My favorite lumber yard had moved over the winter and I hadn't been there in over a year. So I popped down this morning just to check out the stock. They typically have some reclaimed stuff in addition to a good variety of FSC certified hardwoods. Anyway, I came home with this:








Old growth western red cedar. 17" wide. Straight, pretty much blemish free.








Weight feels great. Not too light. I'm really liking light, resonant solid bodies lately. I've made a couple out of old-growth redwood which is very light and resonant too, and have been thrilled with the results. I think maybe some 24" scale Jags, which would be great for my nephew and niece who are just learning?

I recently went back over Ron's spruce strat thread after seeing it for sale in the classifieds, and when I saw this piece couldn't get it out of my head!

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Old March 25th, 2013, 06:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Your a better man than I am...............the glue would already be drying on a blank
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Old March 25th, 2013, 06:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I'm in that gray space without a project.
What?? Whutz that?? Does not compute....

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Old March 25th, 2013, 07:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Yep.. if it was here that would be two blanks glued up and clamped already! Great score. ;)
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Old March 25th, 2013, 07:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Sure would make some pretty archtop acoustics!
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Old March 25th, 2013, 09:10 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Your a better man than I am...............the glue would already be drying on a blank
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Yep.. if it was here that would be two blanks glued up and clamped already! Great score. ;)
At 17 inches wide I would hope you could get a one piece body out of it.
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Old March 25th, 2013, 10:16 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Yeah. No glue. It's 8/4 lumber. I can maybe get 5 blanks out of it depending on what body styles I decide. I'm all giddy just thinking about it.
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Old March 25th, 2013, 10:41 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Yeah. No glue. It's 8/4 lumber. I can maybe get 5 blanks out of it depending on what body styles I decide. I'm all giddy just thinking about it.
Make a whole set.. Tele, Strat, Jazzmaster, Jazz Bass, and ElPee (just for good measure)..

I hear all the cool kids are doing ElPees nowadays.
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Old March 25th, 2013, 11:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I hear all the cool kids are doing ElPees nowadays.
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Old March 26th, 2013, 12:33 AM   #10 (permalink)
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For inspiration...
One-piece Western Red Cedar, 40 GPI, one-piece body, dead-on quarter....

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Old March 26th, 2013, 12:35 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Make a whole set.. Tele, Strat, Jazzmaster, Jazz Bass, and ElPee (just for good measure)..

I hear all the cool kids are doing ElPees nowadays.


Holy cow that's a great idea!


Have to substitute a Jag or a short-scale Jag Bass for the LP, though. Doesn't seem like a Les Paul if it ain't heavy.
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Old March 26th, 2013, 12:36 AM   #12 (permalink)
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For inspiration...
One-piece Western Red Cedar, 40 GPI, one-piece body, dead-on quarter....



Oh my goodness. Is that finished yet?
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Old March 26th, 2013, 12:52 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Holy cow that's a great idea!


Have to substitute a Jag or a short-scale Jag Bass for the LP, though. Doesn't seem like a Les Paul if it ain't heavy.
Nah, for the Elpee, you could drill the swiss cheese pattern in the body blank before you glue the cap on. Then fill the holes with lead !! Should come out just about right for a Lester! (Isn't that what they mean by "reverse engineering?")

EDIT: PS, that's a fabulous score. You have legions of envious guys out here wishing they had your lumber supplier.
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Old March 26th, 2013, 02:33 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Cool

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I hear all the cool kids are doing ElPees nowadays.


Whachoo talkin' about Rich? You sayin' I aint cool? Huh?
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Old March 26th, 2013, 02:55 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Cedar is just an absolute dream to work with... it cuts easy, has a wonderful smell, routes and works easy, glues easy, doesn't warp, doesn't crack, isnt super heavy... Its just amazing wood! :D
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Old March 26th, 2013, 03:34 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Whachoo talkin' about Rich? You sayin' I aint cool? Huh?
LOL.. I'm not building an ElPee either..

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Cedar is just an absolute dream to work with... it cuts easy, has a wonderful smell, routes and works easy, glues easy, doesn't warp, doesn't crack, isnt super heavy... Its just amazing wood! :D
Yes, it is. Be aware of easy tearout when you least expect it- smaller bites in the right direction will work best with Cedar- it's awesome stuff, but it will dent if you look at it crosseyed, and can tear out if you get aggressive with your router. Knowing about the tearout issues will help keep it from happening, and water will swell out all but the deepest dents. If you stay aware, and work very neatly, it's fabulous.
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Old March 26th, 2013, 04:30 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Beautiful timber! Take care when working it, an Ear-Nose-Throat specialist recently told me the WRC dust is quite hazardous. But you probably knew that already?
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Old March 26th, 2013, 08:47 AM   #18 (permalink)
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an Ear-Nose-Throat specialist recently told me the WRC dust is quite hazardous.
Hazardous is relative. Everything is hazardous to someone. WRC is a relative of cypress, not a true cedar but does contain aromatic oils like a true cedar and has been used/logged for centuries and to most people is hypo-allergenic. No kind of dust is safe to breath and hardwood dust is way more carcinogenic than conifers of any kind (which normally only aggravate pre-existing conditions), oak for example sends me into sneezing fits. The exotic hardwoods of South America are in some cases poisonous, and in all cases an irritant, ebony dust being very bad for anyone.
Here is the OSHA page for Western Red Cedar dust in case someone would like to read it
LINK
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Old March 26th, 2013, 10:40 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Cedar is just an absolute dream to work with... it cuts easy, has a wonderful smell, routes and works easy, glues easy, doesn't warp, doesn't crack, isnt super heavy... Its just amazing wood! :D
One of my favorites too - I'm on my phone so I can't do the link, but one of my first builds was with WRC - the first thread I posted here. The tone and weight is amazing, no chambering needed ;)

The only catch is to pad the underside of the body always - denting while working the otherwise is something you have to work around. Never sand WRC without a flat rigid block too - the difference in densities of the grain is significant - the sanding block will help with that. Also, ventilate and wear a respirator - the dust is a problem, don't breath it - it can cause problems for some people.
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Old March 26th, 2013, 11:39 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Oh my goodness. Is that finished yet?
Nah...
Got the parts together though...

Debating on how to finish it...
A custom color antique might be weird with that tight grain sticking through the wear...

It's really lightweight...

I have a Tom Anderson Droptop Strat in curly redwood, and I'm convinced the conifers do something nice to the mids on a Strat...
Looking forward to putting this one together...
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