“Guitars made from The Tree routinely sell for $30,000 - $40,000”. I came into a piece. Need builder

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Bluego1, Oct 7, 2019.

  1. Unionjack515

    Unionjack515 Tele-Holic

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    Man that tree in the pic looks a lot bigger than 10’ in diameter as they state in the article!
     
  2. MDent77

    MDent77 Tele-Afflicted

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    I certainly would be researching local luthiers to craft an acoustic guitar. I'd be debating what shape.




    [​IMG]
     
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  3. Bluego1

    Bluego1 Tele-Holic

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    I’ll post pics for sure when I get it. Just found out about it. My wife just returned from his 99th birthday party back in California. I picked her up at the airport yesterday and she handed me the materials (paperwork) that were distributed with the wood. I’ll post a picture of those after I wake up a bit (more coffee!). He didn’t send the wood back with her on the plane. She was telling him of my fairly recent love affair with guitars and he asked her if I’d like his wood from The Tree. I never even knew he had it. I gotta go down there and get it, after I figure out what to do with it, based in part on comments I get here.
     
  4. djh22

    djh22 Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    Congratulations! It's not very often that one has the ability to knowingly create an heirloom.
     
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  5. archtop_fjk

    archtop_fjk Tele-Holic

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    Wow, congratulations! Definitely make an acoustic guitar from the wood. It will surely become a family heirloom which you can hand down to future generations.

    If it were me I'd make a Gibson J-200 style Jumbo with an Adirondak spruce top. I have some nice mahogany and spruce in my own shop that I plan to use for such a project someday (probably when I retire!).
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2019
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  6. brandonh

    brandonh Tele-Meister

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    If it was my wood, and if I had the coin to afford them, and if they'd take it on, I'd contact TDPRI members Gil Yaron for an electric and Freeman Keller for an acoustic.
     
  7. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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  8. raysachs

    raysachs Friend of Leo's

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    That's pretty amazing. I hang out some on the Acoustic Guitar Forum and that tree is legendary. There's a guy over there who built a really gorgeous box for accessories like picks and capos and such from a specimen from the tree, haven't heard much about full guitar builds. If you have a big enough piece for a full build, you really have something of value.

    Are you looking to have an electric built, or an acoustic? I'd definitely never use that for a solid-body or semi-hollow. I'd probably built an ultimate acoustic guitar from it, with a pickup if you really want to play it plugged in, but I'd go purist and just do a straight acoustic. If I were you I'd go talk to a couple of custom acoustic luthiers. Goodall, Bourgeois, (edit - Froggy Bottom - good suggestion from next post) there are several other really good ones. Tell them what kind of guitar you're interested in, dread, OM, 00, parlor, whatever you like. And you'd have to decide if you'd want an ALL mahogany guitar, or just a guitar with mahogany back and sides and neck, but maybe find a great piece of spruce for the top. I personally love all-hog acoustics, but I'm not sure if the top wood is generally sourced from the same type of mahogany as the back and sides are, but a good builder could work through the options with you.

    It's yours to do what you want with, but I personally think it would be a small tragedy to build a solid body out of that wood - I just don't believe wood makes a significant difference in a solid body or semi-hollow, and even a hollow jazz box can kind of overwhelm any wood-tone with the pickup.

    Sounds like a hell of a wonderful project!

    -Ray
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2019
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  9. NewKid

    NewKid Tele-Holic

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    I would commission Michael Millard at Froggy Bottom to build an acoustic guitar for me with that wood.
     
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  10. Bluego1

    Bluego1 Tele-Holic

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    This is what I’m thinking. Clearly an acoustic but I love the idea of topping a Les Paul, too. He says he has both quilted and blistered figuring and I’m imagining a quilted top on an LP.
     
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  11. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    Is it quarter sawn ?
     
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  12. Bluego1

    Bluego1 Tele-Holic

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    I don’t know, I’ll have to ask. Tbh, I don’t even know what that means.
     
  13. 8barlouie

    8barlouie Friend of Leo's

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    I’m skeptical about the actual worth of the wood from this tree over all others, but it’s a great story.
     
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  14. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    You father-in-law should know if he is a woodworker . If it is not quarter sawn , there will be an even greater risk of delaminating or cracking wood when bent for an acoustic . Highly figured wood is problematic in that way to begin with . Sides are far more prone to cracking/delaminating than backs because of the bends . Fortunately , mahogany tends to bend nicely . Good luck with your good fortune in having some of this wood to use . Bruce Sexauer is in Petaluma , CA . He will be able to assess your wood for viability as an acoustic . Bruces is a top notch luthier . Try to understand that there are many luthiers that will not build with wood supplied by customers . Check the roster of the Guild of American Luthiers for some more leads in your area . There are a number of qualified luthiers out where you are located .
     
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  15. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    I just looked and the GAL convention in 2020 is in Tacoma . Take your wood there for opinions and evaluation . Don't hurry in this decision , please . Good luck .
     
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  16. Bluego1

    Bluego1 Tele-Holic

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    Yeah, he’ll know. I’ll ask him later today. Come to think of it, he may have used some of this wood before for some of his trinket boxes and dollhouses. He’s made some that look an awful lot like this wood. We used to just randomly run into his pieces in shops. Found some at a little shop in Cambria once, and again in Santa Cruz. He could probably build me a guitar, if he were a tad younger.
     
  17. Matt Sarad

    Matt Sarad Tele-Meister

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  18. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

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    Agree with those recommending an acoustic. Don't know any luthiers in your neck of the woods (see what I did...), but might be really cool to watch the progress. Depending on how much is available, well then maybe a thinline with mahogany cap. But first, and also as a surprise, maybe build or have someone build a jewelry box for the Mrs. with some of this mahogany.
     
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  19. Bluego1

    Bluego1 Tele-Holic

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    That sounds like a great idea.
     
  20. Recce

    Recce Friend of Leo's

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    I have a Sinker Mahogany from Gruhn’s. It sounds fantastic. If this wood is that much better it should be a fantastic guitar.
     
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