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Cherry wood

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by mangus, Nov 9, 2019.

  1. SacDAve

    SacDAve Poster Extraordinaire

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    Cherry is great wood to work with the one thing to watch out for is the light sap wood it won't darken in time like the rest of the wood. it's best IMO to just use clear on it you will be surprised how dark the wood gets.

    DSCN1854 copy.jpg
     
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  2. 6stringcowboy

    6stringcowboy Friend of Leo's

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  3. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Martin made some cherry necks a few years back as part of their sustainable line.

    martin neck.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2019
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  4. telepraise

    telepraise Tele-Afflicted

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    I'm not sure which species of cherry you get over in that part of the world, but the cherry that grows here in the states is definitely softer and lighter than rock maple. A neck should be OK with a good truss rod. As a fingerboard material, it's really pretty soft and will wear faster unless you impregnate it with super glue or epoxy. As mentioned by SacDAve, cherry is mauve to pink in color when first milled but darkens to a rich red over time with exposure to light. It sounds like you got an amazing deal on about 75 board feet. I would imagine cherry runs $4-6 bd ft here in 4/4 thickness. Post picks when you open the slab up.
     
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  5. bsman

    bsman Friend of Leo's

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    I had a Martin SWOMGT (cherry B&S) that I stupidly sold off. It was a very good sounding guitar.
     
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  6. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Cherry is excellent ... I like mine covered with chocolate ...
     
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  7. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yes , you should have kept it . Their OM in cherry was rather sweet .
    Sweet cherry/ringbark and sour cherry trees/wild or black will typically produce different grain and degree of redness over time with wild cherry tending to have more visual appeal to the grain and tending to become more red with UV exposure .
    Quartersawn preferred for necks .
     
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  8. Beatbx

    Beatbx Tele-Meister

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    I like cherry for tops. It’s hardness is comparable to red maple which makes great tops imo. I would bleach it before putting finish on as it will darken over time.
     
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  9. Gipper

    Gipper Tele-Meister

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    This body is cherry and maple. Accent stripe is mahogany.
    20190928_133005.jpg 20190928_132926.jpg
     
  10. RolandG

    RolandG Tele-Meister

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    I’m guessing that’s because there are fewer cherry trees than maple/alder/ash, and they don’t grow as large.
     
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  11. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for all the answers
     
  12. epizootics

    epizootics Tele-Meister

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    I have never worked with American cherry (Prunus Serotina) but I have used a lot with its European counterpart (Prunus Avium), mostly for furniture making. My understanding is that the Avium species yields slightly harder wood, but I've seen a lot of variation in hardness from one board to the other. It's one of my favorites to use in the workshop because of how easy it is to work with hand tools. Plus it smells great, like I've been cooking a cherry pie instead of making a bunch of sawdust.

    It is strong enough to make bodies and necks. Cherry is famous over here for how much finish it soaks up, even fast-drying ones like shellac. It just drinks it up, so I always make sure I saturate it before I apply any other more expensive / slower drying finish on top. I guess epoxy resin would work well there too, and harden the surface a good bit.

    Make sure you plane your blanks oversize, let them adjust for a while and thickness them to their final size once the moisture & internal stresses are gone. Cherry and walnut both suffer from being seen as 'furniture wood' but they both make great guitars and people love to work'em.
     
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  13. DrASATele

    DrASATele Poster Extraordinaire

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    Oh, that sounds like an awesome block of wood. I would make tops and backs out of it. Tops about @ 1/4 to 1/2 inch bookmatched over a hollowed out body blank is awesome and weight friendly. I find solid guitars from cherry on the moderate side in weight so I lean towards hollowing.
    Scraps are great for smoking ribs, brisket, chicken . . .
    but oh yeah, cherry is awesome
     
  14. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    The few projects I've done with cherry have run into two issues that can easily be dealt with. First, if you hesitate with the feed speed on a router, the cherry will burn and you'll need to sand out the dark brown marks. Second, staining is a challenge because dye stain will absorb unevenly and look splotchy. An application of boiled linseed oil before staining or sealing will deepen the color and bring out any figure. It benefits from a washcoat of thin finish (a conditioner coat) before staining, if you decide to stain it at all.

    I haven't experienced much wood movement when dimensioning cherry, but that could be just luck of the inexperienced. Id be careful to leave some extra when resawing the thick lumber into usable boards.
     
  15. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    So should I run the router faster?
     
  16. dougstrum

    dougstrum Friend of Leo's

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    It's not the speed of the router, but lingering to long in one spot that cause darker burn marks.
    Keep the router moving and you will be fine~at worst you'll have to do some extra sanding.
     
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  17. Jim_in_PA

    Jim_in_PA Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Don't you know it's extremely sinful to dye or stain cherry? :D :D :D
     
  18. epizootics

    epizootics Tele-Meister

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    Yup, staining cherry can be a dangerous exercise. As pointed above, it darkens quite a bit with time, both from UV exposure and oxidation, so you might end up with an unexpected results down the line. UV inhibitors in the topcoat will help slow down the process, but won't eliminate it.

    All of the Prunus species I have worked with exhibit that characteristic. My apricot solid body from three years ago has already darkened a a lot, in a nice way. Talking of the genus, I always try to get quarter sawn lumber if I can, they all exhibit some very nice ray flakes when QS.
     
  19. GearHund

    GearHund Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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  20. billder

    billder TDPRI Member

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    Here are some work in progress pics from a recent build of twin Strats. The cherry was noticeably more stubborn to cut out with a jigsaw than the maple. You can see the oxidization between the top & arm cut. I "stained" with aniline dyes anyways, so darkening afterwards wasn't an issue. Water base lacquered & sanded to about 2000 grit in the bottom photo I think (not polished yet).
    Good Luck!
    IMG_4071.JPG IMG_4730.JPG
     
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