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Unconventional/weird/exotic neck and fretboard woods.

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by _MementoMori_, Mar 5, 2021.

  1. _MementoMori_

    _MementoMori_ Tele-Holic

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    No offense to Maple or Rosewood, but I'm looking for something a little more "out there" for the partscaster I'm building. I thought I was settled on an all-Wenge or all-Rosewood neck for this build, and in the end I probably will go that way, but I'm also intrigued by the wide world of wood in general. Do any of you have necks or fretboards made from unusual woods? Care to share resources? And please post pics!
     
  2. hamerfan

    hamerfan Tele-Meister

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    I played an acoustic guitar with a riftsawn Spurce neck with rosewood fingerboard.
     
  3. Texas Special

    Texas Special Tele-Holic

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    DSC_0545.JPG I'm a recent convert to Ziricote. It's hard like ebony, but apparently has tonal a character like rosewood. It feels good and looks good. DSC_0592.JPG
     
  4. _MementoMori_

    _MementoMori_ Tele-Holic

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    Yowza. What a gorgeous hunk of wood! I wouldn't even put fret markers on something that pretty. Side dots only.
     
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  5. Texas Special

    Texas Special Tele-Holic

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    I've really fallen for it. It's reasonably priced. I got this hunk for £28 shipped. If you were good on a band saw with a blade with a small kerf, you could get three boards from this piece. It's over an inch thick. 20210305_153536.jpg
     
  6. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    Exotic typically equates to dramatically unusual .
    My current favorites are Black Locust and Mulberry .
    All that other stuff is so common .
     
  7. ale.istotle

    ale.istotle Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Not exotic, but certainly unconventional - I did my T-Style from cherry. The neck, fretboard and body are all cherry. A few other members have done the same IIRC.
    I sliced some 8/4 and joined it to get a roughly quartered fretboard. I put wipe-on poly on it. No stain. It got pleasantly darker as it aged, as cherry tends to do. Also has a little mineral oil on the fretboard.


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  8. ale.istotle

    ale.istotle Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I'll presume to speak for the entire TDPRI when I say We'd love to see pics of those guitars.
     
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  9. _MementoMori_

    _MementoMori_ Tele-Holic

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    Unbelievable. Just stunning. I also love cherry, and you definitely DON'T see it used often as a guitar wood. It almost looks like roasted maple at a glance here.
     
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  10. Mxrk

    Mxrk Tele-Meister

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    +1 for Ziricote, but I think the most beautiful teles I've seen have been pinecasters where the wood comes from an old building and has aged forever.
     
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  11. effzee

    effzee Tele-Meister

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    A friend of mine has used snakewood for fingerboards and it's stunning. It's available where ever you get exotic wood. If you google snakewood guitar, you'll see lots of examples.

    He also has "swamp beech" which is beechwood that was lying in a swamp for decades. A kind of mold grows inside the wood and the grain becomes all kinds of pronounced and weird. A light colored wood with blackish/greenish grain, jaw-dropping. I'm not sure where to get that though.
     
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  12. _MementoMori_

    _MementoMori_ Tele-Holic

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    Are you familiar with Cindy Guitars? She's a luthier who makes everything out of centuries-old lumber all sourced from within NYC. She's immensely talented. And super attractive, not that that has anything to do with anything. She made a guitar for Jim Jarmusch, one of my favorite film makers.
     
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  13. effzee

    effzee Tele-Meister

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    Mullberry wood is really interesting. A friend trimmed her mullberry tree a few years ago and gave me a few big chunks of it. I gave it to my guitar-building friend and he was very excited. It's extremely hard and heavy, probably best for a fingerboard or inlays, something like that. The core slowly turns black with time and the grain becomes very pronounced. Nice stuff!
     
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  14. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Poster Extraordinaire

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    How about a hollow koa neck

    IMG_0484.JPG


    The fretboard doesn't have frets either...
     
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  15. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Telefied Ad Free Member

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    When you think about it, the fretboard and neck is pretty important. I'd be concerned with dimensional stability. That means quartersawn. Looks come in second. Even quartersawn wood fretted in the summer in a home with less than ideal humidity will exhibit fret sprout in the winter. 40 years ago you wouldn't see the kind of stuff people are using today. It's a result of the traditional timber sources drying up. I wouldn't risk all the time and effort for some "beautiful" wood...but that's me. That said, I've done necks out of poplar, pine, mahogany, walnut, and maple. Mostly quartered. The one exotic, zebrawood I did warped like a chip and got thrown away. I did a multilaminate 7 string bass neck through for a guy...his decision...not mine. Kingwood, cocobola, maple, and mahogany. I guess it held up, but it had a cocobola fretboard on it with a truss rod and two graphite rods.


    bass.jpg
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
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  16. Bedder18

    Bedder18 Tele-Meister

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    My vote is for Bocote. It’s overlooked. It’s easy to work and makes a phenomenal looking/performing fretboard. Kinda resembles rosewood in appearance (at a glance from a distance) but when you look closer, it’s grain is livelier. Looks a bit high contrast when fresh cut, but quickly turns a dark chocolate. Contains natural oils but takes glue. I’d advise coating, though. Have heard people complaining that is shows oil spots from fingers if not coated.

    *edit* here’s a dusty piece I’ve had knocking around my shop for a coupla years...if you wiped it down: stunner.

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    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
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  17. _MementoMori_

    _MementoMori_ Tele-Holic

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    Well yeah, I don't disagree. But I also don't think it's fair to discount a whole bunch of interesting new woods just because they're new to the industry. I spent a few years in the hardwood flooring industry, so I know enough to do my homework on a species before I stick it on a guitar.
     
  18. Telefsantasia1

    Telefsantasia1 Tele-Meister

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    incredible!
     
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  19. ale.istotle

    ale.istotle Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Is that one completed yet? If yes, how's it sound?
    It's really beautiful already.
     
  20. NorthenLights

    NorthenLights Tele-Meister

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    My favourite neck is made of wenge, with a goncalo alvez fretboard. It's smooth, has great attack and looks stunning. Wenge doesn't need any finish, and nothing beats the feel of raw wood in my opinion. I can really recommend goncalo alvez as fret board material. It's kinda like the best of all worlds, with attack like ebony, but yet a rosewood smoothness to it.

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