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Thread: Are you still all at sea? I知 now firmly on the beech!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Cumbria, NW England
    Posts
    438

    Default Are you still all at sea? I知 now firmly on the beech!

    My latest tenor is made of spalted beech. Beech is often considered hard, heavy and uninteresting and pros may say they couldn稚 sell a beech instrument. I like spalted beech: I used it to make a pineapple soprano in my first year and have been using it for decoration on my other instruments.

    http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/...+soprano+beech

    From my small board, I chose the most spalted part for the back (not a bad bookmatch), the sides have less spalting (poor matching) and the soundboard has just a few dark lines. However its all quarter sawn, so shows the wood痴 medullary rays, most noticeable on the soundboard (which I find attractive).

    It痴 finished in Tru Oil over shellac: the soundboard has blonde shellac, the back and sides a darker shellac to give a contrast.

    The rosette and end graft are spalted beech bounded with walnut: the bindings are also walnut and there痴 a touch of maple for the purfling.

    The neck started life in China, but I grafted on wood to make a tapered dovetail joint, added the end cap and headplate, drilled the holes and did the final shaping. Still a little work but less than starting from scratch. The fretboard and bridge are also Chinese.

    It has Grover machineheads and Seaguar strings with low G (40, 50, 60, and 90lb line).

    This is the 4th tenor of this design (sapele, cherry and walnut), but the other 3 had an Engelman Spruce soundboard. Despite this, all four instruments are not dissimilar in terms of volume, tone and sustain. Maybe this one has less treble/more bass or maybe that痴 what I was expecting to hear? I知 certainly happy with the way this instrument performs.

    So now that Summer has arrived, who痴 going to join me on the beech?

    beech1.jpgbeech2.jpgbeech3.jpgbeech4.jpgbeech5.jpg

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Bellevue, KY
    Posts
    81

    Default

    Beautiful uke. I have some spalted beech and I thought about building with it but chickened out. Now I'm rethinking it.

    It makes great cam clamps too.

    beech clamps.jpg
    Victor Jones
    Blue Frog Ukuleles

    Bellevue, KY
    bluefrogvic@gmail.com
    http://bluefrogukes.weebly.com/index.html

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Northen California
    Posts
    353

    Default

    Very nice. I really like the rosette.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    JoCo, NC (near Raleigh)
    Posts
    3,565

    Default

    Looks great! Let's hear it!
    Current Stable:
    -Iriguchi Tenor "Weeble" - Bb, SC SMU
    -Blue Star 19" baritone Konablaster - DGBE
    -KPK pineapple SLN-GCEA
    -Cocobolo 16" SC#1-gCEA, SC SLMU
    -Ono #42 19" baritone, Ab, LW
    -Imua iET-Bb, M600
    -Covered Bridge CLN pineapple - Eb cuatro, SC XLL
    -Rogue bari
    -Bonanza super tenor, FBL cFAD
    -Kala KSLNG-C Lava
    Once upon a time:
    RISA Concert Stick
    Bruko sop. custom #6
    Lanikai lam hog bari
    Kala SLNG
    Bruko bari
    Gold Tone BUT
    Ohana TKS-15E


    Jim's Blog

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Cumbria, NW England
    Posts
    438

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Diogenes Blue View Post
    Beautiful uke. I have some spalted beech and I thought about building with it but chickened out. Now I'm rethinking it.

    It makes great cam clamps too.

    beech clamps.jpg
    You make some great looking ukes so I'm sure that you could do something interesting with spalted beech.

    I love your wooden cam clamps but my intentions to make some have come to nothing: Irwin F clamps are so cheap and easy to use.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Bellevue, KY
    Posts
    81

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by greenscoe View Post
    You make some great looking ukes so I'm sure that you could do something interesting with spalted beech.

    I love your wooden cam clamps but my intentions to make some have come to nothing: Irwin F clamps are so cheap and easy to use.
    Thanks, Greenscoe! I like Irwin clamps but I made these with bridge clamping in mind, which they do very well. Three of them will fit in a soprano or concert sound hole. I'll probably have to make a few longer ones for tenors and baritones.
    Last edited by Diogenes Blue; 05-11-2018 at 11:33 AM.
    Victor Jones
    Blue Frog Ukuleles

    Bellevue, KY
    bluefrogvic@gmail.com
    http://bluefrogukes.weebly.com/index.html

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Posts
    29

    Default

    Hey, looks great greenscoe.

    As an aside, I'm interested in that "Tru Oil over shellac finish" you mentioned.

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