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mainger
02-15-2016, 01:28 PM
Hi all,

Anybody know where to find a couple of nice English yew tops for sopranos? I'd like to try pairing yew with some nice walnut, but I'm having a hard time sourcing any :(

Also, in that combination, what bracing wood would you use?

Thanks!
Germain

Sven
02-15-2016, 05:16 PM
Hi Germain, try contacting Stuart Longridge in the UK. Cracking bloke and he has yew.

ProfChris
02-16-2016, 03:42 AM
What Sven said - Stuart provided me with some lovely yew.

But be careful - the dust and shavings cause me an allergic reaction which got worse each time, so I don't think I can now work with that wood. Pity, as it makes a very fine top.

Red Cliff
02-16-2016, 10:04 AM
Hi Germain

If you don't get anywhere with Stuart let me know, I'm pretty sure I have a spare set of baritone sides somewhere which will easily make a pair of tops. Probably very similar to these:

88443

chuck in ny
02-16-2016, 05:54 PM
i have a question. yew weighs 42# per cubic foot. this is in the realm of american white ash and oak.
do the heavier woods have limitations in using them for tops? a lot of lighter woods, 38#/cu.' and below, are used for tops, mahogany, walnut, hawaiian ash, cherry, and of course spruce and cedar. do the lighter woods make soundboards that are more live and speak better.

mainger
02-16-2016, 06:56 PM
Oh, yummy! That's really very pretty! Exactly how I like it. These would make a very nice uke indeed!
Thanks for the offer. I'm waiting to see if Stuart and I can work something out and I'll keep you posted. :)

Hi Germain

If you don't get anywhere with Stuart let me know, I'm pretty sure I have a spare set of baritone sides somewhere which will easily make a pair of tops. Probably very similar to these:

88443

mainger
02-16-2016, 06:56 PM
Hi Germain, try contacting Stuart Longridge in the UK. Cracking bloke and he has yew.

Thanks for the tip. I've emailed him and we're talking :)

mainger
02-16-2016, 06:57 PM
What Sven said - Stuart provided me with some lovely yew.
But be careful - the dust and shavings cause me an allergic reaction which got worse each time, so I don't think I can now work with that wood. Pity, as it makes a very fine top.
Thanks for the warning. I have a few unfinished items made of yew around the house, and never noticed anything, but I'll be careful.

mainger
02-16-2016, 07:00 PM
i have a question. yew weighs 42# per cubic foot. this is in the realm of american white ash and oak.
do the heavier woods have limitations in using them for tops? a lot of lighter woods, 38#/cu.' and below, are used for tops, mahogany, walnut, hawaiian ash, cherry, and of course spruce and cedar. do the lighter woods make soundboards that are more live and speak better.

I don't know. I have played a couple of yewkuleles, and they sounded very good, and it certainly wasnot due to my (poor) playing! It's traditionally used for lute ribs, I believe, but that may well be because it's not so easy to find even, knot-free board that are big enough to tops.

Sven
02-16-2016, 11:16 PM
Hi Germain

If you don't get anywhere with Stuart let me know, I'm pretty sure I have a spare set of baritone sides somewhere which will easily make a pair of tops. Probably very similar to these:

88443
Oooh - if Stuart helps mainger out I'd be tempted by those sides. Darn it, I shouldn't look at pics on the internet.

Sven

Timbuck
02-16-2016, 11:59 PM
There is loads of Yew on eBay like this ... just search for "Yew Timber" .. Sven will show yew how to saw it into tops.;)
http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc143/shiregreenbod/yew_zpsgzkntj4i.jpg (http://s219.photobucket.com/user/shiregreenbod/media/yew_zpsgzkntj4i.jpg.html)

mainger
02-17-2016, 12:37 AM
There is loads of Yew on eBay like this ... just search for "Yew Timber" .. Sven will show yew how to saw it into tops.;)


Thanks, but you know what, I've been an active eBay member for over 15 years, 375 impeccable transactions both buying and selling. eBay still is a place I really like. However, the only negative experiences I've had were when buying wood. Unless the supplier was a proper tonewood supplier, I've ended up with stuff which was never as usable as I hoped it would be. Perfectly good sales (ie not scams or misrepresentations), but just not what I was after. Add to that the shipping to Japan and I'm sure you'll see why I'd rather not buy a whole log :D !

Looks nice, though... Yew really does look nice.

mainger
02-17-2016, 12:37 AM
Oooh - if Stuart helps mainger out I'd be tempted by those sides. Darn it, I shouldn't look at pics on the internet.
Sven
Split it? One top for you, one top for me ? ;)

ProfChris
02-17-2016, 01:10 AM
I made this tenor guitar with yew from Stuart - the pin knots were no trouble, and the sapwood (although a little soft) was solid enough to use.

http://i429.photobucket.com/albums/qq11/ProfChris/Tenor%20guitar/20160117_153944_zpsivwox5e4.jpg

Sven
02-17-2016, 03:16 AM
Split it? One top for you, one top for me ? ;)

Yay! That's an idea I like a lot. I'd need 170x310 mm or something like that.

chuck in ny
02-17-2016, 10:19 AM
I made this tenor guitar with yew from Stuart - the pin knots were no trouble, and the sapwood (although a little soft) was solid enough to use.

http://i429.photobucket.com/albums/qq11/ProfChris/Tenor%20guitar/20160117_153944_zpsivwox5e4.jpg


that's a nice looking instrument grain reading well. how does it play? any comments on darkness or otherwise?

Pete Howlett
02-17-2016, 11:05 AM
Oo er - making a meal of this. First: anyone can get an allergic reaction to any wood. I have Makore which is meant to be am aggressive irritant. I don't find it so yet macassar ebony has me in a rash even before I've got the sand paper out! Second: you really must be aware what you are looking at on eBay. A vendor who post one image isn't being that honest. The one who puts up multiple shots of the same face is similarly being less than open. The important shot you need as a wood buyer is the end grain view. Third: These words need to appear in the description. "My father's/my business's old stock". The word 'new' will give you a clear idea to avoid the purchase unless you are willing to season it yourself. Just be sensible and buy from Stuart if he is prepared to sell!

I'd buy this plank from ebay: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ENGLISH-YEW-TIMBER-WANEY-EDGE-DIY-WOODCRAFTS-1195-L-x-283-W-x-33-D-426-/172091429219

Red Cliff
02-18-2016, 01:00 AM
So I found that spare set of sides - free to anyone who wants them as long as you pay postage:

88475

Giles.

SeanB1
02-18-2016, 04:42 AM
Hi Giles,

PM sent

mainger
02-18-2016, 12:39 PM
Giles, Sven and I would love to split these between ourselves, would you be open to cutting them in two for us?


So I found that spare set of sides - free to anyone who wants them as long as you pay postage:

88475

Giles.

Red Cliff
02-18-2016, 01:06 PM
Ok, so Mainger and Sven would like the sides half each, and Sean would like some Yew action also. Clearly one set of sides doesn't go three ways, so I am happy to part with this set also.

88482

But this set cost me 30 so I would need to charge the same to cover the costs. The dimensions (mm) are marked on the sets. Between the 3 of you doo you want to work out who is having what and then I will send accordingly. I foresee many trips to the post office.

Giles

SeanB1
02-18-2016, 07:31 PM
:-)

Ok so as the most junior member here and also third to the party, I'm happy to take left-overs. I am just starting out building, so really just interested in playing with different woods and trying stuff out.

Mainger and Sven should get first choice at what ever suits them and if there's wood left, I would enjoy enough for a tenor top. Not even sure I could do the wood justice.

mainger
02-19-2016, 12:58 AM
Wow, Giles, that's a really kind thing to do. This is how the internet can be amazing. Amazing.

Sean, "Seniority" has no meaning in my eyes. However, we're talking about soprano-sized pieces here, I don't think that there's enough for a tenor top.

The B&S set looks wonderful. I was looking for a yew top, but I have a nice piece of old fir that could make an interesting combination. Ooh, so many ideas, so little time!

Sven, what is your pick?

Germain

Beau Hannam Ukuleles
02-19-2016, 04:46 AM
im looking for Yew burl veneer if anyone knows of a place

Andyk
02-19-2016, 05:11 AM
I have a massive yew tree at the bottom of my garden. Reading this thread makes me want to buy a chainsaw ... but I'm in a conservation area so would need permission from the Pope's wife to cut it down and we all know that ain't gonna happen. Guess the squirrels and birds can live in it for a few more decades/centuries.

Sven
02-19-2016, 05:13 AM
I'd happily pay good money for half a set of sides. That'd give me a book matched soprano top which is exactly what I want. I could also buy a whole set of sides but I think posting them cut in half is easier.

Giles, if you want to save on postage you can ship to me and I'll forward to Germain in Japan.

Sorry if this turned out to be trouble for you as you only were kind enough to offer those left over sides! Never whisper "free wood" in a room full of builders...

Sven

RPA_Ukuleles
02-19-2016, 05:29 AM
im looking for Yew burl veneer if anyone knows of a place

I'm looking for Burl Ives veneer, should be silver and gold.

;)

Michael N.
02-19-2016, 07:13 AM
That's some spectacular yew that Giles has, it's obviously a very good grade.

Red Cliff
02-19-2016, 11:52 AM
OK, so the way I see it is that this was Mainger's thread, so if you want the B&S set I will send you that and then I will cut the other sides in two and send half each to Sven and Sean - does that seem to be a reasonable outcome?

Can each of you PM me your addresses and then I can get some parcels made up.

Michael N.
02-19-2016, 11:58 AM
I have a massive yew tree at the bottom of my garden. Reading this thread makes me want to buy a chainsaw ... but I'm in a conservation area so would need permission from the Pope's wife to cut it down and we all know that ain't gonna happen. Guess the squirrels and birds can live in it for a few more decades/centuries.

Yew could wait until it starts to decay and become unsafe. You might have a lengthy wait, yew is fairly long lived tree at around 500 - 600 years. It's also our churchyard tree, just as cypress is in the mediterranean countries. An instrument of yew with a cypress soundboard would be quite a thing. It would also smell divine.

Timbuck
02-19-2016, 12:26 PM
I understand that the Yew Tree is like a strawberry plant..the branches grow longer and longer until they come in contact with the ground ..then they start to root where they contact..eventually the rooted branches grow into new trees..so the original tree can evolve into many new trees.

SeanB1
02-19-2016, 02:27 PM
This really is very generous of you Giles! Thank you!

mainger
02-19-2016, 09:16 PM
Thank you so much, Giles, that's wonderfully kind. I'll PM you know.
:o