PDA

View Full Version : Fretboard help !



Caz808
01-14-2011, 12:58 PM
ALOHA UU!

I am going to have a custom ukulele built for me i will be providing all the material for the builder i now need to choose a type of wood for my fretboard . I would like a strong wood. ppl have told me about exotic woods from africa that are very hard and supposedly will no show whear and tear over time because of how hard they . My problem is since i know so little about wood i dont know how the wood will act over time such as dryin cracking changing color ect . If any of you could give me some examples of te best wood to use in your opinion and give me their pros and cons. or even point me in the right direction with a good site it would mean a lot to me. This ukulele is being built in memory of my little brother who passed away. He use to love to listen to me play that is why i have to get this perfect . Thank you to everyone who reads this .

ALOHA

CAZ

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
01-14-2011, 01:32 PM
You're choosing the wood and you "know so little about wood"? This is a discussion you should be having with your builder. Get a trusting, interactive relationship going on with him/her.
As a place to start, ebony is a traditional choice for all the qualities you are seeking.
Good luck.

Bosconian91
01-14-2011, 02:42 PM
I think you're better off having the builder find the source of wood for you. At least he knows what to look for in terms of quality and usability.

As an example, my brother chose to supply the wood for his custom road bike (Renovo) and chose to purchase some Brazillian Rosewood from eBay. It turns out that the wood he purchased was not dry enough for the job and ended up wasting his money.

EDW
01-14-2011, 03:01 PM
What Chuck says. As I was reading it I had the same thoughts. The builder would know best.

When I have had instruments built I spent a great deal of time communicating with the luthier about what would be the best choices based on his/her experiences and resources.

Michael Smith
01-14-2011, 03:42 PM
Sorry to hear of your loss. If I was the builder I wouldn't want you showing up with a lot of wood you knew little about. I have done a lot of woodworking and have had even professional building contractors send me wood that they wanted me to build doors or cabinets out of that I have had to send back and then send the replacement back. That said if you buy your wood from LMI, Stewart McDonald, Allied,
Hawaiian Hardwoods Direct or other reputable luthier suppliers you should be fine. Don't buy wood from ebay, your local lumber yard, an online bulk hardwood supplier etc. Maybe what he is saying to you is to go to a site like http://www.curlykoa.com/ and pick out a set you like. That would be ok to do.

Kekani
01-14-2011, 04:33 PM
Besides what was already recommended by Chuck (I would've said exactly the same thing), I'll throw in another slant that may or may not apply - if your builder is asking you to supply the wood as in, "yeah, supply the wood and I'll build you the instrument," depending on how serious you are on this build, you may want to find a new builder. Of course, your builder could be very experienced in any and all woods, so you may be okay.

Personally, I shy away from clients that want to supply their own wood. Shy away, not run away. The reason is, they expect the cost to go significantly down. What they don't realize, is the supplies are 1/10th to 1/20th the final cost - its all in the labor, so maybe they save $100, big deal.

Anyway, you notice your only recommendation so far is ebony. My personal favorite especially when dealing with inlays, but I only use it about 1/2 the time because for my builds, ebony doesn't always "match".

Allen
01-15-2011, 09:40 PM
I wouldn't ever accept a commission where the person supplied their own wood. Period. And I know that most luthiers that I admire their work and trust feel the same way.

I get all kinds of alarm bells going off about them apparently knowing better than I what is appropriate wood, how it was sawn and dried, if in fact it is dry when they show up with it. Then what happens if their wood just won't do what it's suppose to do? If it breaks when bending etc.

If you are getting a custom instrument then let the builder pick the wood in consultation with you. In the scheme of things wood is a very small cost in the total package. You will not be saving anything by getting it yourself. By far you are paying for their labour, skill and good name.

Caz808
01-19-2011, 10:45 AM
You're choosing the wood and you "know so little about wood"? This is a discussion you should be having with your builder. Get a trusting, interactive relationship going on with him/her.
As a place to start, ebony is a traditional choice for all the qualities you are seeking.
Good luck.

Hey Chuck thnx for the responce. i'm not a complete novice. I do know the uke prettey well i work at Puapua. I guess what i was really goin for was eveyones expierence with some out of the ordinary wood the kinda stuff you don't see all the time. Ebony was however my first choice.

MAHALO!