Monday, March 22, 2010

Soundboard Wood Ordered

The soundboard is the top of the guitar (the part of the body that has a hole). It is also the most important part of the guitar as far as wood choice, because most of the guitar's tone will come from piece. It is almost always a soft wood.

There are many choices of types of woods to choose from but most common that people use are Sitka Spruce, Engelmann Spruce, or Redwood. I've chose Sitka Spruce for the top of this guitar and will use the boards below. They are a book-matched pair...

This is a AAA grade board. The grading is based on many factors: color, stiffness, uniformity, grain count, sound response, run-out of grain, how close to quarter sawn, drying and so on...

I decided to try to order straight from the source (Alaska), to attempt to get the wood at a good price and also to deal with a company that deals directly with luthiers. I spoke with the owner on the phone and he was very helpful and I'm betting that I'll be very happy with the wood. I will put the company name and a link here if I end up being pleased with the wood. I was able to purchase 3 soundboards and bracewood for what it would cost me to purchase less than two from luthier catalogs – so I'm already pretty happy with that.

Another board I purchased AA Grade Sitka Spruce. Both of these boards are much higher grade wood that that used on my $400-450 (purchase price) charvel guitar.

A Grade Red Cedar the owner said that this was actually a higher grade board but downgraded due to color imperfections... I liked it (purchased this too) and may use it for a classical guitar after this steel stringed guitar build.

I also ordered enough brace-wood to do this guitar and maybe a couple additional guitars. Did I mention that I'm already thinking how I would do some things different on another guitar? Should I blog the second guitar?

I'm hoping the US Postal service moves quick. The place that the wood is coming from is on an island – so it needs to make a short plane-ride to the main-land, then on barge to Oregon, then through the mail... I may need to be patient – but it also means I'm kinda stuck 'til I get the wood.


  1. Impressive!

    .....Steve from poker last night

  2. Hell yes you should blog a second (or third) guitar!