The Parker Guitars Forum

General Discussion => COMMENTS & SUGGESTIONS => Topic started by: Lwinn171 on August 13, 2006, 12:46:34 AM

Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on August 13, 2006, 12:46:34 AM
I just read the bit on the Parker website about wood (in the factory tour section). I love it! As a woodworker, I am constantly digging through piles of rough lumber, looking for the "diamonds in the rough". My ability to choose great pieces of rough lumber caught the eye of my main supplier, now they set aside (or point out) cool pieces when I show up. Great guys, at the Hardwood Store of NC.(Sorry for the plug, but they by God deserve it).
 I've been thinking though...why not a cherry Fly? Why not a walnut Fly? Zebrawood? (Okay, that would cost a bit more). But seriously, there are a lot of woods to choose from. It seems to me that one of the things inherent to Parkers is a fairly bright tone. The stainless steel frets and carbon-fiber exoskeleton seem to make for an over-all emphasis on the over-tones, generally. Cherry and walnut would darken the sound a bit, mellowing it, as does the mahogany models. It would also give us some more interesting Fly finishes to look at. Cherry and walnut often have stunning figure (If you get the good stuff, with cherry...more hit and miss with walnut). The Curly cherry can be as wild as maple can get, usually more quilted than tiger-stripe. Walnut with curl is incredible, but usually limited to small areas.
  Anyway, show me the wood! Domestically grown hardwoods are available at reasonable prices (roughly the same or less than mahogany and maple-grades not withstanding). Limited editions? Custom oders? Any one else like to see a Figured cherry fly?

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: loumt123 on August 13, 2006, 02:44:59 AM
a splated maple fly...or...Paduak...or my favorite...

BUCKEYE BURL [:p]


mmmm exotic woods
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: 908ssp on August 13, 2006, 08:42:43 AM
Ken did a lot of experimenting in 1993 and 94 with different woods. I think he decided what was working best and what was the most consistent. This is really important because you don't want to put a lot of work into a guitar only to find that particular piece of wood doesn't sound like another. Also I read that Ken used ceder for time and half the staff was allergic so he had to stop. It is reported that the guitars with a redwood neck can be too boomy for example while others were fine. Figured redwood for the body would be amazing. John P has mentioned that different woods are a prime example of what they are willing to do in the custom shop. For me the added cost and wait of custom is hard to endure, but I may do it yet primarily to get a thicker neck.
[^]

Alex

(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/BoogeClassicTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DSCN1321TN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DeluxeCageWreckTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/ParkerBassTN.jpg)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on August 13, 2006, 11:59:43 PM
Redwood, or any other burl, is a bit difficult to machine, although not impossible, but it's hard to find (ie. expensive as %$#@!) pieces big enough to do a whole guitar body. Difficult to machine, because the grain runs every possible direction, swirling in all 3 dimensions (maybe more, LOL).
   That's why burl is most often used as a veneer, making the most use out of the tiny portion available from any given tree (usually the base, or stump of the tree will display this figure). The grain problem also means an unpredictable (stability-wise) product, done in solid form (like a one-piece body, say). Using it as a veneer allows a stable substrate, of stable straight grained wood, to stabilize the wild grain.
  Two things worry me about mahogany, though. And Parker has made plaenty of mahogany models, mine (2001 Classic) included. Problem 1: There are, like 60 or 70 species of mahogany, from different places, around the globe. They differ more than you'd think, Asian mahogany's being lighter and easier to carve, but less stable and strong. Less dense and lightly colored, too. There's a lot of this being sold as mahogany (with no disclaimer). The better mahogany comes from (you guessed it) the rain forrest of Central America. The very best comes from Cuba (if Castro dies and we can get it, Parker should buy ALL THEY CAN, and SO SHOULD I). African mahogany is good as well, but usually more brown than red. So, problem one: What Kind of mahogany? From where?
  Problem 2: What is the harvesting doing to the local landscape, wherever it's coming from. Mahogany doesn't grow in stands. It grows about 2 or maybe 3 trees to an acre, and that's a GOOD acre. 75 acres might only have a dozen trees. Or none at all. It won't grow any closer to itself than that. The tree's are huge, but so is the demand, and they take 50 plus years to mature. This means alot of other stuff gets cleared to grab a money (I mean mahogany) tree. This worries me. Some forrests are well managed, others not so. Certification seems dodgy, and hard to verify, although there are some folks out there dedicated to doing so. It is my hope that Parker is careful about their sourcing.
  A domestic hardwood would solve all these issues. I'll still take all the Cuban mahogany I can get my hands on. (It's actually worth the moral sacrifice, so beautiful). So, like any woodworker, I'm a hypocrite. But it does worry me.
  Thanks for reading my diatribe...

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Bill on August 14, 2006, 07:02:50 AM
That was a good kind of rant.[:)]

Of course Martin (and others) have come out with a series of "rain forest safe" woods that are supposedly certified to come from "managed" forests so we can all pay a little extra and feel better about cutting down a 100 plus year old tree.

I don't mean to sound cynical as I do think its a start and appreciate the effort and it gets awareness out there that with the world population explosion, it is our individual and national responcibility to replenish what we consume, recycle what we excrete, and generally become "carbon neutral". Of course only a minority of populations will do this voluntarily as most are fine to shoving the problems they create off to the next generation to wollow in. Of course such irresponsible action goes against all conservative ideals, all liberal ideals, and most of the world religion's ideals. But if nothing else, we humans have used our big brains to become great rationalizers.

No doubt Haiti had Mahogony every bit as good as Cuba. Overpopulation (and world demand) resulted in total deforestation that is directly responsible to the poverty and misery there. A microcosm of things to come on a grand (worldwide) scale?

I know this started with wood. How can I turn this rant back on topic? I'll close by saying(to no one in particular)

Put that in your burl and smoke it [:D] [:D] [:D]

(burl is also used for pipes of course).

Custom '03 Hardtail Artist ; Fly Deluxe 2000; Gibson ES137; 1974 K.Yari DY85; Waterproof SchecterDisposable; Martin Backpacker/paddle combo;LarriveeParlor
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Bill on August 14, 2006, 07:09:55 AM
PS. Sanctamonius ass that I am, I'm almost sure I can rationalize with the best of them....[}:)]

Custom '03 Hardtail Artist ; Fly Deluxe 2000; Gibson ES137; 1974 K.Yari DY85; Waterproof SchecterDisposable; Martin Backpacker/paddle combo;LarriveeParlor
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on August 14, 2006, 01:17:40 PM
I agree with your points about politics and religion, Bill. Greed at the expense of the only conveniently located planet we can survive on, goes against practically every true ideology. There are those from every category whose greed outweighs what we all know to be right. They do so to the detriment of us all, and especially for those to come. I'll be the first to admit, I've used wood in many pieces of furniture that I can't vouch for, in these kinds of terms. We're not talking about much wood, really; and sure, it was already cut and dried before I showed up to buy it (rationalizing begins)... It's true, though, that manufacturers dealing with large quantities of wood, have the buying power to effect change. The guitar industry (because of the few who've shown interest) has done more than the furniture industry, which only discusses the topic in magazines devoted to the individual woodworker. So much of the furniture today is coming from the 3rd world, who knows what's going on with those forests. I can only imagine.
  So, I've made the switch to using "primarily" domestically grown hardwoods in my furniture. I try to minimize any use that is quetionable. And I planted 3 trees this year. I plan to plant more this coming year. Maybe by the time I die, I can replace the wood I've used, and then some...

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Bill on August 14, 2006, 05:58:19 PM
Lawrence,I know we always tend to agree. [:)]

Like you,I also love beautiful (exotic) wood. It only makes good since to treat it as a sustainable resource (as well as a living organism).

Of course human encroachment (over population of humans resulting in loss of habitat for non humans) is the primary reason for deforestation. The increased consumptive demand (more people will desire more wood products) is the secondary reason. In fact, managed forests for sustainable lumbar is only possible when/where land is more valuble for lumber than it is for farmland or condos. In that since, its good to keep demand (price) for lumber high in developed countries. Only if demand is high does it make since to replant. Unfortounatly the reverse is true for "developing countries".

Controlling Human population is the ultimate key. War and pestulance has historically served that purpose well. If we wish less war and pestulence we need to "evolve" a collective conscience that understands the importance of population control.

Bottom line: Better to have excess guitars than excess kids [:)]

Planting a meaninful tree is one of the most gracious and selfless acts modern man can do. It will be of no use to you. Only to those who come after. My hats off to you. [:)]



Custom '03 Hardtail Artist ; Fly Deluxe 2000; Gibson ES137; 1974 K.Yari DY85; Waterproof SchecterDisposable; Martin Backpacker/paddle combo;LarriveeParlor
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on August 15, 2006, 01:13:40 AM
Bill,
On the bright side, due to global warming, I'll soon be able to grow Cuban mahogany and rosewood right here in NC. I'll have to get a summer (spring/fall) home in Nova Scotia, to beat the heat, but I'll be able to afford it with just one tree!

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: uburoibob on August 15, 2006, 06:56:15 AM
Lawrence. you are underestimating global warming. I have a cuban mahogany tree already growing in Rochester, NY! It's crowding out the palm trees. [;)][}:)]

Bob

2000 Parker Fly Artist Custom Hardtail  *  1999 Parker Fly Deluxe w/DiBurro Roland Mod Metallic Red  * 1998 Fly Classic in Transparent Dark Blue (thanks, Darren!) •  Now on a signature reduction program! Just the Flies, maam. *  www.rtmadvertising.com
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Bill on August 15, 2006, 04:34:58 PM
Quote
Originally posted by uburoibob

Lawrence. you are underestimating global warming. I have a cuban mahogany tree already growing in Rochester, NY! It's crowding out the palm trees. -- Bob[;)][}:)]


Bob, Are you sure those are Palm Trees? [:D]



Custom '03 Hardtail Artist ; Fly Deluxe 2000; Gibson ES137; 1974 K.Yari DY85; Waterproof SchecterDisposable; Martin Backpacker/paddle combo;LarriveeParlor
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: uburoibob on August 15, 2006, 08:38:37 PM
Yeah - Palm trees. You cut em, dry em, smoke em, and they make you feel funny. Palm trees!

Bob

2000 Parker Fly Artist Custom Hardtail  *  1999 Parker Fly Deluxe w/DiBurro Roland Mod Metallic Red  * 1998 Fly Classic in Transparent Dark Blue (thanks, Darren!) •  Now on a signature reduction program! Just the Flies, maam. *  www.rtmadvertising.com
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: GuitarGuy510 on August 15, 2006, 09:06:24 PM
Another thing to keep in mind is that if you use some of those other woods, you could probably kiss the whole 4-6 lb Fly goodbye, which is part of the appeal of the Fly! [:D]  FWIW, my Thorn will be made out of a 1-piece walnut body and a bookmatched HIGHLY figured FLAMED WALNUT top!!!  The body is chambered to reduce the weight, and aside from the fact that I wouldn't feel safe with a guitar that expensive on stage, it will probably never leave my house due to the weight even after the chambering! [;)]

-[matt]-

My Gear:
Thorn # 153 (in progress), Parker Fly Deluxe and Nitefly-M, PRS CE-24

Egnater M4, Mesa 50/50, EarCandy BuzzBombs, Mesa Thiele (EVM12-L)

PumaBoard #11, HBE Psilocybe, Boss DD-20, BYOC Delay and Deluxe Chorus, Line 6 Verbzilla
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on August 16, 2006, 02:30:05 AM
Walnut and cherry both weigh less than maple and mahogany. Show us a pic of your Thorn when you get it, though... sounds beautiful...

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on August 18, 2006, 03:48:27 AM
Back to the different woods side of this thread, I totally agree, and I actually had a similar thread going somewhere else on here.  There are a host of different woods out there that would make awesome guitars for Parker.  908 mentioned Ken having done a lot of work with other woods, it may be possible and I don't doubt it, but I would largely bet that Ken's ultimate choice to use Poplar, Mahogany, and Maple came down to marketing and business.  And as for the added weight of exotics, it is possible, but with such a small piece of wood that is in a Parker, I would bet that really heavy lumbers wouldn't influence the weigh by more than about a pound.  Another thing that gets me is that we keep hearing from people that the custom shop is willing to use different woods, but has anyone actually ever seen one?  I would love to see a fly made from something else.  There was one bronze fly variety for a time on Roman's site that was what looked like curly walnut or perhaps figured bubinga in burst of sort.  Really gorgeous.  It's around somewhere here on the site, as I think I had a link to the pic up somewhere.  But what gets me is, not only do we hear about these guitars and never see them, but we're also told that the custom shop is really big $.  I've never fully understood this coming from smaller sized manufacturers, and make no mistake Parker while still growing is no where near the size of most of the other brand names.  In fact, to a large extent their guitars are still very hand made, which is why I don't understand the premium $ standpoint.  To my knowledge they aren't really running a production line facility although now with the move to US Music that may have changed.  Fact is that these exotic lumbers, take Zebrawood for instance wouldn't cost any more than a piece of mild flame maple, and when you talk about the actual $ involved we're talking single digits.  Most of the cost assoiciated with custom shop instruments and products comes from the fact that an object as to be removed from the production line and therefore individual consideration has to be put forth for it. A friend of mine once wanted to order a custom bass from Ibanez, all he wanted was no fret board markers, less work right?  Well they wanted almost $800 extra for that, really rediculous.  PRS will charge 10k for a private stock, and the only differences are usually about a $20 more piece of wood and sometimes fancier materials for the birds.  Some companies have their reasons, and some have justifiable ones, but in my opinion most companies don't bother, or try to charge so much for custom work that it is used as a deterrant simply so they don't have to interupt the normal operational flow.  Now, that rant withstanding, if anyone out there has a custom Parker please post pics, everyone wants to see them, in fact, I really think that Parker should start a small photo gallery section of their custom shops the same way that PRS has a section dedicated to Private Stock photos.  Aside from a few cool paint job Parkers, I have only seen three really interesting different parkers, the one I mentioned above and two natural amazing flame maple supremes, and I even visited the factory. Anyway, sorry to make it a long post, but like Lwinn I've always been very dissappointed at this aspect.  Hell they can use Bubinga and Mappa Burl on the P series, but the premium line gets Tulipwood (aka a stainted instead of painted deluxe) and butternut, nice but far from interesting.

Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Bill on August 18, 2006, 07:17:43 AM
Good points KW.

Do you remember seeing the pics of the Fly Koa ?

Custom '03 Hardtail Artist ; Fly Deluxe 2000; Gibson ES137; 1974 K.Yari DY85; Waterproof SchecterDisposable; Martin Backpacker/paddle combo;LarriveeParlor; numerous borrowed amps
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: 21st Century Schizoid Man on August 18, 2006, 07:20:01 AM
I think you hit the nail when you said they " charge so much for custom work that it is used as a deterrant simply so they don't have to interupt the normal operational flow". That is probably true. As a former manufacturing guy I can tell you that anything that interrupts the manufacturing flow is EXTREMELY expensive and if it keeps happening will be a very definate Career Terminating Move. :^)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: 908ssp on August 18, 2006, 10:00:05 AM
KW you make many good points. I have to wonder if Parker isn't missing the boat with the wood angle. On other boards there is a near fetish desire for fancy woods. It is beyond rational but that doesn't mean they will pay through the nose for it. Parker has an advantage I think in that the sculpting really shows off the figure in the wood. Also with the carbon/glass back they don't have to use the fancy wood in the neck and the neck/body join is always hidden. I do think they should consider using more mahogany in the neck I think it plays a huge part in the sound of a Mojo. Just adding fancy wood might attract a slue of people who are looking for fancy wood over everything else.

Koa body with a mahogany neck and Duncan pickups would be my first suggestion. [8D]

[^]

Alex

(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/BoogeClassicTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DSCN1321TN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DeluxeCageWreckTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/ParkerBassTN.jpg)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on August 18, 2006, 11:48:35 PM
Kurt, I agree!! Many good points, there. The weight issue is minimal at the most. The cost issue is marginal (as you say, single digits for a guitar sized chunk). I've never understood why companies treat curly and figured woods like gold. The actual cost difference (in relation to the ammount it takes to make a guitar is negligable. I will say that something hard to work (Birdseye maple comes to mind, very hard to carve stuff) may justify extra cost (tool wear and time are factors). But it's rarely justifiable.
I once read that woodworkers prefer cherry to cigarettes (a bold statement), it's so easy to work, and walnut's about the same. If Parker can make basswood and poplar sound good, I don't see why cherry and walnut wouldn't be great choices. As a woodworker, I never touch basswood or poplar, mostly 'cause they aren't attractive woods.
Curly cherry looks like this...(http://[IMG]http://i88.photobucket.com/albums/k161/dlwinn171/floodbeezlewood007_edited-1.jpg)[/img]
The dark stripe is brazilian cherry (given to me as scrap from a flooring job), and is the corner of a mirror with carved edges (so you don't have to wonder too hard about what you're looking at.[:D]

You can understand why I want to see a Parker made outta that, right?  

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on October 09, 2006, 08:58:43 PM
Speaking of woods, and global warming (no, I'm not going political), my deluxe and artist are flavored by tubes, fx loops, blue alnicos, neos and greenbacks, but ultimately its the wood in the cabs, that I thirst for.  My Leslies are quality, naked but heavy ply, while light solid dove jointed dry pine, 1/2 inch cabs, with bouncy ply speaker boards seem to give a sound alternative to 3/4 inch ply, tolex, and particle board standards we all know and use.  Emory amps has a very light mahogahy cab I'd love to try.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: ChicagoKid on October 09, 2006, 11:23:07 PM
quote:
Originally posted by cmpkllyrslf96

a splated maple fly...or...Paduak...or my favorite...

BUCKEYE BURL [:p]


mmmm exotic woods




Would you be interested in a PM20 made from Spalted Maple? There's less than 10 left on the planet. Not a Fly, but very "woody". [:)]

www.USCustomShop.com <coming soon>
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: David Tomkins on October 10, 2006, 02:15:52 AM
quote:
Originally posted by bembamboo

Speaking of woods, and global warming (no, I'm not going political), my deluxe and artist are flavored by tubes, fx loops, blue alnicos, neos and greenbacks, but ultimately its the wood in the cabs, that I thirst for.  My Leslies are quality, naked but heavy ply, while light solid dove jointed dry pine, 1/2 inch cabs, with bouncy ply speaker boards seem to give a sound alternative to 3/4 inch ply, tolex, and particle board standards we all know and use.  Emory amps has a very light mahogahy cab I'd love to try.


???  surely this is eric johnson territory? (ie so miniscule a difference as to be inaudible to the ear).  I can understand that the physics may back up what you are saying, but can you really hear it?
feel free to correct me without taking offence!!
which way round do you have the polarity on your cables?
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bno on October 10, 2006, 09:27:32 AM
quote:
Originally posted by bembamboo

Speaking of woods, and global warming (no, I'm not going political), my deluxe and artist are flavored by tubes, fx loops, blue alnicos, neos and greenbacks, but ultimately its the wood in the cabs, that I thirst for.  My Leslies are quality, naked but heavy ply, while light solid dove jointed dry pine, 1/2 inch cabs, with bouncy ply speaker boards seem to give a sound alternative to 3/4 inch ply, tolex, and particle board standards we all know and use.  Emory amps has a very light mahogahy cab I'd love to try.

www.KWCabs.com
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 11, 2006, 12:43:36 PM
I just found an interesting article online about mahogany, which seems to back up some of my earlier assertions, and contradict others (somewhat). So here's a link to a scientific look at mahogany repoduction...

http://www.scienceblog.com/community/older/1996/A/199600076.html

Very interesting stuff for those so inclined





Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on October 19, 2006, 03:00:03 AM


David, I think I am serious.  Offense, not offence, at least here in the US.  Anyway, I agree EJ is anal, but the amp makes more difference than the guitar, and the speaker might make more difference than the amp!  ( I may have misspelled differance, I can never tell).  Weight is also a part of my equation, in terms of portability (concerning QCabs).  Buzz Feinten got me started thinking (not personally) about this when he introduced his stereo cabs awhile back, that were lightweight, 1/2 inch, flexible and were reviewed to have  slaughtered GP's test Fender vintage cab with blues or greenbacks.  I noticed my best sounding cab was an old, naked dry pine fender bassman cab cut in half.  Also, tweeds are famous for bouncy baffle boards.  So, since speaker technology is seriously behind the times, I felt Buzz was doing for cabs what KP did for guitars, which was to introduce the first real and meaningful innovations since LPs and Strats/Teles were designed. Buzz just could not patent his cab tricks. Maybe we should start a fresh thread.




Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: 908ssp on October 19, 2006, 08:52:43 AM
I had an opportunity to test a Buzz Feinten at my home against a couple of my cabs and I was not terribly impressed. It was light and small and didn't sound bad but wasn't my flavor. Of course I had spent a couple years buying and selling speakers and cabs until I arrived at what I have now so for it to come and blow my stuff a way wasn't likely. I found it lacked the bass of my cabs and the over all warmth was lacking what I am used to. Nothing earth shattering and no reason for me to pursue it any more.

[^]

Alex

(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/BoogeClassicTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DSCN1321TN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DeluxeCageWreckTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/ParkerBassTN.jpg)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on October 19, 2006, 08:01:35 PM
Hello again all, this topic has been one of my favorites to participate it, and I'm very surprised that I missed so many of these great posts.  I'd like to take a moment to quickly comment on a few of the posts since my last here.  
   First, Cherry, it's an awesome wood and can be found in many different flavors.  Personally, I love when you get cherry that's right on the edge of heartwood and sapwood, you get this light dark contrast that is really beautiful.  Cherry has found it's way into musical instruments, but it has been rather limited.  It can be very pretty, works very nicely, and is not a bad tone wood.  Personally, I would say that it doesn't have it's own unique tone, think of it as a good all around sound like, poplar or basswood or alder.  It's not quite as recognizable in terms of tone as mahogany or maple.  Next, Buckeye Burl! Now that would be a sick looking Parker, man I'd like to see that.  
    While on this topic, to whoever mentioned workability, you are absolutely right, some woods, usually highly figured woods, can be quite challenging to work, and the curves of a Parker could pose some problems.  Make no mistake though, Maple, which they use for a couple of models is no joy to work.  Most woods, that exhibit flame or quilt figure, get that figure because the grain changes direction and likewise the light is refracted differently, causeing the look.  However, when grain direction changes it makes it very hard to machine smoothly.  
    In response to Wilmington, I know weight was a huge concern for Ken, and you are totally correct in saying that it is difficult to find "good" wood.  In terms of size though, of the more popular exotics, some might have been achievable as 1 piece but almost all could have been two pieces.  Most of them would actually look better bookmatched, imagine a chevron zebrawood, that would be really nice.  The reason it surprises me though, is this.  I wouldn't expect these extoics to be used for normal production models.  They already have that, and Ken achieved his goal of lightness with it already.  But another line of "Exotic Flys" would have it's own little niche, as "the" ultimate Parker line.  When I was at the factory, I was introduced to Parker's wonderful CNC machine for the body routing.  With a wood like Poplar, this machine probably works like butter, with a really gnarly grained wood I am sure it is easy to waste wood, and that is probably why so much was scrapped.  It's an incredibly hard body shape to reproduce without the aid of CNC machines, and hence why there could be problems.  Make no mistake though, most of a Parker is crafted by hand with a couple of exceptions such as the body shape roughing.  
    Finally in response to David Tomkins, believe it or not, at least in my opinion, the use of different materials in a speaker cabinet does make a difference.  And Bembamboo brings up an important aspect of wall thickness which can also make a big difference, and I wouldn't put either of these outside the audio receptor capabilites of a middle of the road "ear".  If I put two of my cabinets one made from maple and one from a rosewood loaded with the exact same speakers and equipment chain you would hear a difference.  I'm not saying it's going to be a "wow" difference, but the difference will be easily detected.  For us, that's a great thing, because we can really tailor the tone the user wants.  Drivers of course make an even bigger difference, but if you've found a driver you like you can then tailor around that too.  Finally, Bembam, notices an audible difference with the 1/2 vs 3/4" walls, and also with the pine.  This is quite simple when you think about it, first off, most species of Pine are very light in weight, even lighter that Poplar, and likewise they ressonate more, and the same goes for a thinner piece of any wood.  This can be highly desirable for some who like snappy sound bell like clean, and highly undesirable for the person who likes tight focused low end to play hard rock with.  The point is, they will sound differently, and it gives you many options to find the tone "you" want.  With standard good quality cabinets, they're all made of virtually the same material, void free birch plywood.  It's a good material cause, it comes in large sizes, is relatively cheap, is easy to work with, and the most important reason, because it's very predictable.  When you take two identical Marshall cabinets off the wall (not that they'd be on a wall lol), and close your eyes, guess what, they're both going to sound 99.9999% the same, you won't tell the difference, but grab and old vintage marshall that was made with hardwood from the 60s or something like it and compare and guess what you'll hear a difference, it might not be a difference you like, but there will be one.  
    Threads like this are great in my opinion, because a large number of musicans know nothing or very little about what the equipment they are using is made of and how it works.  I'm not trying to bad mouth anyone, it's just the truth, and it goes with saying that many musicans are of the "artistic" mind and it makes sense that they would not be as involved with the technical side of equipment.  By no means am I saying everyone, cause I'm a perfect example otherwise.  Anyway, sorry to make it such a long post, I could talk forever about this stuff, take care, and anyone who might have a question feel free to email me directly too.  Thanks.


Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 22, 2006, 11:15:24 PM
Great post, Kurt... Sure, it took two adult beverages to get through, but I was going to drink them either way. I agree that wood choices mean a lot in tonal terms, and there's no reason to think the speaker cabinet wouldn't benefit greatly from tonally distinct woods. I'm planning to make a cabinet or two, myself, and am thinking about just that.

Anyway, it's been great to have your input on the forum, and particularly on this thread I started. From one wood nerd to another, cheers, and here's to adult beverage #3.

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on October 23, 2006, 12:07:16 AM
Lol, yeah, sorry about that, I'm sure you understand, I really can talk about this stuff forever, but something tells me that a lot of the people who are actually viewing this thread probably find it interesting enough to take a moment and see what people have to say.  BTW Lawrence, do you use Koa at all in your work?  I ask because I love Koa, and I've been trying hard to find a reasonable quality source.  I think Bob Taylor has bought every felled tree in Hawaii!!!

Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Bill on October 23, 2006, 07:10:47 AM
Yeah, love the thread and both your posts. [:)]

I've been dreaming about a Kojo Mojo. A custom "KoJo" [:p]

Jamie said they could do it but its a bit too rich for me right now.

I was thinking of a satin type finish. He had recommended a non poly (oiled) finish which sounds yummy.

But then I started wondering if that would lend itself to more humidity problems?

Also, most acoustic Koa guitars still have spruce tops to keep them from being too dark tonally. Would a Koa Mojo be too muddy sounding tonally ? Or would it sound pretty much like a mahog Mojo?

Guesses anyone?


Custom '03 Hardtail Artist ; Fly Deluxe 2000; Gibson ES137; 1974 K.Yari DY85; Waterproof SchecterDisposable; Martin Backpacker/paddle combo;LarriveeParlor;VoxAD30VT
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 23, 2006, 02:23:37 PM
Kurt and Bill,

Open two for this one...

No, I've never used koa. It's just too expensive and hard to find to justify in furniture work, and very few people (who aren't musicians) seem to want it incorporated into their furniture. The most practical way to work with Koa seems to be to move to Hawaii (sounds practical, eh?). Not much of it leaves the islands, and it's quite expensive when it does (especially the better figured stuff). I've seen some on ebay, and you can get it from places like Luthier's Merchantile, but it is pricey. I've never seen it on the cheap.

When I bought my Larivee Parlor guitar, I got it from a small acoustic dealer in Brevard NC. They had the Parlor model in several wood choices (back and sides, spruce tops on every one). Maple, mahogany, cherry, walnut, koa, and rosewood. So I got to compare tones in a fairly controlled way (same model, top etc... just different back and side wood). The koa was my 2nd favorite, nice and warm, great tone. The rosewood (which I got) only edged it out with slightly better clarrity in the bass, and a bit more projection. Just a little tighter bass response. The koa was more balanced than the mahogany, with a little better high end response, and more articulate mids. The cherry and walnut were nice, but a little dark in an acoustic (although I think it would be great in a Fly, with the natural brightness they tend to have). I think a koa Fly would be brilliant, tonally and aesthetically. I also think it would make a great speaker cabinet wood choice. As much as I love the look of koa, it would be wasted in a furniture project, in my opinion. True tonewoods should not be used to make a dining room table, when it could be used to make several guitars, or other acoustically driven designs (like speaker cabs).

Spruce and cedar are the only woods generally used for soundboards on acoustics, because nothing else works as well, and spruce is the standard. It tends to hold up better, over the years, than cedar. Most people tend to think it sounds better (although classical guitars often have cedar tops and can sound great in that application).

I don't know much about koa, in terms of its harvesting and reforestation, but it is an outstanding wood, tonally. And it would make a gorgeous Fly. It wouldn't sound muddy at all. I suspect it would sound better than anything they use for the standard Fly's (even mahogany, like mine, which I love!). I say go for it, Bill. [^]

As for the finish, Bill, I wouldn't go with an oiled, rubbed finish. A harder finish (poly, which is harder, or lacquer, harder still) can be rubbed to a satin and will give the wood the protection it needs, from humidity and dings and scratches. Oiled wood looks great, and I use it on most of my furniture, but I wouldn't want it on a guitar. You can use a coat or two of oil, thinned by half to insure deeper penetration into the wood (which would really make the grain "pop" ) and then topcoat with something harder and buff that to satin, and that would be best, methinks.[8D]


Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on October 24, 2006, 12:49:08 AM
First off Lawrence, right on with the finish comments at the end.  Oil finishes, in my opinion are not good options for any musical instruments.  They just have such little durability.  As for the Koa, Parker's already done this.  You need to check out Michael Mozarts Koa fly, search for it on the forum he has it up here with some links to it, although I remember the pics didn't show off the figure he said it has.  If you don't know him, he is the featured artist, has been for quite a while, on the main page.  He has a band called Oppera with Martika.  I met Michael last year (I think) when they were on tour with Pat Benetar and he was really psyched about the Koa fly Parker was building for him, and we were actually talking about matching Koa speaker cabinets, but that was just before he signed with Randall, so it goes.  I was just dissappointed that I didn't get to see the Koa fly as he had to cancel his NY leg of their tour this year, I was really looking forward to checking it out.  I belive he also has a very unique "spanish" fly or nylon fly as they call it now, it is fretless and I think with an epoxy finished macassar ebony board.  Another one of my favorite woods.  Back to Koa, Lawrence I have to disagree a little bit, Koa certainly does find its way into high end furniture, but it is rare simply because of the price, it's up there.  It's not very popular but often times when customers get a look at it, they want it, the highly figured variety of course.  It's also very popular in small products like, jewelry boxes and the like.  It's a shame, it's a really pretty wood, but the music industry has ruined it for woodworkers out there, because in the luthier world woods are highly over priced and none is a better example than Koa.  This stuff should sell for about $20 a board foot for AAA-AAAA figure, and it's very hard to find it for that usually it goes for three times that.  Same goes for quilted maple, it should be about $12 and it's really hard to find for that, it takes some leg work.  You also hit the nail on the head with Koa's tone, it's really a great complex tone that little else is similar to it.  Macassar is another amazing tone wood that you don't see very often in guitars, workability is hard, very expensive, and usually too small for two pieces, and virtually never 1 piece, but oh my, what a tone.  There are quite a few others, but Koa is certainly an great tone wood.  If you haven't already seen them, you should check out Taylor's new T5 Custom which had a Koa top, an awesome guitar in it's own respect.

Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 24, 2006, 10:57:08 AM
Kurt,

Your right that some koa ends up as furniture. I actually know a guy who worked for a cabinetmaker in Hawaii, and they used mostly koa. It's just not practical for me as there isn't a supplier near me. I have to be able to pick through a stack to be happy about the wood I'm using, and paying through the nose for something I can't see firsthand isn't a good option for what I do. It is incredible looking stuff, though. It may be that people here in the south have different tastes, and that's why no one's ever asked about koa. Cherry, walnut and mahogany are common requests. Maple is popular too. Oak and pine are out of fashion, it seems (I despise oak and pine as furniture woods, personally). With the right client, I can sometimes get them into some other options. I've used purpleheart, zebrawood, ipe`, andiroba, jatoba... all kinds of stuff. If you find a good source for koa, I might try ordering some. Let me know...

Mick,

 That's cool! I'm going to try to find some pics of the koa Fly Kurt mentioned.

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Nigel Tufnel on October 28, 2006, 05:10:56 PM
Have a look at some seriously breathtaking wood, fellas! www.edromanguitars.com/wood/spalted.htm
Enjoy, but be sure you put on a bib before you click the link!
Nigel

www.myspace.com/guitarosaur

Owner/Operator:
PM20 Trans Black Flame
PM20 Pro
Nitefly SA
P-42 Blem (!)
"New" '65 Galanti
Trace Elliot amps
Line 6 ToneCore effects
Coming Soon: 2006 Fly Artist!
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: 908ssp on October 28, 2006, 05:41:34 PM
You know of course that is fungus growing in the wood?

(http://www.edromanguitars.com/resources/images/qsgbodsm45.jpg)

Alex

(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/BoogeClassicTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DSCN1321TN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/DeluxeCageWreckTN.jpg)(http://home.comcast.net/~908ssp/ParkerBassTN.jpg)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 29, 2006, 12:27:15 AM
Yeah, I've always seen spalted maple as rotting, cut into boards before the insects and fungus and rot took over completely. It's pretty, in a way, but not something I'd use. I could be totally wrong about this, it's just the impression I've always gotten from it.

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: sfw on October 29, 2006, 10:17:44 AM
Hey guys. I don't know if you remember the custom koa's that Parker made for Michael Mozart of Oppera www.oppera.net but there was a lot of discussion and some pics of it. They also did a Parker Poster with the koa parker custom and Martika. See http://forums.parkerguitars.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=1122&whichpage=1&SearchTerms=mozart

It's a very good looking guitar. I recently picked up a Koa neck with M.Ebony fingerboard for a strat project I keep playing with. Wow really good looking and nice rounding and resonant. I would highly recommend it as a great tone wood. But alas, it is certainly expensive.

- Scott

P6 Black (on its way)
PM10; PM20; Franken-Fenders
Randall RM4,RT2/50 (1086, Clean, TopBoost)
Wiggles Murray, Barbie Electric w/matching mic, American Idol electric
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Almost_Famous on October 29, 2006, 11:32:19 PM
I too would like to see some parkers made of more exotic woods - If I had enough dough, I'd beg them to make me one out of either Ziricote, Bubinga, Cocobolo (especially if it had some heartwood in it) or paduk.. I'm sure it would be bloody expensive though. I'm still saving for my dream fly classic.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: baronthecat on October 31, 2006, 07:26:31 AM

 I really wanted a bird's-eye Fly, but Ken said the 'eyes' would pop out during the CNC machining and would make a mess out of a beautiful piece of wood. Cocobolo would make a nice natural finish, can't tell you about the sound. Has anyone ordered a "hippie-sandwich"? One of those jigsaw/checkerboard patterns, with 8 different woods.

Parker Fly Classic
Parker Fly Custom
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 31, 2006, 11:23:07 AM
Birdseye maple is notoriously hard to carve, and I agree the CNC process would leave a lot of tear-out. Even planers and jointers do this to birdseye, leaving a substantial sanding job. With this wood you have to get it close to shape, then sand it to final shape, and it's a long, laborious thing to do.

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on October 31, 2006, 11:45:19 AM
Hello again, I think Ken was exaggerating about the eyes popping out, Lawrence is correct that Birdseye is pretty hard, but it's no harder than most rosewoods.  That said, the eyes can cause tearout like he said and it makes things difficult.  I don't know about doing it with a CNC, but I've found a great little secret that works really well with difficult woods when planing and jointing, and that is simply to wet the board right before it goes though the machine.  This works wonders with all types of figured woods.  It softens the fibers up just a little so that they can slice rather than tear.  Of course sharp machinery is key also.  But I'm not sure this would work on a CNC because it's a much longer process and the board will dry quickly.  As for those Jigsaw guitars I just saw an Ibanez version of one the other day, the darn thing looked exactly like a puzzle, and I have to say it was very cool.

Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 31, 2006, 01:03:17 PM
Kurt,
Interesting tip about wetting the board, never heard that one! I'll try that next time I use some figured wood. Even with new blades on the machines, some tear-out happens, but I'm anxious to try your tecnique. Thanks for the idea! I think the CNC machine is probably set to take out a fair amount of wood in a single pass, so it may not help in that circumstance. However, it sounds like a great idea for planing and jointing tricky boards. Does this tecnique shorten blade life? Seems like wetness might cause rust on the blades, but maybe it doesn't make any difference. Any thoughts?

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: baronthecat on October 31, 2006, 03:57:14 PM

 There used to be a company called Superior Water-Logged Lumber that recovered up old logs from back when it was pushed down the river from the logging site to the mill. I remember reading that either they or a competitor had access to wood that had fallen in prehistoric times. Bet that stuff sounds good. How much older can you get?

Parker Fly Classic
Parker Fly Custom
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on October 31, 2006, 05:04:16 PM
I've heard and read something about this, pricy wood being dragged from the bottom of some river or something. It cost a lot, if I recall, but then again, it had to spend a long time in the kiln to dry. I bet Kurt might know more on this...

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on November 01, 2006, 12:20:38 PM
Hey guys, first off, Wilmington, I totally believe the experience with birdseye, and now that I think about it, I would bet that it's the same reason why Parker hasn't used some more exotics.  Woods like Poplar are a breeze to work with with, you can cut them just about any way you like, but woods that have really twisted grain or interlocked grain can cause headaches with machinery, all of these things can be worked with when there is a lot of hand work too, but when using the CNC type machines there's a much larger chance of tearout and ruining boards.  Hmmmm, in light of thinking about that this may make the request for exotic flys a little harder or at least with fewer choices. I suppose that's also why we've seen so little figured maple come out of Parker, because I'm sure it's that much harder to work with too.  And yes, you're absolutely correct there would be virtually no way to wet boards on that machine.  I remember seeing it in action when I was there, and it worked fairly quickly for what it was doing, but a guitar would need to be constantly misted and that would probably be havoc causing for the machines.  We have to get someone in there to start carving and cutting them by hand the way the first few were no doubt made :)  And Lawrence, in my experience wetting the boards on the planer does not harm the blades or machine, in fact it probably extends the life of the blades because they're cutting through slightly softer material.  The water drys quite quickly.  I use a plaining sled instead of working on both the jointer and planer to flatten boards, and so I do all my shimming, and when I'm about to push the board through I'll give it a quick wipe with a wet rag, when it comes out it's completely dry except any areas that weren't hit by the blade, so it's also a good indicator of what's going on.  One note to make would be I wouldn't suggest using the wet method on a planer that has iron rollers cause any wetness will make them rust.  On a jointer wetting the board is a little more tricky because the wetness does cause a little more friction and makes it a little harder to push.  Plus, my jointer has alluminium tables where getting them wet is not a problem, but most have cast iron which will rust fairly quickly, so take care there too.  Fact is though, that I won't use the water until the last couple of passes through the planer, because it can tear out all it wants (as long as it's not deep) and when it comes time to take that last 3/64 off I'll wet it for two or 3 passes and the tearout disappears.  Give it a shot on some scrap to get the hang of it first.
    As for the "water" lumber, alot of it is referred to as lake salvaged, swamp salvaged what have you.  Believe it or not there are 2 main groups that are using this lumber.  Music companies use it highly, in a form.  The term swamp ash is not by mistake, these Ash trees grow in swamps and the part of the tree that they use for guitars is the part that lives underwater.  To my knowledge Ash is the only species the music instrument industry uses for this, and to my understanding, living underwater changes the properties of the wood in such a way that tone benefits.  I couldn't tell you the science behind it though.  On the other hand, the other industry that uses this is furniture and a tiny bit of home building.  There are quite a few sources.  A large source of lake salvaged lumber comes from man made lakes where homes and the like were flooded and never taken away, they'll go down break them up and cart away the lumber.  Obviously this is a fair amount of work considering what has to be done, and it's a large reason this type of lumber costs a decent amount combined with the fact that it's a "specialty" item.  They'll do the same for trees that have been flooded over but are still alive in swamps and rivers as well.  There is also a large market for "salvaged" lumber that is nothing more than things like old homes and barns being torn down and the wood being carefully removed instead of destroyed.  As you can imagine these types of lumber are very old looking, weathered if you will, and do have a certain look.  This look is predominantly popular with western design furniture and homes.  If the log cabin is big in the northeast the salvaged wood ranch home is popular in say Colorado or barn flooring in Santa Fe.  Another group that this obviously appeals to is the environmentally sensitive who would obviously rather use a board that's already been cut and used than knock down another tree.  Anyway, sorry to make that long winded, yes again :)


Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on November 01, 2006, 06:55:35 PM
Interesting, I assumed it had something to do with airyness (that can't be a word lol), hence why they probably have a little more of that snap semi hollow tone!

Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on November 06, 2006, 12:39:14 PM
I always wondered about "swamp ash". Thanks for the info, guys. I'm so glad there are some wood geeks at this site. It's been a cool thing to hear from you guys, and I've learned much (just when I tought I knew it all, LOL).

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on November 27, 2006, 02:04:01 PM
I thought I'd give a link to a MySpace page with some of my woodworks, in case anyone wanted to check it out. Yeah, I know, I need some Fly Pics in there. If someone hadn't stolen my digi camera, they'd already be there!

http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=132917993

Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on November 27, 2006, 05:33:16 PM
Some nice work there Lawrence.  I especially like the end tables, interesting leg design there too.  What is the 3 piece top one, ribbon mahogany and is that possible Satinwood or is it something else dyed?  The clock is also really cool, the numerals are subtle but very interesting.  Great work, if you haven't seen it, I have a little of my furniture type stuff on my site under the other products section too.

Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on November 27, 2006, 06:18:50 PM
Thanks, Kurt. The Coffee Table in ribbon mahogany (bookmatched), has flamed birch down the center. It is one of many "8 legged tables" I've done. The leg ends are on a sliding dovetail into the top. The clock design is something I've done for a while, now. The number design (copyrighted in 2004) has been used in about 18 clocks so far, although the shape of that one (#1) is unique among them. One day I might try to mass produce that one. All the rest of those photo's are one-off custom work. I'll probably add some more photo's soon.

Thanks for checking it out. I've seen your cabinets, but missed the furniture. I'll take a look...

Cool stuff, man [^] I especially like the lap desk and the coffee table. Beautiful wood, very well worked. Love the inlay work on the lap desk. [;)]



Lawrence Winn
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: marvin jensen on January 26, 2007, 05:11:12 PM
quote:
Originally posted by Wilmington only

A Fly guitar is carved from a single piece of 8/4 wood. A LOT of material ends up in the dust collector. This makes it hard to wet a piece deep enough to make any difference on the Fadal. Also, the sculpted shape is cut with a ball nose endmill and the shape is so complex that only a small part of the endmill makes contact with the material at any time in the program. Ken spoke from experience on the birdseye. It was a real mess.

There's no money above the fifth fret


Just saw this old thread.  One reason the "curly" woods don't work well the way Parker CNC'd them when I was there is because the cutter speed of the center of a ball end mill is essentially zero which makes for major tear-outs.  Larry always wanted to try and design a program so the cutting was done with the outer radius of the ball mill but never got it done.  He thought about tilting the work in relation to the vertical axis of the machine but then some areas would be undercuts.  It would be fairly complicated.  If perfected it would really speed up the cutting process.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on January 29, 2007, 02:13:21 AM
I wonder if the answer to that question is to hollow out the center of the bit, and make it a little larger (reprogram the machine to compensate). Then there would be no cutting edge moving at zero rpm. This could be designed with a slight twist, to aid chip removal, and the slowest speed a cutting edge is moving would be a controled, by design, known factor. This might allow more "difficult" woods to be CNC'd to spec. Just a theory, fire away!

(http://i88.photobucket.com/albums/k161/dlwinn171/01fly_edited.jpg)
Lawrence Winn
You can hear me playing and see my woodworks at:
http://www.myspace.com/132917993
"42.7 percent of all statistics are made-up on the spot."
2001 Fly Classic, Green
Larivee Parlour Guitar
Several inferior others
Mesa Boogie MK IV
Marshall 2-12 cab
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on January 29, 2007, 02:56:57 AM
Hey Lawrence, it's been a while since we've been on this thread it would seem.  I think you're spot on with the recommendation, I can't recall exactly what the cutter head looked like when I was in the factory hmmm I wonder if I met Marvin, but some sort of spiral upcut bit might leave a much cleaner cut.  If the 0 rpm section of the head is causing tearout an even easier solution is what Marvin suggested with just cutting with the edge of the cutterhead.  The real issue though I'm sure is that it would cost them a significant amount of R&D to reprogram the machine, and they could certainly not afford for the machine to be down for a long period due to testing.  When I was there I think they had 2, not sure if they ever expanded on that or not.  So again, it the world of greed we live in, it probably all comes down to a cost viability standpoint.  If they really think it would make them more money (which is probably would only marginally) then they might do it.  From what we've seen in past efforts though, it seems they are continually trying to cut costs rather than spend any more money. A nice addition to the custom shop (just a suggestion) would be to have one dedicated lutier or carver where the machine could rough out the bodies leaving more excess than usual and then they could be cleaned up by hand with traditional carving tools as opposed to the sanding.  Having a single worker making say 65k a year, he would only have to turn out a small number of special guitars for it to be cost effective for the company.  I'm sure there are a lot more details to consider, but who knows could work. Hey they've made plenty of supremes, and now some Koa's so there aren't too make woods out there that are trickier than curly maple.  Oh how I would love a tulipwood or macassar fly :(

(http://www.kwcabs.com/parkerlogo.jpg)
Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on January 17, 2008, 03:18:36 PM
Anybody have another opinion on speaker cab wood resonance between solid dry pine or ply?
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on January 18, 2008, 01:17:48 PM
Wow, I can't believe it has been a year since there was a comment on this thread!  Pine vs Ply is a challenging one.  Pine can sound very nice, very springy and bell like especially if you're going for a vintage sound and combine it with a nice Alnico, however, Pine is incredibly unstable and likewise is one of the woods most prone to climatic changes.  Ply is standard, so there's not much to say about it if you've ever played just about any speaker cabinet out there.  Personally we very rarely use Pine, but will on special orders.  Again it can sound very nice, but due to the fact that it can move so much no matter how well sealed it offers construction concerns that outweigh any tonal issues for us.  I also notice that you wrote "dry" pine.  All woods used for production use should always be within an acceptable moisture content, and that varies in the U.S. between 6-12% however, even if a piece has been dry for many years it still experiences climatic change and likewise Pine is among the most drastic of these, flat today pretzel tomorrow :)  If you have any questions, feel free.

(http://www.kwcabs.com/parkerlogo.jpg)
Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on January 18, 2008, 02:09:07 PM
Since Steamboat Springs Speaker Company is gearing up, we are concerned only about tone and weight between the two.  Dovetailed pine is what I prefer on both concerns. Appreciate your (KW) suggestions about moisture and stability.  In fact,living in Hawaii, both Sonny Landreth an I both (not personally) experience hummid enviroments causing unsealed cabs to soak up miosture. Bad.  I do not think we will compete since our two piggy back amp speaker cabs will be very cheap, and personalized to fit their respective heads only.  We are mainly selling state of the art tube tone.  








Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Lwinn171 on January 19, 2008, 12:41:50 AM
quote:
Originally posted by bembamboo

Since Steamboat Springs Speaker Company is gearing up, we are concerned only about tone and weight between the two.  Dovetailed pine is what I prefer on both concerns. Appreciate your (KW) suggestions about moisture and stability.  In fact,living in Hawaii, both Sonny Landreth an I both (not personally) experience hummid enviroments causing unsealed cabs to soak up miosture. Bad.  I do not think we will compete since our two piggy back amp speaker cabs will be very cheap, and personalized to fit their respective heads only.  We are mainly selling state of the art tube tone.  



Good lord, man... If you're in Hawaii, MAKE THEM OUT OF KOA! They'll be extra-special! Nice and warm, I'd think. And both unusual, and beautiful. Just my 2 cents.[:D]

Lawrence Winn
2001 Classic,1998 Classic
Boogie MK IV, Behringer ACX-1800, Zoom A2, various effects
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: 908ssp on January 19, 2008, 09:12:39 AM
Or bamboo[:D][:o)][:D][:o)][8D]
[^]

Alex

(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/SupGDSPiTN.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/DSCN1343.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/_1010802.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/_1010613.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/DeluxeCageWreck.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/_1010626.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/_1010502.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/_1010872.jpg)(http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r245/908ssp/ThumbNails/ParkerFlyBass.jpg)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on January 19, 2008, 01:16:42 PM
And send some of that Koa my way, it's so darned hard to get!!!!

(http://www.kwcabs.com/parkerlogo.jpg)
Owner of KWCABS guitar speaker cabinets.  We specialize in making simply the best speaker cabinets out there, constructed out of top-quality hardwoods, standard lines as well as custom work.  WWW.KWCABS.COM

Check out my Parker Supreme here www.kwcabs.com/parker%20page.htm
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on January 19, 2008, 01:48:18 PM
Wow.  Koa guitars aren't my spot'o tea, but I suppose bamboo HAS been used historically in Asian instruments.  And I just saw Donna's (a blind date somebody is trying to set me up with, but frankly, beautiful women are getting too dangerous for an old man) bamboo flooring at her new store in Kapa'au from Home Depot (for $1.99 a sq ft which I guess is cheap)and it was georgeous unfinished.  I'm thinking its too dense for cabinet resonation, or would be mostly glue, but I will definitely check it out!  Is there anything Alex doen't know?  (see where flattery will get me.)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: jamrcat on January 19, 2008, 02:54:35 PM
quote:
Is there anything Alex doen't know?

From my experience, no! [:)]

98' Fly Artist w/RMC (Thanks Dayn!)
93' Parker Fly Deluxe hardtail RP "Blackie" KP Signature (Thank You! Bob & Ken)
2FlyBob (Thanks Paul!)

jamrcat
Butte, Montana
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: jeff on May 03, 2008, 08:38:21 PM
Check out www.ancientwood.com for a look at some kauri wood. I believe Joe Bonamassa and Anthony Gomes have electrics made of this stuff.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on June 12, 2008, 09:41:50 PM
lwinn:  try aloha woods at Kialua-Kona.  was there yesterday looking for planks of african tulip.  tons of koa. every size shape.  next door to goodall guitars!!!!
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: rt0412 on June 21, 2008, 11:35:32 PM
quote:
Originally posted by 908ssp

Or bamboo[:D][:o)][:D][:o)][8D]
[^]

Alex

I downloaded pictures of a Strat style guitar made of bamboo years ago from a website I can't even remember now. I think it was made by a luthier in the Philippines.
http://picasaweb.google.com/rolandotabora/BambooGuitar

Here's an article about Yamaha's all-bamboo acoustic guitar...
http://www.giles.com/yamaha1/pressreleases/PAC/bamboo.htm

And First Act's bamboo guitar...
http://shop.firstact.com/PublicStore/product/ME224-Bambusa-Electric-Guitar,645,93.aspx
(http://shop.firstact.com/WebServices/images/10-645-Everything_ProductPrimaryImage-thumb.jpeg)
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on July 04, 2008, 04:40:58 AM
Wow.  Thanks Rolly.  I meant bamboo for speaker cabs, specifically bass, since it is so dense.  Lots of music gear is now coming from Vietnam (Marshall) and China (Celestion), and the bamboo products there are beautiful when new, but it weathers uglily (advb.)!  
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on November 19, 2008, 02:55:18 PM
picked up a piece of aspen the other day.  very light.  anybody plank and dry it for guitatr or amp use?  ceder?  is that what train wrecks are?  African tulip on hawaii , an invasive species, may be too light.  thanks.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Bill on November 19, 2008, 06:07:12 PM
I was warned of African transplant species in Hawaii.

It seems what grows slowly as a hardwood in Africa, grows too fast and is a spongy softwood in the wet zones of Hawaii.

When we were on Kaui we visited a huge wooded tract and these tree were literally falling over from their own weight.

I have no idea how this translates in tone wood but, be careful.

A few Flys in my soup
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on December 09, 2008, 11:54:33 PM
Thanks, I'll try it and let you know.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on August 11, 2009, 12:37:22 PM
noticed that g&l uses basswood in its tribute(se asia?) series. that mean its cheap, or low quality?
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: kwcabs on August 28, 2009, 01:24:28 PM
Wow, it's been a long time since I made a post here, sorry.  Few quick notes, Bamboo is a great material, difficult to work with, but has a great look and interesting sonic properties.  If really sealed well it will stay beautiful for a long time.  

I could be wrong but I think Aspen is a softwood.  I've never used it for anything, but I tend to stay away from softwoods because of their general instability.  

As for the train wrecks, I'm almost positive that they were made from Cherry.  I've seen and played a few in person and that's my take, of course they have nothing to do with the sound of that amp.  

As for African Tulip, it is a hardwood, where you plant it doesn't change that, it's the botanical makup.  Hardwoods are simply angiosperms or trees that have encapsulated seeds, softwoods are conifers (at least 99% of them are), it's just a cell structure thing.  What might be going on in Hawaii with these African Tulip trees is that the climate is alowing them to grow faster and since they are a large dense tree the undergrowth and soil simply can't support it and hence they're falling over due to their own weight.  I don't know for sure obviously as I haven't been there to see, but that is my best assesment.  

As for Basswood, it is fairly cheap, and is readily available in thick cuts, hence why it was such an obvious choice for guitar makers.  Not to mention it is light which is another good selling point.  That said, it's a great tonewood and has been used for many years by a lot of major companies.

Best to all.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: Strandwolf on August 28, 2009, 02:56:56 PM
I was mis(?)informed by a friend to the effect that "hardwood" means a wood used in woodworking endeavors.

Ergo, balsa is a hardwood.

I wonder if a custom Parker with balsa body and neck would

(1) be feasible
(2) be under 2 pounds.

Might have to use very light tuners and go piezo only to break the 2 pound sound barrier.... Not sure the neck would be stable enough. Talk about dingy, that contraption would be rather bruise-liable.
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on October 15, 2009, 06:58:49 PM
KW: did u wind up showing at the east coast amp show?  Did they eat up your cabs?  I would think so.  I personally think there is a cabinet idea shortfall in the biz. Guitar cabs haven't come very far, except yours.  Awhile back all the naked yellow pine/dovetailed custom cab shops seem to have gone out of business or off the web, anyway.  Shipping has to be a big part of the equation.

Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: WellYourMomLikesMe on June 25, 2011, 04:02:00 PM
I just want a REAL Fly with mahogany body and maple neck. Probably the most popular combination and USM still doesn't have one! Get with it USM/Parker!!

*** '08 Fly Mojo Flame, Schecter 006 Elite, Korg PitchBlack, Boss NS-2, BlackStar HT-DUAL, MXR M-108, Boss FV-50H, Rogue Analog Delay, Boss DD-7, Mesa HeartBreaker Head, Marshall 1960B, Crate/Palomino V16 w/ V30 ***
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: redcloud on June 25, 2011, 07:15:35 PM
quote:
Originally posted by loumt123

a splated maple fly...or...Paduak...or my favorite...

BUCKEYE BURL [:p]


mmmm exotic woods

Then you really need to explore Alembic guitars and basses.

Alembic "Studio Further"
Alembic "Lil' Darling"
Gibson LP "Traditional"
Collings "City Limits Jazz"
Parker Fly Supreme LTD Koa #17/25
Parker Fly Bronze
Fender Custom Shop Road
Show '10 LTD
Fender American Deluxe Tele
Taylor Solid Body Builder's
Reserve #4



Peavey "Delta Blues"
Fender "Acoustasonic SFXII"
Schertler "Unico"

Many Acoustic Guitars
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: mountaindewaddict on June 25, 2011, 07:56:56 PM
quote:
Originally posted by WellYourMomLikesMe

I just want a REAL Fly with mahogany body and maple neck. Probably the most popular combination and USM still doesn't have one! Get with it USM/Parker!!

*** '08 Fly Mojo Flame, Schecter 006 Elite, Korg PitchBlack, Boss NS-2, BlackStar HT-DUAL, MXR M-108, Boss FV-50H, Rogue Analog Delay, Boss DD-7, Mesa HeartBreaker Head, Marshall 1960B, Crate/Palomino V16 w/ V30 ***


In another thread (it's one of the newer ones in the Custom Fly section), Terry (BillyT), the VP of Production at USM said that with the carbon fiber wrap, a good piece of maple is just too stiff for the truss rod to do anything if any adjustment is needed.  That's probably why they don't do it.

Casey

Gear: Parker Fly Deluxe, NiteFly NFV2, Way Huge Pedals, Egnater amps, other stuff...
God Bless!
Title: Wood Choices...
Post by: WellYourMomLikesMe on June 26, 2011, 11:46:06 PM
quote:
Originally posted by mountaindewaddict

quote:
Originally posted by WellYourMomLikesMe

I just want a REAL Fly with mahogany body and maple neck. Probably the most popular combination and USM still doesn't have one! Get with it USM/Parker!!

*** '08 Fly Mojo Flame, Schecter 006 Elite, Korg PitchBlack, Boss NS-2, BlackStar HT-DUAL, MXR M-108, Boss FV-50H, Rogue Analog Delay, Boss DD-7, Mesa HeartBreaker Head, Marshall 1960B, Crate/Palomino V16 w/ V30 ***


In another thread (it's one of the newer ones in the Custom Fly section), Terry (BillyT), the VP of Production at USM said that with the carbon fiber wrap, a good piece of maple is just too stiff for the truss rod to do anything if any adjustment is needed.  That's probably why they don't do it.

Casey

Gear: Parker Fly Deluxe, NiteFly NFV2, Way Huge Pedals, Egnater amps, other stuff...
God Bless!




I'm sure they can solve that problem. Maybe do a partial wrap or partially treat the piece of wrap to make it less rigid, etc. I trust USM can make it successfully and I will one of the people that will be very grateful because that wood combination is perfect.

*** '08 Fly Mojo Flame, Schecter 006 Elite, Korg PitchBlack, Boss NS-2, BlackStar HT-DUAL, MXR M-108, Boss FV-50H, Rogue Analog Delay, Boss DD-7, Mesa HeartBreaker Head, Marshall 1960B, Crate/Palomino V16 w/ V30 ***
Title: Re: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on July 02, 2013, 11:58:19 PM
i cant think of a mahogany body/maple neck guitar other than some oddball fenders, maybe tele varieties w/p90s or something.  clue me in to this popular guitar pls.  thx
Title: Re: Wood Choices...
Post by: mountaindewaddict on July 03, 2013, 09:34:21 AM
bembamboo, AFAIK, Ibanez and Schecter both make TONS of guitars in that configuration (mahogany body, maple neck).  I owned an Ibanez like that.  Also, aren't most Les Paul's that combination as well?
Title: Re: Wood Choices...
Post by: lucgravely on July 03, 2013, 09:52:52 AM
Most all LPs and SGs are mahogany body mahogany neck with a maple top on the body and a rosewood fretboard. And the majority of Fender guitars are ash/alder bodies with maples necks and maple/rosewood fret boards. So with those two guitar types making up the majority of guitars, I'd disagree that mahogany body/maple neck is the most popular wood combo. Having now played my NiteFly with basswood/maple combo, It sounds pretty much like a Strat with maple/alder combo. I think Parker is making the best choice sticking with basswood neck on the DF800 series and maples on the 400/500/600/700 series. It makes sense for production  as maple is a great stable stand alone neck material and basswood and the carbon wrap seem to go well together.

I seem to remember Pats S3 voodoo having the exact maple/carbon issue that they had in the past. So I doubt USM would ever what a production model like that ever again. http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,12382.0.html

Title: Re: Wood Choices...
Post by: bembamboo on July 04, 2013, 10:08:46 AM
thx, yeah i wasnt thinking...but ibanez, maybe a satch model is mahogany in the body
 
Title: Re: Wood Choices...
Post by: BRENTON on May 22, 2019, 04:35:01 AM
I have commonly watched spalted maple as ruining, cut into sheets before the bugs and development and rot took over completely. It's stunning in a manner of speaking, anyway not something I would use.