"After cutting 6 necks from 2 - 1x2x8ft Poplar. When I got to the last scarf cut, I read the UPC tag - premium pine..Any problems with bowing?" I built one neck to test. I used 3 E strings (52 g). After retuning a couple of times (new strings), on the 3th day there was only a 1mm bow, and it had stayed fairly in tune. I was looking at the canjo videos with Ben Baker, and he mentioned that larger dia. strings put more stress on the neck. Has anybody out there had a problem with using premium pine on a 3-string, or should I use this batch for canjos? Thanks

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I have used broken hockey sticks for necks no issues. I do not know what scale you are using , 1mm of bow with 3 E strings.  I would say it would work for a 3 strings . I don't know how well the pine will hold frets if you are building a fretted instrument . You may have to use hardwood fret board glued to it.Build one see what happens. Just my opinion.

Thanks Erasmo. Sounds like a good idea.

Using a hardwood fret board is going to strengthen the neck and help resist bowing.

I used Pine for the neck on one of my 4 stringers. I knew it would probably bow, so I glued on a Red Oak fretboard. It still bowed. I then removed the fretboard and cut a channel for a trussrod, installed a non-adjustable trussrod and glued the fretboard back on. The the headstock bowed a little, but now it's stable.

If your Pine or Poplar neck is flatsawn and doesn't have a trussrod, I wouldn't use more than 3 strings for a scale longer than 25.5"

If you can't find any quarter sawn boards, take a couple of flat sawn boards and glue one on top of the other. Then draw a neck with headstock and heel from a side view, cut it out on a bandsaw, flip it over 90 degrees and glue a fretboard on it and you'll have a multi-piece quarter sawn neck. LOL

Lots of ways to strengthen a neck if you sit back and think about it awhile.
Also remember that the wood you get at the big hardware stores are most likely still green.

After building over 200 guits and using Radiata Pine dozens of times I only had problems with bowing one time. It was because I glued a,super hard piece of oak for the fret board from the clamps and the strength of the oak, the oak made the neck back bow slightly. 1 the wood you use doesn't have to be straight as an arrow as in 99% of all guitars have relief in the neck because of the strings elliptical vibrating pattern. 2 The Term hardwood and softwood are somewhat misleading. Hardwood are trees with leaves and softwood are trees with cones. There are pieces of pine I've ran into that are harder than the poplar I've used. There are over 137 species,of pine. I know some are nearly hard as a rock. 3 wood types are species of wood. Say you see someone has a perfect piece of Maple, that doesnt mean that youre going to be able to go to the home improvment store grab the first piece of maple you see and have it be just as good. Maple grown and dried in perfect conditions are going to be different than the same species grown in China. Just an example. I know Gibson has a Melody Maker that has a Spanish Cedar neck. Most people are going to say you can't use cedar to build a neck. People use low grade cedar to build decks that stand up to years of all weather conditions. I favor the New Zealand Radiata Pine sticks I find at my local home Depot. But I use all kinds of wood. If your questioning the strength and integrity of the pine, I wouldn't be too worried about it bowing Since it has that premium pine label but I would give it some good protective finish. No ones ever came to me with the guitars I've made of pine and said they bowed Or snapped Or deformed. I wouldnt worry too much.

ever notice that balsa is considered "Hardwood" lol

Yeah that's messed up.

The Pine I used was Southern Yellow Pine(a glorified weed) and is probably the softest Pine. That's the Pine that's mostly available here. Pine, Aspen and Douglas Fir from American west is good. Guitarist Bill Kerchen (Hot Rod Lincoln fame) has a Tele body and neck made of Western Pine without a trussrod and it has remained usable sine the 60's. Just depends on type and location.

That Radiata Pine sounds interesting Chris There's a Asian wood called Paulownia that's very light/soft that people rave about tone wise. Wonder if it's an Asian Pine?

Laminating pieces is supposed to add strength, but all pieces used have to be straight. Gluing one piece to another can react in a negative way(bowing), lots of clamps and leaving it clamped til they completely dry can take more time with whether/moisture levels. I glued 2 pieces of Red Oak with a non-adjustable trussrod once that had too much back bow and had to be used for slide playing. You really take chances all the time with wood, you never know how it's going to turn out. Might be good, might not. That's why it's good to have an adjustable trussrod, but I wouldn't worry about it on a 3 stringer.

Ditto what Chris said,.,,.I have used Pine for half my builds.,,.the hardwood fingerboard does add strength.,.,and I know of a well known Ebay seller that has built and sold in excess of 3000 Pine necked CBG's with good results.,.,I say If your concerned you could always make that batch "high strung like a dulcimer .,.,

Thanks everyone for the info. I decided to play it safe and make 5 canjos. Here is a picture of the first one.

That canjo looks great.  I am of the school that pine is fine if you add a glued up finger board.

Thanks Uncle John. The neck is all one piece, just painted the lower half. Used copper wire for frets.

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