Does anyone use pine for necks ? or is it too soft.

Tam

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Jawbone, I am using part of it for something like that too.  And I'm mounting a few short sections onto wood plaques for gifts to relatives.  I ended up with almost 4 feet so I came up with this idea.  The doghouse was in Attala County Mississippi and I have an old Attala County license plate to use for a resonator.

The pine in the rafter feels hard to me.

"doghouse" in the reply above is actually log house

B&Q have stair case upright 'spindles' in white oak only slightly rounded. I got 4 ukulele necks out of one at £8.95 by splitting it up the middle and cutting in half. They are 40mm wide so I will try a four string canjo next using a full split length of one metre. I agree - I hate buying anything but hard wood seems wirth a bit extra.

I was told the B&Q hardwood floor samples for £3 make a cheap uke fretboard too!

I once made a coffee table out of Parana pine which seemed very hard and no knots - not sure where it comes from ot availability now.

All very true. If you check guitar history, Leo Fender made the first few Tele's out of pine. Necks as well, with no truss rod. Unfortunatly, the right pine is hard to get your hands on. At least here in BFLO. I'm always on the search.

Regarding softwoods I might add, that If you want hardness in a softwood with some wild grain patterns, try getting hold of a piece of hemlock that doesn't have a lot of knots in it.

I've made some tables out of hemlock and let me tell you, there some hard and tough and it looks great.

Norway (Red) pine is another over looked species of softwood that's mighty hard and has a beautiful grain to it although it does have a lot of knots and can contain resin pockets, if you can find a fairly clear piece it would make fine neck stock IMO.
Hemlock, indeed. It is a very gnarly wood, doesn't grow too straight typically but that charictaristic is exactly why it is so durable. If you can find a piece that is straight and relatively clear it is unique looking and strong as hell. Good call!!

Lou said:
Regarding softwoods I might add, that If you want hardness in a softwood with some wild grain patterns, try getting hold of a piece of hemlock that doesn't have a lot of knots in it.

I've made some tables out of hemlock and let me tell you, there some hard and tough and it looks great.

Norway (Red) pine is another over looked species of softwood that's mighty hard and has a beautiful grain to it although it does have a lot of knots and can contain resin pockets, if you can find a fairly clear piece it would make fine neck stock IMO.
I have used cedar laminated around a rib of oak and it turned out just fine. some "filling" around knots needed after shaping the neck... use what you got, but be realistic about how much tension the softer woods can stand....

c# merle said:
what about cedar? i recently got some lengths of 4 x 1 cedar and was thinking about necks but it feels very light.
stronger than pine though?
Yeah, I got wise to the uses of hemlock as a kid working for neighbors who used it to fence in their pastures, we used rough cut green 2x8's & 12's, when they dried they where rock hard, took the horses a long,long time to chew them up.

Over the years I've had occasion to use it for any number of projects, I prefer working it up green because when it dries it's as hard as red oak to work, has an outstanding grain to it and takes stain pretty good too.
Lou, never seen it stained. Would love to get a look at that.

Lou said:
Yeah, I got wise to the uses of hemlock as a kid working for neighbors who used it to fence in their pastures, we used rough cut green 2x8's & 12's, when they dried they where rock hard, took the horses a long,long time to chew them up.

Over the years I've had occasion to use it for any number of projects, I prefer working it up green because when it dries it's as hard as red oak to work, has an outstanding grain to it and takes stain pretty good too.
I know they use white pine in guitar making but I've only ever seen it cut for a body blank. I say if you have some laying around that's good an hard go ahead and give it a shot. Personally, I wouldn't use it as it's spongy as all hell and would probably muffle the hell out of your sound. I prefer brighter sound.
I am not wood expert by any means. Ijust use what I can find at local shops....home depot, and Ace....I just found a peice of what I am thinking is pine, I am not really sure, it has a red color too it, so it could be the stain or treatment in the wood that they use at the factory. It is harder I think compared to what I have found at home depot. I use what ever I can find that would fit a nice tight budget, and this stuff I found at ace was only 3 dollars for a nice long peice. It feels very knotty, and in fact, there is one place in my neck that feels like there is a large knot in the way, but I just intend to play slide, so I am not too worried about it. Here is my stand point though on all of this. The true roots of CBG's is using what you have on hand to make music. If you have pine, use pine, if you have or can get oak, use oak. Yes, I will agree different wood sounds better than others and we can go on and debate it, but as far as sound, the blues was born from a distant sounds of soft harmonics that rings out from the strings of a blues player. They never cared what they had, as long as they could make music and express themselves, remember, no rules. With that said....strength is important in a neck, and you don't want it to bow...so, I hope after saying all of this, I hope my new CBG neck stands the test of time, plus I on glueing everything in place, and bloting it, so I hope that makes it sturdy over time.
I don't have an example setting around but the thing I've found with staining hemlock is that if you have say, a dozen pieces that you're putting together for a chest of drawers or a farm table, most of the pieces will take the stain just fine but there will always be two or three pieces that don't take it well so they remain lighter.

That's not a bad thing, it gives the work more contrast and really sets off the grains in the darker stained pieces around it.

Travis Woodall said:
Lou, never seen it stained. Would love to get a look at that.

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