I've got wood!

On the original topic of this thread, Guitars and Woods have a 10% off sale at the moment, and so I was tempted to order a few things that I don't specifically need right now, but which will surely be good to have around, like some neck profile templates and extra fret wire. I also ordered a few headstock veneers, which they sell very cheaply - around a pound each - and those will be nice to have around, whether for fretboards or for other decorative purposes.

To make up the order, since the minimum order value to qualify for the discount was €100, I also looked at their fretboards again. Because you can never have too many fretboards (I'm sure someone has said that in the past!), I ordered another five. This means I will have something like 23 fretboards in stock! I think I'm a bit addicted to buying pretty fretboards...
Time for an update because I've been buying wood again! I'm still exploring the market for good suppliers, and in the last few weeks I've ordered wood from two new suppliers, as well as receiving a top from Crimson Guitars who occasionally sell some of their excess stock. The reason for using different suppliers is that they all seem to have slightly different ranges of exotic woods, and so I need to dig around among them to find some of the more unusual woods.

Most of the wood in the picture below comes from a Spanish supplier called Maderas Barber ("Maderas" is Spanish for "woods"). As an aside, did you know that the name of the island Madeira is simply Wood in Portuguese?

From left to right, and from Maderas Barber unless noted, they are:
(1) A bookmatched exotic ebony top - not as nice as the one in the picture on their website, but should still make a handsome guitar one day
(2) A poplar burl top from Crimson Guitars - the same wood as my son and I used on our course there
(3) A cocobolo fretboard
(4) A ziricote fretboard - looking forward to using this!
(5) A black limba body blank

None of these is for a specific build but they have gone into my little wood stock as nice options for future guitars.

The other new supplier is David Dyke, who is quite well known in UK luthers' circles and trades as Luthiers Supplies. They have a range of different woods, and I've ordered two tops from them - one ziricote and one cocobolo. They are pretty expensive, but really distinctive and should look great. Unfortunately, they don't put pictures on their website, so there was a long series of email exchanges between them and me where they asked me what I was looking for and then sent photos of a few tops that they had in stock. I get the impression that they are more geared towards people visiting, and I'll try to go there when I'm next in the UK.

So here are the pictures that they sent of the tops which are currently making their way to my house. First the ziricote:

And the cocobolo:

These tops should be arriving this week. I'm currently planning to use one of them for a bass build for myself. I've been thinking of making a 5-string bass for a while, but I've actually decided to make it a 4-string instead. I haven't made a regular 4-string bass yet (only Sunrise, which is fretless), and I thought that it would be better to make an instrument that I would actually use (and then perhaps sell my Yamaha bass).

At the moment, I am still working on two guitars, and I hope to finish one of them this month and the second in November or December. I will then probably take a little break from guitar building until Christmas, since it's been a bit all-consuming recently, but I'll probably aim to make another 5 or 6 guitars again next year. If anybody here is interested in a build - possibly using some of the woods in this post or anything else (either from my stock, or we can always order something specific) - then feel free to shoot me a message and we can discuss it.

I've been asking people to cover the cost of materials this year, and will continue on that basis next year, on the understanding that since I'm still learning, there may be some small cosmetic imperfections. I'm fairly confident about making the guitars very playable - I showed the 12-string guitar to a colleague recently and he was very impressed with the quality of the fretwork, allowing perfectly clear barre chords all the way up the neck. He actually said that it's the best fretwork he's ever played, which was quite a compliment!

Sales pitch over....I hope you at least liked the pretty pictures! :)


half rock, half gas
Looking good man!

Love those exotic woods. I got to turn a number of them when I was making pens -- I remember the Cocobolo, although very nice to look at and work with, it gave me a TERRIBLE rash. It kept me awake at night and I just had to get some antihistemine cream.


Well-Known Member
That cocobolo is gorgeous!

I tend to get most of my stuff from David. It's a bit more expensive than buying boards from surrey timber etc. but I've found them to be very good suppliers and their tops actually tend to be on the cheaper side as well. Ordering can be a little slow, but the service is great.
Have a look at this Jon:
Very nice, thanks for the link! Playing with resin is on my To Do list - in fact, I've had a resin kit sitting in my Amazon basket for a while, and I might buy it before Christmas so that I can collect it when I visit my parents (they don't deliver it to Belgium).

Also, my gf bought me a load of pencils and a small resin kit for my birthday recently, with a view to making a pencil top for a guitar, so that's a project for some time in the next few months or so.

The ziricote and cocobolo tops arrived yesterday and they look really nice - I definitely plan on using one on my next build for myself, and will probably use the other when I go for my course with John Ambler next March.
I'm currently plotting my next build, which is currently going to be a bass. I think I'm going to use a walnut body blank that I've already prepared, and probably the cocobolo top that is shown above, and either the ziricote fretboard (if it's long enough) or, more likely, a dark, bog oak fretboard that I've been saving for a special build.

I plan on doing something interesting for the neck, though...I want to do a three-piece neck with something like sapele or ovangkol for the side pieces, but the middle piece will be a laminate of three woods (maybe sycamore, purpleheart and the unused one of the sapele/ovangkol), glued together in strips and hopefully, if I can line it up accurately, arranged in a chevron pattern. That should be a nice challenge!

I already have pickups for this bass, and I had ordered matching bridge and tuners in vintage copper from amazon.de but sadly the supplier didn't have the tuners, so I cancelled the order. I'll have to find them somewhere else, but I'm still debating whether that's the best colour to go for.

When I start working on it, I'll make a thread. It should be another interesting build! :)
Just a quick piccie today because I received a shipment of wood from a place in Spain (Maderas Barber - "Maderas" means "woods" or "lumber"). I'd ordered nine neck blanks, to have a decent stock, and a curly maple top just because it wasn't extortionately expensive as these things go, and I'm fairly sure that someone will want a maple top sooner or later. In fact, it's really thick and I could even potentially cut each of the two pieces in half and make two decent drop tops out of it.

Anyway, here it is, after I sprayed a bit of water on it to bring out the patterns. I think this will look really good with a nice stain!
Top curly maple Feb 2019.jpg