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I Live in souht america and need to know how to pick or choose a good piece of wood (any kind for this purposes) for body, neck and fretboard.Im talking about board blanks. The problem here is that the all good wood is sold to USA :D and then I have to buy them the same wood at double price. :D

I have seen that the price of a body blank (for ex.) cost $60 aprox.-

Here in Argentina I can get the same body (same type of wood I mean) blank for $25 aprox.

So... How can I know if the wood that they are selling me are in conditions for a guitar or bass.

Or the wood is terrible bad or here we have lucky (that i dont think so) B) .

The big question is: HOW DO I KNOW IF THE WOOD THAT I´M buying is ok for a guitar ??

Thanx, B)


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What type of wood are you looking at? or maybe a better question, what is available. There will be obvious things to look for such as; is the wood properly dried, is the wood free of damage, is it thick enough, straight enough, etc... If you are looking for quartersawn,flatsaw, figured etc... then you will need to evaluate the wood for these things.

Often the blanks that you are looking at have been surfaced and jointed which may add a bit to the cost as well as you pay for the persons experience to select good material (some waste material may also play into the price). If you buy the wood yourself (and try to get good efficient pieces), and then do your own joining and surfacing. You can save some loot (not to mention not having to pay shipping). An example might be 8/4 Genuine Mahogany that runs about $10-12 or so per. bd. ft. It will take about 4.5 bd. ft for an average body blank ($45-54 if you have no wasted wood). These blanks are sold for $50-$70 dollars depending on the dealer (one piece, quartersawn, and figured can vary the price a bit). If you buy large quantities and don't hand select each piece cost per. bd. ft. will drop, but waste generally goes up.

Peace, Rich

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The problem here is that the all good wood is sold to USA america.gif and then I have to buy them the same wood at double price. mad.gif

The reason is probably because there is noone down there that prepares the wood for luthiery use, (guitar use). Believe me they aren't buying up all the wood and charging you double. There is quite a bit of preparation that goes into getting it into the condition in which you will be able to use it. It has to be rough cut to size, and sometimes bookmatched depending, it has to be either air dried which takes years or kiln dried to a certain moisture % about 6-10% I believe is about right 6%preferably, then it has to be planed and thickness sanded depending on it's thickness and how much of a rough cut it was, and sometimes seal the end grain I think.

So believe me they are not just charging you double, they are doing you a huge favor especially since it sounds like noone is doing this this in your area. It is a pretty long process and expensive to own all that equipment, so the prices you see are actually very fair! If you can find someone in your area that does all that, it would be the best way to go because you won't have to pay shipping, but if there is noone that does, the best way to go is to buy the blanks you mentioned. Processing raw wood yourself is very tough and expensive. I wish you good luck with your search and if you need to buy the wood that wood from the US don't feel like you are getting ripped off because your not, it's actually a good deal, especially since the equipment to process the wood will probably run you over a thousand. Good luck and let us know what you do and the type of wood you get. Later. Jason

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AHH OK now Im Understanding something else.

So the big problem would be if they are dried well, and I think thats the reason why the wood here are so cheap I think, but how can I know that? I mean iare there some tips or hints to help me to choose a well dried wood, years of dried, etc??

The other one is the "surfaced and jointed" of the blanks, so you say that if I buy this raw wood than I will have to join and surfaced them dont I?



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Link to humidity meter:


More of the same kind (main list):


The wood should idealy be dried to about 8% but wood up to 12% have been used with success.

About the planing and jointing:

This can bee done with a simple hand planer, a straith edge and a lot of elow grease


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