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Santos Mahogony? Ping!

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I was at one of my wood places earlier today, and after mousing around for a half hour, found a piece of Santos Mahogony just the right size for 2 bodies for $30.00.

This goes back to the Castle, Drak sez. B)

Taking it home, hmmmm, pretty heavy and very dense Drak notices. When I see Mahogony like this, I usually equate it with cheap Mahogony that wasn't dried properly or for long enough, but for $30.00, what the hell, I was OK with it.

I start to work it, cutting out the 2 body blanks, and I start noticing that every time I lay a piece down somewhere, I hear this 'PING!' sound just ring out louder than anything. After awhile, I really start to zero in on this sound and start really tapping it to see what's up.

This has got to be one of the most musical pieces of wood I have ever heard, it almost just wants to sing out loud, hahaha!

It's like Rosewood, the tap sound is very similar to a piece of Rosewood or Purpleheart, and it has the weight to match, but the PING! is really something to hear, I'm very stoked to get 2 guitars made out of this stuff.

Luckily, it's only 1" thick, if it was 1 1/2", I think it would almost be too heavy to use (like Rosewood or Purpleheart would be) but at 1" with a top and back of some other lighter woods, I think it's gonna be -very- cool.

Anyone have any info on this stuff? I did a little checking, but didn't find much that was useful to me.

BTW, I'm making a Tele with a 100% rotton spalted top (perfect fit, rotton spalt needs a good solid corewood to make up for the balsawood tone of spalted wood), and another Baby V.

These puppies are gonna ring out like the Bells of St. Mary! :D:D

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The "Santos Mahogany" I found online looks a whole lot like "Santos Rosewood" aka Pau Ferro aka Morado. That would explain the nice "ping" and heavier weight. The price sounds right too, I got two fingerboard blanks of the stuff from Gilmer at a recent luthier show for just $6.00. It's quite a bit tougher to machine than "regular" mahogany, right?

Just my uneducated $0.02 :D

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No, it is not Pau Ferro. It is called Santos Mahogany. It is nothing like Genuine Mahogany or any of the usual "African Mahogany". It is heavy, dense, takes a pretty good polish. Your comparison to Rosewoods is pretty accurate. I will do a quick bit of research and pick up it's scientific name.



Better info


Scientific name: myroxyllon balsamum :D

Man, ya gotta love the web.

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That's pretty cool, I don't think I've seen any bodies made out of any rosewood-ish wood aside from the Harrison tele.

The guitarist from The MisFiTs has a graphite neck through guitar with rosewood wings but he also plays through a bass amp...

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I'm having a tough time deciding which way to go with this one.

I glued up the spalted top last night.

The Santos is truly like building a guitar out of Rosewood, it's -way- heavy enough as it sits right now with just the body and the spalt top (which basically weighs nothing at all) for me.

Also, the Santos was wide enough for a one-piece body, so it would be a shame to cover up a nice one piece back like that.

On the other hand, I'm not a big fan of ultra-thins either. This measures right now about 1 3/16".

I think I'm going to go with it as it is, my leanings so far. I think the Santos will resonate like a ringing bell, and putting a back cap on it will more than likely impede or hinder in some way it's resonance, which I would not want to do.

Opinions? :D

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Drak, you have enough for two bodies right? Why not try one with spalt on both sides with a Santos core? Assuming you have enough spalt of course. The spalted back won't add much weight. If afterward, you think it affected the tone too much, you could always remove the back and do something else.

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Good idea John, but I only had 1 set of spalt left (for the top). Spaltosaurous got 2 sets, front and back, and I only got one other set out of that billet, so no go on that.

Anyway, the Santos is going for 1 Tele and 1 Baby V, both bodies already cut out. :D

PS, I believe a thank you is in order John, I believe you were the one who directed me towards the Allman Bros. 'Hittin The Note' CD, which I have thoroughly fallen head over heels in love with, I have the concert DVD for it too (Live at the Beacon Theatre) which lives in my DVD player for months on end now, and Desdemona was not only named after that song, but I'm designing it completely around Warren Haynes LP tone from that period.

So Thank You johnsilver! :D:DB)

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Looks like an ultra thin is in the making. :D

Allman Bros rule.

Have you ever heard Greg Allman's solo remake of Whipping Post from the Searching for Simplicity disk? Completely different and very cool.

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There is a Heatly built out of Rosewood out there. They just got a forum up, I bet the owner is there and you could get some feed back on tone. My guess is alot of clear high mid.

My Thorn has an IRW neck with an Ebony board. I love it, it resonates in your hand and has a very clear ringing high end. Not exactly what you would call warm. The bottom end is huge too. Its like putting a loudness bottun on your guitar.

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