Body wood mystery

Kchoe

New member
Messages
2
Hello!

I hope this finds you well!

I know this is a tough one but it’s been driving me nuts that I can’t tell what body wood I have here.

I’m not the original owner/builder and the wood is hiding underneath paint, even the neck pocket.

There’s a small sliver of bare wood there and I know the body is obviously  light colored when I drilled for the strap buttons.

The texture of the body route looks like it’s coarse grain but I can’t tell whether it’s the grain or paint.

It’s also heavy; the whole instrument weighs around 9 lbs 10 Oz.

I can’t tell if it’s poplar, alder, maple or ash. And maybe there’s no way to find out?

I know it’s probably a lost cause to find out but if there was a group to solve this, it would be you.

Thanks so much for any/all you can help with!
 

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ragamuffin

Senior member
Messages
1,002
The color of the wood looks lighter than alder. I'd guess swamp ash based on the roughness/grainy-ness, but really it's just a guess
 

DuckBaloo

Senior member
Messages
299
Wouldn't be able to tell. The rough areas are mostly from the tooling of routing out the PU and neck pockets, they probably aren't wood grain. And the paint job has a lot of orange peel to it.
 
C

Cowbell Fever!

Guest
ragamuffin said:
The color of the wood looks lighter than alder. I'd guess swamp ash based on the roughness/grainy-ness, but really it's just a guess

I concur. It looks to be ash maybe northern ash as it is so heavy! guessing too.
 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,445
Take a suitable sharp blade and scrape the paint out of the pocket. The wood will probably be visible enough to say what it is and who wants paint in a neck pocket come to that.
 

Kchoe

New member
Messages
2
Thank you so much, everyone, for your helpful replies. I know it’s super hard to tell. I’ll try that blade trick next time I have the neck off.

I think the body is a two piece, it looks like there’s a seam, as you can see in the attached pics.

Also, I don’t know if it’s more orange peel or if you can see the grain from the paint sinking around that area.
 

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DuckBaloo

Senior member
Messages
299
Considering the paint across the front of the guitar, it's orange peel. I don't think that guitar has ever been wetsanded.
 

Rick

Senior member
Messages
4,497
Come on man you can't tell the wood thru the paint.  Scrape off the paint some place under the pickguard cover. 
 

Steve_Karl

Senior member
Messages
1,625
I'd not scrape in the neck pocket. A good physical connection between neck and body is important.
I'd do it in the cavity from the Humbucker route.

If you can find an old word worker that really knows wood you could lift a good sliver or 2 out of the humbucker area with a sharp 1/4" chisel
and then have something to show someone.

I met an old mandolin maker once that said he could identify wood by how it smelled when it burned.

 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,445
Steve_Karl said:
I'd not scrape in the neck pocket. A good physical connection between neck and body is important.

Indeed and exactly why I would get rid of the paint in the neck pocket. It should not be there. Removing the paint carefully will not damage the wood and will help ensure a good connection.

Actually the paint job on the body doesn't look very good and it may be worth removing it and doing a refinish.
 
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