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  1. #1
    john james Guest

    Default paulownia for guitars

    Hi ,I am wondering if anyone has ever made any stringed instuments,particuliarly guitars,out of paulownia.If so would love to hear from you.
    cheers jim

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  3. #2
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    Me too!

    P

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    Its a fast growing species isnt it? That would count against its use as top material. Might be ok for lining. Would be interested to hear more about this wood.
    Whatever note you blow youre never more than a semitone away from the correct one....(Miles Davis)

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    The Chinese use one of the Paulownia varieties for intsruments, usually the longest growing one, takes about 40 years to mature. Most of the plantations about use the fastest growing varieties, about 10 years to maturity, and it regrows. Apparentley there are about 12 different Paulwonia species that can be used.



    http://www.toadgully.com.au/articles/kiri_ptimber.php

    This unique guitar was made by Yokinobu Chai (master instrument maker, Japan) from Kiri wood provided to him by Masaichi Tanaka, curator of Ryogoku Kiri Museum, Tokyo. The guitar has a deeper, warmer tone than those made from cedar or pine. The fretboard requires a very hard wood and was made from ebony, but all other parts of the guitar are made from Kiri - a truly excellent instrument.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paulownia

    More recently, it is used as body material for low-cost electric guitars and as the core for lightweight touring skis. It is often used in guitars as the core body, then finished with another kind of wood, such as the Dean ML XM that is made of paulownia as the body but is finished with mahogany.
    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/produ...tar?sku=512150



    Paulownia catalpifolia
    Paulownia elongata
    Paulownia fargesii
    Paulownia fortunei
    Paulownia kawakamii
    Paulownia taiwaniana
    Paulownia tomentosa

    The tomentosa is the most common garden variety ornamental, along with the fortunei most often used for plantation timbers, not sure which one is the long growing one but its the best for instruments....
    I have some logs and some cut, sure is an interesting timber, strong and light with resonant properties...

    http://www.paulowniatrees.com.au/



    http://www.paulownia.org/
    http://www.paulowniatrees.org/
    http://www.worldpaulownia.com/
    http://www.worldpaulownia.com/html/p...warehouse.html
    http://archive.idrc.ca/library/docum...52/086352g.htm
    http://paotong.9su.net/en/ptlz.htm
    "I am brother to dragons, companion to owls"

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    I grew some trees at my last place and was amazed at the resonance when you put your ear to the trunck and taped it somewhere. Always thought it would make good instruments.
    Dom

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    I'm 99% sure the fast growing commercial variety grown here in Australia is a hybrid, between 2 of the species, don't know which 2.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amb View Post
    I'm 99% sure the fast growing commercial variety grown here in Australia is a hybrid, between 2 of the species, don't know which 2.
    yes, a few of those sites below mention the hybrids available. The higher quality or tighter grained paulownia grows in temperate or colder climates and grows a bit slower with the seasons making the growth rings closer together. In China where its native, the different varieties were all in different climate zones with the cold weather ones more highly prized.

    Some of the suppliers of the timber, especially in Japan will have the tighter grained stuff at higher prices, but it's definaltey available.

    When i cut the log i have i;ll see if there are wide enough boards for a guitar, definaltey a uke but am not sure there enough for guitar size.
    "I am brother to dragons, companion to owls"

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    Hi john_james and all, I recently made an experimental Classical entirely with Paulownia (except the bridge and fingerboard). Thought I'll share it here.

    The guitar is very light, as you would expect with Paulownia. The sound is deceptively resonant, warm, good separation, voluminous. The wood is easy to work but the edges chip off easily when worked. However it takes shellac very nicely, just that it takes ages to pumice its millions of tiny pores! But the Paulownia is very difficult to get that is big enough for guitars, maybe older trees. The characteristic of the wood doesn't allow for a greater sustain. Maybe with some design alterations and a different top may change somethings. As is, this timber truly exceptional, so many other uses and yet so musical! Between the next Paulownia, is a Flamenco project. Hope can share more then.

    You may see the photos here - http://pimach.com/sg/index.php/about...out-the-guitar. You can also hear the guitar at the home page.

    Keep the music alive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by notamen View Post
    Hi john_james and all, I recently made an experimental Classical entirely with Paulownia (except the bridge and fingerboard). Thought I'll share it here.

    The guitar is very light, as you would expect with Paulownia. The sound is deceptively resonant, warm, good separation, voluminous. The wood is easy to work but the edges chip off easily when worked. However it takes shellac very nicely, just that it takes ages to pumice its millions of tiny pores! But the Paulownia is very difficult to get that is big enough for guitars, maybe older trees. The characteristic of the wood doesn't allow for a greater sustain. Maybe with some design alterations and a different top may change somethings. As is, this timber truly exceptional, so many other uses and yet so musical! Between the next Paulownia, is a Flamenco project. Hope can share more then.

    You may see the photos here - http://pimach.com/sg/index.php/about...out-the-guitar. You can also hear the guitar at the home page.

    Keep the music alive.
    hi all,

    i'm sorry that the earlier link to hear the paulownia classical guitar is broken. so here are the updated links.

    audio sample at http://www.myspace.com/ngohguitars
    construction photos at http://ngohguitars.blogspot.com/sear...ia%20Classical

    keep the music alive!

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    love the construction pics notamen

    i am delighted that you have made the neck out of this wood..

    initially i thought it might not be strong enough but your pics say otherwise
    Looking for

    1. fiddleback mulga - 1" thick, 3"wide, 26" long

    PM if you have for sale!

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    It's fine for solid body guitars, I've got no info on it's uses for acoustics, but I suppose it would be ok. Necks? probably stick with maple etc...but then it's all about choices and experimenting... The body of the strat is Paulownia, and the solid body blank is also Paulownia.!!!! Not hard to get.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    hmmn

    just been lookin at some of me guitars and found this one



    light weight - in region of basswood ; soft - easily dented with fingernail; looks like mahogany but far too light weight to be so imo; originally came from China

    very resonant sound but sustain is shorter than typical...suspect neck might also be paulownia

    i have always suspected this wood to be paulownia; what say you , fellas who have used it?
    Looking for

    1. fiddleback mulga - 1" thick, 3"wide, 26" long

    PM if you have for sale!

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    Looks very much like plain Eucalyptus.
    Cheers Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by woodturner777 View Post
    Looks very much like plain Eucalyptus.
    Cheers Bob
    ya not wrong there Bob ...i got some eucalyptus that looks similar but it's too lightweight and soft though

    there might be lightweight eucalyptus but not the ones i have
    Looking for

    1. fiddleback mulga - 1" thick, 3"wide, 26" long

    PM if you have for sale!

  16. #15
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    I have come across some light weight eucalyptus here in tassie.
    Cheers Bob

    Quote Originally Posted by R3R View Post
    ya not wrong there Bob ...i got some eucalyptus that looks similar but it's too lightweight and soft though

    there might be lightweight eucalyptus but not the ones i have

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