osage orange

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osage orange

Post by johnparchem » Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:48 am

I am planning a classical guitar using a US wood Osage Orange for the back and side at the request of a client. I found a set that is pretty well quarter sawn (I suspect the trees are not wide enough to be perfect across the width). The wood is very dense and stiff, some compare it to BRW but I am finding this one set I have closer to cocobolo. The wood has a very nice sounding tap tone and rings forever. Although this set is very dense 1044 kg/m^3 it long gran young's modules is nearly 20 Gpa. I am surprised at 3 for the diagonal Elc elastic modules and may set it to 1 for the thickness calculations. But my ears hear what I am seeing in a spectrum graph.
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osage orange picture.jpg
osage orange picture.jpg (151.85 KiB) Viewed 3143 times
With its stiffness I can really thin the plate quite a bit and suspect that I can make an active back.

Has anyone had any experience with this wood.

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Re: osage orange

Post by routout » Tue Nov 14, 2017 7:16 am

I have some small pieces used it for Inlay it has a long fiber unlike many other species Indians used it for Bows for that very reason .Should make a resonate back I guess.
John ,of way too many things to do.

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Re: osage orange

Post by kiwigeo » Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:12 am

I guess the vibrational stiffness number you use in your plate thickness calculations will be the critical unknown. I'd go thin with the back but also allow for maximum stiffness adjustment (increase?) via the main lower bout cross brace...

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Re: osage orange

Post by simonm » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:43 pm

Alan Carruth, who is on both the Delcamp and Mimf forums for sure and maybe elsewhere, has mentioned building at least 6 instruments with it.

Here (http://www.classicalguitardelcamp.com/v ... &p=1214100) he suggests it is a "drop-in" substitute for BR in terms of measurable parameters. Customer acceptance is a different question. In the same post he says it is difficult to work with hand tools and it tends break out with a hand plane so a sander and or scraper for thicknessing. If you just google his name and orange osage you are sure to find lots of info. He is a font of knowledge on north american "substitutes" for tropical woods.

I am sure if you contacted him he would be helpful.

p.s. a lovely looking piece of wood

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Re: osage orange

Post by nkforster » Wed Nov 15, 2017 4:44 am

I made a few guitars with it, and I was impressed by it. Glueing isn't always straightforward. Treat it like an oily rosewood, even though it doesn't feel that oily.

The main issue I had with it was it's not very "commercial." Not a great demand for orange with a hint of green steel string guitars. So I sold what I had to a friend in the trade who likes non exotics. That said, it makes a great base for a sunburst, so keep that in mind.

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