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Ernest Martel

Sycamore Fiddle?

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Anyone ever build with American Sycamore? In looking at the Wood Database it has properties close to the softer maples. I have enough to do back, sides and neck on two fiddles.  I think a low density Engleman top would be a good choice. Any thoughts about using this wood?

Here is an acoustic guitar with Sycamore back sides and neck...

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22 hours ago, nathan slobodkin said:

It's beautiful stuff but I would graft in a maple neck.

Thanks, I was wondering if the wood would be stiff enough for a neck. I bought some from a guy I know but haven't received it yet.

Beautiful looking but is it also good tonewise? I'm guessing you have built cello's with it?

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I have built a few double basses with sycamore backs and ribs.

American sycamore is resonant enough but it has noticeably lower resonant frequencies than

European maple and tends to favor the lower harmonics and produce a darker tone color.

All those hard flecks make it quite difficult to produce a smooth surface.

It bends easily and is very crack resistant with its interlocked grain.

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In order to get the long bands of medullary rays the wood's surface has to be perfectly quartered.  

Maple wood has these rays too but they're not nearly as large or so darkly colored.

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