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Carman007
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What does “spf” mean?

I think that construction-grade lumber, such as you would find at The Home Depot, would be fine for corner blocks.  I would look for a piece that has grain characteristics similar wood commonly used for instrument tops; i. e., straight-grained, large-diameter annual rings, similar grain spacing, etc.  You could probably also pick up suitable scraps at a construction site.  But I think that the requirements for corner blocks are not very stringent, and you could probably find them in just about any 2X4.

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25 minutes ago, Brad Dorsey said:

What does “spf” mean?

I think that construction-grade lumber, such as you would find at The Home Depot, would be fine for corner blocks.  I would look for a piece that has grain characteristics similar wood commonly used for instrument tops; i. e., straight-grained, large-diameter annual rings, similar grain spacing, etc.  You could probably also pick up suitable scraps at a construction site.  But I think that the requirements for corner blocks are not very stringent, and you could probably find them in just about any 2X4.

In North East  US 2x4s are more likely to be fir not spruce. If you have access to some woods and a saw you could probably find a standing dead spruce which would provide enough blocks for a lifetime. Personally I prefer black willow (or red if you can get it) and $20 would buy enough for a couple of dozen sets of fiddle blocks with the linings

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So spf stands for spruce, pine, or fir, it means the lumber is one of those 3 but I don't know which...I have no access to willow or spruce trees I live in Georgia....my only options are home depot spf or find an online site to overpay for spruce....I think Douglas fir is stronger than spruce but higher density and therefore mass.... Should I use that?

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I will say, again, that I don't think it matters much what you use for corner blocks.  But Nathan knows a lot more about this than I do.  I've never even made an instrument; I've just done a lot of repairs.

And again, I suggest that you look for scraps in a construction-site dumpster.  If an old building is being renovated, you could find 50-or-100-year-old wood.

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1 hour ago, Carman007 said:

.I think Douglas fir is stronger than spruce but higher density and therefore mass.... Should I use that?

Whichever species you choose find something with less prominent grain lines - none of that thick orangey lines growing thru it.  Find something a little better for end and neck blocks.

Listen to Brad - old demolition sites can be good for wood sources.

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As has been mentioned, corner block material isn't terribly critical for function, as long as they aren't too heavy.  More important is how easy they are to work with, shaping and cutting slots for linings.  You could even get a bundle of cheap firewood and use that (softwood) if you want cheap.  I prefer low-density wood... easier to work, and easier to keep light.  But only for CORNERblocks.  Endblocks see plenty of stress, so I like stronger wood for them.

Getting cornerblock material from offcuts is great if the wedges are extra oversized or you start with split logs.

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11 minutes ago, Mike Atkins said:

I bought this... it seemed like a reasonable price to me, and there's tons of spruce I can use for blocks and there was even quarter sawn pieces large enough that it could be technically used for a violin top... 35 lbs of quarter sawn spruce chunks:

https://alaskawoods.com/product/special-half-box-of-sawn-bracewood/

Just a note now that I remember, shipping for this did almost double the cost... not sure if that makes it unreasonable or not, but I just bought it anyway. There's probably enough for about 50 violins worth of blocks I would guess.

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15 minutes ago, Brad Dorsey said:

I bought a box of “brace wood” spruce like that many years ago, and it supplied me with bass bars and blocks for about 25 years.

Yeah, so maybe it is worth it. I've also used the spruce for linings, not sure how proper that is... still on violin #1... but a search for willow lumber left me frustrated, and ultimately led nowhere. 

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