#1
Me, my dad, and my uncle just downed a really old walnut tree in our yard. After the limbs have been cut for firewood, there's about an 8 foot long solid log of walnut wood. So my question, what kind of tonal characteristics would walnut give? I'm thinking of making either a guitar or bass body out of some of this wood. Why not? Give me your opinions.
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#2
It's used sometimes in high quality guitars. I'd go for it
Not exactly a frequent poster.
#3
Book shelf, make a book shelf. The walnut gives it a great acoustic tone.
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#4
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#5
make a duck call. no, make a shitload of duck calls.
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#6
I've heard it actually sounds pretty good possibly warm but idk for sure,but go for it should be fun anyways
#7
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Piano dick had some good parts, but should have said "As the business man slowly gets boned", would have accented the whole dick feeling of the album
#9
I've got a walnut sevenstring. It's a pretty nice sounding guitar all in all. It has a very percussive tone with lots of attack. That being said, it isn't excessively bright. Super thick sounding. Use the lightest piece you can get.
#10
You do realize you're going to need to let that dry for ages before its ready for use?
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#11
I've done a couple of builds (and a bunch of projects) out of Walnut, it's my favorite wood to work with by a longshot. It's sturdy, beautiful, polishes without polish, cuts good, machines well, turns excellently,... it does everything. I highly recommend it to anyone for a first build as it doesn't tear out or chip and burn marks don't really show up against it. Just be careful with the sawdust, Walnut contains a natural herbicide and some people are allergic to it if they breathe in the dust. Don't use it for horse/animal bedding either, their hooves can absorb the herbicide and make them sick. Also, the sawdust is a great weedkiller

You don't see guitars mass produced from Walnut because of expense and availability. There's a few basses that are mass produced with Walnut bodies, but there's probably 10 guitars sold for every bass


EDIT: You'll have to mill out lumber before you can do anything, smaller sawmills will often do "custom jobs" of a nice log or two for a flat fee. So try to find one locally and go that route. Also, the lumber will have to air dry under a roof for at least 9 months before you can do anything with it. My family has owned a sawmill for over 70 years and I'm very familiar with Walnut if you can't tell haha
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Last edited by Flux'D at Oct 11, 2011,
#13
If you're not kiln drying, it's going to take quite a long time to mature, you'll want to research the process of aging green lumber for use. Worry about that before tone; however, plenty of guitars are made from walnut and have sounded fantastic.
#14
when ever I cut a large tree down I always cut a slab for guitar wood....doesn't matter what kind of tree it is either because that's half the fun, finding new woods to use for building...there are no rules dude
#15
Quote by Flux'D
I've done a couple of builds (and a bunch of projects) out of Walnut, it's my favorite wood to work with by a longshot. It's sturdy, beautiful, polishes without polish, cuts good, machines well, turns excellently,... it does everything. I highly recommend it to anyone for a first build as it doesn't tear out or chip and burn marks don't really show up against it. Just be careful with the sawdust, Walnut contains a natural herbicide and some people are allergic to it if they breathe in the dust. Don't use it for horse/animal bedding either, their hooves can absorb the herbicide and make them sick. Also, the sawdust is a great weedkiller


I believe the term you're looking for is that walnut trees are allelopathic.

Also, go for it OP, although be ready for the wood to possibly warp slightly if it's not completely dried.
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Last edited by Blbmbr666 at Oct 12, 2011,
#16
yea, its gotta be dried for ages, natural drying is at least 6 months -1 year. kiln drying is alot faster.

But yes walnut is a good tonal wood
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#17
Quote by ThrashMetal014
Me, my dad, and my uncle just downed a really old walnut tree in our yard. After the limbs have been cut for firewood, there's about an 8 foot long solid log of walnut wood. So my question, what kind of tonal characteristics would walnut give? I'm thinking of making either a guitar or bass body out of some of this wood. Why not? Give me your opinions.
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#18
I hear that Walnut tends to be warm and round in tone, and it weighs a ton.

You can't use it until you dry it to appropriate moisture content.
#19
8 foot long log?? I wonder if you could make a one piece guitar....
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#21
8 foot log of walnut


That's what she said

seriously though, a one piece guitar sounds cool. I reckon you could do something like that.
EH


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#22
I just realized... what's the diameter of this log? Walnut gets pretty hefty so I'm guessing at least 2ft if you got a nice 8ft log. Typically about 1/4-1/3 of the diameter of Walnut is the undesirable sapwood (it's white and not brown) and you'll want to avoid that when you cut body blanks.

Also is this the butt log? You want to be careful milling these since they could have nails or bullets (yes, bullets) lodged in them over the years. Last summer we sawed the largest pin oak in Indiana and got 2 HUGE logs from it. 14ft diameter at the bottom, 13'6" about 25ft up... and the 2nd was just as big. Talk about a straight gigantic log. Anyways the bottom had a few musket balls lodged in it from god knows when and one of them caused the sawblade to spit a tooth. A 2" tooth flying out of a 60" circular blade at high RPM is a pretty damn scary (and potentially fatal) event.
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[thread="1166208"]Gibsons Historic Designs[/thread]
#23
Quote by seek_&_destroy
8 foot long log?? I wonder if you could make a one piece guitar....


Shoot, no! It'll be a bolt on or set neck... haha I'm nowhere near good enough to do a one-piece. I'll most likely cut the lumber and let it cure. Got one build going now that'll take awhile so by next year it may be dried enough.
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#24
And thanks for the advice, Flux'D. it's probably about a little under 2 feet diameter. I'll remember not to use the sapwood.
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Vox AD15VT
#25
a little sapwood can look kinda sexy imho

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#26
I think the problem with the sapwood is it's difficulty to work with rather than how it looks, iirc.
EH


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