A few comments and then a few questions.  Since I don't have good maple or other decent hardwoods readily available to me I use the 1x2's from the home centers.  Went to HD and Lowes yesterday searching for decent 1x2's.  Sorted through probably 75 boards and came home with 3 good red oaks.  Went through all the poplar they had and found nothing that was even approaching straight.  I've read where they use tulip wood and call it poplar.  Which to me is aggravating.  And frankly kinda dishonest.  Also the poplar seemed flimsy, shaggy  and awfully lightweight.  Haven't done a neck with it yet and frankly haven't found a reason not to use the red oak.

I know that many on here like poplar but is what they sell at the home centers really poplar or tulip wood? 

Why do you prefer poplar over red oak?  

Views: 771

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hi, here in Australia I go to hardware chain Bunnings, for cbg neck timber and fingerboards.

The neck wood is Tasmanian Oak and the fingerboard timber is Merbau. The oak is whitish to cream and the merbau is dark to light...ish mahogany colour. A great combination for necks I think. As I have said I pick the eye's out of the stack and often come away with nothing. The nearest store is 130km away.

I have posed some photo's of what I look for and a bunch of oak necks and Merbau fingerboards.

Cheers Taff

1/4 sawn.

Great figure, you don't see that every day...and.....

Merbau wood fibres hold the fret tang well.


Those look like some pretty nice necks your building Taff.  Are those fret markers the basic 1/4" rounds that CB Gitty sells?

hi Taffy, those Merbau finger boards look great. where do you get them from? Do you rip them down from bigger stock?  some of the Merbau i have seen is finger jointed. i used the 18mmx40mm Tas Oak from bunnings and also used 8mmx40mm Tas Oak as a fretboard..

Considering most 6 string necks are 1 & 11/16" wide at the neck and 2 & 3/16" wide at the heel, 1 & 1/2" should be fine for a 4 string. All 4 of my 4 string CBG's have 1 & 1/2" wide necks, even did a 6 string(3 groups of 2) with one without any problems. 

I have been fortunate to have been able to supply my habit mostly from the free section on Craigslist.  I have gotten some nice oak and a little maple for necks.  I like oak and am used to it, so working with it is ok.  Whenever needing lumber from the stores the quality seems pretty random, sometimes very nice and sometimes a pile of garbage, and often it is wet as others have mentioned. 

For the price we pay for it the box stores should supply better quality hardwoods. I agree sometimes it is more like culls instead of quality lumber.

Call me lucky, I’ve never had those woes? But it does pay to inspect what you’re buying thoroughly? 

Hi Frank, the markers are burnt into the wood with different designs of round wood burning tips. The boards have not been fretted yet.

And whilst on the subject of timber being wet when purchased, bare in mind that timber takes on and gives up moisture even after being dried. For this reason I stack mine as in the photos until I'm happy it has stabilised. Stickering it like this allows air contact to all sides.


I store my wood the same way

My area Lowe's/Home Depot only has Poplar, soft Pine and Red Oak. Different areas will supply Maple, White Oak and others. Do remember that if it's not on display, you might be able to find it online or order it.

Hi Timothy, I get the Merbau from Bunnies, its decking boards, and I resaw it. I buy the metre long lengths and get maybe eight fingerboards out of one length.


Im B&Q (they are here in Irl as well as UK) I got some square oak stair spindles that seem fairly straight. Seem about the right length for my Canjo project.


The Essential Pages

New to Cigar Box Nation?How to Play Cigar Box GuitarsFree Plans & How to Build Cigar Box GuitarsCigar Box Guitar Building BasicsCigar Box Guitar Parts Store

Site Sponsor

Recommended Links & Resources


pre amp unit for Piezo

Started by Mikey Hearrold II in Building Secrets, Tips, Advice, Discussion. Last reply by Korrigan 14 hours ago. 4 Replies

Slider Lids

Started by Brent Kasl in Building Secrets, Tips, Advice, Discussion. Last reply by Taffy Evans on Thursday. 9 Replies

Heel length

Started by Brent Kasl in Building Secrets, Tips, Advice, Discussion. Last reply by Korrigan on Wednesday. 4 Replies

My first real work bench.

Started by Cause the Blue rat in Other stuff - off topic, fun stuff, whatever. Last reply by Cause the Blue rat Nov 11. 15 Replies

Blog Posts

My New Alexandria CBG Adventure

Posted by Poorness Studios on November 12, 2018 at 7:30pm 3 Comments

String Talk !

Posted by Andries D. EKER on November 4, 2018 at 4:40pm 24 Comments

Gutter Guard Sound Hole Covers

Posted by Steebos Kalist on November 4, 2018 at 12:45pm 5 Comments


Posted by Danny Gordon on October 31, 2018 at 5:01pm 3 Comments

Latest Activity

BeetleJuice! commented on BeetleJuice!'s photo

Radios turned into guitar amps

"No Brain...SICK AMP!!!!!! Ha Ha : )"
11 minutes ago
BrianQ. commented on BeetleJuice!'s photo
1 hour ago
JB commented on JB's photo

Acoustic Reso!!

"Yep mgb body!!! "
1 hour ago
BeetleJuice! posted photos
1 hour ago
Brother3String liked BUGGY (C)'s video
2 hours ago
BrianQ. commented on Ron Lutz's photo


"Nice grain pattern,what is it?"
2 hours ago
BrianQ. liked Ron Lutz's photo
2 hours ago
BrianQ. liked Ron Lutz's photo
3 hours ago
Ron Lutz posted photos
3 hours ago
Ron Lutz commented on Ron Lutz's photo

guitar #88 a 6 string lap steel

"Yes Brian.  It is the acrylic fretboard, usually I will place and image underneath but it is…"
3 hours ago
Derek Rose commented on Derek Rose's video

Copperhead Road - cover

"Yes, Brian, it was all me. LOL AGP! I tortured my wife enough with the ukuleles over the years, I…"
3 hours ago
Derek Rose commented on the anonymous pick's video

Swamp witch guitar Helltainium for GD

"Nice original design details and sounds great!"
3 hours ago



© 2018   Created by Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service