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?  

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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.

Taff

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.

Taff

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.

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