what is it tuned to?
Poplar is not really a hardwood. Doesn't have enough rigidity for steel strings - might work with nylon, though. Best to stick with maple, walnut, oak, cherry, or hickory for necks - sometimes even mahogany 1 x 2 won't hold up under steel strings, but usually would work.
Guess I should stop worrying so much about a problem with build#1 when I'm already gathering materials for build#2... and thinking about plans for #3... thanks for the input