well. they say that the reso soundboard should be quite rigid and its the cone that resonates, hence the soundholes.
with the resos ive built, it all depends on how thin the cone or tin is. in a nutshell, yeah to the holes and thinner the cone/tin then better(and louder) it will sound.
theres a difference between what your classing as a reso - on a regular bought kind of reso you have the resonator cone and a coverplate - it's the coverplate that has the decorative holes not the reso cone - i have seen in the past that people have used a paint tin/can lid for the reso cone and have added decorative designs / holes to them i'm not so sure this is the best move for optimum sound output - maybe so if you dont have any soundholes in the box this would be ok
i think of a resonator guitar in a very similar way to a speaker cabinate where the reso cone is the speaker (it moves air ) the speaker cabinate is the cigar box - air moved by the reso cone is compressed in the cigar box and is forced out of the sound holes as sound - so if you were to put holes in the reso cone this would cut down the amount of air compression and reduction in sound - this is only my take on the subject but i have made a few resonators now and all sounded great and loud also as C#Merle said the construction on a resonator body are much more ridgid than a regular acoustic guitar because it's the resonator cone thats producing the sound rather than a soundboard on a acoustic guitar
hope that helps - btw your build is looking sharp :)
The sound comes out of two places on a resonator guitar. The cone and the soundports. If there are no holes, the sound waves created inside the box cannot come out. Enjoy, Keni Lee
I'd say keep it whole. The soundholes on the box should be enough. But on the next build........;)
If you have another paint can lid or whatever it is you have used for the reso cone try one whole and another with a drilled design that way you can just swap the cones and compare the sound using the same guitar - it will give you a much better idea doing it this way than just building another guitar to compare it with :)