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 Post subject: The Butternut Topped OOO
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 11:11 pm 
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Location: SE Michigan
First name: Kenneth
Last Name: Casper
City: Northville
State: MI
Country: U.S.A
Focus: Build
Some of you had asked for finished pictures of this guitar, which, along with a mango commission, were finished several weeks ago. However, I loaned this guitar out just after I got it strung up and finally got it back a week or so ago. I had some nice lighting coming through the window this evening, so I took a few pictures. The guitar is pretty basic with the back and sides made of well quartered black walnut. Bindings and rosette are wenge with the wenge inlaid radially in the rosette.

This is a very cool guitar. I love the warm glow of the butternut, which was pore-filled with zpoxy. And the sound is excellent. I got feedback from several who have played it and most liken the sound of the butternut to mahogany, but with crisper mids and highs, giving it a nice warm, well balanced tone.

My plan is to keep this guitar around so prospective customers can play it. I would love to do some commissions using this combination, but it is so untraditional, I don't think anyone would consider it unless they could personally play and hear it.

Maybe it will inspire a few of you to try butternut as well.

Ken
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 11:40 pm 
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Brazilian Rosewood
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Sure looks nice! Got any sound clips or video?

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 5:45 am 
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Walnut
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That is fantastic. I really enjoy craftsman who can get outside of the box. I have never heard of butternut being used, i can only hope the tone is as beautiful as the rest of the guitar. Great execution and color.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 6:36 am 
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Location: Windsor Ontario Canada
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I tried the guitar at Bluefish a few weeks back and was curious about what the effect of the top material and was surprised at its tone and response. Ken's usual excellent fit and finish quality.

Nice photos Ken

Fred

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:04 am 
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Looks nice. What woods did you use for the neck?


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:07 am 
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Nice looking guitar Ken! Your finishing is top notch!

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 8:14 am 
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Mahogany
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Wow Gorgeous! Would love to hear some sound clips.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:48 am 
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Very nice!

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:49 am 
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Impressive work , I love that Butternut top . great work . I hope some day to be so good [:Y:]

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 10:33 am 
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Looks real nice Ken! [:Y:] Walnut is one of my favorite tonewoods to build with. Can't wait to hear it. :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 10:56 am 
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Wow looks great would love to hear a sound bite. Where did you source the butternut?


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:26 pm 
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Brazilian Rosewood
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+1 for butternut, would like to try it someday, no suppliers here in KC


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 7:49 pm 
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Location: SE Michigan
First name: Kenneth
Last Name: Casper
City: Northville
State: MI
Country: U.S.A
Focus: Build
Thanks Gentlemen. The neck is walnut and the butternut came from Artisan Lumber.

I have a small Sony PCM recorder but don't have external mics. I put the mic end up near the sound hole and played a couple of tunes this evening. Listening to the playback, the audio sounds a bit bassy. I don't notice that when playing, so I may have had the recorder a little close or the gain a little high, but you will get a feel for the guitar anyway:

Butternut Audio File

The scale is 24.9" and strung with D'Addario mixed gauge Bluegrass strings. I used a medium pick for the first part of the track and fingers for the last bit.

Ken

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:18 am 
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Ken – the guitar sounds fantastic! Thanks for the sound clip. It’s beautiful too. Is the walnut from Steve Roberson, by chance?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 6:30 am 
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Brazilian Rosewood
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with the difficulty if getting many of the traditional woods , I am seeing more non traditional woods being used. Some are rather surprising. I am glad to see the infusion of new materials being used. Very nice work on this butternut .

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:50 am 
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Koa
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Ken, I'm glad you posted this follow up. I was one of those who requested it. You described your guitar as
"pretty basic" but I think that's one of its strengths. I suspect it's more difficult to build a beautiful "basic" guitar than a heavily ornamented one. There's no distraction or bling to cover goofs and imperfections--everything has to be just right. I think your vertical photo looking down the side is the most revealing of all the photos. It shows beautiful fair curves, beautifully executed binding and a gorgeous finish. I especially like the way you radiused the corners of the binding. There are many great builders here and even more "wannabe" great builders, but I think everyone here would be proud if they made a guitar this nice--basic or ornamented. It's a very nice piece. Thanks for posting it, and congratulations.
Patrick


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:26 am 
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That is beautiful. Simplicity does not = "basic".


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:23 pm 
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I'm digging the Wenge and the two tone walnut. [:Y:] I've said it before but you have a great eye for aesthetics.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:36 pm 
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Koa
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Nice, I love butternut, I have made some cabinets from it and thought it would make a nice tonewood.
That walnut looks familiar [:Y:]

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 10:58 pm 
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Location: SE Michigan
First name: Kenneth
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Country: U.S.A
Focus: Build
Thanks again everyone for the kind words regarding the butternut. Don't hesitate to give the wood a try if you are looking for something a little different. The sound will positively surprise you. Some day I will build one with a body of butternut as well as I cut out a couple of side sets when I resawed the board.

Ken

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