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Old 11-17-2017, 09:33 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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Default John Kinnaird Pau Santo 000 Build

Hi Everyone, for my first build thread on the AGF I thought I would chronicle a new guitar I am very excited about, because of the builder (John Kinnaird) and the unconventional back and sides wood (Pau Santo). John has just gotten started on the guitar in the last week or two since Woodstock, and it is starting to take shape. Since this is my first build thread, I'll be learning how to post pictures as John sends them, so I appreciate your patience as I figure that out.

First, the wood. Pau Santo is a very hard wood in the Fabaceae family, which of course includes all of the rosewoods, African blackwood, Koa and Australian blackwood, Wenge, and a bunch of other great guitar woods. The species is Zollernia paraensis, if you're curious. Within the Fabaceae family, it seems to be a closer botanical relation to the rosewoods (Dalbergia) than to Koa (Acacia). The gentleman from whom I sourced it told me that it has been used quite a bit for guitars in Brazil, where it is native, and also used a bit in Portugal and Spain. I was not able to find much of anything on its use for guitars, but I don't speak Portuguese and very little Spanish. Pau Santo means "Holy Wood" in Portuguese, which you find when you start digging is a name applied to a number of species in South America. Palo Santo in Peru, for example, is a totally different species, used mostly as incense in sacred tribal ceremonies but not suitable for instruments. I must say I like having a guitar built from holy wood!

At any rate, my source tells me that Pau Santo is a very good tone wood, with a sound that lands between rosewood and ebony. We shall see! Given its density and the thickness of the set, I was a little nervous...the tap tone was more of a thud than the ring of a bell. It took me a while to settle on a builder for this. I knew I needed someone confident and curious.

As many of you know, John Kinnaird and his brother Stephen have outstanding reputations as luthiers, and John came highly recommended by a very happy repeat customer who is way more knowledgeable than me. John has been successfully building with "weird" woods for a long time, and I was delighted that he was game to try Pau Santo. He is also a super nice guy, which matters to me.

Next post: the guitar.
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Old 11-17-2017, 09:51 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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I had been leaning toward a deep body OM, especially after seeing some of the incredible OMs being built for AGF'ers of late. Cigar Fan's incredible OM from Stephen Kinnaird may be "guitar of the year" in my book, and there have been many other notable beauties. However, I asked John what he would most like to build, and he said a deep body 000. I don't have a 000, and I wanted to let John do his thing, so I happily agreed. Main thing I wanted: smaller body, big sound, strong bass response.

As I said, Pau Santo back and sides. This is a dark wood, with a mix of browns, black, and some green streaks. For the top, I chose cedar for the sound, despite it being dark also. Plenty of spruce guitars in my near future, and I dearly miss my Lowden cedar/mahogany O-35. Creates an opportunity for contrast with some other details like the armrest bevel and inlay, to be revealed here soon.
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Old 11-17-2017, 09:57 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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Here is a first shot of the back: IMG_0726.jpg
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Old 11-17-2017, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamiejoon View Post
the unconventional back and sides wood (Pau Santo).
Fun! I'm looking forward to seeing some pictures.

Quote:
Pau Santo is a very hard wood in the Fabaceae family, which of course includes all of the rosewoods, African blackwood, Koa and Australian blackwood, Wenge, and a bunch of other great guitar woods.
It's a very large family that also includes various beans, soybeans, chickpeas and all sorts of other things. Drawing any kind of inference or comparisons from botanical family relationships isn't really telling

Quote:
all of the rosewoods, African blackwood
ABW is a rosewood (Dalbergia).

Quote:
As many of you know, John Kinnaird and his brother Stephen have outstanding reputations as luthiers, and John came highly recommended by a very happy repeat customer who is way more knowledgeable than me.
Based on what they've shown here and their enthusiastic customer base, you're in good hands.

I'm excited to see how this one shapes up.
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Old 11-17-2017, 10:04 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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Here’s another photo of the full unfinished back:
IMG_0727.jpg
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Old 11-17-2017, 10:09 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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And another: IMG_0728.jpg
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Old 11-17-2017, 10:18 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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Originally Posted by rogthefrog View Post


It's a very large family that also includes various beans, soybeans, chickpeas and all sorts of other things. Drawing any kind of inference or comparisons from botanical family relationships isn't really telling

ABW is a rosewood (Dalbergia).

Hi Rog, thanks for following! Yes, I know the Fabaceae family well. I was formerly a forester and arborist. That's partly why I am so excited about finding one that was new to me. I was just trying to simplify things for people who may not know the family.
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Old 11-17-2017, 10:28 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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I wanted a Venetian cutaway for this guitar. Given that neither John nor I have any experience with Pau Santo, we were unsure if it would tolerate being bent to that extent. Happily, John's magic powers have prevailed.
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Old 11-17-2017, 10:29 PM
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Bending the Venetian cutaway: IMG_0730.jpg
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Old 11-17-2017, 10:49 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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Things are moving along! Sides bent, heel and neck blocks being attached. Note the light colored sap wood on the closest side:
IMG_0732.jpg
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Old 11-18-2017, 07:18 AM
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The day has come!! Happy for you Jamie! That looks like cool wood and I know in John's hands this guitar will be stunning! I'll be excited to follow along and see how this develops! Congratulations!
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Old 11-18-2017, 07:29 AM
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Yes, I am one of those enthusiastic Kinnaird customer base. This is going to be really nice. John can't build a bad sounding guitar from the 5-6 I have played. I really like the wood, especially the curly bits just outside the greenish section. It should have great overtones and project well with the wood being so dense. Tap tone, over-rated.....
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Old 11-18-2017, 10:08 AM
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Originally Posted by TomB'sox View Post
Yes, I am one of those enthusiastic Kinnaird customer base. This is going to be really nice. John can't build a bad sounding guitar from the 5-6 I have played. I really like the wood, especially the curly bits just outside the greenish section. It should have great overtones and project well with the wood being so dense. Tap tone, over-rated.....
Allow me to echo echo echo echo echo echo that sentiment . I can't count how many of John's guitars I have played and/or owned. I am yet to play one that doesn't make the hair on my arms pop up. My very best guitar right now is one that John built. Great stuff. This one should be no different!
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Old 11-18-2017, 12:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamiejoon View Post
And another: Attachment 3556


Gorgeous wood, bound to be a great guitar coming through the hands of John!
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Old 11-18-2017, 02:27 PM
Jamiejoon Jamiejoon is offline
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Tom and Mike, yes I am so excited to join the Kinnaird club. Both of you were influential in my decision. Tom, you probably don't know but I am the proud owner of your Koa Pina. I try to take good care of her!
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