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Old 01-25-2021, 08:57 AM
redir redir is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Mountains of Virginia
Posts: 6,204

Originally Posted by Gingerninja View Post
I'm brand new to this forum and still a novice maker, I am now on my seventh build, so please bear this in mind. I hand bend on a pipe and found bubinga very easy to bend, which seems to conflict with others, it's also my best sounding guitar. However, what I've learned is that the thickness is crucial. I've just bent European Walnut with ease in about 15 mins per side and yet the EIR I bent before this one was much harder. They were both around 1.9mm. The difference in stiffness was considerable, the EIR was so much stiffer and with hindsight I should have thinned to nearer 1.7mm. I'd appreciate others' opinions on this but I think the wood needs to show plenty of flex before it will even consider bending. As I say my experience is limited so please take with a 'pinch of salt'. The heat of the pipe is crucial too.
The heat of the pipe is what most people get wrong at first. It has to be HOT! Spritzed water on it should ball up pop and dance on the pipe and you will hear it sizzel. That's when you know it's ready to bend wood on.

1.7mm is pretty thin but not unheard of. I typically go more for 2.3mm. But certainly for difficult woods the thinner you go the easier they will bend.
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