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  #1  
Old 09-03-2019, 09:27 PM
Birdbrain Birdbrain is offline
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Default What's the oldest wood used to make a guitar?

Not the oldest guitar, as was asked previously this year, but the oldest tree. That takes us in the realm of sinker woods, I suppose. Ever curious, I'd love to know more. What say thee, fellow best-and-brightest?
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Last edited by Birdbrain; 09-03-2019 at 09:27 PM. Reason: sp.
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  #2  
Old 09-03-2019, 09:32 PM
Brucebubs Brucebubs is offline
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5000 year old bog oak.

https://turnstoneguitar.co.uk/blog/5...ght-on-bog-oak

Here's a sound clip,

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  #3  
Old 09-03-2019, 09:37 PM
The Bard Rocks The Bard Rocks is offline
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Ancient Kauri is older than that, I believe. And there are some tops made from very ancient Spruce, from bogs. All these are far older than sinker logs.
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  #4  
Old 09-03-2019, 09:51 PM
Birdbrain Birdbrain is offline
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Default That's impressive...

Five thousand years old is older than the Egyptian Pyramids (circa 2500 BC).

Today I made a deal on a guitar with wood half that old. NA(ncient)GD coming soon!
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Old 09-03-2019, 09:59 PM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is online now
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Ancient Nauri from New Zealand the one that Iíve heard touted as being the oldest wood usable as a tonewood for instrument construction, but Iíll happily concede that Iím not even remotely an authority on the subject. So what I can contribute is hearsay, nothing more.


whm
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Old 09-03-2019, 10:14 PM
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Mr. Jelly Mr. Jelly is offline
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The ghost oak guitar made by Santa Cruz is a pretty neat story.

https://santacruzguitar.com/the-ghost-oak/
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Old 09-03-2019, 11:05 PM
Limpias Limpias is offline
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Cutting a tree which is 5000 years old just to make a guitar is a horrible thing. We destroy our base to life which took ages to develop and grow just for our selfishment and foremost dollar business...
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Old 09-03-2019, 11:11 PM
Birdbrain Birdbrain is offline
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Default Relax...

Nobody's doing that... to my knowledge, anyway. That 8,000-year-old tree had lived its life before it fell into that bog. The sinker wood salvaged from river bottoms, likewise. The Sitka Spruce we all know and love doesn't last much beyond 800 years.

But if you spot a guitar made of Bristlecone Pine, which lives up to 4,800 years and counting, contact me and I'll be upset, too!
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Old 09-03-2019, 11:11 PM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is online now
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Limpias, I seriously doubt that anyone is cutting down 5,000 year old trees, or if any even exist. The ancient woods that occasionally get made into guitars are from recovered logs that were serendipitously preserved by some accident of nature, usually when rapidly covered by sediment or immersed in the anoxic murk of a swamp or bog.

When oxygen canít get to the wood, then the usual bacteria and critters that would normally break it down and consume it canít reach it.

Hope that makes more sense.


Wade Hampton Miller
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Old 09-03-2019, 11:12 PM
Brucebubs Brucebubs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Limpias View Post
Cutting a tree which is 5000 years old just to make a guitar is a horrible thing. We destroy our base to life which took ages to develop and grow just for our selfishment and foremost dollar business...
They are not alive and they are not cut down.

Approximately 7000 years ago there was a rise in the sea level that caused the rivers to backup which subsequently caused the Fenlands to flood. The trees that were unfortunate to have been growing there died whilst still standing and eventually fell into the silt of the forest floor. Many of them got buried and were preserved in these Ďboggyí conditions. The unique black colour is a result of a chemical reaction occurring between the tannins in the oak and the soluble irons present in the bog it was being preserved in.


Spring forward to today, these sub fossilised trees start to rise up to the surface. Much of the land in this region now is agricultural and farmers often find one of these fallen oak when preparing their fields Ė and it can be a right nuisance to them!
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Old 09-04-2019, 06:35 AM
The Bard Rocks The Bard Rocks is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Limpias View Post
Cutting a tree which is 5000 years old just to make a guitar is a horrible thing. We destroy our base to life which took ages to develop and grow just for our selfishment and foremost dollar business...
The Kauris used were not 5000 years old living trees, They died eons ago, buried in bogs and whatnot. There are ample living Kauri's, magnificent huge old trees, still living - but I don't know if they are ever cut ("harvested") or not.
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Sexauer L00 Adk/Magnolia
Hatcher Jumbo Bearclaw/"Bacon" Padauk
Goodall Jumbo POC/flamed Mahogany
McAlister baritone Adk/Bubinga
Appollonio 12 POC/Myrtle
MJ Franks Resonator, all Australian Blackwood
Blackbird "Lucky 13" - carbon fiber
'31 National Duolian
banjos, mandolin, autoharp..
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  #12  
Old 09-05-2019, 08:17 PM
printer2 printer2 is offline
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If it makes you feel better...

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  #13  
Old 09-05-2019, 09:24 PM
Birdbrain Birdbrain is offline
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Default Cool!

They're pluckin' those suckers (or, sinkers) like potatoes!
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  #14  
Old 09-06-2019, 12:44 AM
maxtheaxe maxtheaxe is offline
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There was a fairly recent (2-3 years?) influx of sets derived from some 3000 year old Sitka that had been taken down & buried in an avalanche in what is now Alaska. I forget the details but I think there might still be some floating around out there.

The pictures of it are something else...looks like something you might find on a beach somewhere...grey color and all...
https://alaskawoods.com/product-cate...ancient-sitka/

Here's a creation from Bedell made with this wood for the top; the back & sides are 450 year-old Brazilian rosewood found buried in the mud by a riverbank.

https://bedellguitars.com/blog/custo...coustic-guitar
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  #15  
Old 09-06-2019, 01:46 AM
RosieTGC RosieTGC is offline
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Hi all, I don’t get a chance to post that often but thought this was a really interesting thread that I’d drop in with a quick note.

The “oldest” new guitar I ever built had 5,000-year-old ancient Fenland Black Oak paired with 3,000-year-old ancient Sitka Spruce.

No trees were harmed in the process as they fell around the time of dating and have been preserved in the bog/glacier until recently, when they were unearthed and prepared for use. I also wrote a blog post which Brucebubs linked to at the top of this thread https://turnstoneguitar.co.uk/blog/5...ght-on-bog-oak

You can find a video of Michael Watts playing an “ancient” guitar that I built in 2018 with ancient Fenland Black Oak back, sides & neck with ancient Sitka Spruce top, dubbed The Dragon here on YouTube: https://youtu.be/420Dlq4Qhe4

I love the story behind these ancient woods and building guitars with them is a humbling experience.

Last edited by Kerbie; 09-06-2019 at 05:08 AM. Reason: Adjusted; Thank you, Rosie!
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