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Testimonials

“Dear Sir,
A few months ago I placed my first order with you and built my very first guitar. Ovangkol back and sides with Sitka top.
I have been a craftsman for a number of years, rebuilding antique pianos, including making new soundboards and bridges, and decided to try my hand at guitars after buying a Taylor 814ce.
The results of my first attempt were surprising, to me and to others. Since I'm a bit "old-school" I built it entirely by hand, no table saw, router, joiner etc. (I did use a drill press!). I have already received requests for custom made guitars, and from a store interested in selling them.
It really helped to find quality supplies, all in one place, so I could start this experiment - which may just turn out to be my next and final career.
Many Thanks.
ps. I have just placed a second order so I can start making a few more......”

- Jon Ballard

Special Redwood Tops

We are always delighted to carry Redwood tops as these majestic trees, growing 200-400 feet high and for hundreds and sometimes thousands of years, are easily encountered near us in Northern California. 

Redwood is a tricky wood to buy. The usual indicators (tightness of grain, wood cut close to quarter) are not reliable indicators of stiffness and tone. It seems, that only one in very many trees is qualified to produce excellent tonewood, we end up passing on much of the material we look at. It's a challenging quest, but well worth it when we are successful, as Redwood can create a guitar of unsurpassed responsiveness and richness of tone

Gratefully, our quest was rewarded with the procurement of the fine Redwood tops you see here -soundboards that rival the storied 'Lucky Strike' tree from the Craig and Alicia Carter stash. That wood, which first came to us over 25 years ago, set the standard for Redwood and inspired a love for this rare and remarkable tonewood among discriminating luthiers around the world. 
 
We are so pleased to once again offer Redwood of this stature. The sinker tops come from the rustic, fog shrouded forests of coastal Mendocino County in California, from the Little River area. The billets were cut from old growth trees that were ax-felled over 80 years ago when many logging efforts were undertaken to rebuild San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake. 
 
The presence of tannin in the wood accounts for the distinctively beautiful reddish color of the Heartwood as well as the longevity of the fallen timber as it provides a natural defense against decomposition and pests. The varied color bands that make each top unique and memorable, come from minerals in the water that are absorbed by the fallen tree (so sinker lumber shows more) and may be the cause of this wood's additional hardness. Order soon as this remarkable material may only be available for a short while. 
 
Special care should be taken with the tempered Redwood tops. Redwood is more brittle than most woods to begin with and tempering magnifies this.