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Cocobolo question

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Forum topic by Marn64 posted 09-30-2016 12:30 AM 358 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Marn64

209 posts in 245 days


09-30-2016 12:30 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question cocobolo

Does anyone know how well Cocobolo steam bends? I want to know because I found a absolutely PERFECT piece of cocobolo laminate top for my dream electric guitar. In the event that someone purchases it before I do, I want to weigh my options if I can never find that perfect piece of cocobolo electric guitar top ever again. My idea is that if I can’t find a laminate top I can steam press a carved top with a acoustic back and sides.

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee


12 replies so far

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pontic

51 posts in 68 days


#1 posted 09-30-2016 05:13 PM

Cocobolo requires more time in the steamer but it does bend. Thiner the better.

-- drpurvis@aol.com

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Marn64

209 posts in 245 days


#2 posted 09-30-2016 10:24 PM



Cocobolo requires more time in the steamer but it does bend. Thiner the better.

- pontic


so a acoustic back could be hypothetically pressed like the picture below slowly with patience? Or is this too extreme for a wood like Cocobolo?

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee

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bobasaurus

2657 posts in 2644 days


#3 posted 09-30-2016 10:31 PM

I thought instrument backs were carved instead of steam bent/pressed?

-- Allen, Colorado

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Marn64

209 posts in 245 days


#4 posted 09-30-2016 10:37 PM


I thought instrument backs were carved instead of steam bent/pressed?

- bobasaurus


yeah but I’ve been struggling to find a piece of cocobolo with the right color and right amount of sapwood for carved top on a one of a kind ‘59 style Les Paul I am making, this idea of pressing is a last resort.

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee

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bobasaurus

2657 posts in 2644 days


#5 posted 09-30-2016 11:23 PM

Is this the top you were looking at? http://savagewoods.com/product/coco-lt-777/
Just found it on google, amazing stuff but crazy expensive.

-- Allen, Colorado

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Marn64

209 posts in 245 days


#6 posted 09-30-2016 11:35 PM


Is this the top you were looking at? http://savagewoods.com/product/coco-lt-777/
Just found it on google, amazing stuff but crazy expensive.

- bobasaurus


funny you should mention that piece, I was considering buying that one, but its too thin for a carved top LP. Right now I’m looking at Coco luthier billet M-1037 and bookmatch it, now my only concern is that someone will buy it before me, and knowing my Ebay luck, someone probably will :(
(as a high school senior without a job I have to save up for exotic stock like that, usually for about a month)

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee

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pontic

51 posts in 68 days


#7 posted 09-30-2016 11:52 PM

To obtain that shape with steam pressing tech. you would need a positive and a negative press plate preferably made of aluminum. You could make it out of 5000 psi concrete with a hi temp epoxy coating, Make the top one heavy and band it together with rubber straps(olt strips of inner tubes) place the sandwich in a large drum or tub. Put water in the bottom and the jig on bricks on top of it. Get a fire under it and control it so you don’t over heat it. Put a lid on it with a weight on it that will let the steam escape at a certain pressure. take weights on and off until the steam seeps out the top and the lid doesn’t rattle to much. You will have to check it of then. Interestingly, Harmony guitars back in the 50’s and 60’s used a steam press technique albeit more sophisticated than this but they made their topline production archtops like this with 3/16” popular.
You perfect this technique you can make a lespaul out of any piece of thin wood.

-- drpurvis@aol.com

View Marn64's profile

Marn64

209 posts in 245 days


#8 posted 10-01-2016 05:37 PM



To obtain that shape with steam pressing tech. you would need a positive and a negative press plate preferably made of aluminum. You could make it out of 5000 psi concrete with a hi temp epoxy coating, Make the top one heavy and band it together with rubber straps(olt strips of inner tubes) place the sandwich in a large drum or tub. Put water in the bottom and the jig on bricks on top of it. Get a fire under it and control it so you don t over heat it. Put a lid on it with a weight on it that will let the steam escape at a certain pressure. take weights on and off until the steam seeps out the top and the lid doesn t rattle to much. You will have to check it of then. Interestingly, Harmony guitars back in the 50 s and 60 s used a steam press technique albeit more sophisticated than this but they made their topline production archtops like this with 3/16” popular.
You perfect this technique you can make a lespaul out of any piece of thin wood.

- pontic


Based on your profile picture and knowledge you seem to know a lot about guitars! Do you know what Cocobolo’s tonal properties are? I have heard both good and bad, and at this point I simply want a Cocobolo top for the beauty of the wood for a unique guitar instead of influencing the sound of it.

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee

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pontic

51 posts in 68 days


#9 posted 10-02-2016 10:33 PM

If you are building a lespaul style guitar then you are baisicly building a solid body guitar. The type of wood you use on the body is noy as critical as it is for a hollow body. That being said there are differences in tone for solid body guitars. The standards are Sapelle(African Mahogany), Alder, Poplar(clear heart only) Ash, Madagascar Mahogany and clear heart cherry.
The rest are looks. The cocobolo will look very radical if it’s an even veneer. If your substrate is two beefy book matched pieces of Sapelle wood and you do an excellent execution of the dovetail neck set then you will hav a very fine sounding guitar. It will have more sustain than the flamed maple tops in my opinion. The key is the neck set and the fret board. alignment. Good electronics help as well. The Bass in my profile picture is a fender Jazz with an Alder body. I have made a few Bass body’s in my day. The best sounding one was a poplar one left its natural green patina. Remember that the substrate body is best made in three pieces if you are using a dovetail set neck. F or a bolt on neck two piece will do just fine. I no longer make guitars any more it’s more fun to play them so I just buy them. I do have a nice piece of ebony that could be probably be used as a fretboard if you are interested in it let me know by PM and I’ll let you have it.

-- drpurvis@aol.com

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pontic

51 posts in 68 days


#10 posted 10-03-2016 04:54 PM

Here’s your Ebony plank. Madagascar old growth. Saved for 20plus years. The last of the Mohickians. Use it wisely Grasshopper.

-- drpurvis@aol.com

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Marn64

209 posts in 245 days


#11 posted 10-03-2016 06:06 PM



Here s your Ebony plank. Madagascar old growth. Saved for 20plus years. The last of the Mohickians. Use it wisely Grasshopper.

- pontic


Thank you very much,
You Pontic, are a truly incredible person and you have my deepest gratitude. I really wish I could express the full extent of my thanks with just text!
Much gratitude,
Benjamin

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee

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pontic

51 posts in 68 days


#12 posted 10-03-2016 07:04 PM

It’s just a piece of wood lol

-- drpurvis@aol.com

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