I’m shopping for a classical guitar and have run into okume wood as a neck construction material. When used as a back/side wood to compliment a brighter sounding top wood, Mahogany is good for mellowing out the brightness and adding some warmth and a stronger mid-range plus softening the highs and reducing the overtones. As for the classics, the Gibson Les Paul Jr., Les Paul Special, and SG were made of solid mahogany (with mahogany necks), and countless makers have used the wood in both solid and semi-solid designs over the years. Mahogany back and sides often emphasize bass and treble, with more overtone coloration and a “woody” sound (as opposed to the more metallic sound of, say, rosewood back and sides). Okoume is soft (400 psi Janka), so despite it being an outstanding species for a marine panel, often these panels are used as a substrate for something else that is much harder. Is is sweet, very distinctive smell. What is the moisture content of okume wood found in Gabon? Aucoumea klaineana (angouma, gaboon, or okoumé) is a tree in the family Burseraceae, native to equatorial west Africa in Gabon, the Republic of the Congo, and Río Muni.It is a large hardwood tree growing to 30–40 m tall, rarely larger, with a trunk 1.0-2.5 m diameter above the often large basal buttresses. Early on it became the ukulele sound. All very impressive, but what does it mean? Meranti, in a lot of ways, is similar to Genuine Mahogany. The woods used to build guitars—acoustic guitars in particular—are called tonewoods, and they have enormous effects on the sound and price of an instrument. Okoume, pronounced oh-kuh-mey, plywood is made from the wood of the Okoume tree.It is sometimes called Okoume Mahogany and has a pinkish-brown or pale red hue. The density and grain structure are similar with a nice homogenous feel that allows it to be milled easily and hold details really well. True mahogany wood is still used in the manufacturing of fine furniture and musical instruments, but for environmental reasons, contemporary mahogany furniture is usually made from reddish-brown mahogany alternatives. Is okume a heavy wood? You’re not going to be tested, but here are the ABCs of tonewoods — various woods and the sound qualities they’re noted for: As a guitar top, dense mahogany has a solid, punchy tone with low overtone content and good high-end response. Does anybody have any experience with "Okoume" or Gaboon, and is it a Mahogany? The wood takes well to stains, oils, varnishes and glues very well. I cant find very much information on the Okoume wood, other than that it is similar to mahogany but lightweight. Identifying and Using Hundreds of Woods Worldwide, POSTER: Worldwide Woods: Ranked by Hardness. Share . Okoume did have a wavy appearance when finished with a friction polish. Copyright © 2008-2020 Eric Meier | All Rights Reserved, https://www.wood-database.com/wood-finder/. The timber is considered to be fairly resistant to rot. Okoume. Thank you so much, Okoume is pretty lightweight. A dense hardwood that, when used for guitar tops, produces solid tone, particularly at the high end, with pronounced midrange-y quality. No offense, but this entire website was created to enable people to answer these exact questions for themselves. This hardwood species is native to west-central Africa, especially Gabon, Ghana, Equatorial Guinea and the Republic of Congo. Obeche, also known as African maple and Abachi, is the wood of the obeche tree (Triplochiton scleroxylon). (This is a monthly update, and your email will be kept private.). Okoume Plywood. Highly desirable for steel-string acoustic tops because of its rich, full, clear and loud tonal quality. Meranti vs Mahogany. Be the first to know about new products, featured content, exclusive offers and giveaways. Turned a bowl with alternating okoume and walnut. Color/Appearance: Heartwood ranges from a pale pink to light brown. Honduran Mahogany has a coloring that’s closer to orange than its African counterpart; African Mahogany is lighter in color, projecting a more pinkish hue. Thompson Mahogany is your best source for wholesale African Mahogany, Sapele, and Utile. FYI: I receive a commission on sales generated through links to Amazon, eBay, etc. https://www.wood-database.com/wood-finder/. While Honduran Mahogany is known for its fine, straight grain, African Mahoganyenjoys more variety in graining: Bee’s Wing, Ribboned, and Ropey patterns distinguish this wood from any of its counterparts. Okoume has a salmon pink to pinkish brown or reddish brown colour, darkening upon exposure to light to a darker mahogany-like colour. It seems that "Okoume" is becoming very popular in newer guitars all of a sudden. An additional characteristic that sets African Mahogany apart is its chatoyant luster, which makes the wood appear to have different coloring, as it is … Glues and finishes well. Share this page: By Sweetwater on Apr 2, 2008, 12:00 AM. Copyright ©2020. Workability: High silica content has a pronounced blunting effect on cutters. A perfect addition to your ukulele arsenal. Perhaps, this justifies up to a certain extend, the … As a guitar top, dense mahogany has a solid, punchy tone with low overtone content and good high-end response. Fender PlayCYBER WEEK SALE: Save 50% on a Monthly Plan.UNLOCK THIS OFFER. Mahogany is a hard wood but in the middle of the spectrum. Pricing/Availability: Most commonly sold as veneer, Okoume should be moderately priced for an imported hardwood, though highly figured pieces tend to be more expensive. Used for back and sides, koa’s tonality resembles mahogany. Nice sound. The same company that produces the plywood for the Apex/Robin aircraft company in France manufactures this plywood. The Guitar Highlighted by a gloss finish, our tester’s elaborately figured brownish-yellow coloring was a conversation starter. Strong and clear at the low end, rich and sparkly at the top end, with a reverberant quality. One of the most popular woods for acoustic guitar tops. It conforms to the specifications NFL 18-130 April 1995 (French Aircraft plywood Norm) and BS 1088-2003 (Marine plywood Norm). A heavier, flat-sounding and often beautiful wood of which there are several species, maple is used in acoustic guitars because of its sonically “transparent” qualities, which let the tonal character of the top ring through without significant tone coloration from the back and sides. The LAA allow Mahogany Plywood to be substituted with Okoume, also Gaboon. Weight wise this wood is pretty similar to Honduran Mahogany and African Mahogany (Khaya) with a specific gravity of .62 and weighing about 39 lbs per cubic foot (Honduran Mahogany is .54 - .64 specific gravity and 34 – 40 lbs per cubic foot, African Mahogany .54 - … Mahogany’s sound can be described as “earthy” “strong” “beefy”. Okoume offers unusual flexibility in finishing because the color, which is of medium intensity, permits toning to either lighter or darker shades. However, I've also found that it's used in Chinese made Gibson knock offs because it's cheaper and more abundant. The woods we stock at Thompson Mahogany are: African Mahogany/Khaya, Sapele and Utile/Sipo. This is my woodturning project, shisha mouthpiece – Okoume with resin. Basswood: the principal wood used on many Japanese made instruments. Feel free to use the wood finder and look into properties yourself. Wood-Chip stocks the highest quality Okoume marine-grade plywood available on the market today.Each board from our South Florida lumber-yard exceeds the BS1088 and BS 6566 standard. Fluorescence: A Secret Weapon in Wood Identification, Bow Woods (from a mathematical perspective), Brazilian Rosewood, East Indian, and Other Rosewoods, Genuine Lignum Vitae and Argentine Lignum Vitae, BOOK: WOOD! Various woods have distinct sound qualities, especially when used for the top of an acoustic guitar, which is the most important wooden tonal element of the instrument. Every note came up like a bell. These have that gorgeous wood grain coupled with that distinct chrome plated resonator which offers one of the coolest looking ukulele options on the market. Common Uses: Veneer, plywood, boatbuilding, musical instruments, furniture, and interior millwork. What caught my eye was "mahogany" that was only available as 1x6 and lengths 12-13 feet long or more. Within its native range, the obeche tree is … This is due both to its tonal response, (once again, very similar to Alder) as well as the fact that Basswood is much more readily available to the manufacturers in Asia. They also sell "3/4" mahogany" plywood at really low prices, so a few … It is listed as vulnerable due to a population reduction of over 20% in the past three generations, caused by a decline in its natural range, and exploitation. It is much less dense than other hard woods like rosewood and most exotic dark woods, and more dense than softwoods like spruce and cedar. You’ll be well on your way to finding the right guitar for you. Wood Hardness Chart Species (Alphabetical) Hardness Species (by Hardness) Hardness Mahogany, Honduran 800 Padauk 1725 Mahogany, Santos 2200 Tabaccowood 1750 Maple, Hard North American 1450 Rosewood, Bolivian 1780 Maple, Ivory 1500 Bamboo, Carbonized 1800 Maple, Soft 999 Hickory 1820 Merbau 1925 Pecan 1820 Mesquite 2345 Yellowheart 1820 Are Rosewoods (and Bubinga) really banned by CITES? I'm getting a Washburn X50 PRO and found out that the mahogany used for body and neck is actually nato in their spec sheet. Mahogany. See the articles Wood Allergies and Toxicity and Wood … Theses woods are in order of cost from least to most: Okoume, Tiama (also known as Edinam), Sapele, African Mahogany (has several names), and Utile (Sipo). Mahogany: Mahogany is a dense wood and gives a ‘slower response rate’ ... and have landed on a guitar with a Sitka Spruce top and Okoume back and sides. Hello. CYBER WEEK SALE: Save 50% on a Monthly Plan. Ironically, it's also being used in custom-shop quality guitars. Allergies/Toxicity: Although severe reactions are quite uncommon, Okoume has been reported to cause skin, eye, and respiratory irritation, as well as other effects such as asthma-like symptoms, coughing, and conjunctivitis (pink eye). Meranti, a species of Shorea, is commonly known as Philippine mahogany. Looking for a beginner guitar? What is the density/weight in relatio to popular resonant neck tonewood such as maple? All Rights Reserved. Within its native range, Okoume is considered widespread and relatively common. Mahogany back and sides often emphasize bass and treble, with more overtone coloration and a “woody” sound (as opposed to the more metallic sound of, … Color darkens with age. Grain/Texture: Grain is straight to wavy or slightly interlocked. My acoustic guitar made of this type of mahogany. Okoume has a uniform texture and the grain is straight to barely wavy that looks interlocked and attractive. A great deal, actually. Planing and shaping may produce tearout or fuzzy surfaces. Even though it’s used almost exclusively in veneer form in the United States, solid lumber is much more common in Europe and Africa. Distribution: Central Africa (primarily Gabon), Tree Size: 100-130 ft (30-40 m) tall, 3-6 ft (1-1.8 m) trunk diameter, Average Dried Weight: 27 lbs/ft3 (430 kg/m3), Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .35, .43, Modulus of Rupture: 10,870 lbf/in2 (75.0 MPa), Elastic Modulus: 1,228,000 lbf/in2 (8.47 GPa), Crushing Strength: 5,250 lbf/in2 (36.2 MPa), Shrinkage: Radial: 4.6%, Tangential: 7.1%, Volumetric: 12.2%, T/R Ratio: 1.5. Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, but is on the IUCN Red List. Fender Musical Instruments Corporation. See the articles Wood Allergies and Toxicity and Wood Dust Safety for more information. Available in 4′ x 8′ and 5′ x 10′ ; 3mm, 4mm, 6mm, 9mm, 12mm, 15mm, 18mm & 25mm Most of us aren’t wood experts, so what exactly do different woods have to do with the sound of an acoustic guitar? It’s also used in single-wood bodies. Endgrain: Diffuse-porous; solitary and radial multiples; large pores in no specific arrangement, few; parenchyma not visible; narrow rays, spacing normal. Allergies/Toxicity: Although severe reactions are quite uncommon, Okoume has been reported to cause skin, eye, and respiratory irritation, as well as other effects such as asthma-like symptoms, coughing, and conjunctivitis (pink eye). My interest is the weight as I seek a properly balanced instrument. The beauty of Okoume lies in the defect free, perfectly homogenous surface. Texture is medium, with good natural luster. b) The definition of the Pernambuco was unreal. Narrow heartwood is grayish white, not clearly demarcated from heartwood. We offer these in three wood options, but the tone is similar … Sawn lumber is somewhat difficult to machine because of the silica content, but the wood glues, nails, and peels into veneer easily. For example Magogany? The lumber of this tree is known by many names, among them Acoume, Gaboon wood, Uume and Zouga. From Brazilian rosewood to Sitka spruce, get the lowdown on popular tonewoods. I was very well pleased with the result. Plus, it is much lighter than the African exterior wood options like Sapele, Utile, and African Mahogany. You see it all the time when shopping for an acoustic guitar: Sitka spruce top, mahogany back and sides, rosewood bridge, this wood, that wood, another wood. Okoume is the wood of the Okoume tree (Aucoumea klaineana), a species native to west-central Africa, in particular Gabon, Equatorial Guinea and the Republic of Congo. Okoume is widely used for veneers and is often processed into plywood. The guitar’s neck is made from okoume, a Central African wood similar in appearance and tone to mahogany. Rot Resistance: Rated as non-durable; poor insect resistance. Comments: Sometimes simply called Gabon (not to be confused with Gaboon Ebony), the wood is commercially important in the country of Gabon, where it’s the principle timber species. From what I've researched it's considered a lighter-weight alternative to mahogany. Our interactive gear guide, FindYour.Fender.com, matches you with the perfect model by learning about your sound & style. Pernamabuco neck in electric guitar vs. mahogany: a) The pernambuco neck guitar was by at least 30% louder than the mahogany neck guitar. Scans/Pictures: A special thanks to Steve Earis for providing the wood sample (veneer) of this wood species. The nondurable heartwood dries readily with little degrade. Id say the odor is pretty strong, even if its not being worked. Very similar to the Brazilian variety, but with thicker, more midrange-y tonality. My neighborhood deep-discount lumberyard doesn't do much in hardwoods, especially rough stock--they usually sell finished/s4s lumber. Sturdy and lightweight, it’s known for imparting clear, powerful tone. Uses: Most exterior doors and window frames in South Africa are produced from Okoume. Alongside maple, mahogany is a classic ingredient in both slab and multi-wood (or laminated) bodies, and is a common neck wood, too.