Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments

Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby chuckatsoits » Wed Jan 26, 2011 4:00 pm

curious why I rarely see this combo...
any thoughts?

Guess I may wanna point out that I am not a luthier(though I tried for a week) and really just find this kind of topic interesting.
so if anyone could be kind enough to indulge... just for fun
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby Alexandru Marian » Wed Jan 26, 2011 4:45 pm

Two reasons: maple is scarcely used anyway, and the appearance of a top darker than the back is questionable for many people. I recently fixed the FP on one of these and after a number of sessions using the darkest shellac it started to look rather OK. On paper/in general it is a great match: maple has high damping, cedar low.
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby chuckatsoits » Wed Jan 26, 2011 8:40 pm

so there have been a few made? anyone know by whom? or who? lol
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby dcarlso3 » Wed Jan 26, 2011 9:36 pm

Pepe Romero makes cedar/maple guitars
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby Euan Hannah » Wed Jan 26, 2011 9:53 pm

I’ve built one with that combination, the maple on mine being Birds eye. I also used maple for the neck and this made the guitar slightly heavier than my other classicals but still nice to play. Well I liked it anyway and I still have the instrument.
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby chuckatsoits » Wed Jan 26, 2011 10:25 pm

dcarlso3 wrote:Pepe Romero makes cedar/maple guitars

thanks, checked out his website. says Miguel Rodriguez made many with this combo.... supposedly loud and punchy in tone...
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby smwink » Wed Jan 26, 2011 11:08 pm

I had a cedar/maple by Massachusetts luthier Alan Chapman. I kind of liked the aesthetic, and the particular set of maple on this was gorgeous. I wound up selling for reasons other than the look (it was a modern lattice guitar and I have moved toward more traditional designs). Here are some pictures I still have of the guitar.
Image
Image
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Image
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby Marcus Dominelli » Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:19 am

You're right, it's not a frequently requested combination of woods. I have an order for cedar/ maple that I'm just starting. I've build a few spruce/ maples, but this cedar one is a first. I would'nt agree to make it if I did'nt think it would sound good.

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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby Jeremy Clark » Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:59 am

I have built quite a few actually and it beats me why it's not more common --one of my most favorite combinations. Something about the low damping top paired with the high damping back.
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby gabasa » Thu Jan 27, 2011 4:10 am

Here's a great looking/sounding example of a cedar/maple guitar, built by Peter Tsiorba:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fT1BnKNyDGs
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby chuckatsoits » Thu Jan 27, 2011 4:46 am

I gotta say I think they look great! when you walk in a large room at a guitar convention 99% of the guitars look the same. or maybe I should say %49.5 Spruce/rosewood and %49.5 Cedar/rosewood... I find this combo striking.

I did a search and found out that Thomas Humphrey was using this combo towards the end of his career.
The sound? I thought that one example had a pretty lyrical sound. I may have to talk to Kris about whether he wants to try this combo for me.
wouldn't want a Luthier to use a combo he doesn't want to work with. very curious to here his opinion.


Thanks everyone. Will search for more audio clips myself. Hope I can find more
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Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby CharlesThaeler » Thu Jan 27, 2011 4:56 am

Euan Hannah wrote:I’ve built one with that combination, the maple on mine being Birds eye. I also used maple for the neck and this made the guitar slightly heavier than my other classicals but still nice to play. Well I liked it anyway and I still have the instrument.


Any chance you would be willing to post pictures? I really like Birdseye maple :)
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby Gerald Erickson » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:05 am

I'm not a big fan of the look of the dark cedar and the really light maple b/s. I'm starting a flamed Oregon Myrtle b/s classical with an engleman top (possible double top). The myrtle has a darker hue than maple and has similar tap resonance to EIR.

I think a light spruce top would compliment any lighter b/s material better but hats off to the guys that are playing with these different combinations. My first guitar was cedar/paduak steel string. I chose them because they showed the most potential as opposed to what they looked like together, turned out to be a great guitar.
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby Michael.N. » Thu Jan 27, 2011 9:25 am

If you find the colour combination odd looking you can always shoot, brush or pad on colour coats. It will take quite a bit of colour to get close to Cedar but the more you lessen the contrast the less odd looking it becomes.
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Re: Cedar top and Maple back & sides

Postby chuckatsoits » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:21 pm

I have looked at quite a few pics and agree that sometimes this combo looks a little awkward.
below is a pic of how Humphrey turned this combo into a guitar that in appearance is a bit of a nod to
old violins. Is this just several layers of FP or a stain or what? I think she's quite a stunner.

http://www.classicalguitardelcamp.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=27355
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