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 Post subject: Is this possibly BRW?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 17, 2016 5:09 pm 
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As I was sanding the old finish off of the classical guitar I'm working on, it became very apparent that it's not mahogany. I don't want to jump the gun on the wood ID, but I'm pretty sure this is a rosewood. It has a very intense, sweet, rose-like smell, unlike IRW or Panama RW (which is what I thought I was at first).

It most definitely is not mahogany.

I went on a google search and found that BRW can be identified by the lack of water fluorescence, since the heartwood extractive is not water soluble. Being the scientist that I am, I grabbed 2 test tubes, filling one with distilled water, and the other with alcohol. Since I had to rout for binding channels anyway, I was able to get unadulterated samples from the sides. I submerged samples in the water and alcohol (which would just serve to draw out the extractive faster), and looked at them using my UV light. The result is no fluorescence. All other rosewoods fluoresce. Mahogany fluoresces also, so the test confirmed for me that it is not mahogany.

The only other way to identify the wood is by looking at end grain pores, which I have no access to. I found a post that mentioned that BRW shows a mossy green tinge when a light is placed at the right angle. I used a work light and at ~ a 45 degree angle, you can see a greenish tinge. But, for all I know, many woods do this.

This guitar is at least 40 years old, probably older. Since Sue was German, it was most likely made in Spain or Germany. The tag has long been lost and I can't definitively say who the manufacturer was, or even where it was made. Sue traveled the world.

Here is a photo, but I know colors change with monitors. It can be best described as more red than IRW, and brown.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 8:16 am 
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I've taken more photos. You'll have to excuse the appearance of the guitar; I've just taken off the tape for the bindings and it's not been cleaned up. Thinking that the guitar was mahogany, I installed mahogany binding that I had on hand. You can see the color difference between the mahogany binding and the sides. Depending on the angle of the light, you can see more of a greenish tinge, which hopefully is showing up in the following photos.

Thank you!

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 8:57 am 
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Well, there are all kinds of wood called "mahogany," some of which are and a lot of which aren't true mahoganies. I've heard that the term "Philippine mahogany" is used to describe any number of tropical woods that may bear some superficial resemblance to mahogany. It could be some odd species that only botanists have heard of.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 9:52 am 
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Location: Hegins, Pa
My Guess is more to Makore

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 10:51 am 
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tippie53 wrote:
My Guess is more to Makore

Thanks John!


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