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Plywood Guitars

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  • Plywood Guitars

    Just a quickie that I thought of. My very first guitar (a Behringer Strat copy) was made of plywood, which I hear varying reports on the quality of. Anyway one thing I had always noticed was that it was -really- heavy. My mahogany SG is half as heavy for example. Is this normal with plywood? 


    Looks similar to this:


    It's just a curiosity and I couldn't find anything through google.

  • #2
    Yes. Ply is generally heavier. I believe it's the glue myself, but that's certainly not scientific. My only guitar at the moment is an old ply Lotus Strat. Heavy as heck but I love it. Super resonant unplugged.
    I one day hope to be the man my dog thinks I am.WORDS OF WISDOM FROM VARIOUS MEMBERS"most often the guitar will rise or fall to the level of the player""people overthink ****************""Sometimes you gotta know when to shut the **************** up and have a little class. Not you, you're special.""If it sounds good to you then it sounds good"The bull**************** and myths in the guitar world are stacked very high.


    • #3
      Particle board is heavy as hell because of all the glue, if I'm not mistaken. The same must be true for plywood guitars.

      Solid mahogany guitars can be ridiculously heavy, too - how many pieces are Agile LPs? Those things are generally very heavy.

      Guitars: 3 Fender Strats, Fender Jazzmaster, Squier Bullet, 2 Gibson Les Pauls, Gibson ES-339, Gibson Les Paul Jr. Special, Epiphone Les Paul, Epiphone Dot, Epiphone SG, PRS SE Custom 24, Ibanez AS73, Hamer Duotone, Larrivee D-03R, Takamine EG5013S, 1951 Epiphone Devon, Ibanez SR305 (bass)Pedal Chain: BBE Green Screamer -> MXR Distortion III -> Boss CE-5 -> EH Stereo Pulsar -> Boss DD-20 -> BBE Boosta GrandeAmps: Vox AC4, AC15, AC30, Pathfinder 10, DA5SoundCloud


      • thewthrman
        thewthrman commented
        Editing a comment

        I built a guitar body and for my rough draft I made it out of plywood.  it was heavy as heck.  I ended up routing it out and making it sort of like a wildkat.  A hollow body that is routed and not bent wood.  I have another old strat copy that is plywood and it is really resonant, too for some reason.  it is a saga strat kit from the early 80s or maybe 70s.  I don't have prejudice about plywood.  the biggest bummer is that the strap button screws pull out too easlily.  I used drywall screws to replace them so they wouldn't strip out anymore.

    • #4

      Not sure what plywood is used but if I were building one I would use Aicraft or Marine grade ply to 'avoid voids' I reckon the cross graining of ply is what gives it resonance, what ever direction vibrations are moving there is 'longways' grain to carry it. 

      On the glue issue it is Interesting that fiberlass resin xylophones are louder than wooden ones, so maybe resin glue is good stuff accoustically?



      • Alexilaiho
        Alexilaiho commented
        Editing a comment
        The best plywood to use for guitars is spalted burch because of the way it's made, vacuumed together to prevent voids and air pockets