Ask Bob: Sinker Redwood Tone, Availability
Question: I was fortunate enough to spend time at your factory and pick out wood for what turned out to be an amazing BTO. I chose sinker redwood because it has tonal properties similar to cedar but with more volume, bringing it a bit closer to the volume spruce delivers. (I added Adirondack spruce bracing in the hope of adding a bit more zing as well.) I wanted to know more about this wood, such as its break-in time. I'm guessing it's a softer wood like cedar and shouldn't take the time that woods like koa would take to come to fruition. I realize redwood/sinker redwood is reserved for BTOs, but exactly how scarce is it?
Answer: Well, Jeff, I think redwood's break-in time is about the same as spruce and cedar. If you play it, and as time goes by, it will get better. To me, these are moot points, because if a wood sounds different when it's new, it will sound different when it's broken-in, too. The journey to break-in isn't really important to me, because it's all good, all along the way. As far as scarcity is concerned, this redwood we've been using all comes from one tree. It's a big tree, and the wood comes to us from a supplier near the source. I'm not completely sure how scarce it is, because they keep cutting wood from it and sending it our way. There have been at least a thousand sets from it so far.