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would ironwood and mesquite be good for building a bass? Answered

I'm planning on building a six string fretless bass and the wood I'm planning on using would probably be mesquite and desert ironwood. obviously I live in the desert so find this wood wouldn't be a challenge but I'm not sure if its good tone wood. give out some tips also if you guys can what would be good for a fingerboard I was planning on using ebony if I find any in Las Vegas.
I'm prefer using southwest desert wood since its easy to find out in the desert.


For an idea of how thin you can shave th' wood down to ,  check out a new bass in a store !  I think it would be a little less than 1/4" but I aint real sure !

Since they are both hard woods, you'll likely have an awesome tone.  For maximum effect, use a string-through-body design at the bridge and make sure the headstock angles backward slightly.  This will allow the body and strings to act together and get the most sustain and tone from that nice, dense wood.

Mesquite is VERY hard and grows big enough to make respectable lumber out of !  If you have th' prerequisite skills it is a very good candidate fer a musical instrument !

Keep th' wood as thin as possible in th' body of this bass and it should give a very good sound for you !

A good souce of info fer th' project is www.grizzly.com ,  Th' prez of th' company is a aficianado of instrument makin' and would likely provide a little technical info to help you out !! 

yes i live in texas and i have a whole forest of mesquite in my backyard only problem are the thorns that can grow to 8 inches long


8 years ago

They should work fine.  I don't know if you have ever worked with ironwood or not, but you better lay in a supply of carbide tipped cutting tools, its every bit as hard as Ligum Vitae.


Answer 8 years ago

Typo, that is Lignum Vitae.

From the UK, I've only ever heard of Mesquite as a flavouring. What's the wood like to work ? I thought it was only a bush, so are the pieces quite small ? 

mesquite can grow up to 50 feet tall and really wide he will have a really good smelling bass if he makes it out of mesquite

Mesquite can grow large enough to make flooring out of.  I've seen a couple of really nice kitchens where all of the cabinets were out of mesquite.  The trees used for lumber don't get very tall but they get wide so most of the pieces are short length usually.

It's a really pretty wood finished out.

But it makes a great bbq smoke.  I have kept two mesquites growing on my property for just the purpose.