Banjo Workshop Show and Tell

I thought it might be a laugh to have a section here that talks about things that may not appear to be directly banjo related but share a connection. I’ll try not to be completely irrelevant , for well, … most of it . 🙂
I feel I must show you this. It’s a plank of wood. Not just any old plank of wood, This stuff is flamboyant , showy but has real substance. Its like the Jimi Hendrix of sawn timber, it’s Cocobolo.

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Now I love this stuff it makes great fingerboards, although it isn’t the nicest wood to work with. The dust from it is very bad for you . It can produce nitric acid in your lungs and all sorts of terrible things, so dust filtration and a good mask is an absolute must. Of course, all wood dust is bad for you and needs to be avoided , it’s just that the dust from the tropical hardwoods seem to be especially aggressive.
I’ve mentioned before how dense this wood is, so dense it will sink in water . so, it might not be your first choice for a surf board either . 🙂
It’s pretty sought after in the custom gun and knife markets, where it’s used for making gun grips, knife handle scales ( sides ) . It varies a great deal in colour . It’s much paler , often purple , pinkish when first cut . The wood then darkens in air to more browns, reds and black streaks.
Anyway, I won’t go on and on . I’m about to do a neck build series and the reddish looking plank in the picture will be cut to make a fingerboard and peg head veneer for the article.
I’ve been given the kind permission to use a commissioned neck for the article . ( thanks again , Will ! )
The neck will be Birdseye maple , with a tunnelled fifth string . So , hopefully you’ll find it interesting.


  1. A bit quiet on this ‘ere subject Malco…

  2. steve prior says:

    Interesting stuff Malc. Cant wait to see this one.

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