Materials

Materials for oriental music instruments are mostly organic materials which are becoming increasingly harder to extract due to its slow rate of regeneration. With the exception of bamboo, most materials are no longer extensively extracted in China as they are getting rare. Due to market forces, the prices of the materials fluctuate greatly every season, and the common market names of the materials are varied and often confusing. Here, we try our best to standardize the names using Latin scientific names of Genre and Species. The is also no standard gauge for the grading of the materials, but we attempt to grade them here as accurately as possible, with the inputs supplied by the various luthiers and manufacturers. NOTE: The grade of wood is largely due to the differences in the cutting across the lumber. Generally, G1 Woods are denser and has more uniformed grains as they are the center-cut lumber. It is unreasonable to request quartersawn lumber in today’s market due to rarity of the wood, thus, the center plank is usually highest graded.
Name Scented Rosewood 花梨
Dalbergia odorifera
Commonly passed off as Aged Rosewood when stained
Origin Vietnam, Cambodia,
Density 0.93 ~ 1.05 g/ml
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Density above 1g/ml
Almost no knots in the grains
Uniformed shade throughout
Uniformed distance between grained lines
Complete Concentric circular grains if circular gains showing

Grade 2
Density above 0.97g/ml
Slighly knotted (less than 2 per linear foot)
Uniformed shade
Deviation of grain distance more less than 15mm per foot run and across more than 5 grainlines
Possibly incomplete concentric circular grainlines

Grade 3

Lower desity
Random Knots
Shading may be non-uniformed due to slanted cut of wood (to avoid wood damages)

Name Cambodian rosewood 酸枝 / Dark Rosewood 黑酸枝
Dalbergia Oliveri / Dalbergia Cultrate or variant in Same Genus
Commonly Passed off as Aged Rosewood
Origin Vietnam, Cambodia, Brazil, Zimbabwe
Density 0.96 ~ 1.09 g/ml
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Density above 1.03g/ml
Almost no knots in the grains
Uniformed shade throughout
Uniformed distance between grained lines
Complete Concentric circular grains if circular gains showing

Grade 2
Density above 1.0g/ml
Slighly knotted (less than 2 per linear foot)
Uniformed shade
Deviation of grain distance more less than 15mm per foot run and across more than 5 grainlines
Possibly incomplete concentric circular grainlines

Grade 3
Lower desity
Random Knots
Shading may be non-uniformed due to slanted cut of wood (to avoid wood damages)

Name African Black Sandwood/Dalbergia、黑檀
Dalbergia Melanoxylan
Commonly Passed off as Ebony 乌木/Carbonized Blackwood 碳化乌木
Origin Zimbabwe, North Africa, Brazil
Density 0.96 ~ 1.29 g/ml
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Density above 1.2g/ml
Almost no knots in the grains
Uniformed shade throughout
Uniformed distance between grained lines (compacted to not more than 5mm per linear foot

Grade 2
Density above 1.1g/ml
Slighly knotted (less than 2 per linear foot)
Uniformed shade
Deviation of grain distance more less than 15mm per foot run

Grade 3
Lower desity
Random Knots
Shading may be non-uniformed due to slanted cut of wood (to avoid wood damages)

Name African Sandalwood  非洲小叶檀 科特迪瓦小叶檀
Baphia nitida
Commonly Passed Off as “Purple/Violet/Red” Sandalwood Indian Sandalwood, 印度小叶紫檀
Origin Brazil, Zimbabwe
Density 0.99 ~ 1.15 g/ml
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Grade 1
Density above 1.09g/ml
Almost no knots in the grains
Uniformed shade throughout
Uniformed distance between grained lines
Complete Concentric circular grains if circular gains showing

Grade 2
Density above 1.0g/ml
Slighly knotted (less than 2 per linear foot)
Uniformed shade
Possibly incomplete concentric circular grainlines

No lower grade available due to small pith size of usable lumber

Name Recovered Rosewood 明清老红木、旧料老红木
Origin Vietnam, Cambodia, China
Density Above 0.9 g/ml
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Grade 1
Density above 1g/ml
Almost no knots in the grains
Uniformed distance between grained lines
Complete Concentric circular grains if circular gains showing

Grade 2
Density above 0.9g/ml
Slighly knotted (less than 2 per linear foot)
Uniformed shade

No lower grade available due to small pith size of usable lumber

Due to rarity and stability of Recovered Rosewood,they are not often graded, so long as the sound of the instrument matches expectations.

Name Paulownia 梧桐 泡桐
Origin Lan Kao, Henan, China
Density Generally 0.7 – 0.8g/ml
m88.vin appLiên kết đăng nhập Grade 1
Almost no knots in the grains
Uniformed distance between grained lines
Complete Concentric circular grains if circular gains showing
Sounds Uniformed upon tapping across lumber plank

Grade 2
Slighly knotted (less than 2 per linear foot)
Some discapencies in distance between grains
Sounds Generally Uniformed when tapping across lumber plank

Grade 3
Knotted
Grains uneven
Incomplete circular grains

Name Indian Red Sandalwood, “Purple/Violet/Red” Sandalwood 印度小叶紫檀
Pterocarpus santalinus
Origin India
Density Generally 1.15g/ml
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Ungraded, due to small girth of usable lumber, and rarity of the material itself. Wood is generally consistent when available.