Kauri is an amazing wood, both ancient and new. From New Zealand, it is salvaged from bogs where it has resided for millennia, without aging, in an anaerobic environment. Tonally, it has clarity, sustain, good note separation and warmth.
Kauri - A guitar tonewood with some serious history
Guitars are one of the most famous musical instruments that have captivated people since they first appeared. The most amazing aspect about guitars is the sound they make with the strings attached to their narrow long neck. The truth is that the type of wood used, plays a huge role in the type of voice tone that the instrument makescreates. Kauri wood is one of the most special woods ever used in making guitars because it makes aesthetically appealing instruments, and the woods has an amazing history and story.
About the Wood
Its Maori name is “Kauri,” but its scientific name is Agathis australis. It belongs to a very ancient family of coniferous trees – Araucariaceae, which are common in the Northern Islands district of New Zealand.
The color of the wood is naturally yellowish white, and sometimes, has golden brown heartwood. The sapwood typically has the same color. Because it grows into a large sized tree, it is usually knot-less and clear with the least wastage. It has a unique shimmering effect that is quite subtle, which is why many refer to this wood as “whitebait.” The reason for this name is that it appears somewhat like the whitebait fish seen in the New Zealand’s waters.
Kauri wood has a straight grain and even texture with a natural and moderate luster. The texture is fine, which enhances its color.
Why It’s Good for Guitar Building
The Kauri wood is good for making guitars mainly because of its naturally attractive color. Moreover, it is moderately durable, which gives guitars a long shelf life. However, their durability may vary with different species and it is prone to insect attacks if the user doesn’t maintain it well. It doesn’t have any odor, or create allergic reactions for the player, which adds to why people choose this wood to make guitars.
Although there is a restriction on harvesting the trees in New Zealand, the wood is very important in the guitar industry. This is why; the price of these guitars is high and valued. It seems there are only a few of these guitars available in the market nowadays since there is a such a limited supply of the wood.