Hand Tuning the Bedell Revolution

January 11, 2017

Bedell Guitars is always searching the world over for unique and incredible tonewoods that are salvaged or selectively harvested to protect the neighborhood forests and a sustainable economy for the people. The journey for cocobolo first took us to Cosa Rica. We found stunning cocobolo billets in a mountain village mill where we were told they had come from their plantation. The problem turned out to be there was no plantation -  the logs had been smuggled in from Nicaragua. This led us to Nicaragua where we secured a legally, honorably operated mill.
 
Cocobolo is a fascinating tree. It is in the dalbergia family – the same as Brazilian rosewood and other rosewoods. But cocobolo is the densest of them all. For example, cocobolo has a specific gravity of 1.1 which means it is the only tonewood we use that actually sinks in water.
 
We became fascinated with both the beauty and music potential of this rare wood. Being the densest wood we work with, we used our Hand Tuning technology to determine how thin to sand the backs to make them responsive to the target frequencies we have learned give us the most dynamic sound. Knowing that sound energy travels most efficiently through light and stiff materials we met the challenge. We already had the stiffest tonewood, now to individually sand each set to get them as light as possible. The results have been astonishing.  
 
The new Bedell Revolution is truly a breakthrough in tonal dynamics. Every opportunity for enhanced sound has been explored. For example, we selected a Hard rock maple neck over Honduran mahogany. Why? Because it is stiffer and pairs more naturally with the frequency dynamics of the cocobolo. Every back is sanded to a predetermined weight, which means that as the density in each back tonewood set varies.  So does the thickness of the material for each individual instrument. And once the bracing and tone bars are attached to the top, we Hand Tune every single guitar by removing wood until we have achieved the target frequency for the sound board.
 
The Bedell Revolution is truly a revolution in custom guitar craftsmanship. There may have never been an acoustic guitar crafted with cocobolo that sounds, looks and plays as extraordinary as the Bedell Revolution.