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Carbon Fiber Kasha Ribs (Read 1787 times)
msrvfx
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Carbon Fiber Kasha Ribs
May 7th, 2005 at 1:51pm
 
Hello All,

i have been reading on a number of sites by very good guitar makers about the shaping of braces, and the addition of thin carbon fiber strips to the braces.
The writing about the ribs and braces suggest considering the braces like bones. The more stress tehe bone takes...the thicker the bone. Closer to stress points (bridge)...greater thickness.
Several are advocating he addition of a thin crbon fiber strip to the top of the brace for added stiffness and reduced weight.

Anyone experiment with this yet? Or all carbonfiber ribs?

Mark
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Jawhny
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Re: Carbon Fiber Kasha Ribs
Reply #1 - Aug 8th, 2005 at 10:07pm
 
No point in doing this.. THat is the ends don't justify the means. Carbon fiber is hard on tools and not good for the lungs.

Consider this scenario ...assume carbon fiber insert doubles the stregnth of a 1/2" tall x 1/4" wide brace. The cost = Lot of effort and some health risk.

With no carbon fiber added, a simple spruce brace need only to be less than 1/8' taller it's original 1/2' height I think is to gain the same 2x the original stregnth.

At the end of the day the carbon fber in my own opinion is no more than a selling point that jacks up the price. At the end of the day it's not the braces that fail it's the soundboard and usually just above the bridge patch. How much weight is added to a Uke by the bracing? I'd argue that answer is very little compared to the neck, soundboard and back. The ony exceptions to this thought  I would say is using carbon fiber as a bridge patch as it's strong and less suseptable to shrinking and swelling, or using a carbon fiber truss rod to stiffen the neck.

-JC
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john reeves
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Re: Carbon Fiber Kasha Ribs
Reply #2 - Oct 6th, 2005 at 12:47pm
 
I dunno about the last response/seems to be a good technique many builders r using

a few are

http://www.guitarcentre.com.au/smallman.html

http://www.danielbrauchli.com/

seems to be a good way of adding strengthand reducing weight..

Smallmans guitars are top of the line classicals with balsa and carbon lattice bracing, the tops are down to 1.6 mm..
so the carbon fibre seems to give added strenght allowing thinner and lioghter woods to be used, thus extending tone and projection...

cheeeeeeeers
john
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rcelley
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Re: Carbon Fiber Kasha Ribs
Reply #3 - Oct 9th, 2005 at 2:31pm
 
Let's talk apples and oranges. Smallman is using BALSA wood as the composite material with the carbon fiber. This certainly must make a very lightweight yet strong brace and allow for an appropriately thinner top. I'm not sure the brace is actually stronger than spruce but certainly it would be lighter. The oranges is that string tension on an average size classical guitar is at least double the tension on a tenor uke. The surface area of top is probably double also. The point in my mind is that the two tasks, though similar in general are very very different in particular. Why make oneself crazy with laminating materials that probably will not allow for a realistically thinner uke top anyway. If the uke top is relatively as thin as the guitar top we're talking less than a millmeter in thickness. May be it would sound great but man I'd hate to be there when it got whacked even a little bit on the edge of the coffee table. At most what would be the real gain? Perhaps 3 or 4 decibels in volume and 10 or 15% gain in sustain. Usually using nicer top wood and making more uniformly shaped braces will allow for a thin enough top and some decibel tuning of the sound hole size will get you the harmonic richness and volume. Plus the instrument would still be sturdy enough to take to the park and entertain the wahines, or your wife. I just don't see there being enough return on the work involved in making some exotic (and unproven) material. In about fifteen years we'll know though if Smallman's guitars are still holding together. Apples and Oranges taste good together but they are still two different things. Interesting stuff that people are doing though, I'm all for it as good experimentation but new and different for the sake of new and different doesn't neccessarily mean better (though it might be).
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Rich Celley
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koloheukulele
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Re: Carbon Fiber Kasha Ribs
Reply #4 - Oct 23rd, 2005 at 8:33pm
 
Screw it, Just do it.  When in doubt, Try um out.  Don't let anyone confine your creative outlook.  Cookie cutter ukulele and guitars are boring!  Repetition only leads to stagnation.  Open your mind, and your hand will follow.  So will the sound.  Or you could jus stamp out another pattern.  Up to u which path u take.  Either one is fine, but only one really goes anywhere.  Shoots, aJ
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Ukeman
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Re: Carbon Fiber Kasha Ribs
Reply #5 - Oct 25th, 2005 at 2:12pm
 
aloha all.......am also of the "Jes press " mindset....the traditional fan bracing and uke construction has not been exhausted...many variables out there! I make Kasha/Schneider modified ukes as well as Smallman/DeJonge modified lattice ukes as well..of couse a modified fan is thrown in now and again...the goal is simply a better 'ukulele..ergo the paths can be varied but the outcome the same...at least goal wise...I am a student of the uke, thus i am always learning and searching for a better way, not necessarily more easy but for sure more interesting. None of the ways are cut in stone and all of the ways have tons of potential crazyiness to offer..my advise is to follow what you want to build, keep good records, be anal in your work, and love what you do! No matter whch way you choose if you keep focus you will certainly get closer every day to your intended goal..ah my nickel's worth...later  ukeman

ps I've used carbon fiber ribbons laminated to tone bars...messy, interesting, pretty cool....
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