Posted on December 11, 2019February 5, 2024 by Dale Phillips Seeking the Top Seeking the Top by Michael Sandén previously published in American Lutherie #86, 2006 I have been building guitars for almost twenty-five years. One of the hardest parts of being a luthier is getting the right materials. Through the years I have bought wood from all kinds of people. In the beginning I thought that it was best to buy logs and cut them myself. Sure, I got a better price, but all of the work, and all of the surprises I would sometimes get when I got halfway into a log — wormholes, knots, and sap pockets — could sometimes make my cheap log just cheap; good for nothing but firewood. I moved on to buying wood from dealers who were middlemen that would give you a very good price, but it often turned out that they didn’t know what they were selling. These mistakes made me start to buy wood from well-known dealers, ready-cut, so I could see what I was buying. I have even bought back-and-side wood through the Internet, where the dealer sends pictures. But when it comes to soundboards, I always want to look at them, flex them, and feel the weight. I don’t trust anyone other than myself. At least I didn’t until now. Become A Member to Continue Reading This Article This article is part of our premium web content offered to Guild members. To view this and other web articles, join the Guild of American Luthiers. Members also receive 4 annual issues of American Lutherie and get discounts on products. For details, visit the membership page. If you are already a member, login for access or contact us to setup your account.