Acacia cambagei| Tonewood Profile | “Gidgee”
Gidgee describes a wide range of Acacia species but the most common is Acacia cambagei. It is also known as Stinking gidgee and is names after R.H. Cambage, a geologist with knowledgable in Australian plants.
It ranges from Queensland to New South Wales. In it’s native semi-arid and arid environment it can obtain heights of 12 metres and a trunk diameter of 30cm.
This is a relatively uncommon tree in it’s native range but is not considered under threat.
This timber is chocolate coloured with a fine, even grain. It occurs in flammed varieties, occasionally called Ringed Gidgee. The leaves and bark of this tree produce a characteristic odour, hence the name “stinking gidgee”. is a dark chocolate brown to black, occasionally with streaks of purple.
Zebrawood has a Janka rating of 19kN and a Specific Gravity around 0.5.
As a tonewood…
The Gidgee I have seen available have been limited to decorative or fingerboard sizes. In use, it is extremely fine grained and durable. A very fine alternative to ebony.
Jeremy Fullerton says: ” ‘it’s place in instrument making is limited to solid body caps, decorative work… Possibly it’s best use however is for fingerboards. This species is an attractive goldish dark brown to very dark brown…”
Supplies are limited but steady at the time of writing.
©2008 Terence Tan.
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