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Ukulele Tonewood

At Lichty Guitars by custom ukulele – we mean a ukulele that is designed and handcrafted just for you. Different woods contribute to different tones (along with the type of sound board, bracing and many other factors). When you place an order for a custom ukulele Jay will discuss all the variables with you to kick off the design process. The next step is for you to select the specific piece of ukulele tonewood that you’d like your instrument to be built from. We have on hand, at all times, a wide selection of premium exotic and domestic woods. Look through our selection and see which set of wood “has your name on it.”

Ukulele Wood | Ukulele Tonewood

“I look for wood that speaks to me both visually and tonally. What I’m after is wood that has that wow factor – a powerful blend of  stop-you-in-your-tracks beauty and a rich tonal quality.  Selection of the very best wood is where the joy in building each guitar begins.” – Jay

Ukulele Wood | Ukulele Tonewood

A few things to note:

  • Click on the image of the tonewood gallery name and you will open up a gallery that includes all sets we currently have. Sizes are noted as concert, tenor or baritone as a reference.
  • Look to our Guitar  Tonewood Page for additional options, though up-charges due occur when selecting a guitar set to be used for your custom ukulele
  • For most types of tonewoods you can also click on the instrument gallery to see finished instruments built from that wood
  • See the Instrument Price Calculator on our Customize Your Own Ukulele page if you are interested in a custom guitar or ukulele and would like to know the additional cost (if any) of a specific kind of wood
  • Putting a finish on wood transforms its color and warmth. Images of unfinished wood requires a bit of imagination to picture the vibrancy of the finished instrument
  • If you do not see what you are looking for we can contact our premium suppliers and round most anything up
  • We do not ship instruments build from Brazilian Rosewood outside the US, given current laws enacted to protect this species

If you are wondering what is the best ukulele tonewood, we invite you to read the following post: Best Acoustic Guitar Tonewood / Best Ukulele Tonewood ?

Lichty Handcrafted Ukulele headstocks

Here is a sample of our current wood supply

Asian Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood

Very similar to Cocobolo in looks and in tone (none currently available)

Asian Rosewood tenor 32113

Asian Rosewood Instrument Gallery

Long Neck Tenor Ukulele, Asian Rosewood, U51

European Beech Ukulele Tonewood

European Beech Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Beech Ukulele Tonewood 4

European Beech Instrument Gallery

European Beech Ukulele


Black Limba Ukulele Tonewood

Black Limba, which is the sapwood and heartwood of the White Limba tree is similar in quality to mahogany and yet its distinct figure sets it apart from any other tonewood.

Black Limba Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Black Limba Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

 Black Limba Instrument Gallery

Handmade Concert Ukulele, Black Limba

Brazilian Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood

Brazilian Rosewood is a protected species and the wood is therefore becoming increasingly hard to find. We look for old growth and CITES Certified wood. Brazilian Rosewood is considered to be the premier tonewood by luthiers and guitar and ukulele players. It is currently one of our most popular woods for custom order ukes.

Brazilian Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

(sizes are indicated when you hover over the image)

Brazilian Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood

Brazilian Rosewood Instrument Gallery

Brazilian Rosewood Ukulele


Bubinga Ukulele Tonewood

Bubinga grows in Africa and though not a true rosewood, it is often referred to as  African Rosewood, It is as hard as the rosewoods, but has a finer texture. It has great stability and tone and makes a beautiful instrument.

Bubinga Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Bubinga Ukulele tonewood

Bubinga Instrument Gallery

Bubinga Guitar

Chechen Ukulele Tonewood

Chechen is a species of tree that grows in Mexico and Central America. It is often referred to as Caribbean Rosewood, because of its habitat and characteristics, though not a true rosewood. Chechen is a little known tonewood that is hard, dense and tight-grained and that can be found in colors ranging from amber to dark brown with beautiful figure. Given it offers a sustainable alternative to rosewoods, we expect you will be hearing more and more about it.

Learn more about this unique tonewood Chechen


Chechen Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Chechen Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Chechen Instrument Gallery 

Chechen Small Jumbo Guitar

Cherry Ukulele Tonewood

Cherry is domestic tonewood that is comparable in tone and quality to Walnut and Maple.

Cherry Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Curly Cherry Tenor Ukulele Tonewood

Cocobolo Ukulele Tonewood

A true rosewood from Central America that compares with Brazilian Rosewood in terms of tonal quality, warmth and stunning beauty.

Cocobolo Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Cocobolo ukulele tonewood

Cocobolo Instrument Gallery

Cocobolo Instrument Gallery

Ebony (Macassar) Ukulele Tonewood

Macassar Ebony from Indonesia has many similar characteristics to Brazilian Rosewood – beautiful colors and tones.

Ebony Ukulele Tonewood - baritone 11914

Granadillo Ukulele Tonewood

Granadillo is often referred to as Black Cocobolo. It is a non-porous dense wood that produces a bright taptone and long sustain.

Granadillo Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Dalbergia Granadillo Ukulele tonewood

Granadillo Instrument Gallery

Granadillo Tenor Ukulele

Honduran Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood

Denser than Indian Rosewood, Honduran Rosewood is well-known for its excellent tonal properties. It produces a well-balanced guitar with solid projection and strong lows and highs. One set currently available.

Honduran Rosewood Baritone Ukulele Tonewood

Hormigo Ukulele Tonewood

Hormigo is a tree that grows in the humid forest zones in Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras . When struck it produces a beautiful bell-like tone. It is appropriately called “the wood that sings”

Hormigo Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Hormigo Ukulele Tonewood HTenor 2

Hormigo Instrument Gallery

Hormigo Guitar

Indian Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood

A favorite among luthiers, Indian Rosewood is one of the most stable rosewoods and has a deep, rich tone and beautiful  brown color (and sometimes purple hue).

Indian Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Indian Rosewood Ukulele Tonewood

Indian Rosewood Instrument Gallery

Indian Rosewood Guitar


Koa Ukulele Tonewood

A classic for ukuleles, Koa is one of the most sought after tonewoods given its beautiful figure and rich tone.

Koa Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Koa Tonewoods

Koa Instrument Gallery

Koa Ukulele


Lacewood Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Harvested from the South American rainforests, Lacewood shares similar characteristics with Mahogany and yet is notably stiff and light, producing a big full tone.

Lacewood Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Lacewood Ukulele Tonewood,

 Lacewood Instrument Gallery

Lacewood Crossover Guitar

Mango Ukulele Tonewood

Mango is a Hawaiian hardward with a bright tone similar to koa.

Mango Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Mango Ukulele tonewood

Maple Ukulele Tonewood

Maple Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Maple Ukulele Tonewood-M2

Maple Tonewood Instrument Gallery

Maple Guitar


Mahogany Ukulele Tonewood

Mahogany is one of the most stable tonewoods and is also used for soundboards. It produces a balanced woody tone with a powerful midrange. We typically have a variety of types of Mahogany on hand.

Mahogany Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

African Mahogany Baritone Ukulele Tonewood

Mahogany Instrument Gallery

Milo Ukulele Tonewood

Milo is a Hawaiian wood that grows in coastal regions. Though hard to come by, it is prized for instrument making because of it’s rich colors and tone.

Learn more about Milo Tonewood

Milo Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Milo Ukulele Set Tenor T51013

Milo Instrument Gallery


Monkey Pod Ukulele Tonewood

This tropical species tends to resemble Koa in looks and Mahogany in tone and character and has become a favorite of guitar and ukulele builders.

Monkey Pod Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Monkey Pod Ukulele Tonewood, Tenor 50813

Myrtlewood Ukulele Tonewood

Myrtlewood is an evergreen hardwood that grows along the Pacific coast in the northwestern United States. It varies in color and texture as a result of the soil and growing conditions. Myrtlewood is becoming more and more popular for instrument building given is beauty, both visually and tonally.

Myrtlewood Tonewood Gallery

Myrtlewood Instrument Gallery

Custom Myrtlewood Ukulele, U62

Oak Ukulele Tonewood

Special wood reclaimed from a North Carolina mountain cabin – One set currently available

NC Oak Ukulele Tonewood, Tenor_

Oak Instrument Gallery

Lichty Oak Ukulele with sinker cedar top-3

Pau Ferro Ukulele Tonewood

Pau Ferro is denser  than Indian and Brazilian Rosewood and has an incredible tap-tone.  The color of this wood comes to life under a finish, with chocolates, creams, reds, and golds throughout the grain.

Pau Ferro Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Pau Ferro Tenor Ukulele Tonewood

Pau Ferro Instrument Gallery

Custom Pau Ferro Tenor Ukulele

Purple Heart Ukulele Tonewood

None currently available

Purple Heart Ukulele Tonewood



No sets currently available

SOLD Sapele Ukulele tonewood

Sapele Instrument Gallery

Custom Handcrafted Sapele Cutaway OM Guitar, Lichty Guitars

Sycamore Ukulele Tonewood

Sycamore is a sustainable domestic tonewood. It is best described as falling somewhere between maple and mahogany in terms of tone. Highly figured sets look remarkably like lacewood.

Sycamore Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Sycamore Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Sycamore Instrument Gallery

Sycamore Instrument Gallery

Walnut – Claro

Walnut Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Curly Black Walnut Ukulele tonewood

Walnut Instrument Gallery

Claro Walnut Guitar


Wenge is a dense African wood with tight straight grain. It is a heavier wood than Indian Rosewood and Brazilian with excellent projection and sustain.

Wenge Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Wenge Ukulele Tonewood Gallery

Wenge Instrument Gallery

Wenge Ukulele

Ziricote Ukulele Tonewood

From Mexico this high density wood is often compared to Brazilian Rosewood given its rich deep tones and yet it offers beautiful spider webbed figure unlike any other wood.

Learn more about ziricote

Ziricote Tonewood Gallery

Ziricote Tenor Ukulele tonewood 42013

Ziricote Instrument Gallery

Ziricote Bard Guitar


Options include Engelmann Spruce, Adironack Spruce, Sitka Spruce, Carpathian Spruce, Lutz, Sinker Redwood, Curly Redwood, Western Red Cedar, Koa, Mahogany, and hand painted custom tops. Please inquire for sets beyond those featured in the gallery. Too, note Baritone or Tenor size by hovering over image.

Ukulele Soundboard Gallery

Sinker Redwood Baritone Ukulele Tonewood SRW B1

Instrument Soundboard Gallery

Curly Redwood Soundboard