A Ukulele For A Gent (1 Viewer)

kevlray

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Still the uke looks and sound great!!!
 

Micron

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Still the uke looks and sound great!!!
Thanks! When I played the file on my Nikon camera the audio sounded horrid; then I thought 'perhaps it's just the camera speaker and the audio is OK; which turned out to be the case. Hopefully NG thinks the real thing sounds even better. Now back to my current project...
 

NauticalGent

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I'm not sure my skills are up to that challenge.
I'm quite sure they are. I am beyond impressed with this. I have been binge watching ukelele tutorials
 

Micron

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"
Finding a box was a challenge. Long story short, I ended up with a florist box (it was a kind of epiphany) which I shortened and reduced its depth. Still, there was so much cutting, reshaping, gluing and clamping if you can believe it. Then for protection I decided that a left over portion of a 1 1/2" styrofoam sheet would be ideal. I cut out a slab to fit in the bottom of the box and cut out the body shape at one end. I took that cut-out piece and sliced it in half to raise the body off of the bottom of the box by 3/4", creating a 3/4" deep pocket for the body. I placed the uke in a plastic bag, taped shut. The neck is supported by a styrofoam block with a pair of blocks on either side. The head is supported by a thin piece and the head end of the box has a 3/4 thick slab. All of this should be evident in the picture below.

20200415_154638.jpg


Here's one of the foam side blocks at the upper bout. The brown stuff is the polyurethane glue that holds the small bits in place.
20200415_160203b.jpg


Then I made a similar body cutout with a cutout for the neck to place on top of the uke. That got attached to the glue strips you see above.
20200415_160112b.jpg


Box taped up, paper wrapped with reinforced packaging tape all around and off to the UPS depot.
I think I have done all I can to ensure it arrives in one piece. Hopefully NG will be happy!
 

moke123

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Very cool.
Does this mean you can start on my guitar? :rolleyes:
 

Micron

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If I was over confident, or unethical, or both I would say "sure". Given that I'm neither and haven't finished one of my own yet, I'd say it would not be the honourable thing to do. What if my current projects turn out looking great but sound awful? What if the body starts to come apart or crack after 6 months of string tension? What if you keep tuning the strings, only to have the bridge pop off of the body? What if it sounds good, but only up to the 9th fret or so because I got the scale or intonation wrong? There's a LOT involved - mechanics, physics and believe it or not, geometry, and that's without even knowing the characteristics of wood. I have religiously followed the design principles, but my work is unproven.

If it helps, you are probably one of the people here that I would entertain the idea for, but I would feel very bad if the instrument didn't work out mechanically or vocally over the long term. If you want to wait, we can see how my current 2 projects pan out. One is a 000 (Auditorium) waiting for finishing then bridge/nut install and the other is a dreadnought, both 6 strings.

I still have top, neck and bracing material to spare and a nice set of East Indian Rosewood back and sides waiting in the wings which might become a 12 string if I don't have any other pressing need for!

EDIT - if anyone reads this and wonders why I would make a ukulele for someone then, it is because I had the advantage of having done one already from a commercial kit. All I had to do was replicate that kit and its design, which I felt I could do. A full size guitar is in a different league and the forces created by steel strings of that length are in another category.
 
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moke123

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Now you got me checking Amazon and regreting I didn't click "Buy Now" before this whole pandemic stay at home thing started.
Although they have a nice Ovation like my old one that can be here by tuesday :unsure:
 

NauticalGent

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I will agree that you are not over-confident, but you should be.

For the viewers of this thread: Micron and I have had a few email exchanges during this evolution and I confirm that his workmanship, attention to detail and ethics are first-rate.

Micron, you mention a lot of what-if's and your concerns are valid. However, here's the thing - I knew going into this that you are NOT a professional and that there would be some risk on my part. Risk I accepted and decided to take on based on how I perceived you. I knew that you would not send me something that you yourself were not proud of, and even though I have not laid hands on her yet, I KNOW I am going to be more than satisfied.

So why would I ask a wood-worker enthusiast to make me something that I could easily buy from a reputable retailer that came with a warranty of some kind? The answer to that is obvious to anyone who has followed this thread - especially Moke - but I'm going to say it out loud just in case someone doesn't "get" it.

What you have made for me is truly a one-of-a kind treasure that NO ONE, not even you, can have. It also comes at a time where it just "fits" with what is going on with my life. When someone asks "Hey that is cool, where did you get it?", I will have a story that will be almost as cool and the item itself.

Well done my friend, you should be proud of what you have done. I know I am and I thank you...
 

isladogs

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I couldn't have put it better myself.
If I had the slightest musical ability, I would order a guitar even if it was your first project on that instrument.
 

The_Doc_Man

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With all due respect to the impressive level of craftsmanship, I will pass on giving you business, Micron. You are clearly skilled. But me and stringed instruments don't get along. I'm a keyboard man these days.

My skill with stringed instruments reminds me of the line from "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" in which a poet was SO bad that while reciting his poetry, in an impressive act of altruism, his own intestines burst from his body and strangled him. I might not be THAT bad - but I could see the guitar strings unwinding themselves from the tuning pegs and strangling me.
 

Micron

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Those are some mighty generous comments and I thank you guys. They mean a lot to me.

Doc Man, that was a weird movie and your analogy is funny!

Moke: Well, if you don't buy now, who knows what the near future might hold? I could probably convince myself to do a guitar for someone else in about 6 months - a time in which I'd be able to assess my success or lack of it. Some would be happy to take your money right now regardless, but as NG says, I'm not that kind of person. I do appreciate the allure of having something that no one else has though. While there are Cherry ukes available for much, much more than what I charged, they're not so unique. Everyone who ever bought one got one that's just like the last one.

I guess the end of this thread will be NG posting a link to a video where he serenades us?
 

kevlray

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My only experience with stringed instruments are a cheap guitar when I was in high school (it is a wonder my finger tips did not start bleeding, it took a lot of pressure to play any chords). And a couple children's guitars (I was attempting to teach my daughters now to play a little bit of guitar). My youngest daughter actually bought a guitar and took some lessons (I never got to play it).
 

Micron

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I had a department store electric Stratocaster knock off with 4 pickups. It was hard to play too and developed issues with the volume/tone switches and often broke the 1st string. I left it behind on purpose when I moved in 1979. What a stupid ass! Knowing what I know now, I could have fixed all of those issues and kept something around that when I think back, meant more to me than I realized at that time.
P.S. I guess it's OK if the comments deviate from the build a bit now that it's done.
 

AccessBlaster

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I bought my then 16 year old daughter a Fender Stratocaster Junior, gig-bag pignose amp the whole nine yards.
Oh and lessons. That lasted five minutes. 🤣

I played it for the next ten years, ha ha.
 

moke123

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When you mentioned making one for your granddaughter it made me wonder if there was some kind of new fad going on with kids. About 1 1/2 - 2 yrs ago my daughter went out and bought a uke and taught herself to play. She said a few of her friends had done the same thing and one of my co-workers kid did also.
 

isladogs

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Its Tiny Tim. Tiptoe through the tulips ... :oops:
 

isladogs

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Sorry! Anyway it gives you a tune to practise on!
Are you back in the US now?
 

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