Friday, April 27, 2012

All back together

Strung up and ready to play.  Note the string change on Susan's uke, one of my cats thought the strings were toys and chewed it in half.  I had a brand new set of take-offs from another uke that I replaced them with, hope that is okay.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

some repair work

Hi all, sorry for the long stretch between posts.

I was asked by one of our StrumMn regulars, Susan, if I could reglue a bridge. No problem!
Before I could get to it I opened one of my own cases and my own bridge had popped off as well!

So here is a series of pictures of the ukes/bridges. The key to doing this is to locate them properly, I use masking tape, and then remove all glue from both pieces and any finish. Bridges really need to be glued wood to wood, not wood to finish.

I've got these all cleaned up and ready to glue but won't get to that until tomorrow. I need to decide if I want to actually clamp them or just apply weight in a careful manner. I've done it both ways and think I like just using weight as long as I'm careful with the glue.

Anyway, on with the pictures. I'll give an update when they're done and strung up.Brian

Friday, March 25, 2011

some new wood on the way...

I'm picking up this piece of myrtle that has both curl and birdseye. It's 5/16" thick so I MAY try to resaw it and get 2 ukes out of it. It's enough for soprano back/sides/headstock, I'll need to pick some other wood for the top. Right now I'm thinking Western Red Cedar or Spruce, depends on what I can find that excites me.
No idea what to use as binding... what do you think would look nice?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Researching something new.

I've been asked by a friend about building a resonator ukulele for him and have starting researching what goes into building one.

In a resonator you don't want the "box" adding to the sound so it's "over-built" compared to a standard instrument. In this way the cone gets to generate all the sound.

I've found multiple sources for cones and coverplates, from National, Republic, Delta and others.
At this point I'm leaning towards either National or Delta, I figure if I'm putting the effort into doing this right then I don't want to go too cheap. Also, these two are interchangeable (if I specify the size correctly) so it's easy to swap between them later if desired.

The other piece I want up front is the sound well that the cone sits on. There are several ways to go on this but I'm looking at tubular plywood, like a drum shell or tambourine ring, to support the cone. I've seen this done for guitars and it will really support the cone while also locking the top/back together to stop any unwanted vibration.

Once I get these I can work on the rest of the design to get body size and neck angle correct. I'm thinking about sizing this to fit a specific case and hoping to make it a soprano but will bump it up to concert if necessary.

After pricing a few components my thought is that I might do 3 of these simultaneously, keeping the bodies identical but using different cones so I can compare them. If I go this route then my friend will get his pick, I'll keep one, and one may be up for grabs, we'll see. I don't expect to get much done until next spring at this point, mostly design and planning.

In the mean time, lots of uke playing with StrumMn!
Check for dates/times and come join us!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Logo madness?

Got a custom branding iron and burned the logo onto a piece of leather.
Then did a little braiding to make something to hang it with.

Now I've got it attached to my latest uke.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

next meeting, MONDAY Aug 2, 7-9pm

Java J's on Monday Aug 2, 7-9pm.
I'm hearing that others are having problems with Shutterfly. I sent them a msg and we'll see what kind of response we get. We might be looking for another home again... I'm about ready to just buy a URL and pay for hosting so we don't keep going through this.

Friday, July 30, 2010


My daughter embroidered my new logo on a hand towel! I think I'll keep it in my case to wipe down my ukes. Pretty nice!