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Concert Ukulele (The Acacia model neck is pi$$ed!)

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Concert Ukulele (The Acacia model neck is pi$$ed!)

Postby Malc2098 » 16 Sep 2020, 15:40

Just arrived.

fullsizeoutput_a4f.jpeg
(364.15 KiB)


Cedar top, Acacia back and sides. That Cedar has a lovely tap tone!

What shape should I go for?

The 'bell' shape....

https://milanomusic.com/kamaka-hb-2d-ukulele-concert-bell-shape/

or the classic shape?

https://milanomusic.com/amahi-concert-koa-ukulele-uk660c/

The shape in the top of the picture is piece of laminated, not plywood, wood which the industry sometimes uses for the sides and back. The supplier sent it to me to see what the laminated look is like. The theory is that if the guitar/ukulele body is considered to be an air pump, then the sides, and possible even the back, should absorb as little sound as possible to allow the top to do its vibration thing.

It is not necessarily that much cheaper, because the first ply of the sides, the target wood, has to be shaped first and the second ply is glued to the shaped first ply providing a very rigid side, which when the two are joined together with the neck and heel blocks is much more rigid than with solid wood sides.

That is a whole other discussion topic! :)
Last edited by Malc2098 on 07 Nov 2021, 15:59, edited 30 times in total.
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 16 Sep 2020, 17:35

And if you can remember this theme tune, you're older than me!! :D


[youtube]6N6t6NEJBQ0[/youtube]
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Rod » 16 Sep 2020, 23:11

Yes I can it was a great listen back in a day, that and Journey into Space.
A few years ago, at her request, I bought my wife a concert uke complete with “How to play for Dummies”.
Perhaps the book upset her as it’s still in its box.

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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby MattS » 17 Sep 2020, 08:14

Looking forward to this, imagine the considerable drop in size will make everything just that bit more tricky!

I like the classic shape, but that's purely on appearance. I imagine you'll consider things like how it sounds too :lol:
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby TrimTheKing » 17 Sep 2020, 12:16

Malc2098 wrote:And if you can remember this theme tune, you're older than me!! :D


[youtube]6N6t6NEJBQ0[/youtube]


I went to see that lot live a few years ago at the invite of friends who told us they were brilliant and hilarious. Brilliant at playing, yes, hilarious, most definitely not. We almost left at the interval but stayed out of courtesy, certainly not enjoyment. :eusa-snooty:
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Andyp » 17 Sep 2020, 12:24

What shape?

Whatever was good enough for him should do :)

[youtube]hP_h6dN5048[/youtube]
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 18 Oct 2020, 13:55

I decided on the bell, or dreadnought shape.

This time I got some plans to work from! :D

IMG_4597.JPG
(230.42 KiB)


If anyone is interested in making a guitar or ukulele, then I can recommend this company for buying plans from.

https://genone-luthier-supply.com/collections/concert-ukulele-plans/products/concert-14-bell-ukulele-plans

The plans come as .pdf files and are reasonably priced.

I had the plans printed by this company, based in the same county, so lowering the carbon footprint. :)

https://www.netprinter.co.uk/plan-printing/

I thought their charges were reasonable, too, at £1.08 per A0 sheet including VAT, plus Royal Mail shipping costs.

I started having a closer look at the Acacia sides and back and Cedar top that I recently bought. The cedar rings nicely when tapped and smells nice as I started planing off the saw ridges.

IMG_4595.JPG
(351.95 KiB)


Hopefully drum sanded to thickness, soon!
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 20 Oct 2020, 11:01

I don't know about you, but I sometimes get the impression that some people think the ukulele is only used to play 'plinky - plonk' music along to some modern song.

How about Bach's Cello Suite No1

[youtube]QNg9ctXi-bI[/youtube]
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby AJB Temple » 20 Oct 2020, 11:28

I can't imagine anyone ever describing Uke music as "plinky - plonky". That lady is a decent player and I expect soon she will graduate to a proper classical guitar.

I've not encountered a cut away Uke before. Can't help thinking they should have cut away all of it. :lol:

Sorry. I know some people love them. I just think that 4 strings is limiting and the sound chamber is too small to deliver much tonal range. I have played a few. They are marginally better than a banjo. :oops:
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 22 Oct 2020, 10:50

AJB Temple wrote: That lady is a decent player and I expect soon she will graduate to a proper classical guitar.



I hope that comment was meant tongue in cheek. That lady is already a virtuoso. In her islands of birth, the ukulele is considered a proper classical instrument.

I joined this forum for the support, advice and encouragement it gives to other members, especially those of us less experienced than others.
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby droogs » 22 Oct 2020, 13:09

Hi Malcom, have to say when I first saw this thread I thought oooh interesting a concrete uke, I wonder what that will be like. Imagine my surprise. looks like fun to make.

I have the plans for a hurdy gurdy that I would like to make at some point
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby MattS » 22 Oct 2020, 15:12

I love the sound of a uke, I'd love to be able to play one but having tried guitar and failed to get my fingers to move adequately doing so on an even smaller instrument is not going to happen!

This guys version of While my guitar gently weeks is amazing, some irony in the song title too :lol:

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=puSkP3uym5k[/youtube]
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby AJB Temple » 22 Oct 2020, 17:51

Yes Malc, it was very much tongue in cheek. Hence the emoticons. Good luck with your build I shall be interested to see how you get on.

I've made a few guitars in my time and also a couple of (not brilliant) violins. I've never encountered a kit before, and it would be interesting to see how a home constructed instrument compares with one from the manufacturer in terms of playability and tone.

I know nothing about Uke's but used to collect guitars. It was interesting that a lot of professional players of acoustic instruments, given the choice between a hand made instrument or even a semi mass produced one such as Collings, would often choose to use a Taylor. Production made but so consistent.

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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 22 Oct 2020, 19:44

droogs wrote:Hi Malcom, have to say when I first saw this thread I thought oooh interesting a concrete uke, I wonder what that will be like. Imagine my surprise. looks like fun to make.

I have the plans for a hurdy gurdy that I would like to make at some point


Thanks. I would really like to see a WIP of your hurdy gurdy. Do you remember Donavon's song about the Hurdy Gurdy Man?
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 22 Oct 2020, 19:47

MattS wrote:I love the sound of a uke, I'd love to be able to play one but having tried guitar and failed to get my fingers to move adequately doing so on an even smaller instrument is not going to happen!

This guys version of While my guitar gently weeks is amazing, some irony in the song title too :lol:

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=puSkP3uym5k[/youtube]


Give it a go, Matt. There are fewer string to get your fingers round.
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 22 Oct 2020, 19:50

Thanks to the services of Dave Neale of this forum, I was able to sand the sides, back and top down to the required thicknesses.

IMG_4610.JPG
(247.34 KiB)


Nice machine. I want one!
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby 9fingers » 22 Oct 2020, 21:23

The next model up quite often comes up on ebay. 16-32 Several of us have them. very useful kit.

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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 22 Oct 2020, 21:57

9fingers wrote:The next model up quite often comes up on ebay. 16-32 Several of us have them. very useful kit.

Bob


I've just seen a hardly used one on FB Marketplace up near Roger and Michael for £800, but my shop is too small, which is why I want the 10 inch.

The only other thing is is to visit each one of you who owns one with a pile of guitar parts under my arm and a six pack. :obscene-drinkingbuddies:
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 27 Jan 2021, 14:46

Well, here I go!

Instead of making one, I thought I's have ago at making two at the same time

46406E28-E267-4108-9173-2A7BCFDC1A3F.jpeg
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I haven't got all the materials yet, but enough to get me going.



E67A85CF-8DE4-401B-A9CD-C8C4E8579159_1_201_a.jpeg
(293.83 KiB)

Accacia back and sides, cedar top, African mahogany neck and Indian rosewood fretboard.



7E99DDD3-F754-452A-9D0C-8377F34FA2E1_1_201_a.jpeg
(258.38 KiB)

Same again, except for a maple fretboard, pre-fretted and the neck cnc carved, except it's warped, so I'll make another one from my stock of mahogany offcuts. I've already run the back sides and top through Dave Neale's drum sander, but now I've got one of my own! :D



D8986912-E903-44AE-811F-B5A98FD750BF.jpeg
(237.08 KiB)

Templates laser cut by Dave Neale from my plans, along with the fret slot cutting template which he laser cut from acrylic and will be the subject of a separate thread.

And now I've also got plans to go by; this is one of six for this model.

6874805B-58C4-4EEC-9419-6F684AC7A328.jpeg
(253.88 KiB)
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby novocaine » 27 Jan 2021, 15:06

exciting. it's on the list of projects to move on to so I'll be watching with interest. :D I want to make a 8 string tenor or baritone, just because. :D
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 27 Jan 2021, 18:37

I haven't bought any kerfing and I haven't made a kerf making jig (yet!), so I thought I'd try and make some solid kerfing by bending some quarter sawn local ash.


2E183C7E-EC8E-45D7-8365-2969F1B60636.jpeg
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Turns out the 6mm ash is too thick to be bent on my new machine! :)

B643BCCC-53DE-4B68-9098-1A65FB201058.jpeg
(268.04 KiB)



So, I'll have a go at making some 3 or even 2mm thin strips and if they bend well, than I'll try laminating them together to make the kerfing.

If that doesn't work, then it's time to make a kerf making jig.
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 28 Jan 2021, 15:17

Having done some research, I have decided not to progress the solid linings, even laminated. It seems that a bending iron, which I don't have, is essential to get them into shape.

In addition, they seem to be suited to the modern practice of being applied to the laminated sides of guitars and ukuleles, whereas my sides are solid. Laminated sides are marginally thicker that solid sides, they say, so the lining doesn't have to be as wide as kerfed linings.

So, I might have a go at reversed kerfed lining, made by my hand, until I build a reverse kerf lining maker.

Reversed kerfed because the research goes on to suggest that this provides a stiffer joint. ;)

My joints are stiff enough already, and those I used to see in the 60s and 70s depended on what was rolled in them! :D
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 01 Feb 2021, 18:48

Having done some more research, solid linings can be made from laminations. So I had a go.

I ripped up some of the 1/4 sawn ash and put through the drum sander to about 1.6mm.

00636D81-7CF5-4823-96F8-5F3338E34A5B_1_201_a.jpeg
(220.57 KiB)



I also cut out a couple of inside formers.

4ADC7538-CE61-487B-A4BC-6EB02A750F5A.jpeg
(366.5 KiB)


I cut three of the laminations to length, glued to them together and then clamped them to the former. You need a lot of clamps for an inside former.

0B089E5D-D687-45A9-B736-219B8DFB54A7.jpeg
(463.09 KiB)


So I made a couple of outside formers and you only need a couple of clamps.

BD1E1B2E-1770-4324-BE2B-146E61C4E4EE.jpeg
(361.8 KiB)


Oh, well. Let's see how they turn out tomorrow.
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby novocaine » 01 Feb 2021, 18:56

expect some spring back. :D

I've only ever used kerfed kerfing (on the 1 hollow bodied ukulele I've made, a vast amount of experience I know :D ), and on all my store bought (or found for that matter) guitars it's the same. didn't really think of laminated kerfing being a thing.
be interesting to see how you get on with it, I imagine it will be more rigid and not rely so much on the sidewalls for structure.
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Re: Concert Ukulele

Postby Malc2098 » 01 Feb 2021, 19:05

I hope there should be little springback because it's laminated as well as bent, not just bent.

This was what put me on to it.

[youtube]aH1LMBEuJMY[/youtube]

There's discussions going on as to what solid vs kerfed linings does for the sound.
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