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Thread: NUUD: Deering Banjo Ukulele/Banjolele (concert size)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    2,286

    Smile NUUD: Deering Banjo Ukulele/Banjolele (concert size)

    I had been lusting after a banjolele for a couple years, but never took the plunge because I wasn't sure I'd like it and didn't have the opportunity to try one out. I did determine that the Deering concert version would probably be the one that I'd most likely enjoy, but I still hesitated -- until I saw one being offered in the UU Marketplace.

    Not only was the price right and the condition mint, it was also already in Europe! A little impulsively, I bought it off of G Hill. An extremely pleasant and smooth transaction. It was picked up at 9am in Spain and arrived the next day at 11am in Germany. Not bad for 1100 miles distance! (I had bought another uke a couple days prior, which I'll NUD about in a few days when it arrives, so I guess this was a surge of UAS that I thought to be dormant!)

    Gary's FS offer includes pictures (that are better than the ones I could take!), so have a look here for photos.

    I've had it for a few hours and I'm really impressed with it. The neck is lovely and it plays like a dream. The whole instrument oozes craftsmanship and quality. I'm glad it came with an arm rest, which adds quite a bit of comfort. Since the bottom part is heavier than most ukes, it sits well in the lap without support. Probably the most ergonomic ukulele-like instrument I have played, even though in photos it looks awkward. It's much less weird looking in person.

    It took me a bit to learn how banjos (it's really a shortscale banjo with nylon strings) produce sound and how to get the intonation right as the movable bridge had been flattened for the transport. It's very different from regular ukes, so there was some learning of new things involved. The sound is great, much fuller than I expected (and fuller than it sounds in videos), with a surprising amount of sustain. It's loud and punchy, but still maintains a rounded tone.

    I'm really happy with this. It's different enough to enrich my ukulele collection with something new and fresh, and familiar enough to make it immediately accessible. I'll have a lot of fun with this Deering banjolele.
    Current main players: Moon Bird concert and Barron River tenor. My other ukes are listed on my profile page.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    1,981

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    Congrat's! banjolele's are tons of fun!
    Just Play

    Sopranos: 1st uke, Lanikai soprano LU-11 - Aquilas | 30's Martin style 0 - Martins | Fender Piha'eu - Worth Browns | Lanikai banjolele - Fremont Blacklines
    Concerts: Kanile'a K-2 CP - Living Water | Islander AC-4 - Living Water
    UBass: Kala Rumbler - Pahoehoe

  3. #3

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    Thanks for this! I am on the hunt for a banjolele as we speak (still trying to narrow down brands and watch some vids and reviews). The Deering is one I am looking into.
    SOPRANINO: Caramel 17" (zebrawood) "Cecil"
    SOPRANO: Ohana SK-35 (solid mahogany) "Clancy"
    Outdoor Ukulele (bottle brown polycarbonate) "George"
    CONCERT: Gretsch Roots Series G9110-SK (solid koa) "Pearl"
    Ohana CK-28 (solid mahogany) "Manuel" *Nunes-style re-issue
    TENOR: Ohana TK-70-8 8 String (solid spruce & mahogany)
    BANJO UKES: Magic Fluke Firefly (soprano, poly fretboard)
    Gretsch Roots Series G9470 Clarophone (maple)
    VINTAGE/ANTIQUE: 1920 Rolando banjo uke "Grace"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Victoria, BC
    Posts
    21

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    I've had the Deering concert for about 10 months, and I am still thrilled with it. It had a smidge of neck misalignment, but I solved that with a left/right adjustable tenor banjo tailpiece. I also found the string space on the stock bridge a bit wide, but that was replaced easily enough. And the Deering Goodtime armrest is a must-have accessory, IMO. Oh, and then I had to get the Drum Dial so I could tension the head properly.

    Thinking about it, it was a bit of an ordeal to get everything set up exactly the way I want, but I'm very happy with the results. 8^)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Posts
    633

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zagabog View Post
    I've had the Deering concert for about 10 months, and I am still thrilled with it. It had a smidge of neck misalignment, but I solved that with a left/right adjustable tenor banjo tailpiece. I also found the string space on the stock bridge a bit wide, but that was replaced easily enough. And the Deering Goodtime armrest is a must-have accessory, IMO. Oh, and then I had to get the Drum Dial so I could tension the head properly.

    Thinking about it, it was a bit of an ordeal to get everything set up exactly the way I want, but I'm very happy with the results. 8^)
    Banjos can be a lot of fun if you like to tinker. If I ever get a spare minute I'm going to disassemble my two deering ukes and see if I can put the banjo-uke neck on the pot with the tone ring and resonator.
    Blackbird Clara
    Concert Flea
    Pono MB
    Deering Goodtime Banjo Uke (concert)
    Hadean Uke-Bass
    Deering Goodtime Special (5-string banjo - currently with 4 strings...)

    Buckle Up

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