Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 15

Thread: Off-scale ukes (long scales, short scales) luv’em

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    McDonough, GA
    Posts
    4,075

    Default Off-scale ukes (long scales, short scales) luv’em

    The week before last was an amazing week, taking delivery of two very special off-scale ukes. Arriving first was a long scale (18”) tenor by William King (circa 2013), and later arrived a new 19” scale Pohaku baritone from Peter Hurney. Below is a picture of them together (King tenor on the left, Pohaku baritone on the right). Both were on my ‘bucket list’. Despite similar sizes, they feel, respond and sound different. To give you a clue to the size difference of the LS King tenor from a regular tenor, there’s also a picture of it with my MBU. It's a bit bigger all around (body, scale length, neck width) with a 1.5" fretboard.

    Took off the old strings on the King and put on new Worth BTs. Decided it sounded and felt very good in re-entrant Bb tuning, is particularly clear and bell-like in sound. My best description of the Pohaku baritone is that it's sound is like a modern, improved Favilla. More uniform tone, more clarity, more articulate notes but with similar excellent warmth. It has crazy long sustain & excellent resonance. The 19" scale makes the Aquila strings feel just a little slack from normal length bari’s, but it's an easy player. The fit and finish are immaculate.

    I am delighted with each of these off-scale ukes.

    Anybody else got some off-scale ukes they really enjoy?

    2017-10-28 22.57.07 .
    King & MBU , on Flickr
    -Hodge
    Humble strummer of fine ukes.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Bowral NSW AUSTRALIA
    Posts
    6,902

    Default

    Great post Hodge, there are many days I feel the joy you are experiencing right now. Whenever I need a pick me up, I play my Kinnard Super Tenor (19" scale) it never fails to put a smile on my face
    All the best,
    Campbell

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    518

    Default

    Hey Hodge, I have been exploring this theme practically since I started playing a little over a year ago. My first and only custom build was in fact a product of this exploration, and even it has led to further discoveries. I had David Ingalls, of Ono Ukuleles build me an 18" scale tenor with a wide nut width. I love the extra space both vertically and horizontally, especially for exploring chords up the neck. Also, since I often play with others, I use a capo more than I would otherwise. The neck at capo 2 on my Ono feels about like a 17" tenor with a 1 3/8" nut width.

    The other thing I have been exploring is stringing shorter scaled ukuleles (17" & 18") DGBE, and stringing longer scales (18" and 19") GCEA. I love the fullness that a bigger bodied ukulele like your William King has when it is strung GCEA, and I am also liking the brightness and control on the low end I can get with a shorter scale strung DGBE.

    The more I explore this magical little instrument, the more amazed I am by its versatility.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Santa Monica, CA
    Posts
    2,947

    Default

    Very nice, Hodge! You really have some fantastic ukes and it is always fun to learn about what made its way into your very fine cache of instruments!

    Regarding your question: Anybody else got some off-scale ukes they really enjoy?

    I have a Josh Rieck torrefied spruce/quilted sapele 16" concert that I think is very special (strung linear). I previously had 16" Ono that was also super. For me, 16" might be the perfect scale length were I forced to pick one. And speaking of Ono, David has done a couple of 18" tenors now and has been very pleased with their outcome.

    The Beau Hannam I'm getting is a 19" Selmer, so that will also be non-standard scale.
    Last edited by Ukulele Eddie; 10-29-2017 at 07:29 AM.
    More an appreciator of the ukulele than a true player. My motto is: "Don't matter how good it ring if it ain't got some bling."

    Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.—Voltaire

    Curious about the relative importance of tonewood vs. the luthier? See Luthiers for a Cause to learn more!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Mission Viejo, CA
    Posts
    1,195

    Default

    I have a couple of 18" scale tenors by Keith Ogata. After playing them, my normal 17" scale tenor almost feels like a concert.

    I will say that the longer scale does can make for some interesting times with strings. The increased scale does add a bit of tension and balancing everything out can be a bit challenging at times, especially with linear tuning.

    John

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    214

    Default

    Here's the long and short of it for me:

    I started with a Cordoba tenor, which run a bit small (more of a long-neck concert) and then I got a long-neck kamaka tenor (485mm scale). Now I am hooked and totally smitten. I have commissioned a custom uke to replace my Cordoba as my linear uke. I am having it made with the same scale as my kamaka...but with a cutaway! Those frets are addictive.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Upper Hale, Surrey/Hants border, UK.
    Posts
    4,110

    Default

    I've got a few different than normal looking ukes in my collection, though they have near standard scale lengths, it is nice to have something different, I think.
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.
    Formerly known as uke1950.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Rochester, Kent UK
    Posts
    120

    Default

    I have a Tenor Scale, Concert Body by Pete Howlett. I'm enjoying it! It does have the most amazing, and powerful sound. Spruce top, walnut back and sides.
    PA290066.jpg
    Ziegenspeck Spruce and Yew Tenor, Howlett Mahogany Concert, KM Tenor Mahogany, Howlett Spruce and Walnut Tenor scale Concert, Alder Concert and a couple of others.....

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Pickering, ON, Canada
    Posts
    4,026

    Default

    Congratulations on two beautiful looking new additions to your stable of fine ukes. It is no wonder they sound as good as they look coming from two master builders.

    Off-scale ukes that I have owned, Ono 16" concert, Ono 18" tenor, Kinnard 19" baritone and currently have an old beat up Gianinni 19" baritone. I have had that one at least two years and have enjoyed it tuned from DGBE all the way up to GCEA, big resonant sound and the 19" scale is a nice compromise.
    Last edited by DownUpDave; 10-29-2017 at 02:25 AM.
    Ukuleles.............yes please !!!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    McDonough, GA
    Posts
    4,075

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mezcalero View Post
    Hey Hodge, I have been exploring this theme practically since I started playing a little over a year ago. My first and only custom build was in fact a product of this exploration, and even it has led to further discoveries. I had David Ingalls, of Ono Ukuleles build me an 18" scale tenor with a wide nut width. I love the extra space both vertically and horizontally, especially for exploring chords up the neck. Also, since I often play with others, I use a capo more than I would otherwise. The neck at capo 2 on my Ono feels about like a 17" tenor with a 1 3/8" nut width.

    The other thing I have been exploring is stringing shorter scaled ukuleles (17" & 18") DGBE, and stringing longer scales (18" and 19") GCEA. I love the fullness that a bigger bodied ukulele like your William King has when it is strung GCEA, and I am also liking the brightness and control on the low end I can get with a shorter scale strung DGBE.

    The more I explore this magical little instrument, the more amazed I am by its versatility.
    I agree with the reentrant tuning can sound bigger and crisper on a longer scale.

    https://app.box.com/s/6oahaqko9cztrgdwl2zaausvcoq232s6

    BTW I still have that BP tenor (17" scale) strung/tuned DGBE. Something in the tone with baritone tuning on that shorter scale is very compelling, and very fun to play.

    Forgot mention I also have a 21" scale bari. Seems I only 1 regular 20" scale bari.
    -Hodge
    Humble strummer of fine ukes.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •