View Full Version : Curly Maple Concert with Gidgee Trim

09-27-2014, 10:30 AM
I posted this one up on Facebook the other day, and it's received more comments than most, so thought some of you might like to see it as well.

Curly Maple body with all other wood trim in Gidgee. Fret markers are also curly maple. A bit of Koa and Paua in the rosette.


09-27-2014, 10:32 AM
More shots.


09-27-2014, 11:41 AM
Wow, that probably belongs in my stable. Always wanted a cool curly maple uke.

09-27-2014, 01:45 PM
Another stunner, love seeing your work

09-27-2014, 01:48 PM
Beautiful...you always find the nice woods

09-27-2014, 07:31 PM
Well, the maple for this one comes from a trip back to Vancouver I did last year, and I brought back several blocks in my luggage, as shipping from Canada to Oz is just out of this world. And the rest of the Gidgee I'm not too proud to say comes from dumpster diving at my mate Terry Gordon's wooden plane factory (HNT Gordon (http://www.hntgordon.com.au)). I rummage through all the off cuts whenever I'm down in N.S.W. for pieces that aren't suitable to his needs. Just rubbish to him. Good for me. ;)

The rest is just how you put them together, which is always the fun part.

09-27-2014, 08:15 PM
Another beauty.............................

That heel cap detail seems to be one of your trademarks-I'm not about to try to replicate it but it would be interesting to see how you do it-it always looks so perfect!

09-28-2014, 07:46 AM
Please don't hesitate to post your work here, Allen. Looking at wonderful instruments seems to heal some malady that I didn't know I had. Thanks.

09-28-2014, 09:05 AM
Crikey, each time you post pics I'm certain that your ukes are my favourite instruments in the wörld. Such neat and lovely work, elegant and understated.

09-28-2014, 10:52 AM
You're all too kind. I love to see your work too.

As for the heel cap, it's a tricky thing to do and get right.

I build with a Spanish Heel, so the neck and body are all tougher. The back is covering the entire heel but it's been flush trimmed to it, and the binding and purfling rebates have been cut on the body.

The process is to make the cap and then I glue it to the back in the exact position it will sit with a bit of HHG. Let it set for a while and then scribe the outline very carefully with a sharp scalpel. Remove the heel cap and then offset from the scribe line the width of the purfling with my template and scribe another line.

From there is some careful work with the dremel tool, sharp chisels and scalpel.

Once the pocket and steps for the purflings are cut, then the real fun starts with fitting all those parts together.

09-28-2014, 11:14 AM
Wow, I love highly figured wood! :)

12-27-2014, 05:48 AM
Well, the maple has come back to its home country:). Built in Australia by a Canadian born luthier from maple brought back from Canada to Australia (ouch, lots of stuff). I have just received this wonderful sounding and looking concert. Thanks Allen and happy holidays to you and your family.

12-27-2014, 08:57 AM
Merci Michel. Some of my instruments really do get around.

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
12-27-2014, 10:57 AM
Real classy look Allen. I like it. I've never heard of that other wood you mentioned. The closest I know is Gidget Goes Hawaiian. ;)

12-27-2014, 07:34 PM
It's an Australian Desert Hardwood. Can be plain, or highly figured. And it's very hard and heavy. Color can be medium brown, through to very dark, and some even purple. It does machine quite well and bending can be either easy, or leave you wondering why the heck you got out of bed in the morning.

12-28-2014, 05:15 PM
I have to say I am fascinated with all things Australian, but had never heard of gidgee either. Thanks for clearing that up Allen... Below is a quote from Wikipedia. Does it really smell like boiled cabbage?

Acacia cambagei, commonly known as gidgee, stinking wattle or stinking gidgee, is an endemic tree of Australia. It is found primarily in semiarid and arid Queensland, but extends into the Northern Territory, South Australia and north-western New South Wales. It can reach up to 12 m in height and can form extensive open woodland communities.[1] The leaves, bark, and litter of A. cambagei produce a characteristic odour, vaguely reminiscent of boiled cabbage, that accounts for the common name of "stinking gidgee".

12-28-2014, 05:36 PM
It does have a very distinctive smell when your machining it that you wouldn't ever forget. I suppose it's a bit like cabbage.

I have boxes and boxes of it as off cuts from my mate's wooden plane building business.

12-28-2014, 06:02 PM
Nice looking. I like the less is more approach.

12-29-2014, 03:44 AM
Just love your rosettes.

And oh, that kind of plane. I was thinking model planes and was a tad confused (as in why wouldn't they be using the stuff suitable for luthierie ;)). Now I need to save up for an awesome spoke shave as well as a Barron River uke (this may take a while). :(