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View Full Version : Hatís off to UU forum



Hluth
04-10-2015, 05:13 AM
I have been building in relative isolation for many years and generally shy away from anything like social media except to sell my stuff. I joined the forum not knowing exactly where it would lead, and then received a tip through private message about contacting Andrew at the Hawaii Site about selling my instruments. I sent him one of my ukes and he sold it right away after listing it. (This will be the last underpriced instrument I sell!) You can see/hear it here: http://www.theukulelesite.com/hoffmann-lutherie-a-style-custom-tenor.html. More importantly I am totally inspired by the work of builders like Beau, Chuck and others, and have decided to forget about selling to a low ďprice pointĒ and let high quality and artistic expression become the primary motivating force. There is no better place to learn and be inspired than here.

sukie
04-10-2015, 05:35 AM
It's a wonderful place here. There is something for everybody.

Vespa Bob
04-10-2015, 05:40 AM
I totally agree with you, both about this forum and about selling to a low "price point". The help given me here by those who selflessly give up there valuable time, has been invaluable in my search for knowledge! Your tenor ukulele is so beautifully executed, and the nut pin concept is brilliant!:bowdown:

Bob

hawaii 50
04-10-2015, 09:33 AM
I have been building in relative isolation for many years and generally shy away from anything like social media except to sell my stuff. I joined the forum not knowing exactly where it would lead, and then received a tip through private message about contacting Andrew at the Hawaii Site about selling my instruments. I sent him one of my ukes and he sold it right away after listing it. (This will be the last underpriced instrument I sell!) You can see/hear it here: http://www.theukulelesite.com/hoffmann-lutherie-a-style-custom-tenor.html. More importantly I am totally inspired by the work of builders like Beau, Chuck and others, and have decided to forget about selling to a low “price point” and let high quality and artistic expression become the primary motivating force. There is no better place to learn and be inspired than here.

haha..nice to see that your uke sold so fast...I was the person who filled you in on Andrew.....
not only is he a great person...but he knows and has seen some of the best and sometimes not the best custom ukes around.....no one has seen and played as many ukes as he has(maybe Corey..haha)

he gives great advice to improve each uke if there are some kind of problems.....everyone comes out ahead....the builder the seller and the most important the buyer.....sometimes the ukes are not perfect but if the builder understands that Andrew is trying to get the buyer the best uke than things work out very well....

I remember Rick Turner saying that builders need a shop/store to have their instruments to show....when selling on your own website you will only get a certain amount of orders before it stops.....I think it makes sense...if you are as good as others a shop is your best bet...and HMS has all the reviews/sound samples/photos etc....

good luck Jerry in the future.....

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
04-10-2015, 11:54 AM
Andrew has been instrumental in my life as well. :) He has seen it all and has some very good advice. Not to mention that he's the nicest guy in the biz.
(And damn Len, you got a LOT of ukes!)

Kekani
04-10-2015, 01:17 PM
What Chuck said.

BlackBearUkes
04-10-2015, 03:22 PM
Yes, selling through stores is one way to go, but if you make ukes in the mid price range, say $600-$1200, taking 50-60% of the total selling price is a tough way to go and I don't know any full time luthiers who can survive on that cut. Plus, once your instrument is in a store environment, you are competeing with everything on the walls. Just some thoughts.


haha..nice to see that your uke sold so fast...I was the person who filled you in on Andrew.....
not only is he a great person...but he knows and has seen some of the best and sometimes not the best custom ukes around.....no one has seen and played as many ukes as he has(maybe Corey..haha)

he gives great advice to improve each uke if there are some kind of problems.....everyone comes out ahead....the builder the seller and the most important the buyer.....sometimes the ukes are not perfect but if the builder understands that Andrew is trying to get the buyer the best uke than things work out very well....

I remember Rick Turner saying that builders need a shop/store to have their instruments to show....when selling on your own website you will only get a certain amount of orders before it stops.....I think it makes sense...if you are as good as others a shop is your best bet...and HMS has all the reviews/sound samples/photos etc....

good luck Jerry in the future.....

Dan Uke
04-10-2015, 03:44 PM
congrats Jerry! The luthiers are so generous with their knowledge and Andrew really knows what buyers want and is such a genuine person!!

hawaii 50
04-10-2015, 03:45 PM
Yes, selling through stores is one way to go, but if you make ukes in the mid price range, say $600-$1200, taking 50-60% of the total selling price is a tough way to go and I don't know any full time luthiers who can survive on that cut. Plus, once your instrument is in a store environment, you are competeing with everything on the walls. Just some thoughts.


Wow..i did not know other shops take 50-60% of your uke prices....not right too me
usually the real nice uke at HMS never make it to the store.....they are sold in a few days off the website....

Dan Uke
04-10-2015, 04:11 PM
Len doesn't work there but he's a good salesman for HMS. He looks out for the HMS crew!

BlackBearUkes
04-10-2015, 04:54 PM
The shop usually gets 40-50%, the luthier 50-60%. So if a soprano koa uke sells for retail of $600 and the shop takes 40%, the luthier gets $360. While this is standard practice, it is tough to make it on that money working full time in a one man shop, unless you can crank them out fast, which I can't nor would I want to. Such is life.


Wow..i did not know other shops take 50-60% of your uke prices....not right too me
usually the real nice uke at HMS never make it to the store.....they are sold in a few days off the website....

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
04-10-2015, 06:16 PM
Len doesn't work there but he's a good salesman for HMS. He looks out for the HMS crew!

I though Len owned the place. ;)

hawaii 50
04-10-2015, 06:22 PM
I though Len owned the place. ;)

Haha Chuck I need to buy into HMS and Moore Bettah Ukulele....:) just joking
but I really just like seeing uke fans get the best they can get at the right price.....and the custom builders getting what they deserve too .....

btw Daniel is the banker he knows money better than me....:)

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
04-10-2015, 06:30 PM
Haha Chuck I need to buy into HMS and Moore Bettah Ukulele....:)
but I really just like seeing uke fans get the best they can get at a fair price.....and the custom builders getting what they deserve too .....:)

I've seen you work and you're a great asset to HMS. Tell Andrew to give you a raise! Haha.

coolcow
04-10-2015, 11:05 PM
I've seen you work and you're a great asset to HMS. Tell Andrew to give you a raise! Haha.

A Moore Bettah Uke can do right, Len?

hawaii 50
04-10-2015, 11:07 PM
A Moore Bettah Uke can do right, Len?


haha..in my dreams.....:)

Hluth
04-11-2015, 04:18 AM
The shop usually gets 40-50%, the luthier 50-60%. So if a soprano koa uke sells for retail of $600 and the shop takes 40%, the luthier gets $360. While this is standard practice, it is tough to make it on that money working full time in a one man shop, unless you can crank them out fast, which I can't nor would I want to. Such is life.

Right, 50% is the standard in the music business on the manufacturer end, and the retailer usually nocks it down to 40% for street price. But it’s not like HMS is taking 50% of your hard-earned money, because you get a lot in return. Andrew has gone out of his way to promote high-end instruments, and nobody else I know of is doing this. He also has a professional team that does all the stuff a luthier can’t always do for himself. This includes a professionally managed website that will devote an entire page and numerous pictures of your work, you get Corey to play your ukulele in a video that’s posted along with your instrument, and you get a sales people who believe in what you’re doing and will do what it takes to sell your ukulele. This adds up to more time for you to make ukuleles and less time trying to sell them.

Personally this is an opportunity to do what I really want to do and not worry about dealing with sales and promotion. My education is in fine art and I have been self-employed for over 40 years doing work in graphic arts, architectural design, publishing, and artist-blacksmithing. In all these things I have struggled with the balance between promotion (making money) and artistic expression. Besides, I’m not the best promoter even when I devote a lot of time to it. For me, it's a good move.

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
04-11-2015, 07:36 AM
Personally this is an opportunity to do what I really want to do and not worry about dealing with sales and promotion.

Andrew has given me the freedom to do the work I've always wanted to do. Less stress and anxiety. To me that's priceless. I've wholesaled to retail shops for over 40 years and I've never run across a company like HMS that treats it's "vendors" so fairly. Andrew's passion for his work equals the passion I have for mine. I couldn't ask for anything more.
(BTW, in case you didn't know, this is national Andrew Kitakis appreciation day. Mahalo Andrew!)

AndrewKuker
04-11-2015, 09:37 AM
Haha, you guys. I can only show what I have to show. To Jerry and Chuck and Aaron and the handful of guys I admire, doing your instruments justice on a computer screen will always fall short . Of course I enjoy the challenge.. A million mahalos for the opportunity.

LittleCeci
04-11-2015, 10:52 PM
Hi Len, thanks so much. I could not get my dream uke without the help from u and Jen;) And Andrew is such a nice person, too. I am so thankful. Moreover, Chuck is the most wonderful person I have ever seen! I love him and his Moore Bettah ukes soooo much :D
Haha Chuck I need to buy into HMS and Moore Bettah Ukulele....:) just joking
but I really just like seeing uke fans get the best they can get at the right price.....and the custom builders getting what they deserve too .....

btw Daniel is the banker he knows money better than me....:)

Beau Hannam Ukuleles
04-12-2015, 07:09 AM
Andrew/HMS is unique in that he gives luthiers creative freedom for their builds which is a blessing for any creative person.

Thanks to the uke community for being such a beautiful one

Kekani
04-12-2015, 08:54 AM
The folks over at Uke Talk usually refer to HMS and the quality & service provided by the shop.

I think its great that from a builder's perspective, the man behind the wheel is credited where due (not that he's not credited at Talk either). Its different when you're a customer supporting a business, and when you have said business/owner supporting us, the builders. And I say that sincerely.

Andrew doesn't just do retail (well, he does) - his efforts to showcase instruments to sell them (naturally) by investing in audio and video hardware has allowed an avenue of quality reproduction of sound, on the internet. The only thing missing is the actual playability of the instrument, which, until we Scotty can beam it up, is relevant everywhere.

He can't do it for ALL of the instruments, but when he does . . . everyone benefits.