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Hippie Dribble
06-06-2015, 10:55 PM
Hi everyone,

it's been some while since I created a thread like this.

I have recently commissioned a custom instrument from a fellow whose work I've long admired. This is one I hope to keep ahold of and not fall into my usual and endlessly frustrating cycle of buying and selling.

It will be a special instrument to me for a number of reasons.

Here are some initial images.

I wonder if you can discern what woods are being used?

I shall keep it updated as I am able until completion.

803558035680357

mm stan
06-06-2015, 11:10 PM
Looks Like Jakes ukes cedar top rosewood back.. probably not but congratulations

dkcrown
06-07-2015, 12:32 AM
Not sure of the woods Jon, but Allen is very talented and I'm sure it is going to be a stunner. Both sounding and looking. Concert size?

Doc_J
06-07-2015, 12:49 AM
Looking good! Are those woods from Australian/Tazmanian? Top looks a little like bear claw spruce.

guitharsis
06-07-2015, 12:56 AM
Spruce top; mahogany b/s? Nice rosette.

DownUpDave
06-07-2015, 12:58 AM
I bet ya those woods...........come from trees. That's my guess, could be wrong.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 01:31 AM
Looks Like Jakes ukes cedar top rosewood back.. probably not but congratulations

Good guess Bruddah, but no. Very similar body shape to the Hive's though isn't it. Didn't realise that until you mentioned it. Thanks for the reply Stan.

wayfarer75
06-07-2015, 01:31 AM
A Barron River--very jealous!

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 01:32 AM
Not sure of the woods Jon, but Allen is very talented and I'm sure it is going to be a stunner. Both sounding and looking. Concert size?

You picked the builder no probs Dana! Could be a concert...... :)

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 01:33 AM
Looking good! Are those woods from Australian/Tazmanian? Top looks a little like bear claw spruce.

Oooh, good surmising Doc. But I'll hold off some and see if anymore folks would like to hazard a guess. But I will say it's not bearclaw spruce.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 01:34 AM
Spruce top; mahogany b/s? Nice rosette.

I think so too guitharsis. The rosettes on these ukes are always striking and original. No, not spruce>mahogany.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 01:37 AM
I bet ya those woods...........come from trees. That's my guess, could be wrong.

Dave, I got nothin except to say brother that....

80361

:)

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 01:38 AM
A Barron River--very jealous!

Yep indeed! It's a Barron River!!!

The Big Kahuna
06-07-2015, 02:05 AM
Top: IKEA

Back: Bunnings Warehouse

/runs

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 02:06 AM
Top: IKEA

Back: Bunnings Warehouse

/runs
Well, I thought this thread was gonna run for years but ***k you Kahuna for stealin the prize. Folks, we have a winner.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 02:13 AM
Oh yeah, your prize Niq...I know you're hangin on it. I is gonna build you one of your own. Thinkin melamine top (just cause I'm lazy and I hate the finishing process), plasterboard body, toilet seat fretboard, hand made tuners out of bdoorknobs. Reckon you'll be pleased with her bro. I wouldn't serve you up just anything. Let me know if you'd like any further customisation done and I'll nod then tell you to find another builder. It'll be your loss.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 02:15 AM
Oh yeah, your prize Niq...I know you're hangin on it. I is gonna build you one of your own. Thinkin melamine top (just cause I'm lazy and I hate the finishing process), plasterboard body, toilet seat fretboard, hand made tuners out of bdoorknobs. Reckon you'll be pleased with her bro. I wouldn't serve you up just anything. Let me know if you'd like any further customisation done and I'll nod then tell you to find another builder. It'll be your loss.

The gold element in all this is that you can use the endpin as a flush button, given the soundhole will be sculpted to the shape of your ass. It's genius I know. No need to thank me. You earnt it mate.

DownUpDave
06-07-2015, 02:25 AM
Dave, I got nothin except to say brother that....

80361

:)


On a more serious note, congratulations. I have always admired Allan's work and noticed his body shape and Jake's are quite silimar, very classy looking.

I was also thinking spruce and mahogany, but. .............wrong again honey, wrong again :confused:

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 02:28 AM
Cheers Dave. It's sure got that look at me I'm spruce and mahogany - which is also a fab combo - but na mate. Not for this one. If anyone stays interested in the thread I'll let y'all know after a few more stabs.

YorkSteve
06-07-2015, 02:30 AM
Oh those wonderful Barron Rivers...It was your demo video of the mahogony concert which convinced me to buy one. And I have loved every minute of playing it. I'm sure one day I'll ask Allen to build me another, once I can decide which one of several recipes I want him to follow.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 02:34 AM
Oh those wonderful Barron Rivers...It was your demo video of the mahogony concert which convinced me to buy one. And I have loved every minute of playing it. I'm sure one day I'll ask Allen to build me another, once I can decide which one of several recipes I want him to follow.

Thanks Steve. Well that's awesome to hear that my demo of it did it some form of justice. That was a special one for sure. The sweetness and balance of the tone is exceptional in his instruments and the note clarity is truly beautiful to listen to. Rapt you're so pleased with it. Incidentally, I noticed the cypress concert he listed the other day walked out the door mighty quickly, just as I went back to ogle it again with a view to laying my money down. Guy is a genius in my opinion.

YorkSteve
06-07-2015, 02:46 AM
Thanks Steve. Well that's awesome to hear that my demo of it did it some form of justice. That was a special one for sure. The sweetness and balance of the tone is exceptional in his instruments and the note clarity is truly beautiful to listen to. Rapt you're so pleased with it. Incidentally, I noticed the cypress concert he listed the other day walked out the door mighty quickly, just as I went back to ogle it again with a view to laying my money down. Guy is a genius in my opinion.That cypress concert grabbed me too. I hope whoever got it lets us hear it at some point.

Jim Hanks
06-07-2015, 02:49 AM
I'm gonna say Australian blackwood and cypress

UkerDanno
06-07-2015, 02:52 AM
might it be huon pine and blackwood!

wayfarer75
06-07-2015, 03:01 AM
I have no idea what the woods are but I will guess cedar and blackwood.

With the Australian dollar working in my favor of late, I am considering a BR. So I can be jealous of myself! Question is, should I get a tenor or stick with concert, which I know and love.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 03:13 AM
I have no idea what the woods are but I will guess cedar and blackwood.

With the Australian dollar working in my favor of late, I am considering a BR. So I can be jealous of myself! Question is, should I get a tenor or stick with concert, which I know and love.

Hey wayward, sorry brus but the woods aren't right. darn close though.

just to stick my beak in re a possible BR purchase for you...Allen recently completed several spec ukes and made an amazing discover in the process. From all I hear, the monterey cypress he used as top and side woods for the teno were as good a choice as he's ever made. The tone is astounding and sustain for days. he is totally rapt with it. The good news from your angle is that, although the concert sold virtually the same day, her tenor sister is still available. It loks gorgoues and sounds as good.

Not wanting to act as an enabler exactly, but I truly hope Allen's work begins to get the worldwide appreciateion it so richly deserves. i think it's a matter of when, not if.

http://www.brguitars.com/gallery/tenor/cypress_tenor/

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 03:14 AM
I'm gonna say Australian blackwood and cypress

Brother Jim, you are so, so close!!!

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 03:19 AM
might it be huon pine and blackwood!

Danno, you gots it exactly!

The soundboard is Tasmanian Huon Pine and the body is Tasmanian Blackwood.

Both these are native woods to my home state which makes it a special one for me personally. I've never owned a uke made of my native woods and the fact that it is being crafted by another Aussie in allen McFarlen makes it even more so.

It should be a perfect combo by my reckoning. The softwood top (which incidentally is a highly expensive, boutique wood in these parts) shoulkd be a gorgeous complement to the Tassie blackwood and provide for greatattack, good volume and a sweet balanced tone. Allen may hopefully offer a rejoinder here somewhere on the thread and perhaps expalin why these wods are complementary.

So yeah, well done brother Danno. Thanks for taking some guesses and indulging me everybody. Hope to have further updates soon.

Cheers!

The Big Kahuna
06-07-2015, 03:45 AM
Both these are native woods to my home state which makes it a special one for me personally. I've never owned a uke made of my native woods and the fact that it is being crafted by another Aussie in allen McFarlen makes it even more so.

Huge thumbs up for that mate.

UkerDanno
06-07-2015, 04:17 AM
Danno, you gots it exactly!

The soundboard is Tasmanian Huon Pine and the body is Tasmanian Blackwood.

Both these are native woods to my home state which makes it a special one for me personally. I've never owned a uke made of my native woods and the fact that it is being crafted by another Aussie in allen McFarlen makes it even more so.

It should be a perfect combo by my reckoning. The softwood top (which incidentally is a highly expensive, boutique wood in these parts) shoulkd be a gorgeous complement to the Tassie blackwood and provide for greatattack, good volume and a sweet balanced tone. Allen may hopefully offer a rejoinder here somewhere on the thread and perhaps expalin why these wods are complementary.

So yeah, well done brother Danno. Thanks for taking some guesses and indulging me everybody. Hope to have further updates soon.

Cheers!

well, I kind of cheated and looked at the Barron River website, so I'll let Kahuna keep the grand prize! :shaka:

wayfarer75
06-07-2015, 04:26 AM
All Tasmanian wood is special indeed! I'm sure you will love it!

strumsilly
06-07-2015, 04:32 AM
Hey wayward, sorry brus but the woods aren't right. darn close though.

just to stick my beak in re a possible BR purchase for you...Allen recently completed several spec ukes and made an amazing discover in the process. From all I hear, the monterey cypress he used as top and side woods for the teno were as good a choice as he's ever made. The tone is astounding and sustain for days. he is totally rapt with it. The good news from your angle is that, although the concert sold virtually the same day, her tenor sister is still available. It loks gorgoues and sounds as good.

Not wanting to act as an enabler exactly, but I truly hope Allen's work begins to get the worldwide appreciateion it so richly deserves. i think it's a matter of when, not if.

http://www.brguitars.com/gallery/tenor/cypress_tenor/
congrats brother. Looked at this tenor. wow. love the details, especially the heel treatment. so is it all cypress, with no harder wood on the back? interesting.

Patrick Madsen
06-07-2015, 04:42 AM
Looks really good Jon. I trust this will be one you'll keep. If not, First dibs...

sam13
06-07-2015, 05:07 AM
Congrats. Sounds awesome. Looking forward to a video of it with your kick butt playing.

Strumdaddy
06-07-2015, 03:25 PM
Fantastic choices Jon.
I have always loved stringed instruments for the way you can make music with them, but I also love them because they are made of WOOD.
Your uke will capture a dwindling resource in a personal vehicle for spreading love through music.
Take it and fly mate....
(....and stick your nose in the soundhole often to smell that magic Huon pine)

Leigh Coates
06-07-2015, 04:09 PM
Love the rosette!

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 04:13 PM
congrats brother. Looked at this tenor. wow. love the details, especially the heel treatment. so is it all cypress, with no harder wood on the back? interesting.

Thanks a lot Andy. Yeah. All cypress eh. Like nothing I've ever seen before. i do remember Duane Heilman building a one-off all-pinewood uke last year or so and I always wondered how that would have sounded.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 04:14 PM
Looks really good Jon. I trust this will be one you'll keep. If not, First dibs...

Haha. OK Patrick, you have my word. truly hope it will never come to that though!

Ukulele Eddie
06-07-2015, 04:14 PM
Congrats and look forward to following the build development!!

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 04:15 PM
Congrats. Sounds awesome. Looking forward to a video of it with your kick butt playing.

Thanks heaps Simon. I really am looking forward to it so much mate. There will be sound clips I guarantee it brother. :)

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 04:17 PM
Fantastic choices Jon.
I have always loved stringed instruments for the way you can make music with them, but I also love them because they are made of WOOD.
Your uke will capture a dwindling resource in a personal vehicle for spreading love through music.
Take it and fly mate....
(....and stick your nose in the soundhole often to smell that magic Huon pine)
Oh yea, nothing like that smell eh mate. there is a stall in Salamanca place overloaded with hand made huon pine ornaments, plates, bowls and the like and it's always the first thing I do. Thanks Karl.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 04:20 PM
Love the rosette!

Thanks Leigh. Yes, Allen's rosette inlay work has become something of a signature styling with his instruments. They're all so beauitful. Cheers mate.

Hippie Dribble
06-07-2015, 04:21 PM
Congrats and look forward to following the build development!!

Thankyou Eddie. I'll endeavour to keep it updated as often as I'm able mate.

Nickie
06-07-2015, 04:23 PM
Wow, that's gonna be an awesome uke. Tenor, right? Will there be pics when it's done?

Allen
06-07-2015, 06:52 PM
Hello everyone. Jon pointed me to this thread and suggested I add to it if I could.

The instrument in question came about after Jon saw a Baritone I recently completed in Australian Blackwood and Huon Pine with Indian Rosewood trim.

He asked me if I could do something similar in a soprano with a couple of custom considerations that I agreed to do for him as he's been a great supporter of my work. It will be 14 frets to the body and 16 in total. You've seen some of the parts. The fret board is also finished except for glueing to the completed instrument, and then dressing frets. The neck is partially completed to the point where it's able to be attached to the soundboard.

Today the soundboard was glued onto the neck first thing, while I then bent the sides. Glued them to the tail block and then after a few hours of dry time I attached them to the neck/soundboard assembly. After another hour of dry time I've installed the linings between the soundboard and sides. This is where it stops for the day and allowed to dry overnight.

80374

consitter
06-07-2015, 09:40 PM
Heh.

Saw the title of the thread, Jon, and thought YOU were doing the build. I was thinking, "Wow! Jon is really branching out! Mayhap a new career for him!" Then I started reading.

consitter
06-07-2015, 09:42 PM
Heh.

Saw the title of the thread, Jon, and thought YOU were doing the build. I was thinking, "Wow! Jon is really branching out! Mayhap a new career for him!" Then I started reading.

Congrats on the build, btw. Allen makes some of the most beautiful ukes I've seen.

Stuntman
06-08-2015, 02:48 AM
Great choice of timbers :D. Little brother to my bari.

wayfarer75
06-08-2015, 03:58 AM
Hey wayward, sorry brus but the woods aren't right. darn close though.

just to stick my beak in re a possible BR purchase for you...Allen recently completed several spec ukes and made an amazing discover in the process. From all I hear, the monterey cypress he used as top and side woods for the teno were as good a choice as he's ever made. The tone is astounding and sustain for days. he is totally rapt with it. The good news from your angle is that, although the concert sold virtually the same day, her tenor sister is still available. It loks gorgoues and sounds as good.

Not wanting to act as an enabler exactly, but I truly hope Allen's work begins to get the worldwide appreciateion it so richly deserves. i think it's a matter of when, not if.

http://www.brguitars.com/gallery/tenor/cypress_tenor/

Well, I just put the order in for the Brazilian mahogany concert. I've been hemming and hawing over tenors so long, I think they are not for me. Now to see which of my concerts will be low G!

I love the photos of Jon's uke in progress. Looking forward to seeing the finished product!

Dan Uke
06-08-2015, 08:01 AM
exciting to get a new uke! I always thought Allen only made 12 frets to the body so I'm glad to see that he agreed to your 14 frets request.

Camsuke
06-08-2015, 11:22 AM
Looking good Jon, glad to see you buying Australian mate. We have some mighty fine builders in this country and Allen is definitely one of our best.

trevorg888
06-08-2015, 12:17 PM
Blackwood back and sides and hoop pine top absolutely wonderful Jon I am curious to hear the sound of the hoop I know a cellist with a huon pine cello and it sounds amazing.

Hippie Dribble
06-08-2015, 01:12 PM
Congrats on the build, btw. Allen makes some of the most beautiful ukes I've seen.
Thanks Scott. I agree mate. Theyare consistently beautifuland the several I've been fortunate enough to play in the past all had gorgeous tones and great sustain.

Great choice of timbers :D. Little brother to my bari.
Haha. Indeed brother, I thought you'd agree!

exciting to get a new uke! I always thought Allen only made 12 frets to the body so I'm glad to see that he agreed to your 14 frets request.
Thankyou Dan. Allen is the bees knees as far as I'm concerned.

Hippie Dribble
06-08-2015, 01:15 PM
Looking good Jon, glad to see you buying Australian mate. We have some mighty fine builders in this country and Allen is definitely one of our best.
Thankyou Cam. Yes I agree mate. Interestingly enough I recently discovered we have a class builder right here in Tasmania who also has started building ukuleles. His name is Paul Mineur. Have you heard of him by any chance? I am thinking one day to talk with him about an instrument sometime in the future.

Blackwood back and sides and hoop pine top absolutely wonderful Jon I am curious to hear the sound of the hoop I know a cellist with a huon pine cello and it sounds amazing.
So much looking forward to it Trev. Thanks for the comment mate.

Hippie Dribble
06-08-2015, 01:16 PM
Hello everyone. Jon pointed me to this thread and suggested I add to it if I could.

The instrument in question came about after Jon saw a Baritone I recently completed in Australian Blackwood and Huon Pine with Indian Rosewood trim.

He asked me if I could do something similar in a soprano with a couple of custom considerations that I agreed to do for him as he's been a great supporter of my work. It will be 14 frets to the body and 16 in total. You've seen some of the parts. The fret board is also finished except for glueing to the completed instrument, and then dressing frets. The neck is partially completed to the point where it's able to be attached to the soundboard.

Today the soundboard was glued onto the neck first thing, while I then bent the sides. Glued them to the tail block and then after a few hours of dry time I attached them to the neck/soundboard assembly. After another hour of dry time I've installed the linings between the soundboard and sides. This is where it stops for the day and allowed to dry overnight.

80374
Thanks for contributing to the thread Allen. Seems there are a few people also interested to see the development of this build. Thanks heaps for the further update mate.

Camsuke
06-08-2015, 02:07 PM
"Thankyou Cam. Yes I agree mate. Interestingly enough I recently discovered we have a class builder right here in Tasmania who also has started building ukuleles. His name is Paul Mineur. Have you heard of him by any chance? I am thinking one day to talk with him about an instrument sometime in the future."

Hi Jon, I haven't heard of Paul before but I just checked his website, very impressive!

Katz-in-Boots
06-08-2015, 05:17 PM
might it be huon pine and blackwood!

Rats! I picked it straight away, but I only just saw this thread! As a fellow Tasweigan, it was an easy guess for me.


Blackwood back and sides and hoop pine top absolutely wonderful Jon I am curious to hear the sound of the hoop I know a cellist with a huon pine cello and it sounds amazing.

There's a guy in Tasmania who makes gorgeous looking & sounding cellos out of Tasmanian wood, including huon pine and they are lovely.

Jon & I 'almost' met at Paul Mineur's workshop (I was coming out as he was going in). Paul does lovely inlay work, really pretty stuff. I haven't heard or played any of his ukes, but they look ovely and he's really interesting to talk to.

Really excited for you Jon, no wonder you have been reducing your collection recently. The Barron River ukes are very tempting.

YorkSteve
06-08-2015, 09:24 PM
Well, I just put the order in for the Brazilian mahogany concert.
I have its twin. I am 99.99% certain you'll love it.

mds725
06-08-2015, 09:49 PM
Hello everyone. Jon pointed me to this thread and suggested I add to it if I could.

The instrument in question came about after Jon saw a Baritone I recently completed in Australian Blackwood and Huon Pine with Indian Rosewood trim.

He asked me if I could do something similar in a soprano with a couple of custom considerations that I agreed to do for him as he's been a great supporter of my work. It will be 14 frets to the body and 16 in total. You've seen some of the parts. The fret board is also finished except for glueing to the completed instrument, and then dressing frets. The neck is partially completed to the point where it's able to be attached to the soundboard.

Today the soundboard was glued onto the neck first thing, while I then bent the sides. Glued them to the tail block and then after a few hours of dry time I attached them to the neck/soundboard assembly. After another hour of dry time I've installed the linings between the soundboard and sides. This is where it stops for the day and allowed to dry overnight.



Hi Allen,

Thanks for weighing in! Your post led me to your website and to photos of the beautiful Huon Pine and Australian Blackwood baritone ukulele that led to this build for Jon. Is there a sound sample of that baritone ukulele anywhere? I love baritone ukuleles and I'm very curious to know what yours sound like.

Thanks in advance, and have fun with this build. Jon is great people and very talented, and he's going to make what I'm sure is going to be a beautiful ukulele absolutely sing.

AndrewKuker
06-08-2015, 11:06 PM
No one is more worthy. Always loved your passion for unique custom builders Jon. Keep supporting the independents. We love your soulful music and the heart you give to the community of talented luthiers.

wayfarer75
06-08-2015, 11:35 PM
Hi Allen,

Thanks for weighing in! Your post led me to your website and to photos of the beautiful Huon Pine and Australian Blackwood baritone ukulele that led to this build for Jon. Is there a sound sample of that baritone ukulele anywhere? I love baritone ukuleles and I'm very curious to know what yours sound like.

I'd love to hear it too.


I have its twin. I am 99.99% certain you'll love it.

That is good to hear!

ksiegel
06-09-2015, 05:16 AM
This is one I hope to keep ahold of and not fall into my usual and endlessly frustrating cycle of buying and selling.


Hi, Jon.

You WILL keep this one - or I may be forced to find you and say unspeakable things to you.

Or something like that.

Play it proudly.



-Kurt

bbycrts
06-09-2015, 09:44 AM
My treasured custom Brad Donaldson uke is also made from native woods - well, native to me! Oregon Myrtlewood and Port Orford Cedar. It's special because it's from home. I hope you never let this one go, Jon!

(I had Brad add a couple of style elements that would make it very difficult to sell...not sure how many people would be thrilled to have a baby carrot inlaid on the back of their headstock or a PoHo logo on the front :))

Allen
06-09-2015, 09:59 AM
Hi Allen,

Thanks for weighing in! Your post led me to your website and to photos of the beautiful Huon Pine and Australian Blackwood baritone ukulele that led to this build for Jon. Is there a sound sample of that baritone ukulele anywhere? I love baritone ukuleles and I'm very curious to know what yours sound like.

Thanks in advance, and have fun with this build. Jon is great people and very talented, and he's going to make what I'm sure is going to be a beautiful ukulele absolutely sing.

I don't have a sound sample of that Baritone, but the fellow who bought it has commented on this build thread. Perhaps he would share one, or make comment.

Hippie Dribble
06-09-2015, 04:32 PM
Rats! I picked it straight away, but I only just saw this thread! As a fellow Tasweigan, it was an easy guess for me.
There's a guy in Tasmania who makes gorgeous looking & sounding cellos out of Tasmanian wood, including huon pine and they are lovely.

Jon & I 'almost' met at Paul Mineur's workshop (I was coming out as he was going in). Paul does lovely inlay work, really pretty stuff. I haven't heard or played any of his ukes, but they look ovely and he's really interesting to talk to.

Really excited for you Jon, no wonder you have been reducing your collection recently. The Barron River ukes are very tempting.
Thanks K!!! One day we will meet and so will our ukes. Can't wait for you to have a play of this one! x

Hi Allen,

Thanks for weighing in! Your post led me to your website and to photos of the beautiful Huon Pine and Australian Blackwood baritone ukulele that led to this build for Jon. Is there a sound sample of that baritone ukulele anywhere? I love baritone ukuleles and I'm very curious to know what yours sound like.

Thanks in advance, and have fun with this build. Jon is great people and very talented, and he's going to make what I'm sure is going to be a beautiful ukulele absolutely sing.
Thanks so much Mark. This is a special one for sure. The two BR concerts I had the privilege to play were beyond compare in terms of tonal balance and richness. And light. I think adding a BR baritone to your quiver would be a fabulous thing.

No one is more worthy. Always loved your passion for unique custom builders Jon. Keep supporting the independents. We love your soulful music and the heart you give to the community of talented luthiers.
Andrew, thankyou so much for these beautiful words. Know my friendship and warm feelings for you are mutual. You have always been a wonderful brother to me in so many ways and I am grateful to be able to call you my friend.

Hippie Dribble
06-09-2015, 04:36 PM
Hi, Jon.

You WILL keep this one - or I may be forced to find you and say unspeakable things to you.

Or something like that.

Play it proudly.



-Kurt
Haha! Thanks Kurt. You hereby have my permission to say and do whatever is deserved in the unlikely event that ever happens. Cheer mate!

My treasured custom Brad Donaldson uke is also made from native woods - well, native to me! Oregon Myrtlewood and Port Orford Cedar. It's special because it's from home. I hope you never let this one go, Jon!

(I had Brad add a couple of style elements that would make it very difficult to sell...not sure how many people would be thrilled to have a baby carrot inlaid on the back of their headstock or a PoHo logo on the front :))
Aaah, there's the secret revealed Jon. Great idea. Haha. Yes mate, something about having these native woods used in this uke is really making the whole thing extra special. That dimension that is hard to quantify but sort of embeds it in your soul or something. Cheers brother.

Hippie Dribble
06-09-2015, 04:40 PM
Further update from Allen I received this morning. The back is now glued on but he took a "before" shot of the inside linings and top bracing with some spit coats of shellac to seal up the timber. Wish I knew how to embed big photos in the thread , alas I remain forever a technological dunce. Looks fabulous.

80436

Allen
06-09-2015, 07:37 PM
I think that photo's need to be referenced from another source and then they display larger. The problem with that is that if they every get moved or deleted, then the link is broken.

Allen
06-10-2015, 10:21 PM
Overnight dry and the top and back are flush trimmed to the sides, then the rebates are machined to accept the bindings and purflings.

80492

I use the bending iron to shape the very tight bends on these soprano bindings.

80493

Then when everything is ready, they along with the black / maple / black purflings are glued in with hot hide glue. Held in place with gum tape and finally cinched up tight with flat cord.

80494

Again, it's an overnight dry before they are scraped flush with the body. More to follow.

Hippie Dribble
06-10-2015, 10:51 PM
Thanks so much Allen. Just fantastic to see the step by step process as the construction of the instrument unfolds. Almost feel like we're in the shed with you. Gorgeous body shape (uke doesn't look bad either :p ). Cheers mate.

Hippie Dribble
06-11-2015, 07:35 PM
Progress is happening rapidly.

Today's Update:

Bindings are scraped flush with the body, and then rounded over.
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Body is sanded smooth and ready for fret board glue-up.
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Hippie Dribble
06-11-2015, 07:39 PM
Also, for those of you that are on the FaceBook thingo, the complete build progress album is on Allen's page here (https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.363718227156256.1073741834.348210418707037&type=3).

Hippie Dribble
06-12-2015, 02:32 AM
Are you going to go up to Cairns to pick it up? July in Cairns is magic.
Yes, so I've heard mate. Plus the uke fest being on and all.

Unfortunately it's just not a possibility. It was all I could do to scratch together the funds to afford such a beautiful instrument itself.

The silver lining is that I've been invited to play at the Ukes at The Winery fest in Brissy in November so I'm trying to make that happen. Gives me a few more months grace.

Icelander53
06-12-2015, 02:58 AM
I bet ya those woods...........come from trees. That's my guess, could be wrong.

I think it's a woody vine like ayahuasca. Sounds good until you come down.

Hippie Dribble
06-12-2015, 05:25 AM
Postage is cheaper than airfares, sadly.

True mate, unless it's UPS international. Then I could get a return flight to Hawaii. :)

paullchter
06-12-2015, 06:44 AM
JON -

I just got a tenor (mostly maple) and it's incredible. The sound is superior to anything I have! He does beautiful work!!!

paul

vanflynn
06-12-2015, 06:47 AM
Wowzer, it's coming together quick! Nice choice on the binding woods. Allen really has an eye for that.

Do you have a song picked out for the first vid yet!??!!

philpot
06-14-2015, 11:06 AM
Looking good, Jon :) can't wait to see the finished product! It's making me antsy for my MM build to get started. Keep us posted, and I'm looking forward to seeing some videos with it!

Hippie Dribble
06-15-2015, 01:03 PM
JON -

I just got a tenor (mostly maple) and it's incredible. The sound is superior to anything I have! He does beautiful work!!!

paul
Great to hear Paul. Please send through a picture or three if you are so inclined or able mate.

Wowzer, it's coming together quick! Nice choice on the binding woods. Allen really has an eye for that.

Do you have a song picked out for the first vid yet!??!!
Yeah Jim, I'm astounded at how quick things are progressing. Allen just sent me an update last evening with a couple more shots. I'll put them up shortly.
As for the song...all of em!!!!

Looking good, Jon :) can't wait to see the finished product! It's making me antsy for my MM build to get started. Keep us posted, and I'm looking forward to seeing some videos with it!
Thanks a lot Phil. Yeah, I'm so rapt with it so far. Yeah mate, the waiting. You obviously have a lot more patience than me brother! Cheers!

Hippie Dribble
06-15-2015, 01:09 PM
Update! Things re really moving in the Cairns workshop. Thanks Allen!!! He sent me this progress report through last night:

Shaping the neck first up. Bit of chisel work on the heel, and then the rest done with rasps, scraper and sanding.

Then it’s a fine sand to everything and on to pore filling.

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These other two photo’s are after several hours of sanding and filling.
Will be ready to start spraying tomorrow.

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Uh...just a little bit excited. :)

Doc_J
06-15-2015, 01:29 PM
Gorgeous! Very cool build pics Jon! The backplate and extended heelplate add a lot to overall look.

Neck carving on the finished body always amazes me.

Allen
06-15-2015, 08:02 PM
It was a really big day in the workshop yesterday in order to move two commissions along so that I'd be able to start applying the lacquer to them today. Makes today and easy one, as there's lots of time just watching paint dry. :D

Jon's asked for a satin gloss finish, but that happens with the last coats. The build coats are always clear gloss, as the compound that is in the satin finish affect the clarity if used for the entire process.

The figure in that Huon pine really comes alive under finish. We refer to it as White Bait figure as it has that shimmer and movement of little fish.

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wayfarer75
06-16-2015, 03:18 AM
Looking good! I love the "white bait"--looks nicer than bear claw spruce, IMO.

Hippie Dribble
06-17-2015, 03:37 PM
Gorgeous! Very cool build pics Jon! The backplate and extended heelplate add a lot to overall look.

Neck carving on the finished body always amazes me.

And I Hodge. Thanks mate. I look at pictures like that having come so far along in the build and think...aaarrrggghhh don't make a wrong move with the chisel!!!! I could never do it. Guess that's why we pay good money because these guys are the best, eh. Pure artistry and craftsmanship. :)

Hippie Dribble
06-17-2015, 03:38 PM
Looking good! I love the "white bait"--looks nicer than bear claw spruce, IMO.

Thanks Laura. I think so too. Plus, it's Huon Pine which, down here in Tassie is so highly adored and prized.

wayfarer75
06-17-2015, 05:20 PM
Thanks Laura. I think so too. Plus, it's Huon Pine which, down here in Tassie is so highly adored and prized.

I can see why!

Allen
06-24-2015, 08:19 PM
Shhhhhh.......Don't tell Jon, but his uke is finished. :-)

After the lacquer has dried for about a week, the frets are levelled, dressed, and polished. Nut fitted and a bridge is made and glued in place. Tuners are installed. Then a bit of set up work to get the action right and put the strings on. Let settle for several days under tension, check the setup again and adjust if necessary.

But I didn't take pictures of all of that. Just some of the tools used in levelling and dressing the frets. The one picture shows the frets with black felt pen on them, and a diamond stone has been run over the tops to level them. Afterwards they are recrowned, ends smoothed and buffed with the tools you see in the other picture.

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tigersister
06-24-2015, 08:34 PM
Great work, Allen.

Jon, it's gorgeous. I am totally jealous.

Mivo
06-24-2015, 10:08 PM
Looks beautiful, Allen! Congrats to your new baby, Mr. Dribble -- looking forward to hearing you play it. :)

wayfarer75
06-25-2015, 02:20 AM
Very exciting! I promise I won't tell Jon, though. ;)

Hippie Dribble
06-25-2015, 02:55 PM
Haha. The cover has been blown! I went snooping in my email box this morning and found these gorgeous pictures of the completed instrument. Wow. I can't wait to play it. Thanks Allen!!!! He described her by saying: "Man, is it a punchy little instrument!"

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Hippie Dribble
06-25-2015, 02:57 PM
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Nickie
06-25-2015, 03:07 PM
That looks so cool! I love the side fret markers!

Strumdaddy
06-25-2015, 03:37 PM
Beautiful work!
Love that little extension for the bridge pins - a tasteful Art Deco touch that really fits in with the whole design.
You'll have to take it out in to the bush for a session Jon.

Doc_J
06-25-2015, 04:02 PM
She's a looker Jon. Now you got me Jonesing for BRU!

Patrick Madsen
06-25-2015, 06:04 PM
Only word that comes to mind is Wow!. I think this one's a keeper Jon. It has you written all over it. Talk about personality; this uke has it trustfully, to match yours.

Hippie Dribble
06-26-2015, 09:26 AM
Thanks heaps guys and gals. I'm stoked. I agree that Allen really has developed a unique styling with his instruments that sets them apart in the best possible way. When he described this little soprano as "a punchy little instrument" it made me really happy because that was the exact sort of sound I was hoping for from this. Volume, spark and dynamic. Very much looking forward to receiving her some time next week. :)

wayfarer75
06-26-2015, 09:45 AM
Wow! I love the bridge--and the fret markers are fantastic. My BR has the same style, but they're shell, which doesn't show from the side. So Allen had to use the regular dots--not that I mind, but this is more seamless. And the Peghed tuners look great--just blend into the headstock.

Hippie Dribble
07-01-2015, 12:11 AM
Well, the uke arrived late this afternoon. I just recorded a quick demo to show y'all sorta how it sounds. It's a truly sweet and beautiful little instrument. The extended bridge is really classy and the overall art-deco aesthetic just gorgeous. The finish is immaculate, intonation excellent and the huon pine top has a 3D shimmer. More to say and some nice daylight homespun pictures tomorrow. She's a total sweetheart. I'm rapt. :)


http://youtu.be/pTM3Jr_PkD4

DownUpDave
07-01-2015, 12:37 AM
Na.........I am sorry to say this Jon but you need to get rid of that uke ..........send it to me :biglaugh:

You had my from the very first strum, seriously. Fantastic mate, she's a beaut, really great sound and playing as usual. Big Congratulations

Hippie Dribble
07-01-2015, 12:54 AM
Na.........I am sorry to say this Jon but you need to get rid of that uke ..........send it to me :biglaugh:

You had my from the very first strum, seriously. Fantastic mate, she's a beaut, really great sound and playing as usual. Big Congratulations

Thanks heaps Dave. The playability surpasses most sopranos I've ever played. The neck is very slim and the smooth silky lite-gloss makes it super fast. Just after a couple of hours I feel like I've owned it for yonks. So comfortable mate. Really suits me and I can't ask for more than that. :)

YorkSteve
07-01-2015, 01:03 AM
That sounds wonderful. So pleased for you, and of course, very very envious. I know how much I like my Barron River concert, and wouldn't it be good to have one in another size....:)

Doc_J
07-01-2015, 02:20 AM
The new BRU sounds awesome. Your playing with that uke are a perfect combination. Looking forward to more songs.

wayfarer75
07-01-2015, 02:59 AM
Sounds great! I've been so happy with my concert BR, I'm sure your soprano is at least as awesome!

d-mace
07-01-2015, 05:08 AM
That had such a sweet, vintage vibe to it....did not sound like a brand new uke. Congrats! Excited to see and hear more.

Nickie
07-01-2015, 05:01 PM
Congrats on your new baby! Some luthiers just know how to do it right, don't they?

mm stan
07-01-2015, 05:49 PM
Sounds like a winner Jon, congratulations. .happy strummings mate :)

Recstar24
07-01-2015, 06:08 PM
Geez man you really know how to play that thing...sounds and feels like you've owned that instrument for a loooooong time, can't believe you two sound that good only a day under your belt.

Hippie Dribble
07-01-2015, 07:35 PM
Thanks so much everyone. Weather is crap in extremis here today so shall have to put off the uke porn until tomorrow. But enjoying playing it bigtime, really fits me like a glove. And the best part is sticking my nose in the soundhole...that huon pine has THE most gorgeous smell ever. :)

dkcrown
07-02-2015, 04:14 PM
Looks and sounds great, Jon! Congrats!

bonesigh
07-02-2015, 05:59 PM
I wish I knew where Brad D. has gone to.
Jan 6th 2012 I orderd a uke before his move to HI Haven't heard any replies from him in a long, long time. I do hope he is well.


My treasured custom Brad Donaldson uke is also made from native woods - well, native to me! Oregon Myrtlewood and Port Orford Cedar. It's special because it's from home. I hope you never let this one go, Jon!

(I had Brad add a couple of style elements that would make it very difficult to sell...not sure how many people would be thrilled to have a baby carrot inlaid on the back of their headstock or a PoHo logo on the front :))

bonesigh
07-02-2015, 06:12 PM
Congrats Jon. I'd have a hard time putting that one down for even a minute during the day! She beautiful (: I liked the picture at the beginning of the thread where in the build the uke had all these colorful clamps on it....looked like a rainbow and so appropriate for the Season!

hollisdwyer
07-02-2015, 10:34 PM
Congratulations Jon, a real beauty and hearing/seeing your new acquisition has, once again, confirmed my decision to commission a BR from Allen.

Hippie Dribble
07-02-2015, 10:56 PM
Thanks a lot Dana, Janet and Hollis. Playing her non stop today. Just the feel is so perfect. I think that's a great decision Hollis, such high class construction and artistic appointments, with a sound to match. Allen is building incredible instruments.

hollisdwyer
07-03-2015, 01:29 AM
........ Playing her non stop today. Just the feel is so perfect...
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to play a BR Pineapple Soprano that belongs to a member of the group I play with on Saturdays. I was immediately impressed. What I hope to commission from Allen is a 8 string tenor. The one that is shown in the gallery of his website went to an Aussie somewhere near Alice Springs in the middle of the continent. Unfortunate Allen doesn't have any more of that beautiful figured Mahogany so I have to decide on another wood. Everything he makes looks so good I have found it very difficult to make a decision and stick to it.

Fisherman
07-03-2015, 03:07 AM
Looks and sounds great, Jon. Love that bridge!

hollisdwyer
07-03-2015, 03:47 AM
My BR pineapple is made out of cuban mahogany, which might be a good choice for an 8 string if there is any left. The are some details of it on the BR website in the workshop section under cuban mahogany 2011.

Thanks Bill, I'll have a look.

vanflynn
07-03-2015, 04:25 AM
Beauty Jon, looking forward to hearing it some more (if that makes any sense!)

Allen
07-03-2015, 09:44 AM
I just finished a week long uke build course in my workshop, so haven't had much time to even take a breather, let alone look around the forum.

Thanks for posting that sound clip Jon. I love to hear any of my instruments in the hands of their new owners.

Cheers mate.