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View Full Version : Anyone tried putting a strap button on the heel like this?



spookelele
10-11-2015, 03:17 PM
At first it seemed strange, but when I thought about it, attaching to the back of the heel like that, would hold the body less against my belly, which should be better for sound. And if I was skinnier I could go more against my hip/side to further reduce belly damping.

Anyone tried it on a uke? Am I misunderstanding why he's doing that? I attach above the nut, but maybe this way is better?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIlOTV7GM0g

VegasGeorge
10-11-2015, 03:23 PM
My understanding is if you're going to use two buttons, one goes on the heel. The other, alternative method of strapping is to tie the end off around the head plate above the nut. I've never seen a button used up on the head plate of a guitar or a Uke.

tangimango
10-11-2015, 03:26 PM
yes that's where i attach my buttons , you can put it anywhere you want as long as it is a solid location.

spookelele
10-11-2015, 05:17 PM
Maybe I should have been more specific. On the back side of the uke, where the heel cap would be. If you watch the video, and look at how the strap lays, the strap lays against his body, but his guitar doesn't.

When I play lying down I tilt the body, and it's louder.. at least it sounds louder. When I play standing, I strap from the butt block to the nut, the body tends to lay against my belly, which seems to damp it. On my rebel tenor, the whole uke vibrates kind of alot, so when it's damped, I can really tell. I'd like to be less damped against my body when I play with a strap, and I'm wondering if changing where the strap attaches will do it.

In the video, his guitar seems to hang from the strap and away from his body, which seems like a good thing in my head.

Strumdaddy
10-11-2015, 05:19 PM
Every guitar, mandolin and uke I use a strap with has the "top end" of the strap's pin located on the heel of the neck - usually just "around the corner" facing down towards the floor. It feels secure and comfortable to me. If you do it to a uke, make sure the screw for the button isn't so long that it might go through to the other side.. some buttons designed for guitars can be too long for uke. I have been known to shorten them.
I only use a strap on the tenor uke that I perform standing up with - sitting at home, or with smaller ukes, I don't need to, and prefer to hug my little friend.

lewclev
10-11-2015, 05:37 PM
I have installed one that way on one of my tenors. I have one with it on the heel too and I prefer this way. The strap stays flat against my body and is a little more secure than the button on the heel.

I haven't had any problems with this one. It works great and if I have buttons installed in any future ukes it will be this way.

The only downside that I see is the uke doesn't sit flat but, my ukes are either in my hand, on a stand or in the case.

BTW - The button on the bottom of the heel like this doesn't hinder the uke fitting in the case at all.

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spookelele
10-11-2015, 05:52 PM
I have installed one that way on one of my tenors. I have one with it on the heel too and I prefer this way. The strap stays flat against my body and is a little more secure than the button on the heel.

I haven't had any problems with this one. It works great and if I have buttons installed in any future ukes it will be this way.

The only downside that I see is the uke doesn't sit flat but, my ukes are either in my hand, on a stand or in the case.

BTW - The button on the bottom of the heel like this doesn't hinder the uke fitting in the case at all.

8432984330

Thanks. this is what I meant.

Does it seem like the tone is less damped this way? or is it the same? can't tell?

lewclev
10-11-2015, 05:56 PM
Installing the button made absolutely no difference in the tone or playability of the uke.

spookelele
10-11-2015, 06:04 PM
Installing the button made absolutely no difference in the tone or playability of the uke.

Hmm.. ok. Guess I'll stick with tie at the nut. Thx.

kypfer
10-11-2015, 09:21 PM
On a jumbo-size guitar a heel-fitted button is no problem, your fretting hand just doesn't get anywhere close, but, in my experience, on anything much smaller, even a 3/4-size acoustic guitar, the button itself can be an obstruction to the thumb if fretting well up the neck. If drilling unnecessary holes in your instruments could cause you problems, stick with the tie-off at the headstock.

As always ... YMMV ;)

Inksplosive AL
10-11-2015, 11:16 PM
BTW - The button on the bottom of the heel like this doesn't hinder the uke fitting in the case at all.

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It really seems like it has pushed the neck from the body separating it ever so slightly in this one picture here. Looks like I could slide a piece of paper right up between the body and heel.

lewclev
10-12-2015, 02:22 AM
It really seems like it has pushed the neck from the body separating it ever so slightly in this one picture here. Looks like I could slide a piece of paper right up between the body and heel.

Thank you Inksplosive AL.

The heel has separated from the body ever so slightly. So slightly in fact, that I had not noticed it until you pointed it out.

This is a Fender Pa'Ina All Solid Mahogany Tenor that I purchased from HMS in 2012. It was my first uke. After I purchased it, I read several complaints on the forums about quality issues. I have never had any with mine (until now) and it has always been a great uke with a sweet traditional sound.

I am skeptical whether my installation of the strap button caused the separation. I drilled a pilot hole only slightly smaller that the screw and only about 1/4 inch in depth. If this were to cause a problem, I would expect it to be a crack in the heel. I would think the quality of the glue or the joint process of the heel to the body is more likely the culprit.

However, I could be wrong and the installation of the button could have caused the problem. Either way, I hope it can be repaired as this is a great sounding instrument that came from the factory with a super passive pickup.

As always, proceed at your own risk when making modifications to your uke.

Thanks again Inksplosive AL for pointing this out.

Inksplosive AL
10-12-2015, 04:56 AM
My thought is as it lays flat in the case the button pushes up on the heel. Looking for a picture I came across this thread.

http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?89335-Best-Location-for-Strap-Button-on-Neck

lewclev
10-12-2015, 01:11 PM
I hadn't considered that. Either way, the difference in feel and function between the two positions of the button on the heel (end cap vs side) is not enough to risk any damage to the uke. Any future strap button installations for me will be on the side of the heel.

Thanks spookelele for bringing up the topic and thanks Inksplosive AL for your observation and insight.

lewclev
10-22-2015, 01:27 PM
An update for what it's worth.

I went back to see if the button hit the bottom of the case, thereby pushing up on the heel. As it turns out, when the uke is laid in the case the neck sits on the neck rest in the case before the button or the back of the uke hits the bottom of the case. In other words, neither the back of the uke nor the heel would not hit the bottom of the case even if there were no button installed.

So, I don' t think the installation of the button caused the separation of the heel from the body. It could be that the neck resting on the case support before the back rested on the bottom of the case caused pressure that led to the separation but, I doubt it. The uke is pretty light. The more I think about it, the more I believe it was a poorly glued joint between the body and the heel.

However, how a button installed in this location would affect the position of the uke in the case would be a consideration prior to installing one.

Probably safer to stick with the more conventional button location on the side of the heel.

Thymej
10-24-2015, 06:55 PM
Does the separation become less if all your strings are loose as if you were going to remove the strings? If the separation becomes less then you may want to get it fix sooner than later.

Maybe an experienced Luthier can respond but if the separation did become less and if it were my Uke I would not tighten the strings again because the strings in tune have tension polling on the neck (normal).

Minor Adjustment
10-24-2015, 07:10 PM
what about if you sell the uke to a person who is left handed??

lewclev
10-25-2015, 05:32 PM
Yes, it becomes less without any tension on the strings. For now, I have released all tension from the strings and will try to have it repaired.

This was my first uke and I would really like to keep it. It has a great sound that has matured over the time I have had it. Also, the pickup is very good.

I live in a small town and finding a good luthier to repair it will be a challenge but will be worth the effort.