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the flat tire
10-23-2015, 03:44 PM
Growing up, it usually meant 'it's all good.'
Apparently pono has many meanings, including being a ukulele brand.
So anyways, about 40 minutes from downtown Honolulu, in Wahiawa, is Pono Guitar and Ukulele Co.
I was only sort of thinking about getting a new uke, when I read a CL listing about their factory seconds.
Then I was able to pick up a Yamaha THR5A cheap, so off I went!
In search of electric goodness...
Sorry, no pics, I did have a camera but forgot I had it.
Anyways, their showroom is upstairs and it's dedicated to about half ukulele and half guitars.
The guitars are a deal too, I may be going back!
The factory seconds are all lined up on the wall, here's the photo from the CL add:

84593
photo courtesy of Pono

and it looks exactly like that.
All factory seconds waiting for your perusal.
Seriously, it's like going to the dog place and wanting to take them all home.
A gentleman who turned out to be John Kitakis himself showed me around, helping me with the prices.

Pricing.
Half off.
No really.

84594

$350
with the hard case.
Really.
The only thing I could find 'wrong' were some very small scratches on the head plate. If you look in a certain light.

Two for the price of one.
I don't know of anyplace else where you can get that kind of deal.
Like any factory 2nd, you gotta seriously look for the defect, and sometimes it won't even be noticeable.

The catch?
You gotta go there.
No phone, no mail.
Oh and you are also limited to what's on hand.
I was told that maybe 2 or 3 go upstairs every day, but then 2 or 3 leave every day.
Boy, I could go back and blow a paycheck there!
If you are ever on O'ahu...
It's all Pono.

ukuleleden
10-23-2015, 04:00 PM
That's a great deal, especially if the cause for the Ukulele becoming a 2nd is something minor and easily to live with... The few Pono's I had a chance to play were great and had I been in the market at the time Inplayed them, I would likely have one on my ukulele wall...

So which ones did you buy?

Pueo
10-23-2015, 04:03 PM
John is a great guy. The first time I went there I talked with him a long time about strings, told him I had a bunch of ukuleles including a Pono, and he gave me a bunch of sets of Ko`olau strings for each of my ukuleles. I asked him how much, he said $20, but you have to tell me how you like them!

So I did.

I went back and took my Pono with me, he checked it out (it is an early Koa model they no longer make) and he said, "Hey, this is one of the koa sets we cut here!" and then started passing it around to the guys there. Then he looked at me and said, "Don't ever get rid of it, you got something special."

John and Andrew are two of the best in the business. I need to go back and say Hi again!

the flat tire
10-23-2015, 04:56 PM
That's a great deal, especially if the cause for the Ukulele becoming a 2nd is something minor and easily to live with... The few Pono's I had a chance to play were great and had I been in the market at the time Inplayed them, I would likely have one on my ukulele wall...

So which ones did you buy?

Of the ones I tried, I couldn't see anything wrong right off, but I wasn't really scrutinizing.
I got the acacia electric pictured.

the flat tire
10-23-2015, 05:04 PM
John is a great guy. The first time I went there I talked with him a long time about strings, told him I had a bunch of ukuleles including a Pono, and he gave me a bunch of sets of Ko`olau strings for each of my ukuleles. I asked him how much, he said $20, but you have to tell me how you like them!

So I did.

I went back and took my Pono with me, he checked it out (it is an early Koa model they no longer make) and he said, "Hey, this is one of the koa sets we cut here!" and then started passing it around to the guys there. Then he looked at me and said, "Don't ever get rid of it, you got something special."

John and Andrew are two of the best in the business. I need to go back and say Hi again!

I wish I had more time to spend there, I needed to get back in Honolulu by a certain time.
Probably going back to check out a guitar...

the flat tire
10-23-2015, 09:18 PM
At prices like that, I'm tempted to fly to Hawaii and buy the entire wall. I'd make all my money back in resale, and get a few free stunners into the bargain.

The thought did occur to me...then again that would go against the whole spirit of the thing.
Perhaps Pono needs to mark or relabel these instruments like other manufacturers, so they can be identified in resale.
The prices are ridiculous for a solid wood body instrument!