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ukuleleden
12-06-2015, 03:24 PM
I didn't have a Tenor on my radar, but the uncontrollable desire of ukulele upgrading has taken hold yet again. The Kala KA-ASLAC that recently replaced my Córdoba 25CK has now itself been replaced with a new Martin T1K. My local Martin dealer had 3 new-in-the-box Martin T1K's to select from. I can't say I was excited about any of their factory setups out of their boxes. All 3 had actions set higher than I normally prefer, but still were all quite nice sounding and very playable out of their boxes aside from a few fret ends being a bit sharp and could use some dressing.

So ultimately, all things being practically equal it came down to appearances. Therefore, I chose the one that had the nicest looking Koa which even had a bit of figuring in it that the others didn't have, and seemingly not too often seen on the 1 series Martin Ukes.

Now that I have it home, I am going to let the wood acclimate in the proper humidity levels and see where everything settles since all three T1k's the dealer had were sitting in their sealed factory boxes in the back storage room, which of course was not likely getting the proper humidity.

Once the T1K is exposed to the proper humidity level over the next few days, since this dealer offers a free setup with each new instrument purchase in the first year of ownership I'll bring it back to them to have the saddle shaved and the frets dressed as needed sometime next week.

UkieOkie
12-06-2015, 04:21 PM
Sounds great. Do you have any pics?

M3Ukulele
12-06-2015, 07:42 PM
Congratulations....... Pics and sound samples or comments on how the new uke settle in would be helpful. Glad you had some choices and of course a free set up when you want it. I hear they can be pretty nice ukuleles. Haven't sited one in my local market though I have asked if dealer would consider bringing one in on spec.

ukuleleden
12-07-2015, 12:19 AM
Sounds great. Do you have any pics?

I will get both done soon and will post them up.

ukuleleden
12-07-2015, 12:40 AM
Congratulations....... Pics and sound samples or comments on how the new uke settle in would be helpful. Glad you had some choices and of course a free set up when you want it. I hear they can be pretty nice ukuleles. Haven't sited one in my local market though I have asked if dealer would consider bringing one in on spec.

I was actually surprised they had any Martin's in stock. They had these 3 and 1 additional T1K, plus an S1 that had a small chip out of the top edge out on display. All the actions were consistently higher on the T1K's. Unlike some other dealers, this dealer doesn't touch the factory set-up unless the customer purchases the uke and asks for a set-up adjustment. I suppose I have been spoiled when buying from places like HMS, Uke Republic and MIM's who all check and adjust the Ukes they sell before delivering to their customers.

But again, I was surprised this dealer had any in stock at all as their guitar dept manager commented to me several weeks ago that they aren't ordering new Ukes any more for store stock, and are just selling what is on display or trickles in from past orders. Apparently though they wil still do pre-paid special orders with manufacturers they do carry, which means they will be from those from companies who makes guitars and other instruments they already carry (Martin, Córdoba, etc...), but not ukulele-only companies. He said their uke sales don't justify ordering inventory which was surprising to hear. This is the same dealer I pre-paid for my C1K order. I was glad they had these though so I could trade out of the Kala Lacewood which I ended up not liking as much.

DownUpDave
12-07-2015, 01:55 AM
I feel sorry for your new Martin. When your Mya Moe arrives poor Mr. Martin will feel unloved and neglected. When dealing with this situation I throw some sheet music in the case. Gives them something to read and helps the bouts of boredom from being in their cases for so long.

All very tongue and cheek. Enjoy your new Martin, see you have all sizes now, congrats.

actadh
12-07-2015, 03:23 AM
What a nice new addition to your ukulele collection. My OXK was fine out of the box, but I wondered about the Martin factory set up for the wood versions, so you answered some of my questions.

ukuleleden
12-07-2015, 04:34 AM
Not the best pics to highlight the bit of cross figuring in the grain, but shows the T1K nonetheless...

I will check the Oasis soundhole humidifier tomorrow to see just how thirsty, if any the wood was. The room humidity is proper so that will help it along too if it needs it.


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UkerDanno
12-07-2015, 04:39 AM
Enjoy! I had a C1K and it sounded every bit as good as any K-brand I've heard. I only replaced it because I wanted a Hawaiian made, more premium figured koa. The factory setup was perfectly fine for me.

PS, you got a great looking one!

ukuleleden
12-07-2015, 07:01 AM
Enjoy! I had a C1K and it sounded every bit as good as any K-brand I've heard. I only replaced it because I wanted a Hawaiian made, more premium figured koa. The factory setup was perfectly fine for me.

PS, you got a great looking one!


Thanks Danno!

I agree with you, I too think Martin competes very well with these 1 series to comparatively priced instruments of Solid Hawaiian Koa. The action on this is easily remedied, but I will take advantage the dealer's free set-up and let them shave the saddle down to lower the action some.

johnson430
12-07-2015, 09:25 AM
Not the best pics to highlight the bit of cross figuring in the grain, but shows the T1K nonetheless...


This is a nice looking uke. I love that you got to pick from 3.
Also, I can't wait to hear how it sounds.
Congrats!

ukuleleden
12-07-2015, 12:17 PM
This is a nice looking uke. I love that you got to pick from 3.
Also, I can't wait to hear how it sounds.
Congrats!

Yes, I'll get a sound file recorded. I actually played it some today when I was taking the pics and forgot to get my iPad to record it.

As Peter Forrest (PeteyHoudini) commented in his YouTube review, with higher action it's a bit more difficult to fret bar chords as compared to my other Ukes, but should be remedied once the action is lowered.

Nickie
12-07-2015, 12:51 PM
Congratulations on the new Martin. I tried out a Martin soprano the other day, it was very nice, action was maybe a tad high for me, but it really sang its heart out. Would have loved to have given it a new home, but didn't have $1200. Besides I have a Nuke on order.

PeteyHoudini
12-07-2015, 01:07 PM
As Peter Forrest (PeteyHoudini) commented in his YouTube review, with higher action it's a bit more difficult to fret bar chords as compared to my other Ukes, but should be remedied once the action is lowered.

Congrats on the new T1K! Wow, your T1K has really nice looking wood! Maravilloso!

Indeed, I find the action just a bit too high for my tastes. I should have said, "Dissatisfaction with the action!" hehe

Funny you mentioned a chip on the S1. I had one in the same spot on the top edge. Never noticed it until I brought it home from the music store. I eventually gave away the S1 to a friend so it wouldn't sit in a case with some sheet music (so it would not get lonely). hehe

Pete

ukuleleden
12-07-2015, 03:25 PM
Hi Pete!

Thanks, yes it's a real looker! I'll drop off the Martin at the dealer for them to adjust the action and recheck the setup ensuring the current spot-on intonation remains while making it more enjoyable to play...

Have you considered having your T1K action lowered too? If I recall correctly, you may have mentioned you favored your 2 Tenor, or at least anticipated that to be so...?

That S1 with the chip might be a great candidate for some haggling with the dealer over price. A little mahogany wood filler might solve that chip on the cheap! I bet your friend who received your S1 didn't mind the chip all that much, he has a good friend obviously!

M3Ukulele
12-07-2015, 04:36 PM
Very nice wood selection. It's sad to hear that dealer is reducing ukulele stock to special order. I guess that is why HMS, MIMS, Uke Republic are alive and well. i must say that big guitar stores in general are poor marketers of the ukulele. No respect IMHO. I just don't think they take it serious. Can't wait for sound samples. Enjoy!

ukuleleden
12-07-2015, 05:03 PM
This local dealer used to be a lot better in several regards, including pricing, in-store stock and a desire to get the new or hard to acquire models. But they have moved in a direction away from that, unfortunately. They are, however, very convenient in terms of upgrading as they have a decent trade-in program. And as I found out recently, shipping a ukulele across the country can get prohibitively expensive, and the ease of trading eliminates those private selling hurdles. That all said, with the exception of builder-direct sales, I am more apt to buy from HMS, UkeRepublic and MIM's due to positive past experiences with each. I will have some time tomorrow to record that sound clip.

Ukulele Eddie
12-07-2015, 06:44 PM
Two new ukes in a week, nice!

ukuleleden
12-08-2015, 05:12 PM
Two new ukes in a week, nice!

Yes, as I mentioned a while back, having sold both my corvettes over the summer, I got the always highly recommended spousal approval to have some ukulele endeavors..:)

By the way I couldn't log on for much of the day today to the forum. I kept getting a 503 web page error. Anyone else experience this?

UkieOkie
12-09-2015, 08:42 AM
well, I finally got my interwebs to load the sound sample. It sounds pretty good. I would like to hear one of those in person. Thanks for posting.

ukuleleden
12-09-2015, 10:58 AM
well, I finally got my interwebs to load the sound sample. It sounds pretty good. I would like to hear one of those in person. Thanks for posting.

The iPad mic isn't all that good, the T1k sounds better in person than through all the hardware/software. Being Solid Koa, I would expect like most solid woods, that in time it will upon up its voice even more.

PeteyHoudini
12-10-2015, 12:18 PM
Hi Pete!

Have you considered having your T1K action lowered too? If I recall correctly, you may have mentioned you favored your 2 Tenor, or at least anticipated that to be so...?

That S1 with the chip might be a great candidate for some haggling with the dealer over price. A little mahogany wood filler might solve that chip on the cheap! I bet your friend who received your S1 didn't mind the chip all that much, he has a good friend obviously!

I only play the 2k tenor now. The T1K just sits there. Kind of sad actually. So, I don't need to adjust the action.

The S1 suffered in a way the same fate as my T1K. Once I got the higher end model in the line, I didn't play the other one anymore. So, once I got a style 2 soprano, I didn't need the S1 anymore and I thought I would give it away to a friend of mine who really appreciated it! I've given away a lot of my ukes but I don't just give a Martin anyway to anyone. I don't want to give my T1K though. I knew that was a great uke when I first stumbled across it by accident in a music store in Montreal.

Pete

strumsilly
12-10-2015, 12:57 PM
I just played a Martin T1K in a store the other day and was impressed. They had a nice selection of ukes. The best one in the store was a Kamaka concert, but was just a bit more $. :o

ukuleleden
12-10-2015, 01:39 PM
I just played a Martin T1K in a store the other day and was impressed. They had a nice selection of ukes. The best one in the store was a Kamaka concert, but was just a bit more $. :o

Thats great that they had these there for you to try out, especially the Kamaka Concert which usually is a harder find.

ukuleleden
12-17-2015, 01:47 PM
Received my T1K back from the local shop this evening after bringing it in for their complimentary set-up. The playbility is now like like that proverbial "plays like butter" thanks to the lowered action and fret dressing. I could barely get myself to put it down long enough just to add this update. It now plays like a completely different instrument and underscores why a proper set-up is a must-do for old and new Ukes alike.