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View Full Version : A Lesson Learned while Care & Feeding



OhioBelle
01-14-2017, 01:17 PM
With the midwestern US firmly in the gnarly fingers of Old Man Winter, today was the perfect day to open up all the cases, fill the humidifiers, and give them all a little one-on-one time. They all need to feel the love!

I've got humidifiers, vaporizers, misters, and bowls of water everywhere. So while it's not a perfect 45 RH in the house, I thought it was at least safe to play a few songs on each before returning them to their cases. After spending all day with my wonderful herd, I just had to come on this forum and publicly say that I am overly blessed with riches. What treasures they all are! Each unique and beautiful, each with their own voice.

I'd been thinking lately that the herd had gotten out of control, and perhaps it's time to move some along. But as the day wore on, I was starting to think that wouldn't be possible.

Until I pulled out the Kala. Oh my. Wow. The sound of my dreams. Sustain for days. I had forgotten. If I had to reduce them all down to one, just one, this would be it. If only two, then the Kala and the rosewood and cedar Mainland baritone. If three, add the Cocobolo.

So what was my final lesson during this cozy winter day? Hello, I am OhioBelle and I am an Overtone Junkie.

UkieOkie
01-14-2017, 03:27 PM
Hi Ohiobelle. Keep coming back.

OhioBelle
01-14-2017, 03:57 PM
Hi Ohiobelle. Keep coming back.
Hi Okie, I will! :cheers:

Mivo
01-14-2017, 04:21 PM
I started with a similar ritual on the weekends, though just with the four in my signature, so the ones I didn't play during the week get some exposure and a re-tuning. I always hope that this will also help me refine my preferences more, and give me a clue as to how to downsize to two or three, but usually I just end up making a mental list of what I like about each of them, and then conclude that I appreciate them all. It's definitely easier to get ukuleles than to let them go when you had them for a while.

What's worse, I keep thinking I should have a concert size for C tuning, so I can change my Black Bear soprano to D tuning, too. Really love that tuning for sopranos. Even worse is that I have a pretty good idea what I want, too. :) Either a Flea or a Famous/Kiwaya FC-*, something not as affected by humidity, which limits the choice - well, to those, and the Blackbird Clara. Then again, I don't really feel I need something else, and maybe I don't need a C tuned instrument at all.

kohanmike
01-14-2017, 04:25 PM
My first year playing uke I accumulated 16, then culled them down to 4. Then I started playing bass uke and I'm up to 12 of those in the last 2 years. Then a few weeks ago I started playing uke again and I'm up to 7. To me it's all good, no regrets or guilts.

Choirguy
01-14-2017, 04:38 PM
I have three instruments that I would actually call "good" instruments...the Opio, Pono, and Lanikai UkeSB.

All three have to be cared for and have double humidity in them--Oasis and a Herco. We may have seen the coldest weather we're going to see this winter (it was -13F Friday morning while I was down in Tampa), and both the hard cases and zipper-cases seem to hold the humidity above 40%. The house is at 33% (thank you, Nest Themostat).

The choices of the Pono and Opio as "good" instruments is pretty self-explanatory. The Opio's sound is so full; and the Pono (cedar) is clear and easy to play with the radius fretboard (I wish there was an Opio with a radius fretboard...might have to sell everything and buy that). The odd ukulele out is the UkeSB, which is Spruce. It is nowhere near the quality of the Opio or Pono, and I'm pretty sure the wood is thicker. It doesn't resonate as long as the other two instruments.

What the UkeSB does, other than letting me hook it up easily to my iPad via USB, is overtones. Seriously...that ukulele screams overtones louder and clearer than anything else I have played. So while playing it isn't as nice of an experience as the Opio or Pono...the sounds that are created, while less resonant, are wonderful. I can't explain it.

All that is to say that I find myself to be a lucky guy, too. I could get rid of some of these ukuleles (the Outdoor Ukulele serves a very different purpose) and thankfully don't have to, as I do like pulling out the Black Lanikai, or my "original" Makala.

I have been blessed to find the ukulele, and blessed to be able to own the instruments that I own. Who knows what the future may hold.

Nickie
01-14-2017, 05:04 PM
Belle,what a nice ritual. I have no uke ritual, except for tuning and stretching my fingers before I play.

Croaky Keith
01-15-2017, 12:14 AM
Living in the UK, surrounded by water, we don't need to bother. ;)

willisoften
01-15-2017, 01:10 AM
Living in the UK, surrounded by water, we don't need to bother. ;)

To expand: In Belfast with a radiator in every room we can get humidity down to to 44%, maybe 40% 0n a dry summer day with the heat on at night ...
Met Office "The average annual relative humidity is 86.7% and average monthly relative humidity ranges from 81% in May to 92% in December."

JesterBlod
01-15-2017, 03:10 AM
To expand: In Belfast with a radiator in every room we can get humidity down to to 44%, maybe 40% 0n a dry summer day with the heat on at night ...
Met Office "The average annual relative humidity is 86.7% and average monthly relative humidity ranges from 81% in May to 92% in December."

So lucky to live in the UK, no concerns about solid wood Ukuleles!

I live on a boat so outside - is basically water! Inside I can get it down to 45% with the solid fuel stove kicking, but generally sits around 60-65%.