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dkame
01-15-2018, 04:26 PM
I've searched some earlier postings about side sound ports and watched Beau's YouTube on cutting out the hole. I want to try one in my current build. Couple of questions... 1. Any recommended size for a Tenor? 2. Position recommendations? Centered on the apex of the bout? 3. Binding - Sounds like there are lots of different approaches, some pretty tricky due to the curvature. Any suggestions for just a simple, single color wood or plastic binding?

sequoia
01-15-2018, 05:59 PM
I've never done a side port but does that stop me from chiming in? Ha ha ha! I do think about them a bit though... A suggestion: Use a computer graphics program to make ellipses and print them out. Almost any graphics program will allow you stretch circles into ellipses. Cut them out with scissors and overly on your upper bout until you find a shape that seems to fit. Not too big nor too small. Just right. That will be a start. As far as Beau's Youtube video: Violent wood butchery but does the job. As for your binding, I would use something forgiving like tortoise shell on the first effort before going to something ambitious like ebony(!!!!). I think there are plenty of videos out there to help you figure it out. Send pictures! Good luck!

Allen
01-15-2018, 08:47 PM
I've got pretty good at installing them now. Just did one this afternoon from making the parts, cutting the hole to suit and having it fully installed inside of an hour.

I use solid timber for the binding with a black/maple/black purfling.

As for position, I like them sort of facing the player as in this image.

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For the inside I use to do all kinds of thin veneers to reinforce from the waist right up to the neck block, but found that was way too much work and really unnecessary. So now use a larger version of the binding as the backing material. The first image is the inside of the above sound port. The second image is the one I just did this afternoon.

105989 105990

I cut the two pieces of mine with a laser, but there isn't any reason you couldn't do it by hand. The hole is marked out with a very sharp pencil by tracing around the bent binding piece and then using a dremel with cutting bit and finally a small sanding drum. Sneeking up on the line and lots of trial fitting.

I'd say the trickiest part of the job is installing the purfling to the binding piece prior to bending it. A work board with sticky tape on it (CA glue won't stick to it), push pins or thumb tacs and patience helps a lot. Oh and CA glue is your friend.

Patrick Madsen
01-16-2018, 06:59 AM
Brian Griffin has liners lasered out for his soundports. Here's an explanation in his blog:http://www.griffinukuleles.com/blog/previous/3

I'm not sure if he sells the liners.

Michael Smith
01-16-2018, 09:10 AM
Most of the time I lke soundports. However I made one uke where the sound port made the instrument sound a little thin. It sounded better when the port was taped over., atleast to my ear (which has been blasted by screaming power tools for 40 years) I compensate on the main soundhole in an attempt not to get the hemholtz resonance too high. Not one to one but some.

Briangriffinukuleles
01-16-2018, 08:21 PM
Yes Pat I am happy to sell a few. I have a cousin who recently retired from Boeing and bought himself a cnc machine as a hobby machine. I sent him a large variety of woods and he cut me far more of these nice oval sound port rims than I will ever use- If folks tell me what wood they want I will sell them for $8.00 apiece. My cousin did not do them for me for free. My blog shows how I install them, with a veneer liner patch behind. Easy to do, and I am sold on side sound ports. All my ukes are built with them.

dkame
01-24-2018, 07:49 PM
So the sound port worked out fine, although a bit time consuming. I ended up gluing heat bent sectional strips of very thin wood (0.020" x 0.180") with titebond, then sanded flush when dry. The walnut inner ring was a built up with three layers of strips.

sequoia
01-25-2018, 06:13 PM
Looks very nice and I can appreciate the amount of work that went into it. It ain't easy. It never is.

Beau Hannam Ukuleles
01-26-2018, 07:10 AM
if your going to bind it, cut the hole on the flattest part of the upper bout, just after the waist.

I use a similar template to this to get the shape, according to how deep my sides are (concert, tenor, baritone, guitar etc)
https://www.amazon.com/Home-Mart-Professional-Template-drafting/dp/B074DW2XFT/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1516986508&sr=8-3&keywords=oval+drawing+template

I use a dremel with a tile cutter bit (link below) and this works well for me.
https://www.amazon.com/Dremel-562-Tile-Cutting-Bit/dp/B00004UDIC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1516986179&sr=8-1&keywords=dremel+tile+cutter+bit

Then i clean it up with the dremel tiny drum sander thingy
https://www.amazon.com/Dremel-ORSNO23390-407-Drum-Sander/dp/B001D1GY28/ref=sr_1_4?s=hi&ie=UTF8&qid=1516986219&sr=1-4&keywords=dremel+drum+sander

Others route it out which looks like a great idea but i can do it so quick i've never bothered to make a jig like "those fancy guys" :)
Regardless, the end result is exactly the same as routing. No particular way is better (routing would be faster though if you made alot of instruments) . Depending on how many you plan on doing, and to save you buying these extra bits, and/or making a router jig, id just drill it out and clean it up with a sanding stick.

sequoia
01-26-2018, 07:42 PM
Thanks Beau for your posts on cutting a sound port. I'm gonna get around to it someday. Maybe in my future... Maybe not... I think you once posted a video of cutting out the sound port with a tile cutter which I think is a classic of ukulele horror shows. The kind of image that makes people wake up screaming in the night. You got down with it and the chips were flying. It all works out fine after you show us how to trim the hole. I have never looked at a tile cutting bit the same again.

Beau Hannam Ukuleles
01-27-2018, 06:28 AM
Thanks Beau for your posts on cutting a sound port. I'm gonna get around to it someday. Maybe in my future... Maybe not... I think you once posted a video of cutting out the sound port with a tile cutter which I think is a classic of ukulele horror shows. The kind of image that makes people wake up screaming in the night. You got down with it and the chips were flying. It all works out fine after you show us how to trim the hole. I have never looked at a tile cutting bit the same again.

haha-i did a funny video of my stabbing the venner while the music from Psycho was playing.
The tile cutter method is totally fine- its just like cutting out an inlay or something, not hard at all- and in the video i was doing it with one hand!