PDA

View Full Version : Mystery Words on Old Ukulele...Another Picture



Citabria
04-27-2018, 12:06 PM
Here's another picture! Thanks to all:)

Bill Sheehan
04-27-2018, 12:40 PM
Darn, that's really a mystery, sorry I don't even have a guess!

Oh, also Citabria, on those Martin M-600 soprano strings, just a word of caution-- they recently changed their packaging on these strings, so that instead of their older blue-and-white color theme, they now have a nice light green background with some pink, orange, and yellow flowers across the front. I recently got a few sets of these newly packaged strings, and I discovered (as I think others here have too) that the four separate envelopes that you find when you open up the main packaging have MIS-LABELED the strings contained therein, so that it's VERY confusing to determine which string goes where! Honestly, I'm disappointed that the folks at Martin would let this happen. The good news, however, is that the strings ARE correctly designated on the reverse side of the main package, so if you follow THAT, you should be okay! But, to clarify, as you hold the uke out in front of you with the strings facing you, the left-most string is considered the fourth, or G; the next from the left is the third, or C; the next is the second, or E; and the far-right string is the first, or A. Match the string "gauges" shown on the back of the main package with those indicated on the separate envelopes. Hoping this helps!

mm stan
04-27-2018, 04:40 PM
Looks to be japanese. .

Citabria
04-27-2018, 05:08 PM
Thanks so much, Bill! I just picked the strings up and luckily for me the turn-over for uke strings in our small town of 10,000 isn't very fast -- so my strings are in the blue and white package. I was going to change them tonight but then I brushed a tissue inside the body and discovered it has about 70 years of dirt there! SO, any suggestions how to clean the inside? I already did the outside with fret cleaner and a body cleaner.

Citabria
04-27-2018, 05:14 PM
Wow! I never thought of that! I have squinted and magnified and lighted...and tried to think who might stamp this...I just couldn't recognize the letters...maybe this explains it.

Because the stamping is a bit diagonal, I figure it must have been a hand stamp of some sort. I had also thought the letters might be "old-fashioned" cursive. I know my great-grandmother's writing has some extra curlicues on the capital letters. The first capital looks like it might be an initial since it is so short and followed by another capital and by a longer word. I thought it might be a hotel or old-time music store but I couldn't find any names that might be similar in length. I guess the ukulele is from around 1935 and from Honolulu (best guess). I love to research stuff but I sure hit a dead end here. I like the idea of Japanese; thanks again:)

mds725
04-27-2018, 06:12 PM
The photo appears to be blurry.

Bill Sheehan
04-27-2018, 06:24 PM
I once suctioned a fair quantity of cat hair out of the inside of a pre-owned uke, just using the "narrow" attachment on a vacuum cleaner; you might try that!

Also, I must agree with mds725 just above, about the photo quality; it's better than the first offering, but is there any chance you could try once more, and try to avoid any kind of "glare" on the wood finish near the mystery lettering?

Stagehand
04-28-2018, 02:15 AM
any suggestions how to clean the inside?

I recently read (not sure if it was here), put a1/4 cup of dry rice in the soundhole.Tape the hole closed with blue painters tape and then shake. My only reservation would be if there is a paper label. If the label is loose or lifting,it might be damaged.

stevepetergal
04-28-2018, 04:00 AM
Looks to be japanese. .

Looks like Greek to me. It says the following:

If you can read this, BACK OFF!
Made in China

(roughly translated)

Citabria
04-28-2018, 04:54 AM
Hi MDS,
The letters (assuming that's what they are!) are very blurry. I think my only chance is if someone has seen a stamp like this before that was more legible or if someone recognizes the length of the "words" in historical context and can figure it out. I'll keep trying with the photos but they actually reflect what is visible (and I use that word loosely:). Thanks very much!

Citabria
04-28-2018, 05:04 AM
Ha! And I DEFINITELY don't speak Greek as evidenced by the fact that I once ordered a piece of fish at a restaurant in Piraeus, thinking it was $5 equivalent..and the bill came to $200!

Citabria
04-28-2018, 05:06 AM
I recently read (not sure if it was here), put a1/4 cup of dry rice in the soundhole.Tape the hole closed with blue painters tape and then shake. My only reservation would be if there is a paper lable. If the lable is loose or lifting,it might be damaged.

Thanks for the suggestion! I'm giving it a try since no label exists inside the uke:)

Citabria
04-28-2018, 05:07 AM
I once suctioned a fair quantity of cat hair out of the inside of a pre-owned uke, just using the "narrow" attachment on a vacuum cleaner; you might try that!

Also, I must agree with mds725 just above, about the photo quality; it's better than the first offering, but is there any chance you could try once more, and try to avoid any kind of "glare" on the wood finish near the mystery lettering?

Thanks, Bill. I'm going to try vacuum plus rice...and I'll keep trying with photos:)

Stagehand
04-28-2018, 06:58 AM
I recently read (not sure if it was here), put a1/4 cup of dry rice in the soundhole.Tape the hole closed with blue painters tape and then shake. My only reservation would be if there is a paper label. If the label is loose or lifting,it might be damaged.

Found the post http://http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?132717-Vintage-Uke-Smells-bad&highlight=smell

ScooterD35 posted this in the linked thread
http://www.frets.com/FretsPages/Luthier/Quickies/RiceClean/riceclean.html

mds725
04-28-2018, 10:29 AM
Hi MDS,
The letters (assuming that's what they are!) are very blurry. I think my only chance is if someone has seen a stamp like this before that was more legible or if someone recognizes the length of the "words" in historical context and can figure it out. I'll keep trying with the photos but they actually reflect what is visible (and I use that word loosely:). Thanks very much!

I know how hard it is to take a photo like the one you are trying to take, and I considered the possibility that the letters themselves were blurry. I mentioned blurriness because the grain around the words looks blurry to me in the photo you posted, and unless the actual grain itself is blurry, the camera was not focused when you took the shot. I recommend getting your camera to focus on an area of wood grain, because it may be unable to focus on the blurry lettering.

Citabria
04-29-2018, 09:07 AM
Thanks MDS...I tried to have my iphone focus on the wood and then tried lighting...It almost seems like the INSIDE of the lettering was dissolved, leaving a blurred frame of the writing. (Maybe the inside of lettering was originally a different color or composition??)