PDA

View Full Version : Advice: K Uke that has had gloss added



shanmoon
06-06-2018, 03:38 AM
Looking for a little advice. I'm considering purchasing a used Kanile'a Tenor (a K1 Natural). However, it has had gloss added to it to mimic the premium gloss finishes available on more expensive models. The gloss was added by a luthier at a guitar store.

My only concern is how this might have effected the uke. This would be an online purchase so I don't have the opportunity to play it in person to see how this might have changed the acoustics of it.

Thoughts from the experienced uke crowd here?

UkerDanno
06-06-2018, 04:00 AM
Personally, I would steer clear unless it's a really, really a good deal. Luthier doesn't necessarily mean wood finish expert. A coat of gloss might deaden the sound, at least ask for detailed photos.

Ziret
06-06-2018, 04:26 AM
I think "luthier at a guitar store" nearly always means "guitar technician." If there's someone there making guitars, I'd be amazed.

bacchettadavid
06-06-2018, 04:58 AM
Was the original finish hand-rubbed to gloss or was a new finish applied? If a new finish was applied, what type of finish is it (e.g. lacquer, nitrocellulose, french polish, LPU, etc.), and was the natural finish removed first?

I'd be cautious. General consensus is that ukuleles are susceptible to being muted when the combined thickness of the soundboard and finish is too great.

RichM
06-06-2018, 05:47 AM
Was the original finish hand-rubbed to gloss or was a new finish applied? If a new finish was applied, what type of finish is it (e.g. lacquer, nitrocellulose, french polish, LPU, etc.), and was the natural finish removed first?


Yep, this. Properly stripping and refinishing a uke is a time consuming process and hard to do well. Even for a great uke like this, it would be unusual. If someone simply applied new coats over the existing finish, I would be very wary. However, if they rubbed out a satin finish to a semi-gloss, I would be fine with that. While it's not a true gloss finish, it may look fine (most satin finishes show some glossing over time where there is contact), and wouldn't affect the tone at all.

70sSanO
06-06-2018, 06:49 AM
I agree with the hand rubbed over additional clear coats. I've hand rubbed out the tops of a couple ukuleles and they are very glossy. But they lack the depth (plasticity) of a true gloss finish. Think back of a neck gloss.

As others have said, adding a coat of gloss, or any additional coat could bring problems. While this is a totally unrelated example, it does show the potential perils of applying a top coat. There was a guitar manufacturer, Tacoma, that made very nice mid-range guitars. However they had problems with applying the top clear gloss coat. Their guitars are notorious for the gloss finish peeling. They went out of business, even after Fender bought them, as their reputation was ruined. I have a gloss and satin. Satin is fine, but gloss looks horrible.

John

Rakelele
06-06-2018, 09:41 PM
I'd leave it alone. Kanilea's own gloss finish is very professional and well worth the extra money.

Jerryc41
06-07-2018, 01:18 AM
Looking for a little advice. I'm considering purchasing a used Kanile'a Tenor (a K1 Natural). However, it has had gloss added to it to mimic the premium gloss finishes available on more expensive models. The gloss was added by a luthier at a guitar store.

My only concern is how this might have effected the uke. This would be an online purchase so I don't have the opportunity to play it in person to see how this might have changed the acoustics of it.

Thoughts from the experienced uke crowd here?

That was not a smart move by the owner. Top quality builders put a lot of research and effort into their finishes. Regardless who made it glossy, there are too many unanswered questions.

In reality, I bet if you listened to this uke and a standard Kanile'a, you wouldn't notice a difference. I can say that because I'm not the one handing out the big bucks. : )

If you decide to buy it, make sure you can return it without a stocking charge. Since someone went to the expense of having it refinished, I doubt the price would be lower than for the standard Kanile'a.

SandChannel
06-07-2018, 06:22 AM
I'd take a hard pass on this one. Seems a bit too much of a risk.

DownUpDave
06-07-2018, 06:31 AM
I'd take a hard pass on this one. Seems a bit too much of a risk.

Agree with all that have said NO!!!

The sweet taste of a cheap price is soured quickly once poor quality becomes evident.

There is more worry about the durability of the new finish, will it adhere long term. A friend of mine had a Martin 2K "refinished". The new finish started flaking off after just a few weeks.

Jerryc41
06-07-2018, 08:57 AM
Would you mind telling us the price so we can compare it to other, similar Kanile'as?

mmfitzsimons
06-07-2018, 12:42 PM
No, don't do it. That's just wacky.

By the way, some of the most expensive Kanileas don't have a gloss finish. It's a preference thing rather than a price thing. All their finishes are rock-solid UV coats.

ukeinfused
06-07-2018, 04:05 PM
I loved the Natural finish of a KSTP tenor I once owned, still a UV finish so I can't even imagine putting a finish on top of it.
But perhaps this was one of the early versions with an oil (almost non-existent) finish?