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View Full Version : Help:Strap buttons on a soprano-real world experience.



Astein2006
09-14-2018, 05:13 AM
Ok so i am considering getting strap buttons on my soon to be ordered Outdoor soprano ukulele. Sometimes I just feel lazy and would rather not hold have to hold my ukulele. Who here has buttons on their sopranos? Do you have one or two buttons? Also what kind of strap do you use?
I have a Kamaka soprano so I have no experience with strap buttons.
Any advice and real world experience is appreciated!

DanY
09-14-2018, 05:28 AM
I play 90% without straps, but Iíve got double strap buttons installed on my Martin, Kamaka, and Kanileía sopranos. Itís great to have when you need them and theyíre not in the way or cause any issues when you play without a strap. I donít like tying around the headstock cause it gets in the way and I donít like how it looks.

When Iím on the computer or lazy to carry, so sometimes I just wear the soprano like an accessory. When I need some inspiration or want to practice a lick, itís right in front of me dangling.

RafterGirl
09-14-2018, 05:38 AM
I have two strap buttons on all my ukuleles, regardless of size. That is my personal preference. One on the tail block and one on the heel of the neck. I don't like tying a strap to the headstock or nut area. Two of my ukuleles have MiSi pick-ups, so that takes the place of the strap button on the tail block. I use a Strap Keeper to keep the strap from coming off the pick-up. Works very well. I do have one ukulele that I wasn't able to add a strap button to the heel of the neck because of the way it was made. The maker of the ukulele, Gary Gill did not recommend drilling into the neck. I searched around and found a gizmo called a Uke Loop that allowed me to attach a strap in the neck area. It's not the most aesthetically pleasing method, but it works.

This is my personal preference. I don't always use the strap when I'm at home, in a chair, just messing around. But then I play with a group, or standing, I always use the strap. My favorite straps are Sherrins Threads, the one inch version, ordered from Amazon.

Astein2006
09-14-2018, 06:12 AM
I play 90% without straps, but I’ve got double strap buttons installed on my Martin, Kamaka, and Kanile’a sopranos. It’s great to have when you need them and they’re not in the way or cause any issues when you play without a strap. I don’t like tying around the headstock cause it gets in the way and I don’t like how it looks.

When I’m on the computer or lazy to carry, so sometimes I just wear the soprano like an accessory. When I need some inspiration or want to practice a lick, it’s right in front of me dangling.
Thank you for your input and advice. This is the way I feel I just wanted some real experience.

Astein2006
09-14-2018, 06:15 AM
I have two strap buttons on all my ukuleles, regardless of size. That is my personal preference. One on the tail block and one on the heel of the neck. I don't like tying a strap to the headstock or nut area. Two of my ukuleles have MiSi pick-ups, so that takes the place of the strap button on the tail block. I use a Strap Keeper to keep the strap from coming off the pick-up. Works very well. I do have one ukulele that I wasn't able to add a strap button to the heel of the neck because of the way it was made. The maker of the ukulele, Gary Gill did not recommend drilling into the neck. I searched around and found a gizmo called a Uke Loop that allowed me to attach a strap in the neck area. It's not the most aesthetically pleasing method, but it works.

This is my personal preference. I don't always use the strap when I'm at home, in a chair, just messing around. But then I play with a group, or standing, I always use the strap. My favorite straps are Sherrins Threads, the one inch version, ordered from Amazon.

This is the way Ive been feeling. I don't really like the look of the tie off at the headstock. I was just concerned with neck dive if I let go of the ukulele while its strapped up. Does that happen to you if you let go of the neck or is it pretty balanced? Thank you for the strap recommendation. I will definitely check them out.

Jim Yates
09-14-2018, 06:49 AM
All of my ukes that I play standing have straps. My reso has a heel button, but the rest are tied at the headstock.
I find that I can strum first position chords without a strap, but for any closed chords or melody picking, I want a strap. I fasten the strap above the 1st and 4th tuning pegs so it won't interfere with 1st position chords. I have a few different straps made from old belts or woven leather boot laces. I wear the strap over my right shoulder rather than putting it over my head.
111962

I think this guy went a bit overboard.
111963

I'd love to find some more of these lovely South American woven belts.
111964

Jerryc41
09-14-2018, 07:05 AM
I have strap buttons on some concerts and tenors, but none on sopranos unless the came that way. Several people I know use straps on sopranos. I have two buttons, with the second one on the base of the neck. They're cheap and easy to install.

Jerryc41
09-14-2018, 07:07 AM
My favorite straps are Sherrins Threads, the one inch version, ordered from Amazon.

Sarah Maisel has a nice selection of straps.

Jerryc41
09-14-2018, 07:08 AM
I was just concerned with neck dive if I let go of the ukulele while its strapped up.

I've never experienced neck dive.

RafterGirl
09-14-2018, 07:08 AM
This is the way Ive been feeling. I don't really like the look of the tie off at the headstock. I was just concerned with neck dive if I let go of the ukulele while its strapped up. Does that happen to you if you let go of the neck or is it pretty balanced? Thank you for the strap recommendation. I will definitely check them out.
Not so much neck dive, as just more comfort moving about on the fretboard. For me, the balance feels right with two strap buttons. I'm often arranging music on a music stand (both seated & standing), or writing stuff on the sheet music. With a strap, I don't have to worry about dropping my ukulele, or having to put it down.

Jerryc41
09-14-2018, 07:11 AM
My favorite straps are Sherrins Threads...

This one is beautiful.

https://smile.amazon.com/Sherrins-Threads-Hawaiian-Print-Ukulele/dp/B01MR8PJQJ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1536944943&sr=8-1&keywords=Sherrins+Threads

ripock
09-14-2018, 07:17 AM
Ok so i am considering getting strap buttons on my soon to be ordered Outdoor soprano ukulele. Sometimes I just feel lazy and would rather not hold have to hold my ukulele. Who here has buttons on their sopranos? Do you have one or two buttons? Also what kind of strap do you use?
I have a Kamaka soprano so I have no experience with strap buttons.
Any advice and real world experience is appreciated!

I always use a strap. It lends itself to consistency, to better hand ergonomics, to more resonance because of less muffling. Also, I only have two hands. If I'm lighting a cigar with my hands, where do I put my ukulele? Between my knees? Also, if I take a break and take my pipe from my mouth and grab a beer...again, where do I put my ukulele?

I always use two buttons, on the heel and on the tail. My strap of choice are hand-crafted Medina straps. These straps are beautiful, but waaaaay over the top for a ukulele. They are so solid and substantial. I could use them to cherry-pick engines from refurbished cars. Or, if I had been invited, I could have prevented the Infinity Wars by beating Thanos to death with my Medina strap...festooned of course with stylized rosettes.

Down Up Dick
09-14-2018, 07:33 AM
I like Sherrinís Threads too. I have a coupla inch and a half ones, but Iíve never seen inch ones. I think Iíd like those. :old:

Astein2006
09-14-2018, 10:17 AM
I always use a strap. It lends itself to consistency, to better hand ergonomics, to more resonance because of less muffling. Also, I only have two hands. If I'm lighting a cigar with my hands, where do I put my ukulele? Between my knees? Also, if I take a break and take my pipe from my mouth and grab a beer...again, where do I put my ukulele?

I always use two buttons, on the heel and on the tail. My strap of choice are hand-crafted Medina straps. These straps are beautiful, but waaaaay over the top for a ukulele. They are so solid and substantial. I could use them to cherry-pick engines from refurbished cars. Or, if I had been invited, I could have prevented the Infinity Wars by beating Thanos to death with my Medina strap...festooned of course with stylized rosettes.
Ha!! Great advice. Especially the cigar and beer reference. Extremely important. I'm thinking a Sherrin's Threads strap with the birds of paradise on there. Very festive.

DownUpDave
09-14-2018, 11:45 AM
Ha!! Great advice. Especially the cigar and beer reference. Extremely important. I'm thinking a Sherrin's Threads strap with the birds of paradise on there. Very festive.

I have straps on all my ukes, from sopranos all the way up to baritones. I only do the two button method after trying everytning else. There is a reason most guitar players do it this way, it works best. I own many of Sherrins Threads straps, super high quality with a great selection of colors and patterns.

RafterGirl
09-14-2018, 01:26 PM
This one is beautiful.

https://smile.amazon.com/Sherrins-Threads-Hawaiian-Print-Ukulele/dp/B01MR8PJQJ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1536944943&sr=8-1&keywords=Sherrins+Threads

I have the one inch version of that one on my Loprinzi. I have the Peacock strap on my KoAloha, a blue Honu on my Islander, and the tan Kokopelli on my Gary Gill.


I like Sherrin’s Threads too. I have a coupla inch and a half ones, but I’ve never seen inch ones. I think I’d like those. :old:

Amazon carries the one inch as well as the 1.5 inch versions. There are a few more patterns available in the i.5 inch version that they don't carry in the one inch. Uke Republic also carries them.

Astein2006
09-14-2018, 02:37 PM
I keep reading about the neck dive phobia. What is worse, you drop the neck drops you are playing and the uke is still hanging on your shoulders on the strap, or the the sickening noise a uke makes when it bounces on concrete or a hard wood floor because you did not fit a strap? If you have problems which cause you to drop the neck, you probably need a strap more to stop the uke hitting the floor than you need it for the music.
We are talking about a $200 plastic uke, not a Kamaka or Kanilea. If you want to be real world, you are going to take your plastic uke on some adventures outside your house, without a heavy case, and you are going to need a strap to carry it while you are hiking or walking or riding your bicycle etc.. Head drop and ease of playing are only half the issues you need to think about for a strap on an OU. When you go out to a venue for a jam or festival or fun don't really need to put the uke in a case while you have lunch or a coffee, you can keep it safe and secure on your shoulders, hands free without lugging a case. Then when you finally sit down to drink the coffee, you have your uke right there ready to play a tune in between mouthfuls of coffee and chocolate cake (which you can also eat with an OU because you can hose it off when you get home). Fitting a strap to your OU is going to increase the availability for playing and may change your entire ukulele life.
Wise and true words. My wife and I just bought a travel trailer recently and we have plenty of trips planned with the kids. So this is going to see lots of campfires, hikes, trips to the beach etc. You make very valid points which is the reason I chose an OU ukulele. Hence the reason I wanted a strap for it. So I can be active and still play if I want. My 4 year old daughter has recently taken to my Kamaka soprano when I take it out to play. I start to cringe when she gets near a table corner or hardwood floor. So hence another reason for the OU, plus a Dolphin for her.

Astein2006
09-14-2018, 02:37 PM
I have the one inch version of that one on my Loprinzi. I have the Peacock strap on my KoAloha, a blue Honu on my Islander, and the tan Kokopelli on my Gary Gill.



Amazon carries the one inch as well as the 1.5 inch versions. There are a few more patterns available in the i.5 inch version that they don't carry in the one inch. Uke Republic also carries them.


Love the tan Kokopelli. Was thinking that one for the OU bottle green soprano.

Astein2006
09-14-2018, 02:38 PM
I have straps on all my ukes, from sopranos all the way up to baritones. I only do the two button method after trying everytning else. There is a reason most guitar players do it this way, it works best. I own many of Sherrins Threads straps, super high quality with a great selection of colors and patterns.


Thanks for the real world advice on the two button method. I have been leaning heavily toward that conclusion. So it's nice to have someone who's tried many methods.

kohanmike
09-14-2018, 07:40 PM
I played guitar for almost 50 years and was very used to having 2 strap buttons. My first uke was a soprano and it had 2 strap buttons, neck heel and tail. Now I have tenors and bass ukes, all with 2 strap buttons, I also don't like tying on the headstock. I use 1" to 1 1/2" all leather straps with a rough inside to help with neck dive, which has only happened with my basses, never a uke.

8 tenor cutaway ukes, 5 acoustic bass ukes, 9 solid body bass ukes, 7 mini electric bass guitars

• Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children's hospital music therapy programs. www.theukc.org
• Member The CC Strummers www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos

spongeuke
09-15-2018, 07:16 AM
The strap I got for Christmas had leather ends, but the holes even with an expansion slot would not fit over the pick up on the tail block, I had to modify it, then it came off once. I purchased a strap keeper but it was too thick to fit the strap and keeper over the pickup button. I made may own with a much thinner plastic washer I constructed. I like the looks of the strap but I'm don't like the modification I had to do to make it work. Was the strap to be used for some other instrument, or the pickup not designed for a leather strap?

dgame
09-15-2018, 07:47 AM
Two strap buttons on my Outdoor Soprano and a 3/4 inch wide shoelace is the strap. Works very well.

Adjust the strap so that it is comfortabe to play the ukulele when sitting. When standing it will be in the same comfortable position.

Rllink
09-15-2018, 08:05 AM
I have a MiSi in my Mainland and it has a strap button integrated into it, as do most pickups. I use a strap once in a while on that ukulele, especially if I am going to play it standing up. I just tie the other end to the headstock. I've never given it a thought. I'm just not that particular that I would do otherwise. I guess thinking about it right now though, that I use a strap so little that it isn't really worth it to drill hole in my ukulele and stick another protrusion on it. Neck dive, I have no valid opinion about that as I have no experience with neck dive. But my logic tells me that it is a ukulele, it weighs nothing, how is it going to dive? But then logic sometimes doesn't work for me, so maybe there is something to neck dive that I don't know. If one is worried about it, then they need to take that into consideration I guess. I use a red Ernie Ball nylon guitar strap that one of my guitar playing friends gave me years ago. It isn't anything special. It works well though and I really like it. I don't have a strap button on my soprano, but someday I'm going to put a MiSi in it, and then I will. Until then I'll just keep struggling along.

Ukecaster
09-15-2018, 08:11 AM
The strap I got for Christmas had leather ends, but the holes even with an expansion slot would not fit over the pick up on the tail block, I had to modify it, then it came off once. I purchased a strap keeper but it was too thick to fit the strap and keeper over the pickup button. I made may own with a much thinner plastic washer I constructed. I like the looks of the strap but I'm don't like the modification I had to do to make it work. Was the strap to be used for some other instrument, or the pickup not designed for a leather strap?

I have found that pickup end pins are usually much larger diameter than standard strap peg buttons; they have to be to accommodate a 1/4" input plug.

I like 2 strap buttons, one on neck heel and one on the uke bottom, but on sopranos, especially vintage sopranos, I hate drilling the neck heel, so usually just attach the strap to the headstock on those, between upper and lower tuner posts, using a leather shoelace to attach to the strap on the bottom, which is usually the one that slips. To keep the strap from releasing from the bottom button, I use the orange washers from Grolsch beer bottles, got a big bag on eBay for $4.00.

111999

kitsunegarcia
09-15-2018, 10:36 AM
Another pro-strap vote here. It's not "lazy" to want to protect your shoulder! if you have chronic shoulder problems like I do, getting a strap may help with the discomfort. I prefer 2 button method of attaching a strap but I have one ukulele that can't be done that way and it attaches to the headstock with a string. Ugh. I hate it but that's life! I do not like those straps that attach to the sound hole. They seem really unstable for me.
I make my own straps so I don't have to worry about adjusting too much or release from the bottom.

EDW
09-15-2018, 12:28 PM
To keep the strap from releasing from the bottom button, I use the orange washers from Grolsch beer bottles, got a big bag on eBay for $4.00.
111999

Not as much fun as emptying all those bottles yourself.

I have nothing to add of value about straps, as I don't use one.

Astein2006
09-15-2018, 02:05 PM
Two strap buttons on my Outdoor Soprano and a 3/4 inch wide shoelace is the strap. Works very well.

Adjust the strap so that it is comfortabe to play the ukulele when sitting. When standing it will be in the same comfortable position.

Oh so you actually use the two button method on an actual Outdoor Soprano. Which color did you get? I'm thinking bottle green but they all look good. Check this link. Are they really recommending tying it off at the headstock. It seems fuzzy. Any way thanks for the advice.
https://www.outdoorukulele.com/collections/custom-shop/products/strap-button-gold

Astein2006
09-15-2018, 02:07 PM
Is OU recommending only using one strap button and tying it off at the headstock or is it only if you are getting one strap button? Maybe I'm reading too much into their description. Thoughts?
https://www.outdoorukulele.com/collections/custom-shop/products/strap-button-gold

kohanmike
09-15-2018, 03:25 PM
Is OU recommending only using one strap button and tying it off at the headstock or is it only if you are getting one strap button? Maybe I'm reading too much into their description. Thoughts?
According to that description, yes, they're saying one strap button and tie it to the headstock. If I can't add a strap button to the neck heel or if the uke has a combo output jack/strap button, I pass.

8 tenor cutaway ukes, 5 acoustic bass ukes, 9 solid body bass ukes, 7 mini electric bass guitars

• Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children's hospital music therapy programs. www.theukc.org
• Member The CC Strummers www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos

Kenn2018
09-15-2018, 07:34 PM
Another pro-strap vote here. It's not "lazy" to want to protect your shoulder! if you have chronic shoulder problems like I do, getting a strap may help with the discomfort. I prefer 2 button method of attaching a strap but I have one ukulele that can't be done that way and it attaches to the headstock with a string. Ugh. I hate it but that's life! I do not like those straps that attach to the sound hole. They seem really unstable for me.
I make my own straps so I don't have to worry about adjusting too much or release from the bottom.

I used the short button straps for the neck for a while. They look much better than a shoelace. I did cut a few down so the leather wasn't as wide.

All-in-all, I prefer two buttons. I also prefer a 2" guitar strap on my tenors. They seem easier on my neck & shoulder.

Tootler
09-16-2018, 12:32 AM
I use uke leash with their strap button adapter. I just have one strap button and fit the head end between the tuners rather than behind the nut. It doesn't get in the way of my left hand there.

dgame
09-16-2018, 06:18 AM
Oh so you actually use the two button method on an actual Outdoor Soprano. Which color did you get? I'm thinking bottle green but they all look good. Check this link. Are they really recommending tying it off at the headstock. It seems fuzzy. Any way thanks for the advice.
https://www.outdoorukulele.com/collections/custom-shop/products/strap-button-gold

I have a brown soprano and green tenor. Both have two strap buttons.

As that description is for only one strap button the other end would have to be tied on.

I recommend getting two strap buttons.

Astein2006
09-16-2018, 10:22 AM
I have a brown soprano and green tenor. Both have two strap buttons.

As that description is for only one strap button the other end would have to be tied on.

I recommend getting two strap buttons.
Thanks! I've pretty much made up my mind to get to strap buttons. When you have your soprano hanging by the strap and you let go, does the neck dive downward or is the uke very balanced?

Tim Mullins
09-16-2018, 11:40 AM
Those reading this thread who may not want to drill into their uke, or may not like straps connected to their headstocks, or are concerned about "neck dive," please check out my Mobius Strap. Here's a video of it in use on a soprano:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GeriA2ZfxAg

dgame
09-17-2018, 01:13 AM
Thanks! I've pretty much made up my mind to get to strap buttons. When you have your soprano hanging by the strap and you let go, does the neck dive downward or is the uke very balanced?

The neck falls down with no hands. So with two strap buttons it is slightly front heavy.

Ziret
09-17-2018, 05:08 AM
I'd love to find some more of these lovely South American woven belts.
111964

Would you mind posting or PMing me a close up or two of the belt and how you attached it to your uke? I might borrow an inkle loom and make something similar for myself. It looks great.

captain-janeway
09-17-2018, 11:29 AM
Only have buttons on ends, but like this brand. Feels really sturdy. May try the one on the neck. These were easy to install (assuming you feel OK about drilling into your uke).

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005FKF3L6/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER&psc=1