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Jerryc41
11-14-2018, 02:03 AM
What do you think of laser-etched tops that we're seeing on more and more less expensive ukuleles? I don't like that etching. I'd avoid buying a uke with an etched top. Of course, the amount of etching makes a difference, but, as they say, "Less is more."

You might recall that I bought an etched Eddy Finn camp uke, but only after I found one with etching that was more to my liking. I rejected the Moon, but bought the Tiki.

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bazmaz
11-14-2018, 02:26 AM
I don't like them 'generally' - and see you used a pic of mine for the first image - but that does help explain why I used the word 'generally'.

What I DON'T like are those that are totally over done, like Luna - the etching is really deep and ugly and in some examples runs under the bridge plate which is a terrible idea structurally. But with the first image, the Dean - like some other brands (Baton Rouge) I don't mind it so much when it's subtle and not too deep.

Still - I'd always prefer without, but that's just me - but the overly done ones can't be good for structural integrity.

kkimura
11-14-2018, 11:29 AM
Speaking of Luna Ukuleles, I like their old etched look better than their new black printed look.

player
11-14-2018, 02:53 PM
I like the delicate etching on my one. Must post a pic.

Down Up Dick
11-14-2018, 03:45 PM
I like the etching on my “Peace” Luna (concert) a lot, but, then, I like decoration. That’s why I bought it, and it hasn’t caved in yet. It sounds pretty good to me too when I’m playing well.

:old:

Jeffelele
11-14-2018, 03:55 PM
I think like/dislike on etching is more irrelevant than on strings. Companies do it because they think it will help sales.
They have more data on it than we do as they deal with a much larger pool and have, hopefully, records. If they go wrong they pay. If they go really wrong their uke’s might be discounted to get rid of them.

Either way people who want etching get what they want and everybody else looses nothing.

No criticism of Jerry’s question which is a perfectly good one for the forum and which, obviously, motivated me to reply.

At any rate, based on what I’ve seen so far, given a choice of same uke etched or not, I’d chose not. Unless it was a Tuesday afternoon.

Kenn2018
11-14-2018, 06:55 PM
Different strokes...

Arcy
11-14-2018, 08:06 PM
I think a lot of it depends on the specific design. Laser etching is a modern, cheap way to adorn a ukulele. It's not different in concept to the classic, expensive inlays adorning higher end ukuleles, except that it's a mark of inexpensiveness. With laser cutting and CNC inlays shouldn't be that expensive to mass market, except as segment differentiators.

My objection to most of the laser etched designs I've seen is that they're horrid^H^H^H^H^H^Hnot to my taste. I like DUD's peace Luna -- I'm a sucker for peace-sign sound holes and lust after a tye-die + peace sign Fluke (This may invalidate my opinions on matters of taste :)). The only thing keeping me from laser etching a design in the ukulele I'm building is that I'm putting enough work into it anyway that it's worth my time to inlay instead.

Further invalidating my opinions on matters of taste, in my other window I'm drawing up a design for the vinyl cutter to adorn my Outdoor Uke. I expect those who take a hard line on laser etching really hate stickers :)

kypfer
11-14-2018, 08:17 PM
Like an otherwise attractive but tattooed woman ... waste of a good body!

YMMV ;)

RafterGirl
11-15-2018, 01:20 AM
Not just less expensive ukuleles. KoAloha has started doing it. HMS had a whole bunch with the plumeria and honu sea turtle on them. The only one they have left is a plumeria tenor. Seems like they had at least 6 of these, so they must have been popular.
https://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/brand/koaloha/koaloha-koa-tenor-ktm-00-plumeria.html

Down Up Dick
11-15-2018, 03:48 AM
Like an otherwise attractive but tattooed woman ... waste of a good body!

YMMV ;)

Ya gotta move with the times, kypfer. Tats are in - smooth, silken skin is out.

I wonder what those bodys’ll look like when they’ve aged and wrinkled or fattened up . . . :old:

Jerryc41
11-15-2018, 05:32 AM
The Koaloha has hand burned pyrography, not laser printing. It is done by an artist by hand.

Yes, that's an entirely different process - artistic. I wouldn't hesitate to buy one of them. I can see that being popular with custom designs.

"Pyrography or pyrogravure is the art of decorating wood with a heated point, in this case a solder gun. This is all done by hand and in that way you are getting a one of a kind art peice that showcases the beauty of our islands with the plumeria flowers on Hawaiian koa. Video and pictures show this special instrument."

Jerryc41
11-15-2018, 05:35 AM
Ya gotta move with the times, kypfer. Tats are in - smooth, silken skin is out.

I wonder what those bodys’ll look like when they’ve aged and wrinkled or fattened up . . . :old:

My body has aged - and maybe fattened a bit - but I still have smooth, silken skin. :)

Nickie
11-15-2018, 07:24 AM
The unfortunate etching in my ukulele tops is done by my fingernails.

kkimura
11-15-2018, 09:09 AM
I wouldn't mind having one of these.


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

Kenn2018
11-15-2018, 02:06 PM
Yes, that's an entirely different process - artistic. I wouldn't hesitate to buy one of them. I can see that being popular with custom designs.

"Pyrography or pyrogravure is the art of decorating wood with a heated point, in this case a solder gun. This is all done by hand and in that way you are getting a one of a kind art piece that showcases the beauty of our islands with the plumeria flowers on Hawaiian koa. Video and pictures show this special instrument."

When I was a kid, they sold kits to make art like this on pieces of wood in the kit. I believe they had a design printed on the wood and you burned the surface with a plug in soldering iron-like tool (a cork ring around it to protect your fingers as it got hot) and three or four different screw-on tips of different sizes so you could change the burned line width and make different effects.

I can't remember what the kits were called though.

Kenn2018
11-15-2018, 02:19 PM
Our ukulele club has about a dozen ukuleles of different sizes that beginners can try out and play at our meetings. The first ones that are chosen to be played are the 4 Luna ukes.

If it attracts the new player and helps to grab their attention, I am all for it.

Frankly, most of the designs from the various mfgs are mediocre. But, there are a handful that are quite attractive.

I'm not at all attracted to the ukuleles that have inlays of the islands in the soundboard. Nor do I like Abalone purfling around the edg,or anywhere for that matter. But I certainly don't look down on the people who do like those embellishments. And I own a few ukuleles that have abalone rosettes and position markers. I'd prefer something else, but that's the way they came and I don't mind abalone enough to reject owning the instrument. It's all in the eye of the beholder.

Jerryc41
11-15-2018, 02:23 PM
The unfortunate etching in my ukulele tops is done by my fingernails.

Latex gloves! :)