View Full Version : Anyone played a Luna bari-bass with steel strings?

Bombay Mick
04-03-2019, 02:58 AM
Hello, I'm thinking of getting a "bari-bass" ukulele with steel strings to compliment a UBass that's already in our local ukulele community group. The two differing sounds together, but an octave apart, should sound good - after we've practised together :p
Luna have a few bari-bass ukes with steel strings - has anyone any experience playing them? Their prices are reasonable for a first timer like me and I like the idea of being able to practise without having to use an amp.
Thanks in advance.

04-04-2019, 01:53 AM
I keep wanting to get one, but haven't yet. I really like the sound, and the maple binding.
I don't play bass, and the prospect of learning the new tuning slows me down.

04-04-2019, 02:35 AM
I have played them a couple of times. For my playing style I liked them more than a UBass although I should declare that I'm not a Bass player so what do I know. I should say that for better or worse one of the factors that has stopped my buying one so far is that no one could tell me what strings its using and what I would buy as replacements if needed. On the other hand maybe Bass instruments don't need strings to be replaced.

04-04-2019, 05:23 AM
If it works for you, that's great.

In all honesty, I am not a huge fan as it is just the top 4 strings of a regular guitar.
As someone who plays ukulele, guitar and bass - it makes more sense for me to simply have a guitar. You can do what the "bari bass" does using a guitar, in addition to... well, being a guitar!

Each to their own, but a regular Ubass type instrument with the tuning an octave lower like a bass guitar is far more useful in my eyes. You get that actual octave-low bass-line, but in a smaller package with that unique sound.

Either instrument would require some amplification to be really useful anyway.
Even full sized acoustic-bass guitars, with big bodies and steel strings need amplification to be used effectively in any setting other than personal practice.

04-04-2019, 12:35 PM
The strings on them are not regular guitar strings. Not even close. I've had people tell me that they were piccolo bass strings yet no one had them in stock or could even show me them in a catalogue.

04-04-2019, 02:46 PM
I used D-Walker short scale Acoustic Strings on the Bass side of my the "Bass'nBari" project ukulele. Some have called it a Flipper. (see pictures)

04-05-2019, 02:45 AM
You’re both right. There are two versions.

This link says the strings are “Aquila Thundergut Bass Uke.” The video sounds like a U-bass.

The one I saw had steel strings, like this one, but it was black instead of laser-etched.
For strings, it just says “Flat-Wound.” The description says it’s tuned like a bass guitar—but one octave up.

There’s also a link on the site to “Stainless Flatwornd Bass Strings from Luna Ukes. The picture provides string thickness, but when you click on the link they seem to be out of stock.

Bombay Mick
04-08-2019, 08:48 AM
Thanks for your thoughts, and sorry I couldn't reply earlier - been away for a few days.
The same thought occurred to me about the bari-bass having 4 strings tuned like a guitar - but I couldn't turn up at the local ukulele group with a guitar!
I like the sound of low bass strings and there are few bass ukuleles with wound strings that are the same as a bass guitar, I think Ohana made one - OBU-22 - but it's now discontinued.
That's something to add to my wishlist for future!
In the meantime I'll keep looking out for a bari-bass - the Luna ones aren't expensive here and it must be several weeks now since I bought a uke!

04-08-2019, 03:36 PM
Whatever floats your boat. I can definitely see value and usefulness in such an instrument. Its compact.. being an octave above regular bass means it is more likely to be audible without amplifying.. it looks like a uke.. and it all depends on how you use it musically. I can see lots of potential.

I daresay regular guitar strings (EADG, 6th to 3rd) would work, maybe get a Medium tension set due to shorter scale.

And lastly, guitars are just bigger ukes with more strings :D