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View Full Version : It Ain't Rocket Science



Moore Bettah Ukuleles
10-13-2009, 09:03 AM
This video has been on this board before but it's worth seeing again especially since there are some people who think you need a degree in rocket science and a bunch of fancy tools to build a uke.
Give a look, it's a hoot!

http://www.ukulele.org/?Videos

Matt Clara
10-13-2009, 09:11 AM
Awesome! But I bet that wasn't the first one he built like that!

Pete Howlett
10-13-2009, 09:13 AM
That is a priceless mini movie... it also accounts for the not uncommon assymetry of those early ukes.

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
10-13-2009, 10:05 AM
Half the builders I know personally don't use molds. Now that takes skill. Using all the molds and jigs like we do is the sissy way!

Pete Howlett
10-13-2009, 10:17 AM
I've done a 'free build' - bit scary an' all... I like my forms.:D

E-Lo Roberts
10-13-2009, 11:10 AM
Chuck, wow very insightful. You're right, we be sissy.....e.lo..

Timbuck
10-13-2009, 11:36 AM
When I first saw this Vid it inspired me to have a go at the same method and build just one uke..it was great fun and a lot easier than i imagined it would be...The hardest bit was the twine binding ..I studied the Vid over and over again before I give it a go..and still I got it wrong..it looked like a cocoon when it was finally clamped...The vid isn't clear on the fitting of the front soundboard so I had to improvise a bit, I liked the little wedges they are great for tightening up little slack areas (I use them all the time now)...There is a Photographic log on this if anyone is intrested.

UkuleleHill
10-13-2009, 03:15 PM
There is a Photographic log on this if anyone is intrested.

Yes please! Where can we find it?

dnewton2
10-13-2009, 03:38 PM
Half the builders I know personally don't use molds. Now that takes skill. Using all the molds and jigs like we do is the sissy way!

Wait you don't build the way they did in the video?:D

nic579
10-13-2009, 04:08 PM
I want that chisel.

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
10-13-2009, 04:11 PM
Wait you don't build the way they did in the video?:D
The guy in the video is the one who taught me how to build ukes!

RonS
10-13-2009, 05:58 PM
Cool, thanks!

Timbuck
10-13-2009, 09:52 PM
Yes please! Where can we find it?

Here it is just click on the pic....The original film was with a Spanish heel..but I did it with a dovetail block instead.
http://s219.photobucket.com/albums/cc143/shiregreenbod/1917%20uke/th_PICT1010.jpg (http://s219.photobucket.com/albums/cc143/shiregreenbod/1917%20uke/?action=view&current=18572ff0.pbw)

mrUKETOBER
10-13-2009, 10:00 PM
Here it is just click on the pic....The original film was with a Spanish heel..but I did it with a dovetail block instead.
http://s219.photobucket.com/albums/cc143/shiregreenbod/1917%20uke/th_PICT1010.jpg (http://s219.photobucket.com/albums/cc143/shiregreenbod/1917%20uke/?action=view&current=18572ff0.pbw)



how long did it take you to make it this way ?

Timbuck
10-13-2009, 10:18 PM
A couple of days I remember..But I was having fun....Here is a video of that uke being tortured by a Turkish Gent.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lTHOCeRDkHk
And there is more about it here.
http://www.ukulelecosmos.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=8218

koalohapaul
10-13-2009, 10:36 PM
I have to carry around a business card with the link to that video. When people ask me what a master luthier is, I'll politely hand them the card.

I'm amazed at how little we've progressed since then. Of course technology will evolve, but the uke still needs to be assembled in the same way. The video got me thinking of better ways to do what we do.

One part that freaked me out was watching him chisel towards his chest. Danger, Will Robinson!

ukuleG
10-14-2009, 08:14 AM
i thought i already replied to this thread but i haven't :confused:. anyway really cool video.

Pete Howlett
10-14-2009, 09:08 AM
This really was a brilliant re-imagining by Ken wasn't it?

thistle3585
10-16-2009, 04:09 AM
Going back to the video, what is the reasoning for putting the brace on the body first versus gluing the brace onto the back then attaching then attaching the back? Are the sides and braces tapered at all to account for the angle? Does the back flatten out where it meets the sides or is it just so minimal of an an arch that it doesn't really matter?

Timbuck
10-16-2009, 04:55 AM
Going back to the video, what is the reasoning for putting the brace on the body first versus gluing the brace onto the back then attaching then attaching the back? Are the sides and braces tapered at all to account for the angle? Does the back flatten out where it meets the sides or is it just so minimal of an an arch that it doesn't really matter?
The arch on the video uke is quite high, thats why the bracings and the linings are more sturdy than I would do them today...As the twine is applied it forms the arch and glues on the back all in one go.... I've just done some rough calc's, and with a high dome of 3/8" it would need about .025" sanded off the edges to fit the angle flush...less than a 1/32" or(0.6mm)...would they have bothered in 1917 or just let the glue fill the gaps??? can anyone on the Islands remember???

fromthee2me
10-16-2009, 08:59 AM
Ukulelel Hall of Fame Video does not trigger???

Sven
10-16-2009, 09:21 AM
I want that chisel.
Heh... I have that chisel.:D

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
10-16-2009, 09:28 AM
Ukulelel Hall of Fame Video does not trigger???
It's moody. Try it again later. Or try a different browser.

Ahnko Honu
10-16-2009, 11:37 AM
Here's a interesting modern equivalent build (he even sews his own gig bag):
http://www.youtube.com/user/siwzet12#p/u/3/urtu4OLYMok
http://www.youtube.com/user/siwzet12#p/u/1/YpI9kK1UiFk

Here he is playing his creation. ;)
http://www.youtube.com/user/siwzet12#p/u/4/JdfE0VOLz18

Do we have any UU members from Poland?

Harold O.
10-16-2009, 01:58 PM
The arch on the video uke is quite high, thats why the bracings and the linings are more sturdy than I would do them today...As the twine is applied it forms the arch and glues on the back all in one go.... I've just done some rough calc's, and with a high dome of 3/8" it would need about .025" sanded off the edges to fit the angle flush...less than a 1/32" or(0.6mm)...would they have bothered in 1917 or just let the glue fill the gaps??? can anyone on the Islands remember???

I'll wager the video guy didn't calculate with math anywhere near as much as Timbuck did in this one post alone...

thejumpingflea
10-19-2009, 08:01 PM
I just saw this video. Something about it gave me a whole new outlook on what it takes to build an instrument.

Thanks for sharing it Chuck, it is too cool!