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View Full Version : Is a less than ideal Pineapple Sunday still the right choice?



wickedwahine11
01-07-2010, 05:50 PM
So I admit it, after being solely on the Kanile'a and Kamaka sides, I finally succumbed to the allure of the KoAloha Pineapple Sunday. I spent this past weekend driving to almost a dozen different stores (and looking online) to find the elusive delicious koa goodness. I decided that I really wanted to get a pineapple ukulele, and KoAloha's appealed to me the most...although the Kamaka traditional pineapple is a second choice (and for a lot less money). But I thought since I already have a Kamaka, it would be better to add a KoAloha to the family.

Finally, I was able to locate one at the store where I take ukulele lessons. The great news is that I was able to get it for 20% off. The less good news is that it isn't "perfect." Now before anyone takes offense, let me be clear that there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with this instrument. It is beautiful and it sounds like angels singing. But it isn't the "perfect" Pineapple Sunday for me.

I fell in love with the original design, the one with the bowtie bridge and the deep grooves in the pineapple "top." As one store proprietor told me, she will never order them again because she doesn't like the style of etched laser grooves in the top or the new bridge. I should point out that I am the type of person that is highly easily influenced by little thoughts like that. As I took home the new proof of UAS, all I could hear was her voice in my head telling me it isn't the one I wanted.

Let me state the couple of things that I'm not entirely in love with:

1) There is a two tone nature to the wood grain on the top. A wide swatch of orange is on the top left portion of the ukulele. Before anyone gets mad at me, yes, I know koa grains very a great deal, and in fact, I have seen many ukuleles, by all manufacturers that were less even than this one. I just know it would probably bug me because I do worry about stuff like that. My Kanile'a also lacks symmetry and it still occasionally bugs me.

2) The bridge isn't the bowtie style. There is nothing functionally or design oriented wrong about this one, I just really liked the bowtie one.

3) The etched grooves are not as deep (or to me anyway) as aesthetically pleasing as the old style.

4) This will cause me to stretch my budget a little more than I like right now, but I didn't think I would get another opportunity to get one of these on sale, as they are both impossible to find and never discounted. Case in point, to complete the purchase, I have to borrow some money from my spouse (who will hold the Pineapple hostage until my debt is paid).

To illustrate my points, allow me to post a couple of quick photos I took of mine, and one photo of the one I consider to be my ideal (GX9901's). His is the dream one I was searching for, in terms of color, bridge styling and face grooves.

This is GX9901's perfect Pineapple:
http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=7718

This is the one I bought today:
http://travellifeisshort.com/close.jpg
http://travellifeisshort.com/side.jpg

The good news is that the store where I bought it will let me return it up to 10 days later -- so I plan on thinking about it over the weekend and then keeping it, or taking it back on Tuesday.

Again, I admit I am impossible to please, and I stress again this is a perfect instrument (just maybe not for me). Believe me, I know what a work of art this ukulele is. I'm just worried that because I like the other bridge, and a lighter color, I will consider myself "settling" for this Pineapple Sunday, only to find MGM or someone else selling one down the road that I like better, at which point I won't be able to return this one. I could return this one and buy it again later if need be (if it is still available) but I would probably not be able to get the discount.

So moral of the story: would you keep an otherwise wonderful, perfect instrument even if it is not "perfect" for you because you saved a lot of money on it? Or would you return it, and maybe pay more later to find the right one for you? Or throw in the towel completely and get a Kamaka pineapple?:confused: Of course George (GX9901) if you are willing to give me yours, all my problems would be solved.

ukeatan
01-07-2010, 06:03 PM
Return it. Almost everyone on this forum would be positively ecstatic to have just taken home a Pineapple Sunday. If you're feeling this ambivalent about it already, it's clearly not the right uke for you right now, especially given the investment. I say continue with your pineapple quest! Just my two cents. :)

haolejohn
01-07-2010, 06:09 PM
Is that bridge the normal bridge (yours)? That is the same bridge I have on my koaloha concert. Tell ya the truth I'm a big koaloha fan and I'd let that PS go unless it was a really good deal. It doesn't look like a PS to me. Is there a blackmark on the corner of the label? How does it sound?

MartinLil
01-07-2010, 06:10 PM
I would return it. If it isn't the one and isn't a perfect match, then you'll never be happy with it. Better to wait for the perfect one, one that you love everything about, than to settle. It may cost you a little more money, but what does the discount matter if you're not 100% happy with it?

-Lil

bbycrts
01-07-2010, 06:12 PM
You have the opportunity to return it - do it. It may be perfect as an instrument and as they are currently built - but it's not perfect for you. This is a pretty huge purchase to feel ambivalent about, and since you really haven't even had the Kamaka for that long, play it for a while longer and save up the cash so you can get the PS that is perfect FOR YOU.

wickedwahine11
01-07-2010, 06:55 PM
Is that bridge the normal bridge (yours)? That is the same bridge I have on my koaloha concert. Tell ya the truth I'm a big koaloha fan and I'd let that PS go unless it was a really good deal. It doesn't look like a PS to me. Is there a blackmark on the corner of the label? How does it sound?

I know, I really don't like the bridge. But as you can see from this MGM auction that ended, they are using it now on the PS. A real shame, the bowtie one looked so cool.
http://cgi.ebay.ca/New-KOALOHA-PINEAPPLE-SUNDAY-UKULELE-w-tweed-case_W0QQitemZ370300274361QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_De faultDomain_0?hash=item56379dc6b9#ht_3272wt_1165

This auction also shows the laser engraved styling...why that shop owner said she won't order them anymore unless it is a custom for a client, I really miss the old styling. :(

Thanks guys, I knew that was the right decision deep down, I will take it back tomorrow...and keep searching for a PS that works for me, or a curly koa Kamaka pineapple instead.

hosenfeferdave
01-07-2010, 07:10 PM
Dang!

You have my empathy and best wishes. If you can't return it, please let me know.

haolejohn
01-07-2010, 07:16 PM
I know, I really don't like the bridge. But as you can see from this MGM auction that ended, they are using it now on the PS. A real shame, the bowtie one looked so cool.
http://cgi.ebay.ca/New-KOALOHA-PINEAPPLE-SUNDAY-UKULELE-w-tweed-case_W0QQitemZ370300274361QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_De faultDomain_0?hash=item56379dc6b9#ht_3272wt_1165

This auction also shows the laser engraved styling...why that shop owner said she won't order them anymore unless it is a custom for a client, I really miss the old styling. :(

Thanks guys, I knew that was the right decision deep down, I will take it back tomorrow...and keep searching for a PS that works for me, or a curly koa Kamaka pineapple instead.

Is yours a concert or a tenor? I tried counting the frets but the phone screen isn't the best thing to count frets on:)
WW, you might want to try and contact KoAloha and inquire about a factory second. The blemishes are usually unnoticeable (can't find the blemish on my concert and i have spent 6 months looking for it). There is also a substantial discount on those factory seconds. Just saying. You knbow, cut out the middle guy and go directly to the source.

PeformanceUke
01-07-2010, 07:25 PM
If you are already having second thoughts and are not content, then it is a sign that your not satisfied. Sometimes it is better to listen to second thoughts our you could have some regret down the road, like another member said don't let the discount dilute your feelings. On a side notie I personally would go with a curly koa Kamaka pineapple. Just look at your Kamaka tenor, i would get something in that stature for the money you are spending.

Do you prefer the Koaloha sound over the kamaka sound?

haolejohn
01-07-2010, 07:28 PM
If you are already having second thoughts and are not content, then it is a sign that your not satisfied. Sometimes it is better to listen to second thoughts our you could have some regret down the road, like another member said don't let the discount dilute your feelings. On a side notie I personally would go with a curly koa Kamaka pineapple. Just look at your Kamaka tenor, i would get something in that stature for the money you are spending.

Do you prefer the Koaloha sound over the kamaka sound?

She has never had a koaloha yet.

PeformanceUke
01-07-2010, 07:37 PM
She has never had a koaloha yet.

Really? I got the impression that she just bought the ps and thinking about to returning it .

Check um out



Thanks guys, I knew that was the right decision deep down, I will take it back tomorrow.

haolejohn
01-07-2010, 07:42 PM
Really? I got the impression that she just bought the ps and thinking about to returning it .

Check um out

Your right. I just meant (which didn't clarify) that she might not have had a chance to really compare the sounds yet. I'm not really paying attention yet.

Lori
01-07-2010, 07:49 PM
I agree with the others. Wait and get what you really want. And if you are willing to wait, you could have them make up a bowtie one for you as sort of a special order directly from KoAloha. They might not be taking orders for truly custom ukes right now, but one with a slight difference like that might get into the queue for the next batch of PS.
Just a thought.

–Lori

dkcrown
01-08-2010, 01:39 AM
Unfortunately, buyers remorse never seems to subside, it only gets worse the more you think about it. I would return it if you can.

That being said, if it was mine, I would keep it! It looks like a beautiful instrument to me. Especially since it was discounted. If they are no longer making the bow tie bridge on the PS, the only way that you will be able to snag one with it would be second hand.

As a Kamaka and Kanilea owner, how does the sound compare?

NatalieS
01-08-2010, 02:56 AM
Yeah I think I would return it if I were you. I've bought a few ukes that were very well made and beautiful, but something negative stood out and made me regret my purchase. Those ukes all went back out the door again. Hold out for the exact one you want. :-)

pulelehua
01-08-2010, 03:05 AM
Let me be the different one. I think it's a beautiful instrument. I think the plain bridge gives it a more antique look. It also cleans up the lines a bit. The current Pineapple Sundays are lines flying every which way. Huge amounts of energy. This is a more restrained ukulele. It looks like Ohta San's "Hawaii" or Iz's "White Sandy Beach". It's old school. It looks like if you wanted to play "While My Ukulele Gently Weeps", it would pat you on the shoulder and say, "Come on. Let's just relax a bit."

It's the Pineapple Sunday for Sundays, not the modern midweek Pineapple Sunday.

:)

deach
01-08-2010, 03:25 AM
Return it. If you took the time to create this thread there is obviously something bugging you about it. I've gotten rid of several ukes that sound and look great but just didn't do it for me.

pulelehua
01-08-2010, 03:26 AM
Deach has 6,335 more posts than me. I'd do what he says. ;)

RevWill
01-08-2010, 03:46 AM
Deach has 6,335 more posts than me. I'd do what he says. ;)

He has also owned and given away around 6,335 more ukes than any of us, so I'd say he speaks with a unique brand of authority.

Sic_Rob
01-08-2010, 03:50 AM
Look at it this way. Playing the Ukulele is a peaceful harmonious thing. It will be in the back of your mind every time you see the Uku. Every time you touch the Uku and every time you Play it. That doesn't sound like the maikings of a peaceful or harmonious act.

But on a side note. Will your wife allow you visiting rights until you pay her back?

Bring it back, save some more money an get exactly what you want. And if the Kamaka is exactly what you want, go for it. Then start saving for a different model koaloha that will bring you less stress..

pithaya9
01-08-2010, 05:26 AM
That is the way that the newer PS are, I have one. I have searched for the old style but people that have older KoAlohas never seem to want to sell them. If I ever do find one I'll just buy it and sell the one that I have. Good luck with your search WW.

Jack

GX9901
01-08-2010, 05:27 AM
I'd probably advise returning the uke also, since it's not exactly what you want. I do want to point out that the current bridge is functionally superior to the old pointy style bridge as found on my P.S. I believe part of the reason KoAloha went to the current bridge style is because they had many customers having problems with the older pointy bridge. It's made entirely out of koa and on some the strings cut into the wood fairly easily, potentially damaging the bridge. Mine also had this condition but it wasn't too bad and I have since made some plastic washers (beads probably work too) to keep the string from cutting into the wood.

If one day you find the P.S. with the right bridge for you, be sure to inspect the bridge to see if the string has cut too far into the wood. Hopefully you'll find the one for you soon.

thejumpingflea
01-08-2010, 05:30 AM
I'd probably advise returning the uke also, since it's not exactly what you want. I do want to point out that the current bridge is functionally superior to the old pointy style bridge as found on my P.S. I believe part of the reason KoAloha went to the current bridge style is because they had many customers having problems with the older pointy bridge. It's made entirely out of koa and on some the strings cut into the wood fairly easily, potentially damaging the bridge. Mine also had this condition but it wasn't too bad and I have since made some plastic washers (beads probably work too) to keep the string from cutting into the wood.

If one day you find the P.S. with the right bridge for you, be sure to inspect the bridge to see if the string has cut too far into the wood. Hopefully you'll find the one for you soon.

Update your blog! :)

GX9901
01-08-2010, 05:43 AM
Update your blog! :)

Heh, I'd like to, but I don't really know what to put on there right now. :p Don't worry, I'm not abandoning it, just have nothing interesting to post right now. I have a trip to Oahu in a couple of months and hopefully a custom Glyph completed soon afterwards, so it should provide a jolt of inspiration for the blog. Or something.

molokinirum
01-08-2010, 05:50 AM
I vote to return it as well, it is not the Pineapple Sunday you have in mind!!! FYI while in Maui a few months ago at Bounty Music, they had a Pineapple Sunday that was selling for $1,500. I got to play it wanted to buy it but did not have nearly enough money! The Pineapple Sunday that you want is simply beautiful!!!

phanzo
01-08-2010, 06:28 AM
Yea I had a chance to get a "perfect" PS here for a GREAT PRICE, $900 to be exact. It had the bowtie bridge and the deep etched top. I didnt have the money at the time and before I could raise enough money (I was about $300 away), the dealer got an offer at the $1,200 asking price, so he had to take it. He told me that he had a guy interested in trading one in a month or so and would give me that one for the same price ($900) but the guy never ended up trading it in. I'm still waiting, day after day for my chance to get that "perfect pineapple." I agree with your decision to return. One day you will get that Perfect PS and it will be GLORIOUS!!! Until then, rock that Kamaka and continue the search. (I know if I had a Kamaka in the stable, I wouldn't just "settle" for an average KoAloha.) Gotta find the one that's perfect for you...man, now I want that PS again. DANGGGGITTT!!!

phanzo
01-08-2010, 06:31 AM
He has also owned and given away around 6,335 more ukes than any of us, so I'd say he speaks with a unique brand of authority.
haha, well put, Rev...:D

mailman
01-08-2010, 06:48 AM
WW, for what it's worth, I agree with you about the color, and I'm not sure either way about the etching of the top. I do, however, prefer the bridge style you bought to the older bowtie style. And, like most opinions, mine doesn't matter much.

What's important is that you are happy with what you bought. You made the right choice returning the PS. The right one will find it's way to you someday....

Ronnie Aloha
01-08-2010, 11:37 AM
Update your blog! :)

Seconded.:mad:

Ronnie Aloha
01-08-2010, 11:44 AM
Of course George (GX9901) if you are willing to give me yours, all my problems would be solved.

George? We are awaiting your response. You have way too many ukes as it is!:o

GX9901
01-08-2010, 11:58 AM
George? We are awaiting your response. You have way too many ukes as it is!:o

No way man! This thread has me appreciating my P.S. even more now. :p

experimentjon
01-08-2010, 03:51 PM
Yay for George's blog update! I saw it in my RSS feed this morning.

And as for the PS decision, I'd have to say return it and wait to get one you really like. Personally, I like the simpler bridge more. The old version was just a bit too crazy for me. And I have no problems with the etching. But I can see what you're saying about the color of the wood. I think that if you're buying a high ticket item like this, you should really enjoy it and buy what you really want. When I bought my PS from the factory, I was lucky because they had three of them, and I got to choose my favorite. Two of them, I didn't really like the wood. But I loved the wood on the one I ended up going home with, and when I played the uke, it really spoke to me. If I didn't have that connection and intangible vibe with the uke, I would have waited.

There will be more PS ukes in the future. :)

Ronnie Aloha
01-08-2010, 05:17 PM
Jon, did you get your ukes back yet? I was wondering how the install went.

koalohapaul
01-08-2010, 07:06 PM
If you aren't 100% satisfied, you should return it. While I'm glad you decided to get one of ours, I'd much rather you totally love your uke, rather than have even a small bit of remorse. Things have a funny way of working out. I'm sure one will turn up eventually, and hopefully it's something you're still interested in, when it does.

pdxuke
01-08-2010, 07:52 PM
So moral of the story: would you keep an otherwise wonderful, perfect instrument even if it is not "perfect" for you because you saved a lot of money on it?

No. It will never be what you wanted. Take it back until you find a uke that you simply can't walk away from.

experimentjon
01-08-2010, 10:53 PM
Jon, did you get your ukes back yet? I was wondering how the install went.

Haven't gotten them back yet. In fact, I havent checked on their status in a while. Just been totally swamped and haven't had time. I'm sure the install will go/has gone great though, since I've had them do an install before, and it was really awesome work.

BUUUT, I have been entertaining myself with my new-used KoAloha Tenor, so I'm in little rush. And I think my KoAloha tenor is somewhat relevant here. I got it in a trade for my best classical guitar. I thought it was going to be one of KoAloha's new tenor models from what the person had told me, and I was really looking for one of the new models. But when they brought it over, it turned out to be an old-label Tenor with plastic fretboard binding and a wacky string through crown bridge. It was not quite what I was looking for, and honestly I didn't totally dig it in the beginning, because it had high action and the frets were literally black from corrosion or whatever awful phenomenon does that to frets. Plus the sound wasn't too great with the GHS strings on it. Did the trade anyway, b/c heck, it's a KoAloha, what could go wrong, thing just needed some TLC.

So I spent a few hours cleaning the frets, oiling the fretboard, lowering the action at the nut and saddle, and putting on a new set of Worth Clears. It looked pretty nice after that, and was much more comfortable to play, but the sound still wasn't really there for me. It sounded sort of hollow and scratchy. And I thought I'd probably turn around and sell it later.

I went to take a shower to get all the saddle dust off my arms, and came back to try it again. But boy, the sound got better. I think it had to do witht he strings setlling in.

It sounded even better the next day, and better the day after that. And now, I love it. It's only been a few days. The thing just has such crazy booming tone, with a lot of percussive accents. Really like no other tenor I've played (granted I have not played any customs). It just grew on me. And now she's a keeper. :D

deach
01-09-2010, 12:20 AM
Jon - I was really hoping you were going to say that you didn't want the Koaloha tenor anymore and that you were going to send it to me.

pulelehua
01-09-2010, 02:26 AM
It's only just occurred to me that many of the people saying, "Return the ukulele. Wait for the right one!" are people who own a ridiculous number of ukuleles. Maybe they actually AREN'T the people to give advise on purchasing satisfaction. It's like asking a room full of lady's men about monogamy...

Seven57
01-09-2010, 03:15 AM
i say return it..i have a picky personality too and it would bug the crap out of me if it wasn't what i i truly wanted..i mean paul even says return it if your not happy with and its his product..the right pineapple sunday will come for sure..ive had a fair share of ukes but i never bought anything i wasn't in love with..do what you feel is right cause at the end of the day you have live with it no one else..

haolejohn
01-09-2010, 06:40 AM
It's only just occurred to me that many of the people saying, "Return the ukulele. Wait for the right one!" are people who own a ridiculous number of ukuleles. Maybe they actually AREN'T the people to give advise on purchasing satisfaction. It's like asking a room full of lady's men about monogamy...

That is funny. The key is be happy with it. I want a PS and was going to get one for a graduation present but my wife says no for now. If I ordered one I wasn't happy with I'd send it back. If there was a local dealer (there isn't) where I could play it. If I wasn't happy, I wouldn't buy.

Ronnie Aloha
01-09-2010, 07:22 AM
Jon - I was really hoping you were going to say that you didn't want the Koaloha tenor anymore and that you were going to send it to me.

And then Deach could Deach it to me!

wickedwahine11
01-09-2010, 07:31 AM
If you aren't 100% satisfied, you should return it. While I'm glad you decided to get one of ours, I'd much rather you totally love your uke, rather than have even a small bit of remorse. Things have a funny way of working out. I'm sure one will turn up eventually, and hopefully it's something you're still interested in, when it does.

Thanks for the advice everyone, including you Paul. I did return that one.

Looks like I found one that might be the one for me...so it may all work out in the end. I should know for sure in a couple of days, but this one while it still has the new etching and new bridge, is a color I like much better. And the sound is wonderful...so it may be a Pineapple Sunday for me after all!

haolejohn
01-09-2010, 07:39 AM
Thanks for the advice everyone, including you Paul. I did return that one.

Looks like I found one that might be the one for me...so it may all work out in the end. I should know for sure in a couple of days, but this one while it still has the new etching and new bridge, is a color I like much better. And the sound is wonderful...so it may be a Pineapple Sunday for me after all!

Jealous, I am:)

Seven57
01-10-2010, 01:16 AM
Well done.. hope you get it !

guitharsis
01-10-2010, 03:00 AM
Thanks for the advice everyone, including you Paul. I did return that one.

Looks like I found one that might be the one for me...so it may all work out in the end. I should know for sure in a couple of days, but this one while it still has the new etching and new bridge, is a color I like much better. And the sound is wonderful...so it may be a Pineapple Sunday for me after all!

Great news and good choice.

Skottoman
01-10-2010, 06:06 AM
I have a PS, and it's not perfect either. The top of the pineapple shape where it meets the headstock is not the same width on each side. It's a little wider on one side, although the fretboard is centered. Also the etching does not go all the way to the edges at the top near the headstock either...

That said, I've wanted one for a long time, and my wife got it direct from KoAloha as an anniversary present, so in that regard I love it. Instead of thinking of the 'faults' in the construction, I see it as a hand made instrument, that was given to me by my wife, and for that I love and cherish it, even if it's not logistically "perfect".

It sounds and plays wonderfully, and is nice looking as well. I wouldn't trade it for any other because of the sentimental attachment to it. Perfect or not.
Cheers,
Skottoman

Doc_J
01-10-2010, 08:09 AM
With any new uke on the day you get it:
Play it alot today. Look at it.
If it is not your favorite uke today, it never will be.

haole
01-10-2010, 09:13 AM
I'm not very picky and I'm usually broke, so I'd gladly settle for some cosmetic features I don't like if I could get a better deal. Especially if it's a Pineapple Sunday. I'd take one in vomit green with highly irregular crosshatch work and a bridge shaped like a mangled pumpkin if it still felt good, sounded good, and was cheaper than a "perfect" one. :B But buyer's remorse doesn't usually go away! If you have regrets RIGHT after buying something, chances are you'll still hear that nagging in your head every time you look at it. So you did the right thing by returning it and holding off for one that'll make you happier!

Since the one you returned was already 20% off and is now "pre-owned," I wonder how much it's going to resell for? I wouldn't mind it.