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Uke Republic
01-12-2010, 12:35 PM
Innovative design from Blackbird Guitars. Using carbon fiber they have come up with an all weather ukulele that sounds good. Just spoke with the owner Joe Luttwak on the phone as he prepares to premier this new uke at NAMM . Lots of low end and mid range coming from this lite but sturdy instrument. Other sizes may follow but the tenor as seen on the Blackbird site will be the first. Looks like March will be the release time for it.
Awesome!
http://www.blackbirdguitar.com/pressreleases/blackbird_ukulele.html

RevWill
01-12-2010, 12:54 PM
Perhaps they can offer an endorsement deal to, say, a United Methodist pastor who has a successful ukulele ministry. :drool:

Uke Republic
01-12-2010, 12:58 PM
Perhaps they can offer an endorsement deal to, say, a United Methodist pastor who has a successful ukulele ministry. :drool:
Email him you never know. He may even be Methodist:)

Tigeralum2001
01-12-2010, 01:00 PM
Price? Likely competitive with a K brand...

ukulelearp
01-12-2010, 01:23 PM
Price? Likely competitive with a K brand...

Their guitars run around $1500. I'd expect something similar.

RevWill
01-12-2010, 01:25 PM
I did it! I must be in a crazy mood tonight, and you caught me. Here's what I sent:







Dear Joe, I am a United Methodist pastor who has begun a successful ukulele ministry in the local churches I serve. I am completely thrilled to see a carbon-fiber uke because I believe the use of alternative materials for musical instruments is responsible stewardship of the earth and her resources, which I see as a profound ethical and theological issue. I also have several ukulele videos available on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/user/williedeuel), and am hoping to record an "album" for the 2010 RPM Challenge. I would love to help you promote your fabulous tenor ukulele by recording music and posting YouTube videos as well as performing with it in public, just on the off chance you would be willing to donate one to my ministry. It will not break my heart if you can't or choose not to. Just thought there was no harm in asking.

Let's see what happens!

ukulelearp
01-12-2010, 01:38 PM
Scratch that. The website says $999, without electronics.

Steiner
01-12-2010, 01:38 PM
Good luck!

haole
01-12-2010, 01:40 PM
http://knowyourmeme.com/i/235/original/Relevant_to_interests_hedgehog.jpg

As the owner of a Rainsong acoustic guitar, I've been hoping for a carbon-fiber production ukulele for a while. This one's an interesting body style, too! Dig the hollow neck.

Hope it works out for you, Will! :D

deach
01-12-2010, 01:46 PM
Perhaps they can offer an endorsement deal to, say, a United Methodist pastor who has a successful ukulele ministry. :drool:

Damn, the poor guy hasn't even made a penny from the uke and you're asking for a hand-out.

RevWill
01-12-2010, 03:06 PM
Damn, the poor guy hasn't even made a penny from the uke and you're asking for a hand-out.

I'm a pastor. I have experience in asking for donations, though not usually for myself. ;)

I see your point, Deach. I'm not asking him to just send me one; I'm asking him to consider whether doing so would be a good business decision on his part. He's free to say no, and I'm more than happy to accept no as an answer. And even if he says no, I'm probably going to save my money and buy one because I think it's a great design.

experimentjon
01-12-2010, 04:41 PM
I am also a Rainsong owner, and I love that guitar. Carbon fiber sound is just so unique. However, I'm not really a big fan of the blackbird designs. I thought their Ferrari edition was cool...mainly b/c it had a Ferrari emblem on it, but without a marketing gimmick like that, their shape is a bit too untraditional for me. If it had a regular ukulele shape body and soundhole in the middle, I'd love it though. I am also curious to see whether the soundhole in the headstock actually helps the sound.

GX9901
01-12-2010, 06:29 PM
Cool. This thing just might cause an UAS itch to materialize...

iDavid
01-12-2010, 09:01 PM
I have a few CA guitars and the Dread is fantastic. I am going to sell the two Cargos I have, when I get around to it.

Would love to hear the Carbon Uke!

RevWill
01-15-2010, 06:14 AM
I'm not really a douche. I just play one on the board sometimes.

Ahnko Honu
01-15-2010, 08:22 AM
I'm waiting for a carbon fiber top FLEA or FLUKE

Ukeffect
01-15-2010, 09:43 AM
:agree:
Hmmmm! I like your thinking Ahnko, oh did you catch the new Tenor pineapple from Ko'olau?! I know you are drooling about now!!

raecarter
01-15-2010, 09:59 AM
Sorry everyone it may be just me but I think there's something a bit wrong with a carbon uke. I think the msp of a uke is the beautiful wood craftmanship involved. Sorry there's my two penneth

SuperSecretBETA
01-15-2010, 10:15 AM
You can leave it in the car on a hot day, but make sure you let it cool off before playing. Think about it. You could actually burn yourself on one of these without affecting intonation... lol

UkuleleHill
01-15-2010, 10:16 AM
http://www.blackbirdguitar.com/images/Uke/Blackbird_Ukulele_web1.jpg

:iwant::iwant:

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
01-15-2010, 10:31 AM
Absolutely hideous!

seeso
01-15-2010, 10:36 AM
Absolutely hideous!

Tell us how you really feel. :D

RevWill
01-15-2010, 10:38 AM
I would love to know what difference (if any) the hollow neck + headstock soundhole makes. I'll bet that thing is light as a feather.

I love Moore Bettah, and I love this forward-thinking uke.

Pueo
01-15-2010, 11:37 AM
I'm with RevWill. I very much want a carbon-fiber ukulele and I also want my own MooreBettah.
As soon as I feel I am proficient enough to do the instrument justice, I will be contacting Chuck!

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
01-15-2010, 11:38 AM
Tell us how you really feel. :D

Hah! Do you know I posted that and deleted it at least three times. I just couldn't help myself. And the worse thing is they will never break down in a landfill! Unless it's fed into a shredder, those things will be aroung long after the cockroaches die........ aaaarrgghhh!

Pueo
01-15-2010, 11:53 AM
I understand your view Chuck, you are a master craftsman. I still want one of them there newfangled carbon fiber ukuleles though! Does that mean that when I call you for my MooreBettah, I have to not let you know that I like them?

ogikloavailable
01-15-2010, 12:53 PM
wawawiwa,awesome stuff :drool:
i hope someday there'll be new invention

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
01-15-2010, 01:04 PM
I understand your view Chuck, you are a master craftsman. I still want one of them there newfangled carbon fiber ukuleles though! Does that mean that when I call you for my MooreBettah, I have to not let you know that I like them?

Mike DaSilva in Berkely does a nice job with carbon fiber on ukuleles.

iDavid
01-15-2010, 01:05 PM
I played guitar for years and in the last two years I got a couple CA Carbon fiber guitars. I have to say my CA Dread is one of the nicest sounding and easiest playing guitar I have ever played. However, it does seem to miss something. I can tell if it is in the osund of the materail, but I prefer to pick-up a wooden instrument. In fact, the carbons are in the closet and the wooden guitar are in a humidified controlled room. I will be selling the two Cargo CA and replacing them with UKULELES!

bbycrts
01-15-2010, 01:14 PM
Absolutely hideous!
:agree::agree::agree::agree:

Give me ANY Moore Bettah ANY day.

Brad Bordessa
01-15-2010, 03:46 PM
This exceptionally loud and tonally rich instrument is as responsive as it is resilient and will inspire ukulele players to bring their music places no nice wood instrument should ever go—like the beach.


While carbon fiber is more acoustically efficient than wood, it is also much stronger and resistant to humidity.

I wonder how much much humidity we are talking about here... When I think of an 'ukulele that goes to the beach, I think of an 'ukulele that goes in the water. And if it goes in the water without damage, then I want one. Of course then I would have to learn to ride drop-knee so I could play it while catching a wave... You might have to drain it after ever ride though.

commandercup
01-15-2010, 03:47 PM
I think the body design looks really meh although carbon fiber is awesome

SuperSecretBETA
01-15-2010, 04:08 PM
I wonder how much much humidity we are talking about here... When I think of an 'ukulele that goes to the beach, I think of an 'ukulele that goes in the water. And if it goes in the water without damage, then I want one. Of course then I would have to learn to ride drop-knee so I could play it while catching a wave... You might have to drain it after ever ride though.

Yes, you can dip carbon fiber in water without warping it. I just wonder if it's truly all carbon fiber... what about the fret wire and tuners? Hmmm...

Beef Stew
09-21-2010, 04:04 PM
wow i am behind on the times. just saw the carbon fiber uke. i immediately checked it out on youtube. i think it sounds great and its price is pretty damn fair for what you get.
but but but
the look. i dont know. i just love the look of wood.
i mill lumber(as a hobby, not much for sale but i do sell knotty pine) and i love the looks of different woods.

so while ill probably end up buying the blackbird, i still wont like the look of it as much as my wood ukes(especially the koa)

ADD
09-21-2010, 07:43 PM
Design is interesting but the material is ugly as sin. But it would be nice to have a uke I could keep in my car year round without having to worry about it. It needs an insulated gigbag to prevent burns in the summer.

ukecantdothat
09-22-2010, 06:16 AM
I, too, am bothered by the design more than the material. Eye of the beholder and all that, but the straight side would be a deal-breaker for me. Seems like a great travel uke, though.

misterpk
09-22-2010, 08:39 AM
I saw and played this uke last week at the Wine Country Uke Fest. It actually looked better than I expected in person. For some reason the picture doesn't do it justice. Keep in mind though, it's by no means pretty. ;)

I really liked the sound coming from it. It was really mellow. Kind of guitar like. So if you're looking for that bright punchy uke sound you're not going to find it here. The other problem was that there were some imperfections in the finish. I think Blackbird is still working that out.

Paul Dominic Martin
04-30-2012, 06:55 PM
I'm with RevWill. I very much want a carbon-fiber ukulele and I also want my own MooreBettah.
As soon as I feel I am proficient enough to do the instrument justice, I will be contacting Chuck!

i agree a few more years of playing under my belt and many more pennies saved and custom Moorebettah here i come!!! :D

chris667
04-30-2012, 09:54 PM
Surely the biggest prerequisite of a uke you can take to places you wouldn't take an expensive uke is it isn't expensive?

Other than that, I'm glad they're available.

The Big Kahuna
05-01-2012, 01:54 AM
Want a cheap Uke' to take away with you ? Why, gentlemen, I may have just the thing.

http://bit.ly/IkwM4J

Can I also interest you in a bottle of Snake Oil ?

kegmcnabb
05-01-2012, 03:04 AM
Personally, I love the way these ukes look. Traditional? No, but who cares(but then I play a Steinberger bass, so what does that say. Not much geekier looking than that). Like all instruments it is a TOOL for making music and any tool that makes the creation of music easier is good.

An example, I just played a big outdoor gig in Phoenix, AZ. Temp was around 104-105F and by the time we took the stage we were in direct sun. I was playing the aforementioned Steinberger. Guess who had NO tuning issues? Here's a hint...NOT the guys with the wooden guitars. ;) Would love to have a uke with the same properties.

I also play a lot of outdoor theatre gigs. The Steinberger stays in tune whatever the temp, temp change, direct sun, humidity, etc. My guitars and ukes? Adjustments must be made.

And it is not a matter of expensive vs. inexpensive. The Steiny was a bit pricey but I know it will deal with environmental fluctuations without problems or damage, unlike my also pricey traditional basses.

Give me carbon fibre any day!

Keef
05-01-2012, 03:44 AM
this fiber uke has a functional purpose and fills a nitch and it fills it well
I wish I had one but I have enough toys
and I have learned that more toys dont make your life better
new toys are a very temporary feel good thing
.
If I was to buy the most beautyful uke ( in my opinion ) it would be one of chuck's ukes
but right now I have no business buying any uke I should learn how to play the ones ive got
3 years now and I still dont know even one real song only the one I made up comprized of notes and chords I dont even know the names of :)

Paul Dominic Martin
05-01-2012, 08:02 PM
i loved my steinberger bass... i traded down from a modulus 6 string fretless and got the steiny and never looked back... i also had a steiny guitar at one point.... i loved the action and the fact that they rarely went out of tune and were built like tanks... small and compact like an uke without the sacrifice in tone.... not ideal for playing while sitting without a guitar strap but i loved loved loved them...

I heart GEEKY as well!! hence the move over to the UKE!!! :D




Personally, I love the way these ukes look. Traditional? No, but who cares(but then I play a Steinberger bass, so what does that say. Not much geekier looking than that). Like all instruments it is a TOOL for making music and any tool that makes the creation of music easier is good.

An example, I just played a big outdoor gig in Phoenix, AZ. Temp was around 104-105F and by the time we took the stage we were in direct sun. I was playing the aforementioned Steinberger. Guess who had NO tuning issues? Here's a hint...NOT the guys with the wooden guitars. ;) Would love to have a uke with the same properties.

I also play a lot of outdoor theatre gigs. The Steinberger stays in tune whatever the temp, temp change, direct sun, humidity, etc. My guitars and ukes? Adjustments must be made.

And it is not a matter of expensive vs. inexpensive. The Steiny was a bit pricey but I know it will deal with environmental fluctuations without problems or damage, unlike my also pricey traditional basses.

Give me carbon fibre any day!

webby
05-01-2012, 11:26 PM
I think it would depend on how good it sounds, if an instrument sounds awesome and is very playable who cares what it's made of, it's an instrument which means its primary purpose if making musical sounds, the rest is all secondary imo.

And if it saves trees, then it has to be a good thing right ?

AndrewKuker
05-02-2012, 05:42 AM
Just shot this yesterday- Four in that price range including a blackbird-
I sed two different mics, 1st half a Rode NTG-2 because it was windy (a bit more compressed), Second half used the NT4, which is very true or adds very little color.

https://vimeo.com/41426626

The Big Kahuna
05-02-2012, 05:48 AM
There seems to be a lot of clarity to the Blackbird. It appeals to me as a guitarist.

caukulele
05-02-2012, 05:55 AM
Thanks so much for posting the comparison! They all sounded wonderful to me! Was surprised by the Blackbird sound.

The Big Kahuna
05-02-2012, 06:01 AM
Looks like I'm going to have to spend an extra day on Oahu, just so I can drive up and have this guy sell me a Ukulele.

imabuddha
05-02-2012, 06:28 AM
Just shot this yesterday-

Thanks for that video. I think you've got a typo on the prices you posted on the vimeo page though:

"KoAloha - 149"

I'll take 2! ;-]

AndrewKuker
05-02-2012, 06:51 AM
thank you buddah! (not for the order) If I could I would. everyone here could get two. one for high g and one for low g. The world would be a better place.

Ukuleleblues
05-02-2012, 11:58 AM
Absolutely hideous!You could paint it to match the shirt you play in........stealth uke

webby
05-02-2012, 04:42 PM
Just shot this yesterday- Four in that price range including a blackbird-
I sed two different mics, 1st half a Rode NTG-2 because it was windy (a bit more compressed), Second half used the NT4, which is very true or adds very little color.

https://vimeo.com/41426626


The first one you played sounded the best IMO, and I was really dissapointed with the carbon fibre, very thin and weak sound in comparison to the others.

ziqpy
09-05-2012, 07:11 AM
http://quicklol.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/go-save-yourself-from-the-zombies.jpg

Nice to see the comparison, and can tell by the smile on his face playing it, that it's good enough :)

YOu can tell how crisp the sound is because none of the strutting in the uke.

I tried a Flea Tenor and my hands are too small.

I would have had the opportunity to buy one when I'm in Vegas from UK in January :( if it wasn't the case with my TINY hands :rolleyes:

The Big Kahuna
09-05-2012, 08:24 AM
If it had been awful, Aaron would have turned green and ripped his shirt in anger at Andrew making him play it.

"Aaron MAD! Aaron SMASH!!"

chrimess
09-05-2012, 01:21 PM
I am just glad we have an alternative once we have exploited all the wood.

ziqpy
09-19-2012, 08:52 AM
Just shot this yesterday- Four in that price range including a blackbird-
I sed two different mics, 1st half a Rode NTG-2 because it was windy (a bit more compressed), Second half used the NT4, which is very true or adds very little color.

https://vimeo.com/41426626

Could we get a tutorial for that 2nd part with the plucking please Andrew?

Anyone in UK has one would appreciate it if you'd let me try it out, don't wanna do the 5/6hr run to devon to classical guitars :(

wendellfiddler
09-19-2012, 04:50 PM
Andrew does great videos, thank you - what a pleasure to hear so many different ukes played with such skill - different ukes, different strings - what next?

Paul Dominic Martin
09-27-2012, 08:09 AM
i have passed Blackbird many times living in the mission district in SF and never knew they made guitars until i started playing the uke and started hearing about the carbon fiber ukes... so i stopped by and was able to play a blackbird ukulele and Joe (the founder of Blackbird) chatted for almost an hour about ukes and the process of making a carbon fiber uke, all the many customs makers out there that i possibly wanted to get an uke made with, Moorebettah, DaSilva, Mya-Moe, Griffin, Wixom, etc. and even Karadoo.... i will say that i loved the feel of the blackbird uke and the no worries about wood cracking and such... it has a nice very ergonomic feel and i currently only have one uke, a KoAloha Thin-Body Tenor that i got from HWS in June 2012 and i must say my next uke will probably be a blackbird carbon tenor... i am all about supporting small local businesses and not a purist when it comes to sound by any means since i have always owned solid state amps over tubes for their consistent tone at any volume. i know people fear losing the warmth of the wood but i fear more cracks and damage to my instrument. i am a minimalist and so i wouldn't necessarily hold onto to my KoAloha and Blackbird (once i got), and i have done my fair share of UAS since i started playing the uke March 2012. Joe is an amazingly nice down to earth guy whom after a lot of insight from custom builders, research and years of fine tuning has made a pretty rad instrument! and he told me he's sold over hundreds of them so they are definitely sought after!!! i loved the feel of the blackbird tenor uke and for me getting any instrument is about the synergy and connection between you and the instrument, so you can both harmoniously make great music together... but i'm not a purist and we all like what we like... and i love the blackbird uke... just need to get my chops up to par and save many more pennies and then i'll take the plunge!!!!

1937Scott
09-27-2012, 04:08 PM
Paul, you must keep us informed when you do finally get the Blackbird.

I spoke with Karadoo some months back, I'd like a soprano, but I want metal frets and it was a significant price jump, and months to wait so I passed. I get little to no pleasure from concert size, and I start having guitar P.T.S.D. when I play a tenor. So I'm sticking with soprano & sopranino and smiling all along.

It's good to hear from you, again, let me know when you make the jump.


Scott