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View Full Version : So my daughter Facebooked that she wanted a uke...



oldrookie
06-11-2010, 08:15 AM
and her friend replied, "I"ve got one for you!" Fortunately didn't get our hopes up.

Novelty uke. 1/2 a coconut shell with a frame around it, hand made neck. Friction tuners that don't.

Still...has me wondering if a neck could be made to allow this to be played.

Hmmmm...

rasputinsghost
06-11-2010, 08:19 AM
Buy her a cheapo Makala dolphin from MGM and sidestep invasive surgery, I mean, carpentry?

oldrookie
06-11-2010, 08:22 AM
Actually, I did get her a Dolphin. Bright yellow. She loves it.

But this looks like another wacky misadventure waiting to happen.

UncleElvis
06-11-2010, 08:40 AM
WOO HOO! Go for it!

There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with wacky misadventures!

Ooh.. good name for a band! "The Wacky Misadventures"!

If you do decide to do it, do a log, so we can all share in the insanity!

kenikas
06-11-2010, 09:35 AM
If memory serves me ( as I get older it sometimes doesn't!) Mike at Mainland sells nice necks, or you could just get a Grizzly kit for about $25 and just use the neck & tuners.

pulelehua
06-11-2010, 10:56 AM
I think Wacky Misadventures is the album...................

oldrookie
06-11-2010, 11:41 AM
Will log it, if I do it. Always wanted to learn how to use a spokeshave.

Built a 21' sailing kayak with what my neighbor described as, "A screwdriver and a rake," so this seems less life threatening!

Wacky Misadventures Rock! (It does sound like a band name.)

oldrookie
06-11-2010, 12:09 PM
http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9614.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9612.jpg
With my other uke, Stagg electric

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9613.jpg
Have to get the bass finished (literally) before tackling this project
http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9618.jpg

Chris Tarman
06-11-2010, 01:40 PM
What's the worst thing that could happen? You'd make it LESS playable?

oldrookie
06-11-2010, 01:46 PM
What's the worst thing that could happen? You'd make it LESS playable?

I have firm belief, grounded in long experience, that yes... yes, I could.

UncleElvis
06-11-2010, 04:03 PM
Now THAT, mon ami, is a wacky misadventure waiting to happen!

DOO EEEET!

oldrookie
06-21-2010, 08:17 AM
Okay, so wandering through a flea market and spotted a pink First Act child-sized guitar. All the tuners were there and the neck joint pulled out from the body. Bought it for $2.00.

The wacky misadventure theme takes on new life and woobles off the starting line. Heh, heh, heh!

Chris Tarman
06-21-2010, 08:54 AM
Go go go! Yes!

TicToc
06-21-2010, 03:44 PM
Can't wait to see this!

oldrookie
06-21-2010, 05:39 PM
Oh, I think when it is done you will think, "Well, there some time I'll never get back." :)

Any way, thought you might like some pix of the donor

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9639.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9643.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9644.jpg

oldrookie
06-21-2010, 05:40 PM
This one is a bit blurry.

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9648.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9649.jpg

TicToc
06-22-2010, 05:03 AM
My friend's 6 year old brother has a black version of that, I couldn't tell you about quality, it's always out of tune when I want to jam on it. Haha, I'm sure it'll be entertaining to say the least.

Tudorp
06-22-2010, 05:20 AM
Im confused. Are you using the body to make a Uke out of it? Or you planning to rebuilt and/or upgrade it into a small guitar? Those things are kinda junk, BUT that said, a ton of fun for a kid, and it is what it is and ya can't fault them for that. They spark creative, and musical interest in kids. I bought one of those "First Act" ukuleles for my daughter (but I think they called it a guitar). It only had 4 strings, and was tiny. I bought that for her when she was about 2 years old, and she banged on that thing for years, and loved it. She would stand on the coffee table in concert many nights entertaining us. We would sit and watch her for hours instead of TV, she was a hoot. She eventually outgrew that thing at around 8 or so years old, when we bought her a small student accustic guitar which she banged on for a couple more years. She is now 13, and I gave her my Alvarez accustic, and then bought her her own Strat. She does pretty good, and also plays my Ukes too. All started with one of those crappy, fret buzzing First Acts... <grin>

Good luck, I am following this project..

oldrookie
06-22-2010, 10:10 AM
No, my plan is far more ridiculous than that. I' going to try and marry the two instruments together. The pink neck onto the half-pineapple shell uke. I'll have to figure out what tuning I want to accomplish, but the easiest will likely be as a baritone since I wouldn't have to adjust fret spacing to accomplish the job.

The theme is wacky adventure-- but it could also be "messing about with toy instruments."

oldrookie
06-22-2010, 10:12 AM
Though the body would make a decent uke. A few scratches, but otherwise sound.

Tudorp
06-22-2010, 11:50 AM
Dunno, I do the same kinda crap. I will void a warrantee before the ink dries, lol.. The wife always tells me "You just can't leave anything the way it should be can you? " hahah..No such thing as a failed project, because even the failed ones are fun, and ya learn something from even those that you can apply to the next experiment/project.. Keep us posted..

oldrookie
06-24-2010, 03:27 AM
I have disassembled the two instruments. Looks like I could do a concert scale or a tenor scale.

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9650.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9652.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9653.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Uke/DSCF9656.jpg


Trying to decide whether to add a block to the coconut shell of two inches depth to create the 17" scale, move the bridge back two inches to get the tenor scale, or to cut down the fretboard length to get to a concert scale.

Chris Tarman
06-24-2010, 01:58 PM
It would be REALLY cool if you married the pink neck to the shell body, but ALSO somehow converted the shell body into a BANJULELE! Oh! With LIGHTS flashing inside! Yeah!

UncleElvis
06-24-2010, 02:05 PM
Sir,

You are completely mad and this project is absolutely insane.

I applaud you.

oldrookie
06-24-2010, 05:26 PM
Thank you, UncleElvis. It would appear that you are a kindred spirit. I highly suspect that the finished product will make an excellent bonfire starter at the next UWC.

Oddly, Chris, this thing has a sort of banjo sound to it. Lights, eh? Hmmmm.

Chris Tarman
06-24-2010, 06:59 PM
Thank you, UncleElvis. It would appear that you are a kindred spirit. I highly suspect that the finished product will make an excellent bonfire starter at the next UWC.

Oddly, Chris, this thing has a sort of banjo sound to it. Lights, eh? Hmmmm.

There was a Rickenbacker guitar in the '60s that had a mother-of-toilet-seat looking top, and had multi-colored lights in it. They are quite rare and valuable now. I saw one a while back on Antiques Roadshow. I can't remember what the appraisal came in at, but it seems like it was around $10,000. I've seen photos of John Entwistle from The Who playing a bass version. Not the standard Rickenbacker bass, but a larger hollow-bodied model. Of course, he had a really HUGE collection of basses, so his might well have been the only light-up bass Rickenbacker ever made.

UncleElvis
06-24-2010, 07:31 PM
You CANNOT burn it!

This project is just WAY too insane to destroy! It MUST be played, no matter how awful it sounds...

Then again, if it's TRULY awful, you could always chuck a pickup in it and go electric....

which, come to think of... is even MORE insane!

OOOH! HUMBUCKERS AND STEEL STRINGS!

Ok... that may be going too far.

I really need to stop posting at 1:30am...

oldrookie
01-22-2011, 08:25 AM
This one's been on the back burner, but I'm about the turn up the heat (I think.)

Here's the bass I mentioned very early in the thread. It occupied most of my summer. http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/Peavey%20Fury/DSCF9868.jpg

I am about to go buy another child-sized guitar at Goodwill for $15 for more tuners. Think I'll convert that to a baritone for my younger daughter. It is in better shape than the donor shown above...but it should be at 7x the money.

I also pickup a nice cigar box at a flea market for $3.00 and will be making a cigar box three-string guitar. Have the oak 1x2 already purchased.

And the fun begins! Pics will follow sporadically since I also have things of actual importance to occupy my time.

The coconut uke will be first.

oldrookie
02-02-2011, 06:12 AM
And, since I am iced in, the fun begins. I have decided to get a bit more conservative than I planned. I strung the second guitar I purchased as a baritone and it sounds really good. My daughter really likes it and if I'm going to get to play I'll need another one.

So, stripped the pink neck back to bare wood (love the heat gun) and reshaped the headstock to look right with just four tuners. Marked where I need to cut the triple tuners into quad tuners and will cut those at some point today.

Will be making a neck for the coconut shell uke out of 1x2 red oak leftover from the as yet unstarted cigar box guitar project. I'll be using the tuners I cut off the triple tuner set up, drilling new holes for the screws and mounting them on the oak. Goal is to have it ready for UWC this summer.

Question for the moderator: Should I post pictures of the on-going project in this thread, or is it more appropriate to started a new post in the build forum?

lordlogan
02-02-2011, 07:13 AM
http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9614.jpg

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9612.jpg
With my other uke, Stagg electric

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9613.jpg
Have to get the bass finished (literally) before tackling this project
http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSCF9618.jpg


They sell that little coconut guy at toys r us for 12 bucks

oldrookie
02-02-2011, 09:05 AM
That's interesting. Somehow thought perhaps it was a tourist bait thing from the islands.

lordlogan
02-02-2011, 09:09 AM
http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3809293&CAWELAID=478005458

:D

oldrookie
02-02-2011, 11:34 AM
;)
Can't believe the review! Somebody is on crack! This thing isn't worth a quarter as is.

70sSanO
02-02-2011, 03:16 PM
25 years ago I was just starting to get into road biking. I had a Sears bike and I went down to a local shop and asked what upgrades I could do to improve the bike's performance. He looked at me as if I was nuts and said you have a 30lb bike with the worst componenets, you couldn't spend enough to make it even close to an entry level road bike.

Moral of the story... unless you just really enjoy working on that ukulele, you will spend more time and money and have little to show for it.

As for me, I ended up buying a Cannondale... still have it today.

John

oldrookie
02-03-2011, 01:08 AM
I'm doing this for the fun of messing about with a project. I have no illusions that either of these projects will be worth anything when I am done.

The child-sized guitar actually has a pretty good tone, let's me use steel strings and gets me into playing baritone scale for nearly no money invested.

I am also starting to build cigar box guitars and I'd rather make my "I'm just learning" mistakes on an instrument that doesn't matter much.

I find it fun trying to figure out how to make something work that shouldn't. The coconut, for instance, has a non-uniform curve to it. So I have to figure out how to get a neck securely attached to a non-uniform surface.

May never do it again, but I will have one more skill in my tool box in case I run into a cigar box that has a non-uniform shape. In fact, one of the boxes I already purchased has a chamfered top and I have to deal with that in order to build the guitar.

I'm also about to begin working on a 1974 Schwinn, so the Cannondale analogy is a good one.;)

oldrookie
02-18-2011, 09:38 PM
So back in post 15 I showed you a pink First Act Discovery guitar with a neck that had become detached. I had thought to affix the neck to the coconut shell for some odd hybrid, but then I started getting in baritone ukes.

Picked up second child's guitar and converted it to baritone uke setup and my younger daughter asked if I could get one for her. Sure, why not.

Here is the pink guitar as of tonight.

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll288/oldrookie_2008/DSC_0041.jpg

You'll see that I reshaped the headstock, cut down the triple tuners into doubles and reattached the neck. Painted it some sort of GM metallic blue, did a terrible buff job (which I will fix later) and added a bridge saddle. Still have some work to do on the saddle. Couldn't find any cheap material to make one, so I borrowed an idea from our cigar box guitar brethren and cut the head off a machine screw and laid the screw in the saddle slot. Sits a bit high, but the right size screw would work to bring the action down (plus it now has adjustable string spacing just like some Gibson guitars--well, not just like.)

Slapped on some really lousy strings I got a Target and it plays. Strings are too high yet and the strings on it are really not good, but it once again makes music.

It's a rattle can paint job because my compressor failed while I working on a bass refinish (that I am taking far more seriously than this one.)

Should be perfect for my girl to learn to play and mistreat in a dorm room next fall. If she does learn to play, then I start looking for a better instrument.

Turned into a nice 10-footer--you know, looks good from 10 feet away. Total investment, including strings...about $12.00, maybe $14.00.

Fun quotient, pretty high.

oldrookie
02-19-2011, 03:46 AM
Sorry about the grammatical errors. The time stamp says it was 9:41 when I posted, but it was closer to 2 a.m. and I was tired.