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View Full Version : Kamaka concert - is this a fair price?



janeray1940
09-13-2010, 12:04 PM
Someone is offering to sell me their 2005 Kamaka concert for $750. Pics can be seen here (http://www.flickr.com/photos/littleblackmaryjanes/sets/72157624950434632/with/4988184954/). It's got a little ding near the soundhole (not a crack) but otherwise looks and sounds great.

I haven't seen too many of these come up for sale so I'm not certain if this is a fair price or not. I know the MSRP is $870, but this one is especially pretty and I suspect that counts for something.

Someone please talk me down off this ledge. Or encourage me to jump!

Gmoney
09-13-2010, 12:12 PM
Someone please talk me down off this ledge. Or encourage me to jump!

Jump! And sell me your Pikake Soprano to help defer the $$ of the fall. (my daughter is immensely jealous of my own KoAloha Soprano).

Personally, I am in almost the same dilemna - there's a beautiful KoAloaha Concert w/ pickup taunting me in a similar way.

Lexxy
09-13-2010, 12:12 PM
I'm preeeettyyy sure you can get a better price for an even more vintage used Kamaka.. I think.

Just saying :)

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 12:16 PM
Jump! And sell me your Pikake Soprano to help defer the $$ of the fall. (my daughter is immensely jealous of my own KoAloha Soprano).

If I jump, I will most definitely be selling my Koaloha - I'll let you know!

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 12:17 PM
I'm preeeettyyy sure you can get a better price for an even more vintage used Kamaka.. I think.

Just saying :)

That's the thing - I don't really want a "vintage" one, and that seems to be all that I ever see come up for sale in the usual places. Personally I've found vintage instruments to be more trouble than they're worth :)

Lexxy
09-13-2010, 12:22 PM
That's the thing - I don't really want a "vintage" one, and that seems to be all that I ever see come up for sale in the usual places. Personally I've found vintage instruments to be more trouble than they're worth :)

I see :) Then i guess you should jump.

(GMoney should be thanking me HAHAHAHA)

mm stan
09-13-2010, 12:25 PM
That's the thing - I don't really want a "vintage" one, and that seems to be all that I ever see come up for sale in the usual places. Personally I've found vintage instruments to be more trouble than they're worth :)

Aloha Janeray,
I like the newer kamaka concerts much better than the white labels...they have a much more
refined sound with tons of substain and resonance...the problem is the price....kinda steep..
if you can haggle it down a little it would be worth it...I'd pay $600.00 if it's in good condition.
Maybe mint $650.00 the most but it has to be extrodinary...I hope it helps, Good Luck!!
MM Stan.
P.S. Try and play it first before buying, to see how it sounds....gotta make sure if you're
popping that kind of money...bring your tuner to check...try not to get excited when
you're making the decision....

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 12:30 PM
I'd pay $600.00 if it's in good condition.

Thanks MM Stan - that's exactly what I offered the seller! He was asking $800, then gave me $750 as his best price, which I passed on. Maybe he'll counter-offer...

wickedwahine11
09-13-2010, 02:34 PM
I think I would pass at $750. If you can do it for $700 I would probably grab it...it does look beautiful, that is some gorgeous koa. How did it sound?

Ronnie Aloha
09-13-2010, 02:36 PM
I might pass on this too. The price is a little steep for a used one. The wood has some nice grain but the crack/ding by the soundhole offsets the wood for me. I would rather have a plain grained wood that was in perfect condition.

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 02:38 PM
How did it sound?

It sounded great - actually very similar to my Kamaka soprano. I had expected it to be quite different, somehow. I only wish it didn't have the factory strings on it - I'd love to try out some Aquilas on it before deciding whether or not to go through with it.

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 02:40 PM
...the crack/ding by the soundhole offsets the wood for me. I would rather have a plain grained wood that was in perfect condition.

I agree - if the seller will renegotiate the price I may reconsider.

Lexxy
09-13-2010, 03:05 PM
Pray that he'd give a better price :)

Mr Bill
09-13-2010, 03:11 PM
Hello Janeray,

Do keep in mind that not all concerts cost $870, some cost more.
Mine for example is currently being built and is significantly more expensive
but after saving for more than a year it's what I want.
Looks like nice wood on your uke. Best of luck.

Cheers.

didgeridoo2
09-13-2010, 03:22 PM
I saw this one on craigslist last week and thought the asking price at $800 to be about $150 too high. Knowing there is an imperfection, I'd probably try to get it down to $600 to even consider it. Playing it may change my mind a bit, but on paper it's a bit high. If you're having a tough time finding another that suits you, the convenience of having it in your backyard and knowing it sounds good could add value to the deal.

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 03:26 PM
Do keep in mind that not all concerts cost $870, some cost more.

Thank you, this is helpful - I didn't know that, but the seller told me he paid $1000 for it and until I saw your comment, I was a bit skeptical!

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 03:27 PM
the convenience of having it in your backyard and knowing it sounds good could add value to the deal.

This. Is killing me! Because really, how many other chances will I have in this lifetime to take a two-block walk from work and come back with a sweet little ukulele. Decisions...

didgeridoo2
09-13-2010, 03:32 PM
This. Is killing me! Because really, how many other chances will I have in this lifetime to take a two-block walk from work and come back with a sweet little ukulele. Decisions...
I need to get down your way to McCabes and check out the National resonators they have there. I was about to post that he probably overpaid a bit at $1000 since he did buy it whilst in Hawaii. I know I tend to pay a bit more for stuff when I'm there.

didgeridoo2
09-13-2010, 03:37 PM
One other thing to keep in mind if your itching for a new uke. MGM will be at the Cerritos uke fest in a couple of weeks and he'll have a great selection for you to try out all you want. There will be other vendors there as well. I think Buffalo Bros out of Orange County were there last year and so were the guys from Oceana...

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 03:44 PM
Good point about the uke fest, didgeridoo2 - I'm planning to be there.

cletus
09-13-2010, 03:46 PM
I seem to remember a couple of used concert Kamakas going for $600ish on ebay recently.
Acoustic Vibes has two new models in stock. $910 with case.

I know you want it, good luck with negotiations.

haolejohn
09-13-2010, 04:17 PM
well to put it into perspective. I paid $800 for my kamaka tenor with p/u and curly koa and it was made in 2005 with no imperfections. $600 seems like a fair price to me with the ding. I'd take the money ($600) and go try the uke out. Money talks.

Gmoney
09-13-2010, 04:39 PM
...I'd take the money ($600) and go try the uke out. Money talks.

Bro. Haolejohn makes a great point! Cash in hand & point out the ding - though to me it looks like more of a crack in the glossy finish than a thru-the-wood crack.

(and yes, I would be interested in your Pikake if/when you buy something bigger fatter mo-bettah! )

cletus
09-13-2010, 04:41 PM
I'd take the money ($600) and go try the uke out. Money talks.

Sound advice. Cash money in person can make a difference.

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 04:43 PM
I'd take the money ($600) and go try the uke out. Money talks.

I didn't even think of that - when I went to look at it today I wasn't prepared to buy, because I honestly didn't think I'd like it so much!

haolejohn
09-13-2010, 04:47 PM
I didn't even think of that - when I went to look at it today I wasn't prepared to buy, because I honestly didn't think I'd like it so much!

Just don't jump on it b/c you want it. If he seriously paid $1k for it, he bought it at a tourist shop. That uke is pretty but that is an awful lot for a damaged uke. I bought a Mele solid koa with abalone inlay uke once that retailed for $1000 and it had a repaired crack for $400. I really don't think anyone will pay what he wants for it. Patience is the key...unless you got the extra moneya nd you just want it.

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 04:49 PM
...unless you got the extra money

Ha, extra money - no such thing! :)

He bought it at Hilo Guitars.

Gmoney
09-13-2010, 05:29 PM
He bought it at Hilo Guitars.

IGNORE stupid statements following from Uker suffering from KoAloha fever!

Interesting.... they aren't on KoAloha's dealers list & Hilo Guitars doesn't list KoAloha on their site at all either, though they do list the other "K" brands.

Take $600, offer him $550 & let him weasel the extra $50 from you because of the ding.

haolejohn
09-13-2010, 05:47 PM
Interesting.... they aren't on KoAloha's dealers list & Hilo Guitars doesn't list KoAloha on their site at all either, though they do list the other "K" brands.

Take $600, offer him $550 & let him weasel the extra $50 from you because of the ding.
Glen, it is a kamaka. Not a koaloha. you got koaloha fever worse than me, i think.

cletus
09-13-2010, 06:05 PM
you got koaloha fever

Are there meds for that?

mm stan
09-13-2010, 06:42 PM
Aloha Janeray,
One last note, Kamaka concerts don't sell for a thousand bucks....certainly not now..875.00 is MSRP now..
and five years ago..alot cheaper, unless he got ripped off...
For the crack, it should be negotiable...drop 150.00-200.00 asking price to be fixed...
I think this guy may be taking advantage of you, let him know you know you're more
knowledgeable than he is.....then open up discussions again....if not, say see ya!! Good Luck!!! MM Stan..
P.S. a damaged or fixed ukulele loses it's value considerably, because it loses it's appeal to many...

Huckleberry
09-13-2010, 06:56 PM
I have a Kamaka Concert and as far as I'm concerned it plays and sounds better than my KoAloha Tenor. Looking at the picture of the Kamaka your contemplating it looks like Curly Koa which makes it more valuable than the the standard Koa. Mine is a 2009 model and was in excess of $800. Once you hear it with Worth Clear Light strings, there is no turning back.

Good luck on your decision, I'm sure you will make the right one.

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 07:01 PM
it looks like Curly Koa which makes it more valuable than the the standard Koa

That's what the seller tells me. Is it just a matter of appearance, or does this make the sound better somehow? Even with the factory strings on it, it certainly did sound good.

And I don't doubt that your Kamaka Concert trumps your Koaloha Tenor - I've played my Koaloha only a handful of times since my Kamaka Soprano came my way. The Koaloha is a perfectly fine uke, I just prefer the Kamaka.

janeray1940
09-13-2010, 07:03 PM
I think this guy may be taking advantage of you

Thanks MM Stan (and to everyone else who has offered input), I'm not going to let that happen. My instinct was to walk away and stay away unless the price comes down a bit, and this whole discussion has been very helpful in that I feel like I'm doing the right thing.

mm stan
09-13-2010, 07:09 PM
That's what the seller tells me. Is it just a matter of appearance, or does this make the sound better somehow? Even with the factory strings on it, it certainly did sound good.

And I don't doubt that your Kamaka Concert trumps your Koaloha Tenor - I've played my Koaloha only a handful of times since my Kamaka Soprano came my way. The Koaloha is a perfectly fine uke, I just prefer the Kamaka.
Aloha Janeray,
Actually all the fancy Koa is cometics......you get a better sound out of the plain straight Koa....Alot of ukers buy with their eyes
and not with their ears....retailers are just asking for the curly stuff because that's what sells....And I'm a Kamaka Luv-r
too....My kamaka soprano has tons of substain and resonance with the nylguts and wound G string for me... MM Stan...
Actually I took another look at your pictures of the uke, and it looks in the picture as the standard ones, who's he fooling..
must be himself and not us...

Gmoney
09-13-2010, 07:12 PM
Glen, it is a kamaka. Not a koaloha. you got koaloha fever worse than me, i think.

Apparently so! Dang... I got to go take my meds... :)

Pippin
09-13-2010, 08:33 PM
You can get brand new in that price range. I'd skip this, it's not a good buy.

experimentjon
09-13-2010, 09:48 PM
The price is high, IMO. Closer to $500 or $600 would be more appropriate for a uke in that condition.

Hah, about a year ago, I was offered a Kamaka Concert, 2008 or 2009 production model in like new condition with hard case for $400. Divorce sale. I was pinching pennies back then, and was really looking for a tenor. So I didn't buy it. Of course, in retrospect, that was a mistake, and I should have bought it as an investment that would instantly appreciate about 50%. Oh well....

Back to your case, the price is just a bit high for me. But if it really sings to you, and you bond with THAT instrument, you should strongly consider buying it. Because another Kamaka, even if it is at a lower price, might not quite be the same to you, since they are all handmade. I will admit that there are some instruments in my collection that I just keep going back to--even though they weren't the most expensive or the nicest-- just because they sing to me.

janeray1940
09-14-2010, 04:32 AM
Closer to $500 or $600 would be more appropriate for a uke in that condition...

...you bond with THAT instrument, you should strongly consider buying it.

$500 even - okay, this gives me a bit of perspective. And outside of it being especially pretty, I didn't have an immediate bond with it - it sounded so similar to the soprano that I already have. I think I'm more tempted by the prospect of 16 frets instead of the 14 that I already have than anything else!

70sSanO
09-14-2010, 05:12 AM
Most of the replies indicate that the price is too high.

A couple of things... Does it come with a hard shell case?

Did the person tell you how the ding happened?

Does the person have a receipt for the amount paid?

How well do you know this person?

Where that ding is located is kinda strange. Usually you'll find them more toward the outside edge of a soundboard where the ukulele bumps into something, or on the headstock. Underneath the strings is a little odd.

If you don't really know the person, you have no idea if anything is true.

Just my opinion.

John

janeray1940
09-14-2010, 05:23 AM
If you don't really know the person, you have no idea if anything is true.

Thanks John, I don't know this person at all, which is part of why I had my doubts.

It doesn't come with a case - the seller had it hanging on his wall. He said the ding happened when he dropped his cell phone on it. It didn't occur to me to ask to see a receipt.

70sSanO
09-14-2010, 05:50 PM
I don't think I would ask to see a receipt.

But if I had spent $1000 on a ukulele when I was in Hawaii and brought it back without a case, I'd probably have all the paperwork, maybe the hang tag if it came with one; especially if I thought it would help to sell it one day.

How's this story... I used to have a 2007 KoAloha soprano that I bought at Larry's in Kauai. I always stay at the Islander that is just down the road. Great place to stay. I paid $429 for the ukulele with the case. It cost me a little more, but I got the best one they had.

I'm not saying the person is not being truthful, because I really used to have a 2007 KoAloha soprano; but I got it from MGM and paid $325 with the case. There is a guy at work who owns a condo on Kauai, and he always stays at the Islander when his condo is rented out. He goes over there at least 4-5 times a year and he did take a picture of Larry's and gave it to me.

Just food for thought.

John

janeray1940
09-14-2010, 07:40 PM
Thanks to all of you for your thoughts on this! I've decided to definitely pass on this one. It's a very pretty uke, but I realized that I was being influenced more by its good looks than by anything else - and we all know that looks alone shouldn't be the sole basis for forming a new relationship :)

haolejohn
09-16-2010, 03:51 PM
Thanks to all of you for your thoughts on this! I've decided to definitely pass on this one. It's a very pretty uke, but I realized that I was being influenced more by its good looks than by anything else - and we all know that looks alone shouldn't be the sole basis for forming a new relationship :)

Unless we are shallow:)

wahineilikea
09-22-2010, 03:43 PM
You've already made your decision, but just FYI, from the photos this is obviously a curly koa Kamaka - and those add on $360 for AAA grade koa and $450 for AAAA. So the price for this uke new today would be $1230 to $1320. I'd say the seller's quote of a $1,000 price in 2005 is probably about right. I think $800 is probably a pretty good price, actually - without the scratch you'd expect to pay at least a couple hundred dollars more for it.