View Full Version : The Bowley - really taken with this uke

10-27-2010, 08:48 AM
ANyone know much about these ukes - for sale at Southern Uke store for about £120 - all solid wood and a finish to absolutely die for.

I want!


10-27-2010, 12:42 PM
I remember coming across this uke on the Southern Ukulele Store site a little while ago, and agree it looks great. Had a search about and couldn“t come up with any reviews or videos. Would love to hear if it lives up to its looks and price. Personally i think it would look even better with friction tuners.:)

10-27-2010, 11:37 PM
Agreed. Frictions would finish it perfectly. All solid for £120 is pretty good value I think

10-28-2010, 12:01 AM
I got the chance to try out the prototype at Hollesley in the summer. All spruce, including the neck I believe, and thus feather-light. This meant I really noticed the weight of the geared tuners.

Plays nicely, sounds very good (bright but not hollow). The satin finish was very matt, which I thought made the sunburst looks a bit muddy, but it's still a pretty instrument.

At that price it's a very good buy. If I got one I'd replace the tuners though.

10-28-2010, 02:30 AM
Lamar - I'm sorry??

ProfChris - they are being sold as all solid mahog

10-28-2010, 05:03 AM
Pauljmuk, on the Southern Uke store web site they state solid Spruce. Elsewhere ive seen them advertised as Mahogany.

10-28-2010, 11:20 AM
The one I played was definitely spruce, and Paul of Southern Ukulele Store knows his stuff.

I think some sellers may be deceived by the fact that the back and sides are stained brown - but as soon as you pick it up you know it can't be mahogany because it's so light.

I think it's the best uke I've played at that price point. Probably the main reason I didn't buy one (tuners apart, and they can be replaced) is that I've got some spruce and aim to make my own.

10-28-2010, 02:05 PM
hmm interesting - the southern uke site lists it as spruce, but the trade website for the uke (ie not the site selling to the public) lists it as mahog.

Confusing, but im sure you are right Chris.

Still, its cheap for all solid, and I suppose in line with ukes like Bruko.

Do wish it had frictions though

10-28-2010, 08:29 PM
I have played the one at The Southern Ukulele Store. Definitely all spruce (except the fretboard!) looks really nice under the matt brown finish. Really fantastic sound for the money, better than some much more expensive ukes in fact. But, geared tuners on a soprano? Absolutely crazy, would be much nicer with a good set of friction pegs.

10-28-2010, 11:38 PM
I love it! Really like the headstock too, kinda like a banjo uke headstock. Please report if you take the plunge, I need a new soprano and this is certainly a contender!...

06-17-2011, 02:13 AM
I know this is an older thread, but I recently got the chance to play a B&M Bowley.

I never even considered it before walking into the shop, but for the money it's a real winner, which is why after a long time spent playing almost every uke in the store (Southern Ukulele) I ended up buying one!

All solid spruce, Aquila strings, made in China.

It really is VERY light but it has a fantastic sound. The funky headstock, vintage styling and matte stained look really appealed to me too. There were a couple of very slight finishing issues but nothing major and certainly nothing to complain about on a uke of this price.

Yes it's got geared tuners, but I am too heavy handed to use friction tuners effectively! lol

06-17-2011, 04:17 AM
I was playing around with this one in my local shop recently, seemed nice but as I couldn't find any reviews (as someone else stated) I wasn't sure. I think its quite an old brand originally isn't it? I'll have to go back for another look. The price certainly does seem good!
Cheers -F