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View Full Version : Customising a uke, any tips? Any photos?



Leodhas
02-12-2011, 12:08 AM
Hello, I'm thinking about getting a cheap soprano (another dolphin) simply to customise it. I would like to do a good job and don't want it to look like crap, so has anyone got any tips, any techniques they used when customising their own? Pictures would be good.

Cheers,

Louie.

Gillian
02-12-2011, 07:51 AM
A lot depends on what image you have planned for the uke. If it is just painting a design on it, then buy a set of those model enamel paints and go for it. If you want to change the colour of the uke, you are going to be doing a lot of sanding and have a good technique for applying the spray paint smoothly.

Here's a thread (http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?42340-Transformation-from-a-Dolphin-uke-to-a-Shark-u-lele) with my photo of my sunburst orange Dolphin that I turned into a "Shark-u-lele".

Ukuleleblues
02-12-2011, 10:47 AM
I made the one in the video out of an old plastic fretboard harmony with no fretboard. Had to make a nut, put on colored tuners, moved the bridge and put in a Piezo pickup. I've seen other ones made like dogs and other cats since. I saw a pic of this somewhere and copied it. It was a fun project.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipZgvRU43do

mmorris1333
02-12-2011, 11:21 AM
I made the one in the video out of an old plastic fretboard harmony with no fretboard. Had to make a nut, put on colored tuners, moved the bridge and put in a Piezo pickup. I've seen other ones made like dogs and other cats since. I saw a pic of this somewhere and copied it. It was a fun project.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipZgvRU43do

That IS the coolest thing I have ever seen. Great job, so sweet :)

joeybug
02-12-2011, 12:10 PM
A lot depends on what image you have planned for the uke. If it is just painting a design on it, then buy a set of those model enamel paints and go for it. If you want to change the colour of the uke, you are going to be doing a lot of sanding and have a good technique for applying the spray paint smoothly.

Here's a thread (http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?42340-Transformation-from-a-Dolphin-uke-to-a-Shark-u-lele) with my photo of my sunburst orange Dolphin that I turned into a "Shark-u-lele".

I would love to have one of those for my SO. If I paid costs, and shipping (he's in US I'm in UK, so it wouldn't be major shipping for that) and a little extra for the artistic, how much would you want to do one for him?

I'd just love to have him bitten by the shark-u-lele bug and us share a passion...PM me if you're interested!

pdxuke
02-12-2011, 12:13 PM
I made the one in the video out of an old plastic fretboard harmony with no fretboard. Had to make a nut, put on colored tuners, moved the bridge and put in a Piezo pickup. I've seen other ones made like dogs and other cats since. I saw a pic of this somewhere and copied it. It was a fun project.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipZgvRU43do


Ukeblues, what kind of paint?

Ukuleleblues
02-12-2011, 02:16 PM
I used artists acrylic with a brush on the top with a clear coat over the cat, fence, moon, etc. over the top. The sides, back, neck and headstock were American Accents SUGAR PLUM. It says on the can it's for indoor, outood, wood, metal and wicker and more (more must be ukes).

I didn't worry too much about tonal purity and muffling of sound with the paint since it has a pickup. It actually sounds like other similar Harmony's without the paint I've played. I don't think the paint subdued the sound at all.

I put a clearcoat on the top to protect the acrylic image (sometimes I drool when I play :))

pdxuke
02-13-2011, 07:13 PM
Ukeblues, where did you get the multi colored tuners?

Ukuleleblues
02-14-2011, 02:01 AM
I got them on E-bay. They are Lucy's Colored Tuning Pegs. Elderly sells them. Lucy also makes coloired strings.

http://www.elderly.com/accessories/items/LPEGS.htm

Pukulele Pete
02-14-2011, 02:21 AM
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Here's some pics of my Mainland red cedar concert that I painted black. I used black lacquer and clear lacquer. I think it came out great. I only painted the top. I also cut down a banjo uke bridge and used it for a saddle. This uke had the top cracked and pushed in, I repaired it and painted it black to hide the repair.