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pdxuke
03-05-2011, 12:07 PM
I have made a momentous decision.

I have some vintage ukes and I love every single one of them because they all sound different, even though they are all mahogany sopranos.

But, two of them have action issues that make them unpleasant for me to play. So, I've decided to use my UAS fund and have the action professionally adjusted.

I'm bringing sets of Martin strings, and my Ohana SK35 as the model for what I want (action was PERFECT OUT OF THE BOX!) to the luthier to do an exact set-up with the strings I like. $55 per instrument, and you know what, I'm guessing it will be worth it.

I'll keep you posted. This may not be a new concept for some of you, but it is to me. My Martin guitar was perfect from the day I got it 44 years ago, and I never had the action adjusted. I'm thinking with the ukes, it will be like having a vintage suit altered by a tailor to fit my body! I'm jazzed!

RyanMFT
03-05-2011, 12:48 PM
Cool, I look forward to hear about the changes! I think it is a wise decision so you can really enjoy them.

mm stan
03-05-2011, 03:44 PM
Aloha Thom,
Let us know how the setups work our for you...keep us informed...Happy Strummings.. MM Stan

Harold O.
03-05-2011, 04:37 PM
The prospect of setting up a ukulele to play best is daunting to the uninitiated. Fortunately, we are not without resources. In my case, I have Pete Howlett coming to my Los Angeles woodshop (http://www.westhillswood.com/ukulelebuildingclass.html) to conduct two ukulele building courses. In the process of doing this, he is also offering a special seminar on setting up, adjusting, and maintaining an instrument.

Not everyone has "access" to a luthier and they can be a secluded bunch to be sure. But when one surfaces, have them show you a trick or two. Or take advantage of build class near you.

pdxuke
03-05-2011, 05:06 PM
The prospect of setting up a ukulele to play best is daunting to the uninitiated. Fortunately, we are not without resources. In my case, I have Pete Howlett coming to my Los Angeles woodshop (http://www.westhillswood.com/ukulelebuildingclass.html) to conduct two ukulele building courses. In the process of doing this, he is also offering a special seminar on setting up, adjusting, and maintaining an instrument.

Not everyone has "access" to a luthier and they can be a secluded bunch to be sure. But when one surfaces, have them show you a trick or two. Or take advantage of build class near you.

I think this is good advice. I do want to learn setup. A class later--playable ukes now! Luthier, here I come! :-)

olgoat52
03-05-2011, 06:44 PM
I think this is good advice. I do want to learn setup. A class later--playable ukes now! Luthier, here I come! :-)

It is a great idea, but don't be too disappointed if they can't do what you want for what you want to spend. Vintage instruments especially have a lot of factors to consider from sunken tops to changing neck angles to previous poorly done work. Sometimes you just can't tweak it to get it playing it's best. Sometimes it takes a lot more work.

I hope in your case, it is just saddle, nut and fret tuning to give you what you want.

As perfect as your Martin may seem, it too could probably benefit from a pro setup. Every instrument I ever bought got setup after purchase and everyone of them needed it. A factory is a factory and Martin is no exception. They are far from perfect. Maybe better than some but they all need some help.

Good Luck. I hope it works out great!

pdxuke
03-05-2011, 08:30 PM
As perfect as your Martin may seem, it too could probably benefit from a pro setup. Every instrument I ever bought got setup after purchase and everyone of them needed it. A factory is a factory and Martin is no exception. They are far from perfect. Maybe better than some but they all need some help.

Good Luck. I hope it works out great!

The Martin was set up by the shop when I purchased it. I'm satisfied with it.