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widespread
03-10-2011, 05:20 AM
I see Duane Heilman has a few discounted ukes for sale on Flea Market Music's markeplace page. Has anyone played one of his soprano ukes, either the mahogany or the koa? I already have a mahogany Hamano, so I'm leaninng toward the koa.

I would appreciate any feedback from folks who have first-hand experience with Duane's ukes.

Thanks,
David

WestPhillyUke
03-10-2011, 06:06 AM
I've never played one but have heard good things. They look like a heck of a deal at those prices. All-solid woods...

GX9901
03-10-2011, 06:25 AM
Whoa, he's really discounting those ukes! I have never played a Black Bear, but his reputation is similar to the likes of Dave Means (Glyph), Mike DaSilva, Dave Talsma, etc. I would grab one of those immediately if I played sopranos much at all. $300 for a Black Bear ukulele almost sounds insane to me.

pat rock
03-10-2011, 07:42 AM
Thanks for posting! off to check it out!

widespread
03-10-2011, 08:21 AM
I just called Duane. He said that he had only two koas, and has had a bunch of e-mails this morning, so only the first two firm offers will can get those. He apparently has more of the mahogany, and it sounded like you could still get one of those.

WestPhillyUke
03-10-2011, 10:25 AM
Whoa, he's really discounting those ukes! I have never played a Black Bear, but his reputation is similar to the likes of Dave Means (Glyph), Mike DaSilva, Dave Talsma, etc. I would grab one of those immediately if I played sopranos much at all. $300 for a Black Bear ukulele almost sounds insane to me.

You're not thinking of Bear Creek are you? Black Bears are supposed to be good, but he's had these on his website for awhile -- I think they were more like $400-$450 before...but a Glyph certainly wouldn't sit around at that price -- or 3x that price.

GX9901
03-10-2011, 11:11 AM
You're not thinking of Bear Creek are you? Black Bears are supposed to be good, but he's had these on his website for awhile -- I think they were more like $400-$450 before...but a Glyph certainly wouldn't sit around at that price -- or 3G that price.

Yes, I was talking about Black Bear. Now I understand these ones are very basic, but the builder is still Duane Heilman, so I would expect them to be great player ukes. Again, I don't have personal experience with Black Bear ukes, but people who have seem to hold them in as high regard as a number of other custom ukulele builders.

widespread
03-10-2011, 11:59 AM
I got one of the Koas! Sweet! I'll follow up in a few weeks with my impressions.

Hippie Dribble
03-10-2011, 12:07 PM
he's a great guy and a fabulous builder. I had him make me a custom concert scale uke a couple of years ago. It is so sweet. Low action, very smooth to play. These ukes are $150 discounted...1/3 off original pricetag. His necks tend to be a lttle wider than most standard ukes . Some people like this, others not. I couldn't recommend his work highly enough. he's not just a uke builder, the guy is an artist in the true sense of the word.

check out his website and gallery here: http://www.blackbearukuleles.net/

Doc_J
04-04-2011, 12:04 PM
Duane has some new koa sopranos for sale ($350) on fmm.

They look pretty nice.

http://www.fleamarketmusic.com/marketplace/default.asp

Hippie Dribble
04-04-2011, 01:14 PM
Duane has some new koa sopranos for sale ($350) on fmm.

They look pretty nice.

http://www.fleamarketmusic.com/marketplace/default.asp

yeah Doc, these ones look a fair bit nicer than the last lot and only $50 more. I wish I had waited for these actually. I'd grab one in a second had I not bought one from the last batch. I am actually off to pick the uke up later today so will post some pics and first impressions here later...

To me, you just can't beat that price for the quality of uke Duane builds.

marymac
04-04-2011, 02:09 PM
+1 for all the positive comments for Duane's ukes.

I have an all spruce concert he built in 2006 and it's one of my most favorite players. The sound is fantastic on it. I highly recommend him.