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View Full Version : My Fat Bottomed Girl - Compass Rose



KentSantaBarbara
03-07-2012, 08:18 PM
Bob Meyers and i have been talking behind the scenes. Both of us have been eagering waiting for our Compass Rose ukuleles. And i am not for showing off or "look what i got", but i do read the UU forum religiously, and i appreciate when other UUers post their ukuleles and show pictures.

I received my concert CR (spruce top/cherry back and sides) a few days ago. Mine was also almost two months late. Compass Rose ukes is a small shop, and other than my nail biting antiicpation, i was patient and understood that a small business often bites off more than they can chew. And i know it is hard to operate a small business during the holidays and to maintain quality folks as your orders ebb and flow.

The tone is incredible. All notes up and down the neck are butter. And the sustain is awesome. It just keeps on ringing.

Initially i was having trouble adjusting to the look. The lower bout seems soooo large visually, and with the light colored spruce top it seems to accentuate it. But i keep reminding myself that I am all about the sound. And, I am getting use to this "fat bottomed girl". She sounds and looks beautiful.

It came strung high G, and i had asked for low G. I also had asked for gloss, and i got satin. I went back and forth with myself on the satin/gloss scenario and wasn't sure, well, fate says satin. And she is pretty. I changed out the strings immediately, i don't like high G, i've tried to like it, but it seems so limiting. I put Aquila's with a low G, and the G and C are wound. The sound is full bodied.

Sound sample will be coming in the future. 3484934848

mds725
03-07-2012, 08:36 PM
Congratulations! That is one awe-inspiring ukulele!. I've heard nothing but good things about Compass Rose ukuleles, and the ones I've played at Gryphon Stringed Instruments have been a delight. I've even signed up for Rick Turner's Build-an-Ukulele-From-a-Kit class in April.

Your sound sample ought to be "Baby Got Back" ("I like big bouts and I cannot lie....") Enjoy!

SuzukHammer
03-07-2012, 08:44 PM
Wow, the pics look good. More please. I look forward to the sound sample. So much is said about the Compass Rose and that makes me curious. I want to play a few. Make sure you bring it to UWC.

Hippie Dribble
03-07-2012, 08:45 PM
congratulations Kent, it's stunning. Wonderful craftsmanship! I do think it's rather strange though to have explicitly ordered a gloss finish and to receive it with satin. I'm not sure I'd be happy at all about that, but hey, as long as she makes your rockin world go round mate, that's the important bit. Enjoy brother and thanks for the gorgeous pics!!!

Doc_J
03-08-2012, 01:34 AM
It just seems to me that satin finished ukes have less finish thickness and more sound, in general (there are always exceptions). And that is good trade off.

My CR is satin too, and that's just the way I like it.

Congrats Kent. Can't wait to hear your sound sample.

Dan Uke
03-08-2012, 07:19 AM
I likes yours much more as it has 14 frets before hitting the body.

Kimosabe
03-08-2012, 07:35 AM
I'm a chubby chaser also and love my Ohana Vita Uke. More to hold.

Drew Bear
03-08-2012, 07:41 AM
I do think it's rather strange though to have explicitly ordered a gloss finish and to receive it with satin. I'm not sure I'd be happy at all about that...
Same here. But I have read reports of this type of mistake happening with other custom builders. That said, I'm pretty sure a gloss finish requires a bit more work, so it wouldn't be out of line to request a discounted price.

I'm also curious how the "14 frets to the body" change affects the overall sound. It's hard to tell from photos, but did the bottom get bigger along with the fretboard change? The headstock logo & rosette decal has also changed. Here's build #285 or 288 from 2011:

http://i861.photobucket.com/albums/ab171/bearthio/Ukulele/4901414be86c3b7fd7da49a678a1661c.jpg
http://i861.photobucket.com/albums/ab171/bearthio/Ukulele/CRnew.jpg

Scott S.
03-08-2012, 07:53 AM
Really nice! I'm intrigued about the larger bottom. I've been thinking about that regarding a custom I am hoping to have built. Personally I'm a fan of the satin finish.

KentSantaBarbara
03-08-2012, 08:54 PM
Good observations DrewBear, my head stock number says "12 289". And it is 14 frets to the body. But close inspection of the head badge and rosette decals with the picture you posted from Elderly, the decals appear to be the same, maybe its the lighting, maybe the gold accent is less pronounced on my gal. And i can't really tell if the lower bout is bigger on my "Fat Bottomed Girl" or if its the light colored wood and the lighting. Her measurements are 6.25 - 5 - 8.375" and she's 23.375" tall. And her voice rings with sweet music to my ears.

SuzukHammer
03-08-2012, 09:59 PM
It would seem that without a cutaway, I couldn't reach those frets on the cantilivered fretboard. Its a big bottom that extends up to the first roll above her waist.

Drew Bear
03-09-2012, 06:21 AM
...the decals appear to be the same, maybe its the lighting, maybe the gold accent is less pronounced on my gal. And i can't really tell if the lower bout is bigger on my "Fat Bottomed Girl" or if its the light colored wood and the lighting.
I think you're right, I can't really see any gold accents on your uke from the photo. The angle of the photo also can play tricks on the eye.

I can't find the link, but I vaguely recall some discussion about how changing the fretboard attachment point from 12th to 14th fret affects other design factors. The bridge placement changes and affects the internal bracing and overall soundboard behavior. Or something like that.

When I first saw photos of a Compass Rose uke a few months ago, my gut reaction was I didn't like the way it looked. I've since read more about Rick's design philosophy and listened repeatedly to MGM's sound samples. That has affected my perception of the aesthetics of CR ukes to the point where it is at the top of my sub-$1500 "I Want" list.

keliiyama
03-11-2012, 05:20 PM
Aloha! You gotta that BEAUTIFUL A.G. model and Martin 3. And from what I've read your on the Devine wait list. But you probably got to get your hands on a Compass Rose. Rick Tuner is one of the best luthiers in the planet. Also he is very reasonable. I have a salvaged Redwood top, Cocobolo back and sides coming in. It has a Spanish cedar neck, 14 frets to the body, ebony binding, his cantilevered neck, antique Gotoh tuners, high-gloss, NO sound hole on top, larger side port of side. All for $1900!!!!! Yes he could charge more but he doesn't. He's only made about 300 so far. My ukulele should be finished by next week (he is two months behind:)! Anyways, you've given me uke-envy. Keep jamming!

southcoastukes
03-11-2012, 05:32 PM
Your sound sample ought to be "Baby Got Back" ("I like big bouts and I cannot lie....")

That would be great! I can hear it now - stanza of rap: "I like big bouts ..." - alternating with stanza of fast-paced uke chunk/strum. Rick, if you're watching this go for it!

The big bouts are a great design feature. We do them on our 4-string guitars and also our concerts. Our concerts, however, are a bit more refined, just a taste of the big bout instead of the whole lolapalooza.

In our case, the shorter / wider body gives more frets to the neck - with this one, it should be a (to borrow a term) a Sound Monster!

keliiyama
03-11-2012, 05:34 PM
Good observations DrewBear, my head stock number says "12 289". And it is 14 frets to the body. But close inspection of the head badge and rosette decals with the picture you posted from Elderly, the decals appear to be the same, maybe its the lighting, maybe the gold accent is less pronounced on my gal. And i can't really tell if the lower bout is bigger on my "Fat Bottomed Girl" or if its the light colored wood and the lighting. Her measurements are 6.25 - 5 - 8.375" and she's 23.375" tall. And her voice rings with sweet music to my ears.

Rick changed his body shape just recently. He's modeling it after the Gibson Super 400. Also he just started putting 14 frets to the body. Also about the decals I think your is silver and black. Rick and Jake Maclay try to match the color of the sound board. So if your getting a Koa uke, you'll get the gold and black. If lighter soundboard like spruce, black and silver. Hope this helps.

Drew Bear
03-11-2012, 05:46 PM
Someone pointed out to me that Kent's CR is a Concert, while the photo I posted of the one from Elderly is a Tenor.