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View Full Version : Kudos to KoAloha



wickedwahine11
03-08-2012, 10:43 AM
I know we always hear stories around the UU parts about how great the KoAloha spirit is, but I just wanted to chime in with my recent experience. I just bought a crown bridge tenor and since I am completely incapable of playing while standing (and some would argue barely capable while sitting), I needed to get either a strap button or input jack on the uke. While I like the uke leash for my Pineapple Sunday, or while sitting, I prefer a more traditional strap when playing a tenor and standing.

So I tweeted that I wasn't sure which route to take, and Paul Okami advised I should opt for the input. Since I already have a Mi-Si in my Kamaka, I bought the new LR Baggs 5-0 for my KoAloha.

I then mentioned to him that I was going to be in Oahu for a day, and while I knew they were crazy busy, was there any way I could make an appt. to get it installed. He had me speak with Brian, who kindly accommodated me and told me he would do it for me.

So a couple of days ago (in crazy pouring rain), I took the bus out to KoAloha. Brian warmly greeted me and told me he would call when he was finished. I also mentioned it had a tiny intonation issue at the 12th fret, and that the A string tuner was a little tight. He told me he would look at both for me while he had it.

Before I left, Papa and Mama KoAloha came in, and Papa smiled and told me, "I remember you!" I was shocked as I had done a tour of the factory about a year ago, and that was the only time we met. I told him why I was there, and that I loved my tenor and Pineapple Sunday and he said that made his day - what a sweet man.

A few hours later, Brian called to say my uke was ready and I headed back out to pick it up. When I got there, he told me that I didn't need to pay for the install as they wanted to thank me for my loyalty to the KoAloha brand. I was thrilled and gave him a big hug.

I can't say enough about the KoAloha customer service and ohana. They truly go above and beyond. I debated about mentioning this, as I thought they might not want me spreading it for fear everyone will expect free service. I also felt a little guilty as I may end up needing to sell my Pineapple Sunday next month. But I decided to post this anyway as it is just one more example of why, when anyone asks which of the K brands they should buy, my first recommendation will always be KoAloha. I like the history of Kamaka, and the beauty of the Kanileas, but you just can't beat the customer service of KoAloha.

PS - he also fixed my A string tuner, and the intonation is spot on. He did adjust the action a bit (it is now a tad higher on the higher frets), but he did an amazing job. Though I'm not going to lie, I just saw a stunning figured koa KoAloha tenor in Maui today, and if I hadn't just had my input put in, I might have been tempted to buy it and flip mine. It was just that pretty. ;)

krisseye
03-08-2012, 10:51 AM
Thanks for sharing. They're definitely tops on my list if I get another uke because of stories like yours.

Ronnie Aloha
03-08-2012, 11:00 AM
Buy it! You can never have too many KoAlohas! Did you mention to them where you got your tenor? LOL! I love that family.

wickedwahine11
03-08-2012, 11:05 AM
But it! You can never have too many KoAlohas! Did you mention to them where you got your tenor? LOL! I love that family.

Aw, yeah, I should have said where it came from. My bad! And ha, I wish I could buy that other one, it is stunning, but I may have to sell my PS to finance something else so another tenor would really put me behind the 8 ball.

Trinimon
03-08-2012, 11:44 AM
Awesome story! Guess their warranty IS better than the weather. :)
I definitely have a KoAloha uke in my future that's for sure.

janeray1940
03-08-2012, 12:01 PM
I'm torn right now between a Kamaka longneck figure-8 soprano, and a Koaloha longneck pineapple soprano. This story may have just nudged me slightly more toward the Koaloha :)

Howie1947
03-08-2012, 12:11 PM
Now that is what I call "Customer Service" !

lawaia
03-08-2012, 12:19 PM
It's not just the warranty that's great about KoAloha. The entire Okami family will instantly make you feel like a member of that family when you meet them. They all have such a great and generous spirit! They had a HUGE impact on my life when I went there for a factory tour. And they probably had no idea. So humble. So generous and loving. I have much respect for them.

coolkayaker1
03-08-2012, 01:59 PM
This is a genuine story, and good to know.

dkcrown
03-08-2012, 02:32 PM
That is a great story Staci, but not surprising. KoAloha is a company that "gets it." I have had similar experiences with them.

erivel
03-08-2012, 03:51 PM
Great story, great company!

chrimess
03-08-2012, 03:52 PM
This is so awesome. Brian is turning into a luthier also.

jbem
03-08-2012, 04:04 PM
This is really great to hear. I just bought a KoAloha and I love it. Its also great to hear stories from people who have had such great experiences with the company.

Nickie
03-08-2012, 04:58 PM
Wow, that's a great story. I am constanly amazed by wonderful stories like this. It makes me proud to be part of the Ukulele Community!

Ronnie Aloha
03-08-2012, 05:49 PM
This is so awesome. Brian is turning into a luthier also.

Dude, Brian rocks as a luthier. You should see his custom uke that he made himself. The Okamis let each of their employees make their own uke and could pick whatever wood they wanted in the shop (adding to their awesomeness.) He does all the repair work too and if you saw what he did to mine after I dropped it you would be amazed!

Tigeralum2001
03-08-2012, 07:27 PM
My only complaint about KoAloha- they never update their website. The last update was April 3, 2011. I would love to know what they are up to, what they are working on, and just how things are going in general...

tigersister
03-08-2012, 07:44 PM
It's good to know that companies like this still exist. Thank you, wickedwahine11, for sharing your wonderful experience.

mm stan
03-08-2012, 08:17 PM
I called and asked to buy a nut for my koAloha Concert and Mama KoAloha sent me one free. wow they truely have the aloha spirit:)
Last Week I was there, ant they are so nice and welcoming Met Gordon Marks and they introduced him to me...and went to Zippys around the Corner and bought me a couple zip packs..onolicious

consitter
03-08-2012, 08:43 PM
As always, I invite those who haven't read it, to read the story in the link in my signature area. It is my experience with the beautiful folks at KoAloha.

Terry Kinakin
03-08-2012, 09:04 PM
I'm joining you in my appreciation for Pops KoAloha and the entire crew. They are more than just a brand of uke there..." Salt of the Earth" comes to mind...One of the best experiences of my life was meeting them.

Plainsong
03-08-2012, 09:18 PM
If I ever get to Hawaii, which first? Visit the beach, visit Koaloha, visit the beach...visit Koaloha...

Koaloha, easy. :D

consitter
03-08-2012, 09:28 PM
Agreed plainsong. There are beaches all over the world, but only one KoAloha.

guitharsis
03-08-2012, 11:32 PM
What a nice story, Staci! Thanks for sharing.

dkcrown
03-09-2012, 01:36 AM
Dude, Brian rocks as a luthier. You should see his custom uke that he made himself. The Okamis let each of their employees make their own uke and could pick whatever wood they wanted in the shop (adding to their awesomeness.) He does all the repair work too and if you saw what he did to mine after I dropped it you would be amazed!

Agreed Ronnie. Brian's custom is beautiful. When I talked to him about it a couple of years ago, all he would talk about were the mistakes he made on it. He is sooo modest. He did the setup on my PS for me, eliminating a buzzing problem.

chrimess
03-09-2012, 03:01 AM
Hi Ronnie,
see, that is the thing, he is so modest, you would not know all these things since they do not brag about it...

Wish I could afford a black line! THey just made three available last week.


Dude, Brian rocks as a luthier. You should see his custom uke that he made himself. The Okamis let each of their employees make their own uke and could pick whatever wood they wanted in the shop (adding to their awesomeness.) He does all the repair work too and if you saw what he did to mine after I dropped it you would be amazed!