View Full Version : Ouch! Dropped Uke - Repair needed.

03-25-2012, 07:45 AM
Help! My Koaloha soprano slid off my lap and onto a hardwood floor. It hit on the bottom edge of the lower bout. A two-inch long sliver broke away and now there's a narrow hole along the edge and a crack along the seam past the hole. The sliver fits back but not invisibly. There's a hairline gap where it fits along the edge. Can I make an invisible repair with glue and filler? Or should I take it to a pro? I'm fearless about the glue but nervous about retouching the finish. What do you think? What are my options?

03-25-2012, 09:17 AM
Do some research on Frets.com, this URL should take you to the "Items for Luthiers" part of the site. http://www.frets.com/FRETSPages/pagelist.html#Luthier

Your decision about doing it yourself and taking it to a pro is going to come down to if you want it to look as pristine as possible (and how much you're willing to spend to get it there) or how "loved" of a look you're willing to live with. One of my high school students dropped a cheapie I keep in the classroom with about the same damage you're talking about and I did the repairs myself just to learn. Definitely no Koaloha, so I didn't mind that it wouldn't look as pretty. It also had a satin finish so I used hot hide glue for the repair(s) (again, do your homework on frets.com) and some Tru Oil for the finish. It came out much better than I thought myself capable of. With a Koaloha I'd probably take it to a professional. Hope this helps guide you a little.


03-25-2012, 09:22 AM
Ouch, you have my sympathies, I'm sorry to hear it.

Check out this thread. A fellow UU member dropped their KoAloha and they did an amazing job repairing it at the factory. You can jump to the last page to see the before and after photos.


If it were mine, I would absolutely send it to KoAloha. I had a seam separate on my Kamaka and sent it to them to repair. Even though it wasn't 100 percent successful, I felt better having its builders repair it. And the KoAloha guys worked magic on Ronnie's uke, it was a bad injury and came back flawless.

03-25-2012, 09:26 AM

After looking at those pics, definitely send it to Koaloha!

03-25-2012, 11:20 AM
If it were a cheap uke, I'd say try it yourself. Since it's a Koaloha, I'd either have the factory do it for find a competent local luthier.

03-25-2012, 12:13 PM
Thanks everyone! Great feedback. You've saved me from myself! I'm going to send it back to Koaloha. It will be a good excuse to start practicing on my tenor. I'll post before and after pictures here later.