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kalmario
10-09-2012, 05:35 PM
hey all

off to Hawaii very soon, 40 days and counting.

have heaps planned but need a little advice

I have roughly 4 hours to go ukulele hunting while in oahu, going outside of honolulu is going to be pushing it, so a trip to hawaiian music supply is out of the question, also its on a monday, so a kamaka tour is also a no-go.

i have a budget of around US$1000, but don't want to go over that, and am looking for a tenor. (i have saved for ages and are down to only 1 uke for the record, and thats home made so it doesn't count) previously my best uke was a kala mango tenor, so i'd liek an upgrade from here.

so here are the questions:

A) easiest way to get to koaloha factory from waikiki? google maps is no help at all, and i can't bothered walking a 10 mile round trip, is the bus an option, or that taht wasting too much time.

B) does the 'ukulele friend' store carry any ukes at my price level?

C) ukulele puapua, and bob's ukulele are in easy walking distance, any other suggestions for stores within this area?

D) if i get a tenor from the factory tour, is getting a hard case easy enough to sort out without putting the other shop's nose out of joint? assuming Koaloha don't carry cases?


besides if all else fails i'll come home ukeless and order online when i get back.

man this is a massive e-mail

thanks in advance

Cheers

Cliff

coolkayaker1
10-09-2012, 07:27 PM
For that price range, I really enjoy Pono slot head tenors. HMS is "ground zero" for Pono, of course. KoAloha used to be at that price point for tenors, but the price just jumped.
http://www.theukulelesite.com/pono-atcsh-pro-classic-acacia-tenor.html

A) I don;t know.

B) No.
http://ukulelefriend.com/

C) No suggestions for any other expensive stores besides the two you mention.

D) No clue.

And your final point is a good one: order at home for worry-free, hassle-free free shipping, no issues about buying instrument cases and airline travel storage or fees, and of course, no Hawaii general excise tax (which is like sales tax), which in Oahu is effectively 4.72%
http://www.salestaxaccountants.com/hawaii-sales-tax-rate.html

So, a one grand uke will cost you about 47 bucks more to buy in-person.

Bottom line: if you've only got four free hours on Oahu, having a group surf lesson on the most famous beach in the world, Waikiki, is going to be a ton more memorable than sweating out a ukulele.
http://www.waikikibeachservices.com/surf-lessons/

Aloha, brother kalmario.

PS On eBay now, HMS has, I think, one of the last first-rate (not a "second", which is harder to resell if you ever wish to do so..), new Koaloha tenors for the old price (the new price just leapt to $1150, I think). So, no tax, no hassle, free shipping, not a "second" with the black hash mark on the label, and they throw in the awesome ($100) Oahu hard case... hard to beat.
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_trksid=p5197.m570.l1313&_nkw=koaloha&_sacat=0&_from=R40

man this is a massive e-mail

itsme
10-09-2012, 08:00 PM
D) if i get a tenor from the factory tour, is getting a hard case easy enough to sort out without putting the other shop's nose out of joint? assuming Koaloha don't carry cases?
IMO, any shop would be happy to sell you a case or any other accessory whether or not you bought the uke from them. :)

I imagine Koaloha has cases to sell to go with their ukes, but you are not obligated to buy one with it and may be able to find a better deal elsewhere.

kalmario
10-09-2012, 08:03 PM
But appreciated,:D

I've always maintained playing a ukulele before buying it, but I'm real nervous about it getting back to nz. Plus air nz charges $100 for extra bags ( if they by chance find it too big for carry on)

Thanks for replying

Cliff

coolkayaker1
10-09-2012, 08:09 PM
You're welcome.

patfia
10-09-2012, 08:14 PM
Also in Waikiki is Bruce Shimabukuro's Ukebox at the Pacific Beach Hotel. At least, it should be there. Website isn't up to date.

kauaijim
10-09-2012, 08:33 PM
The bus goes right by the street to the Koaloha factory. You'll have to walk about a block. I don't know the bus number but you'll have to go to Ala Moana Center from Waikiki to change buses. The factory is in an industrial district so look hard for the sign. You'll be walking makai by a stream.

They have cases at the factory. They are Uke Crazy hard foam. I bought my tenor there six months ago. I did notice that the new mahogany models are in hard cases at HMS yesterday so maybe they have those, too.

The stores within walking distance will be more than happy to sell you a hard case. I like the Oahu cases. You're a tourist. All of us want you to spend as much as you can anywhere you can. Hawaii is happy to have your money.

Personally, I like the factory seconds. The flaws are minor. I got to pick from four ukes. Griz went upstairs and found more for me to try. I actually picked the one with the most flaws because it sounded the best. No one ever notices that it's a second and I have to point out the slight blemishes. You'll get uke and case for less than a thousand even with the tax.

kalmario
10-09-2012, 09:05 PM
Yeah my other concern is the factory tour may not be running, as they need 4, and I'm only 1! Still looking forward to it, and I'm guessing Hawaii will get plenty of my coin (unfortunately):D

mds725
10-09-2012, 10:42 PM
Yeah my other concern is the factory tour may not be running, as they need 4, and I'm only 1! Still looking forward to it, and I'm guessing Hawaii will get plenty of my coin (unfortunately):D

I called in advance to ask about the tour, and I was told to come even though nobody else was scheduled for that day's tour. I ended up having what was, in essence, a private tour. Call KoAloha and ask!

GKK
10-10-2012, 06:47 AM
My wife and I took the Koaloha tour in 2011.

The tour for 4 or more people includes a Koa wood key chain that you can sand and finish as a souvenir.

I called Koaloha a couple of days before and Brian said, to be there around 10am.

We took the bus in front of the Hilton Hawaiian Village. It took the bus about 15 minutes and the walk was only about 250 yds, (exit the bus and turn Right then walk towards the rear of the bus) we exited, turned left and got lost and had to call Koaloha for help.

Dominic gave us a Great tour!

http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j179/karengarret/IMG_0727.jpg

kalmario
10-10-2012, 07:31 AM
Awesome guys, good advice as always! Was going to taxi it, but I might have a go on the bus.

Cheers

Cliff

hawaii 50
10-10-2012, 08:23 AM
Awesome guys, good advice as always! Was going to taxi it, but I might have a go on the bus.

Cheers

Cliff


I would do whatever it takes to get to The Ukulele Site(AKA HMS) in Haleiwa..you are going to get the Best service and PRICE! and u can play ALL the ukes there no matter the price..no pressure..rent a car maybe $20.00 a day>>ride to Haleiwa about 45 mins if you leave about 10am in the morning..the tours are fun>> but dont you want to get the right Uke?

coolkayaker1
10-10-2012, 09:12 AM
I would do whatever it takes to get to The Ukulele Site(AKA HMS) in Haleiwa..you are going to get the Best service and u can play ALL the ukes there no matter the price..no pressure..rent a car maybe $20.00 a day>>ride to Haleiwa about 45 mins if you leave about 10am in the morning..the tours are fun>> but dont you want to get the right Uke?

i agree with h50.

coolkayaker1
10-10-2012, 09:14 AM
The tour for 4 or more people includes a Koa wood key chain that you can sand and finish as a souvenir.



How much is it for a keychain that they have sanded and finished?

mds725
10-10-2012, 10:16 AM
I didn't even get a keychain. I would have been happy to sand and finish it myself.

GKK
10-10-2012, 07:23 PM
How much is it for a keychain that they have sanded and finished?

I don't know if they offer the Koa wood key chain souvenirs anymore. Dominic gave us two plastic toothpaste tube squeezers that they patented and sold to another manufacturer when they were a plastics factory.

Plainsong
10-11-2012, 01:29 AM
Wow, the 42 goes there. The 42 also stops near our place here in Helsinki. Maybe I can take the bus to Koaloha too! :)