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Pondoro
10-15-2012, 04:26 PM
I've lowered the string height at the nut on three ukes, lowered the saddle and changed the compensation on another uke (all professionally built) and built two ukes myself. So I can adjust string height and compensation. I want to teach my friend how to do this and I also want to buy a chap uke for my daughter. I am thinking Lanikai, Dolphin, Diamond Head, etc.

Here is the twist - I want one that is not very well set up so I can teach my friend to set up a uke. So please tell me about a cheap mail order place that will sent me a uke that has not been adjusted. I want a sturdy uke, one that won't fall apart, but I hope the compensation and string height are both wrong!

Joe90
10-15-2012, 04:34 PM
Has to be a makala of some sort from ebay , my intonation was a bit off on mine and learning from you guys ive re-strung it, lowered the action to the perfect height via the nut and the bridge and fixed the intonation whilst doing so. I also worked on the frets to stop buzzing from a lower action.

jglover
10-15-2012, 04:54 PM
You can also probably go to any local Guitar Center and get a nice, poorly set up uke, I'm thinking their house brand ukes here, Mitchell I believe. The Dolphins I've seen here locally are also pretty badly set up out of the box.

Ukelix
10-15-2012, 05:07 PM
I want one that is not very well set up so I can teach my friend to set up a uke. So please tell me about a cheap mail order place that will sent me a uke that has not been adjusted. I want a sturdy uke, one that won't fall apart, but I hope the compensation and string height are both wrong!

The Spongebob Squarepants Pineapple Ukulele would be perfect for your project. I have one of these (http://www.ebay.com/itm/SPONGEBOB-SQUAREPANTS-PINEAPPLE-UKULELE-COMPLETE-OUTFIT-/200612701181?pt=UK_Musical_Instruments_Guitars_CV&hash=item2eb572e3fd), and the factory setup was horrible. But with good strings and some action-lowering it turned into a great little instrument. Sturdy, cute and really well-sounding and playable for such a cheap uke. I got mine for 20€ shipped, and it was totally worth both the money and the effort.

808boy
10-15-2012, 05:17 PM
How about the Makala? smiley face uke. With set up and new strings, it's a good player for $27.00 on Amazon, shipping included............................BO............ ..............
Oh, bought it for my daughter too, although she was 44 years old. She loves it.........................PRICELESS!

OldePhart
10-15-2012, 05:25 PM
The lower end Lanikai (LU-11) pretty much always have at least one string, and more often three or four, that need to be adjusted at the nut.

I keep hearing how great Dolphins are but the one and only one I've purchased was abolutely the worst excuse for a ukulele that I've seen. I not only had to drastically lower the nut but I had to level the frets; put simply the frets were a disaster.

fitncrafty
10-15-2012, 05:27 PM
Go to amazon and buy a dolphin...after setup you will be much happier with the uke

jglover
10-15-2012, 05:33 PM
The lower end Lanikai (LU-11) pretty much always have at least one string, and more often three or four, that need to be adjusted at the nut.

I keep hearing how great Dolphins are but the one and only one I've purchased was abolutely the worst excuse for a ukulele that I've seen. I not only had to drastically lower the nut but I had to level the frets; put simply the frets were a disaster.

+1 on both counts! I've got an LU-11 that I found dirt cheap at a local garage sale and the C string intonation is horrible. I went through seven Dolphins here locally and the intonation was bad in all of them as well. Maybe once they are set up they are fine but out of the box, Yeow!

Pondoro
10-16-2012, 01:22 PM
On the Lanikai ukes I'm pretty sure that LU means "Left unfinished", I'm gonna buy an LU-11 or a Dolphin, depending on what my daughter wants.

OldePhart
10-16-2012, 02:26 PM
On the Lanikai ukes I'm pretty sure that LU means "Left unfinished", I'm gonna buy an LU-11 or a Dolphin, depending on what my daughter wants.

Ha-ha - that's pretty funny! They're actually not bad starter ukes once you sort out the nut and put on a good coat of wax to seal the rather porous (and sometimes rough) finish.

John

dhoenisch
10-17-2012, 04:01 AM
You can buy a Rogue from Musician's Friend. Possibly the worst set up ukes I've ever had to perform a setup on, and I've had to do setups on some pretty cheapo ukes. Once setup, it's not a bad player. I actually prefer that or the Mahalo over the Dolphin. Sorry, Dolphins just sound muted to me, must be the huge bridge. Anyhow, just another one to add to your list of possible ukes.

Dan

vanflynn
10-17-2012, 04:16 AM
I guess I would be hesitant to by any low end uke without looking at it first. The bridge may be incorrectly placed and the frets may need work as well.

Pondoro
10-17-2012, 02:07 PM
I guess I would be hesitant to by any low end uke without looking at it first. The bridge may be incorrectly placed and the frets may need work as well.

That would make it even better as a teaching device. I had to move the saddle slot on my Lanikai LU-21 - I widened it towards the tail and then made a thicker saddle. This let me move the break over point farther and got it in tune.

But I've never seen a Rogue, so I think I will go Dolphin or Lanikai.

vanflynn
10-17-2012, 04:09 PM
If you are willing to move a bridge, I would go for a $30 Rouge. http://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/rogue-ukulele-starter-pack

Moving a bridge on finished/painted Ukes like dolphins are trickier.

Keep us posted

itsme
10-17-2012, 04:27 PM
There was a thread some months ago about a cheap Flea knock-off. I believe the consensus of those who actually bought them was that they were practically unplayable.