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View Full Version : Please help me build a Compass Rose



mds725
11-28-2012, 09:07 PM
So I emailed Rick Turner today and got on his Compass Rose build waiting list. I'll be driving down to his studio in early December to work out some of the details of my build. I had been thinking about black acacia or walnut or maple or some of that redwood sinker he found recently. I want an ukulele that sounds different from my Kamaka tenor (koa) and my Mya-Moe tenor (myrtle), maybe even sounding a little more like a guitar (collective gasp). I'm sure that when I tell Rick this, he may have some ideas about what wood or woods to use, and, well, he's Rick Turner. But I'd also love to hear suggestions from my fellow UUers about anything and everything, from wood selection to bindings, purfling, rosettes and bling, and from those with Compass Rose ukes what they like the most, and the least, about their CRs. Thanks in advance for any suggestions, observations, comments, etc.

Dan Uke
11-28-2012, 09:20 PM
Get the adi spruce top!

anthonyg
11-29-2012, 12:45 AM
More guitar like? Well low bass to start with. Consider a baritione ukulele. Or, ask him to built a tenor that's happy tuned E, A, C#, F#. Think of transposed chords where you transpose Down from standard tuning(GCEA) or UP from baritone(DGBE) tuning.

Anthony

guitharsis
11-29-2012, 01:29 AM
Redwood sinker would be unique and would have a different sound from koa.

savagehenry
11-29-2012, 01:39 AM
Just tell him what you have and that you want something different and let him take it from there. I'm sure that he will have something amazing for you.

Doc_J
11-29-2012, 02:08 AM
Just tell him what you have and that you want something different and let him take it from there. I'm sure that he will have something amazing for you.

I agree with Henry. Let Rick do the design.

hammer40
11-29-2012, 02:14 AM
I have an all Claro Walnut CR and love the sound. Walnut is an excellent tonewood falling sonically between the warm dark sounds of East Indian Rosewood and the bright bell-like ring of Maple. Not only is it different but I think it's gorgeous.

caukulele
11-29-2012, 03:53 AM
You can't go wrong with a Compass Rose... Like some of the others have said, just tell Rick what sound you are looking for and let him make suggestions. He will make something for you so much better then you imagined! I believe he is really a master builder.... I do think a spruce top and hardwood back and sides is a wonderful combination to give you a full, rich range of tones...

soupking
11-29-2012, 03:59 AM
If you're going for guitar-ish sound, a good choice would be rosewood back and sides with a softwood top. From there I'd probably go with ebony binding and rope purfling, both on the body and headstock like their style C.

The Big Kahuna
11-29-2012, 04:22 AM
My next Uke will be bog wood (if I don't change my mind between now and then...which I probably will). I just love the idea of owning a Uke made out of 30,000+ year old wood.

Plainsong
11-29-2012, 04:24 AM
I think you can tell Rick what you like in terms of looks and asthetics, but tell him what sound you want, and let him work his magic. Let him pick the wood and all that. It's the best way to let artists work for you. Like getting a tattoo, tell the artist what you like and what you don't, but let them draw you something awesome. :)

edit - agreeing with most everyone else

Rick Turner
11-29-2012, 06:30 AM
I'm nudging this toward one of our new micro-jumbo 14 fret models in spruce over Amazon rosewood...the closest legal wood to Brazilian rosewood that I've seen. We just recently got about ten sets for backs and sides, and the stuff is beautiful.

mds725
11-29-2012, 07:14 AM
I'm nudging this toward one of our new micro-jumbo 14 fret models in spruce over Amazon rosewood...the closest legal wood to Brazilian rosewood that I've seen. We just recently got about ten sets for backs and sides, and the stuff is beautiful.

Thanks, Rick! I was hoping you'd weigh in. I can't wait to see what you've got in the shop. Please save some of that Amazon rosewood!

mm stan
11-29-2012, 07:17 AM
Aloha Mark,
What another ukulele....wow wow, Congrats I hope I can get one from Rick too....I want a tenor if you are reading this...Hee Hee

didgeridoo2
11-29-2012, 07:17 AM
I'm nudging this toward one of our new micro-jumbo 14 fret models in spruce over Amazon rosewood...the closest legal wood to Brazilian rosewood that I've seen. We just recently got about ten sets for backs and sides, and the stuff is beautiful.

Shoot. That sounds like the option I'd consider. Match it up with a softer top like sinker redwood. Although spruce would really shine.

Plainsong
11-29-2012, 07:24 AM
See? Rosewood isn't even really my jam, but I think I just might say build what you want. :)

vanflynn
11-29-2012, 07:25 AM
My next Uke will be bog wood.

I initially thought you said Bong wood. That would be different

localmana
11-29-2012, 07:50 AM
I've got a CR from Rick with a Cedar Top and Rosewood sides with Peg Heads... The most guitar sounding uke I have.
I go back and forth from the CR and a KoAloha Tenor because they sound so wonderfully different. Good luck.

The Big Kahuna
11-29-2012, 08:25 AM
I initially thought you said Bong wood. That would be different

Now THAT would be a Uke smell to cherish!

hawaii 50
11-29-2012, 11:34 AM
Hey Mark..you know this is my favorite subject Lol>>Rick Turner and his CR's

first get a C body..tenor
these come with binding on the top and back and the headstock...purfling on the top and headstock..nicer Gotoh tuners(i got Pegheds on my Koa CR) and Rick's unreal beautiful Gloss polyester Finish..Rick tries to explain how nice it is but you got to see it! super smooth and it really shines .. i got tourtise binding and rope purfling on it>> I got lucky the Koa got to be 4A

my next CR C style body(ready sometime next year)
macassar ebony back/sides with a sinker redwood top..i live in Calif but i am letting Rick make all the choices on the wood selection and binding/purfling(but going to be wood this time) and i am going with his antique Gotoh open geared tuners this time..for me this is more fun to let Rick do what he does best..

i am a big fan of the 12 fret to body with Rick's CR's..seems like lowering the bridge into the sweet spot of the uke body..gives it a more mellow deep sound..i like it like that..

after getting my Koa CR and meeting Rick i trust him all the way on my new CR
i hope you get one as nice as mine..

hawaii 50
11-29-2012, 11:46 AM
Aloha Mark,
What another ukulele....wow wow, Congrats I hope I can get one from Rick too....I want a tenor if you are reading this...Hee Hee


Come on Stan order one already..Lol>> i tell you they are great ukes..

i will help you www.rickturnerguitars.com

gyosh
11-29-2012, 11:48 AM
So I emailed Rick Turner today and got on his Compass Rose build waiting list. I'll be driving down to his studio in early December to work out some of the details of my build. I had been thinking about black acacia or walnut or maple or some of that redwood sinker he found recently. I want an ukulele that sounds different from my Kamaka tenor (koa) and my Mya-Moe tenor (myrtle), maybe even sounding a little more like a guitar (collective gasp). I'm sure that when I tell Rick this, he may have some ideas about what wood or woods to use, and, well, he's Rick Turner. But I'd also love to hear suggestions from my fellow UUers about anything and everything, from wood selection to bindings, purfling, rosettes and bling, and from those with Compass Rose ukes what they like the most, and the least, about their CRs. Thanks in advance for any suggestions, observations, comments, etc.

Get the cutaway body style!

Newportlocal
11-29-2012, 11:51 AM
Get the cutaway body style!

Hahahaha stop reading my mind.

hawaii 50
11-29-2012, 12:05 PM
Hahahaha stop reading my mind.


Hey Newport and Gyosh..already thinking bout number 2..you got to go a long way to catch up with the guy with 9 CR's..between us see who ends up with the most Lol

gyosh
11-29-2012, 12:06 PM
Hey Newport and Gyosh..already thinking bout number 2..you got to go a long way to catch up with the guy with 9 CR's..between us see who ends up with the most Lol

You win.

You already have twice as many as I'll own. Does the one I built in his class count?

hawaii 50
11-29-2012, 12:10 PM
You win.

You already have twice as many as I'll own. Does the one I built in his class count?

i give you 3/4 a point Ha ha

mds725
11-29-2012, 12:25 PM
Get the cutaway body style!

Is your mystery CR a cutaway? Why do you recommend getting a cutaway?

Newportlocal
11-29-2012, 12:26 PM
Hey Newport and Gyosh..already thinking bout number 2..you got to go a long way to catch up with the guy with 9 CR's..between us see who ends up with the most Lol

Don't need to catch up to that, but my next will probably be a cutaway in your current wood choices. That was a definite thought when I was deciding on my current one. I read a lot of guitar forums before settling on the Cocobolo.:D

gyosh
11-29-2012, 12:35 PM
Is your mystery CR a cutaway? Why do you recommend getting a cutaway?

Part of the reason I went with a CR is l like its distinctive sound. Like you, if I want a traditional sound I have other ukes to choose from, but I wanted the CR for its own unique sound. If it were available I would have gotten the cutaway also because it's a different and it would set it apart that much more.

Accessing the frets up there is beyond my ability . . . but maybe some day:)

Slotted peghead? Choose the sound and style and let Rick work his RT magic.

gyosh
11-29-2012, 12:42 PM
Rick says "micro-jumbo" I'd go with "micro-jumbo." He already has something in mind :)

hawaii 50
11-29-2012, 01:20 PM
Part of the reason I went with a CR is l like its distinctive sound. Like you, if I want a traditional sound I have other ukes to choose from, but I wanted the CR for its own unique sound. If it were available I would have gotten the cutaway also because it's a different and it would set it apart that much more.

Accessing the frets up there is beyond my ability . . . but maybe some day:)

Slotted peghead? Choose the sound and style and let Rick work his RT magic.


Hey Gary i agree with you Rick's ukes have a different sound..deeper more mellow i guess..hard to explain..
you know i got all the K brands and some others too..but when i play my Graziano,Mya Moe and Compass Rose>> seems to me that the CR sounds more like a Hawaiian ukulele more than my other West Coast ukes..maybe my imagination?

for sure my CR my best sounding uke..

but the sound hard to describe..got to hear to understand..

keliiyama
11-29-2012, 01:25 PM
I agree with Len. Compass Rose ukulele are indeed special. I actually play it in my company's video. Here's the link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAnR0NwhirI

I got Redwood top, with Cocobolo back and sides. I agree with the Adi top and rosewood back. Or M. ebony. The saddle set up is what adds to the guitar like sound. My ukulele FOR SURE sounds like a classical guitar.

Cheers and mahalo!
Keli'i

hawaii 50
11-29-2012, 01:31 PM
I agree with Len. Compass Rose ukulele are indeed special. I actually play it in my company's video. Here's the link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAnR0NwhirI

I got Redwood top, with Cocobolo back and sides. I agree with the Adi top and rosewood back. Or M. ebony. The saddle set up is what adds to the guitar like sound. My ukulele FOR SURE sounds like a classical guitar.

Cheers and mahalo!
Keli'i

Aloha Kelii

It's about time we hear from you again Lol

has the new baby come yet..i have been working hard to spread the Compass Rose love around..i will check your link now>> i could not wait to see your CR..

just saw the video..i guess i did not notice when you posted before Thanksgiving..

i like your CR..looks real good..i bet it sounds real good too..is it as loud as a CR with a normal sound hole? and what kind strings did you end up using.. i show you my Koa CR when i am back on Oahu..later in 2013 my macassar ebony sinker redwood ready..you show me yours i show you mine..

see you

Gillian
11-29-2012, 01:58 PM
Mine will be sequoia for the top (sequoias are redwoods but not all redwoods are sequoia), that was feather-light. The back, sides and neck will be walnut. Ebony fretboard and black binding, satin finish. Elegant.

I...must...be...patient...

hawaii 50
11-29-2012, 02:04 PM
Mine will be sequoia for the top (sequoias are redwoods but not all redwoods are sequoia), that was feather-light. The back, sides and neck will be walnut. Ebony fretboard and black binding, satin finish. Elegant.

I...must...be...patient...


You can do it Gillian..it will be ready before you know it!! and i saw one of your videos..you can play!..you are going to sound even better with your new CR..

fyi Kelii who posted above..is maybe Rick Turner's and Compass Rose biggest fan..i started to message with him when i ordered my Koa CR..i am right behind him though Lol

Newportlocal
11-29-2012, 02:52 PM
I agree with Len. Compass Rose ukulele are indeed special. I actually play it in my company's video. Here's the link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAnR0NwhirI

I got Redwood top, with Cocobolo back and sides. I agree with the Adi top and rosewood back. Or M. ebony. The saddle set up is what adds to the guitar like sound. My ukulele FOR SURE sounds like a classical guitar.

Cheers and mahalo!
Keli'i

Haha at 4 minutes in. Nice uke. Sounds good.See there is no front sound hole very unique. Mine will have sinker redwood and Cocobolo with carbon fiber binding around the soundboard. Yours is the closest I have seen to what mine will be like. Thanks. Hope they meet each other sometime.

ksiegel
11-29-2012, 05:28 PM
I'm nudging this toward one of our new micro-jumbo 14 fret models in spruce over Amazon rosewood...the closest legal wood to Brazilian rosewood that I've seen. We just recently got about ten sets for backs and sides, and the stuff is beautiful.

Rick showed it to me. it is gorgeous stuff!

But then, I played his personal cherry and koa ukes, and really, really didn't want to give either one of them back to him...

Neither felt nor sounded like anything else I had played.

When I can afford one, (not if - definitely not if!) I think I'll just let him decide what to make. I know he likes ebony fingerboards and rosewood bridges. Other than that, I'm thinking North American Sustainable, and let him go from there. (That Cherry was certainly fine!)


-Kurt

maclay
11-29-2012, 07:40 PM
For what its worth, my favorite CR wood combination is Adirondack Spruce with Rosewood back and sides.
Having said that, the uke will sound great regardless of your wood choice.

mds725
11-29-2012, 08:24 PM
Rick showed it to me. it is gorgeous stuff!

But then, I played his personal cherry and koa ukes, and really, really didn't want to give either one of them back to him...

Neither felt nor sounded like anything else I had played.

When I can afford one, (not if - definitely not if!) I think I'll just let him decide what to make. I know he likes ebony fingerboards and rosewood bridges. Other than that, I'm thinking North American Sustainable, and let him go from there. (That Cherry was certainly fine!)


-Kurt

Hey Kurt,

Great meeting you at our ukulele meetup this past Sunday. I'm glad you decided to come, in spite of all the logistical impediments, and I hope you had fun! I think hearing you talk about your visit to Rick's studio was the final push I needed to get on his build list. I love my premium ukuleles, but your description of your experience playing Rick's personal CRs .... I agree with everyone; in the same way that I wouldn't tell Leonardo da Vinci how to paint a masterpiece, I can't imagine not liking whatever Rick ends up building for me. Now to begin saving ....

BIGDB
11-29-2012, 08:30 PM
I like the simple maple back and sides with spruce top and ebony binding

hawaii 50
11-30-2012, 08:52 AM
For what its worth, my favorite CR wood combination is Adirondack Spruce with Rosewood back and sides.
Having said that, the uke will sound great regardless of your wood choice.

Hey Jake.
once you get your shop setup..i might go for a Rosewood b/s with an Adirondack spruce top..i kind of like top wood that looks nicer but i hope by then i will be playing better(going to take lessons from Aaron at Hawaii Music School when i retire and living on Oahu)i am pretty sure that Rosewood-Adi wood combo would sound great if you are a good player Lol>> i might never become a good player ha ha..

maybe in 2 years..i guess by then your shop should be ready and your waiting list open..you got orders waiting right now right?

wow i will be in Hawaii and you in the East coast..that uke got to do some traveling..ha ha

what do you think of the Amazon Rosewood Rick has at the shop?i read about it but never saw it..

hawaii 50
11-30-2012, 08:55 AM
Rick showed it to me. it is gorgeous stuff!

But then, I played his personal cherry and koa ukes, and really, really didn't want to give either one of them back to him...

Neither felt nor sounded like anything else I had played.

When I can afford one, (not if - definitely not if!) I think I'll just let him decide what to make. I know he likes ebony fingerboards and rosewood bridges. Other than that, I'm thinking North American Sustainable, and let him go from there. (That Cherry was certainly fine!)


-Kurt


Hey Kurt..my CR's came with a ebony fretboard and bridge..you might have to ask for a rosewood bridge..not 100% sure but i think

maclay
11-30-2012, 10:13 AM
Hey Jake.
once you get your shop setup..i might go for a Rosewood b/s with an Adirondack spruce top..i kind of like top wood that looks nicer but i hope by then i will be playing better(going to take lessons from Aaron at Hawaii Music School when i retire and living on Oahu)i am pretty sure that Rosewood-Adi wood combo would sound great if you are a good player Lol>> i might never become a good player ha ha..

maybe in 2 years..i guess by then your shop should be ready and your waiting list open..you got orders waiting right now right?

wow i will be in Hawaii and you in the East coast..that uke got to do some traveling..ha ha

what do you think of the Amazon Rosewood Rick has at the shop?i read about it but never saw it..

Len, it would be my pleasure to build you a ukulele. I already have orders waiting. Let me know when you are ready, and I will put you on the list.
You don't have to be a great player to enjoy a nice Rosewood/Adi uke......you just need to love playing:)

I think Hawaii to West Virginia is around 5000 miles!

If you can get a nice quarter-sawn set, Amazon Rosewood is fantastic. I haven't seen the Amazon RW that Rick has, but I'm sure he has some good stuff.

hawaii 50
11-30-2012, 10:18 AM
Len, it would be my pleasure to build you a ukulele. I already have orders waiting. Let me know when you are ready, and I will put you on the list.
You don't have to be a great player to enjoy a nice Rosewood/Adi uke......you just need to love playing:)

I think Hawaii to West Virginia is around 5000 miles!

If you can get a nice quarter-sawn set, Amazon Rosewood is fantastic. I haven't seen the Amazon RW that Rick has, but I'm sure he has some good stuff.


Thanks Jake..hope i am ready in about a year i will keep in touch

see you

Kamanaaloha
11-30-2012, 10:27 AM
Kou wood
Milo wood

both will be different sounding...and there are very few out there!