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View Full Version : Honolele Ukulele - What's the word?



drose
01-30-2013, 09:21 AM
What's the word on Honolele ukuleles anyone owned one or played on? I know they're made in Thailand and that's why they're cheaper. Saw a couple on eBay and am tempted to try one out.

tattoobabaloo
01-30-2013, 10:41 AM
I played with one in ukerepublic a few weeks ago, a long neck concert.

I don't think I could give you a qualified review of it after only picking it up for a minute, but I thought it was a great lil' uke for the price.

It is for sure handbuilt all the way. The braces are hand cut, maybe a little rough looking for some, but the uke played well and sounded good, for the two minutes I played it...

It was mostly just personal preference as to why I didn't buy it. This one had a slothead stock. I'm not a fan of slotheads (I know most people love them, but I think they are too much on a uke, I like a normal headstock with pegheads/friction tuners)...For the price, it was on my list of possibilies for that days purchase, but I went in looking for a Loprinzi tenor. The Honolele had a tenor neck, but I didn't care for the concert size body. The rope binding and rosette are simple but look very good, I thought the uke had it's charm for sure.

I think they are priced very fair for the quality of the build, a Koolau they are not, but they also don't carry that price tag either.

savagehenry
01-30-2013, 03:37 PM
Played them at TBUG this year. Mike from Uke Republic had them. Big Jim Allen of the Tampa Bay Ukulele Society has a longneck acacia that he got from Mike and it is truly awesome. It was really loud and finished well. I'd be interested to hear anybody else's experience. If I didn't already have a longneck soprano I would be seriously be thinking about getting the acacia one.

bynapkinart
01-30-2013, 05:43 PM
I really, really want the vintage-looking soprano with the flush neck. I hope they sound as fantastic as they look, even though I really don't need another soprano.... They just look too nice to pass up.

kauaijim
01-30-2013, 08:55 PM
I've had a long neck soprano for about six months. The solid mango. I really like it. Good tuners, Worth strings. Plays well and sounds good as it came from Thailand well set up. Beautiful wood. It's a conversation piece every time I get it out to play. Ordered some Southcoast strings to tune it like a machete just for fun.

drose
02-09-2013, 08:18 AM
Thanks everyone, this is very helpful! Anyone have any experience with owning one of their tenors?

drose
02-14-2013, 11:49 AM
Bumpiddy bump!

drose
02-15-2013, 08:05 AM
Well I just bought a Honolele Tenor Walnut! I'll let you guys know how it is when I get it. Here's a video of the one I bought:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G1cOcDRXMNo

Uke Republic
02-15-2013, 09:16 AM
hey drose I think you'll like it. They sound and feel great to me and we've had a few come through the shop. We had some Narra wood long neck sops that sounded really cool. These I are all hand made in Philippines and finished in Thailand.

drose
02-15-2013, 06:53 PM
hey drose I think you'll like it. They sound and feel great to me and we've had a few come through the shop. We had some Narra wood long neck sops that sounded really cool. These I are all hand made in Philippines and finished in Thailand.

Thanks! Looking forward to playing it!

drose
03-31-2013, 11:00 AM
This uke is great! Solid intonation, and action all the way up the neck. Volume without compromise. A sweet deal, for a sweet uke, and it looks beautiful! Would rather have a satin neck, but that's personal preference anyway. Great finish! Thanks Honolele! Will probably buy again.

Luke El U
03-31-2013, 07:26 PM
This is the message I got from Honolele on Facebook on March 11:

"Hi! We just finished some stock of guitalele 21" with blank on fret board waiting for your order with custom inlay. This is just special price 400 USD with free hardcase!! just order honoleleukes@gmail.com"

I currently live in Bangkok and immediately called Mr. Kim, the owner(?) of Honolele. I told him that if it's well built with very good intonation and action, I will buy one for sure!
He told me that they're being finished in the Phillipines and would be able to show me one in the early part of April. Here is the Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Honolele-Ukes/114901131941414?fref=ts

drose
01-29-2014, 04:21 PM
This is the message I got from Honolele on Facebook on March 11:

"Hi! We just finished some stock of guitalele 21" with blank on fret board waiting for your order with custom inlay. This is just special price 400 USD with free hardcase!! just order honoleleukes@gmail.com"

I currently live in Bangkok and immediately called Mr. Kim, the owner(?) of Honolele. I told him that if it's well built with very good intonation and action, I will buy one for sure!
He told me that they're being finished in the Phillipines and would be able to show me one in the early part of April. Here is the Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Honolele-Ukes/114901131941414?fref=ts

Hey, took a bit of a sabbatical from uu for a while, quite a while. But did you ever end up getting that uke?

Luke El U
01-29-2014, 07:50 PM
Hey, took a bit of a sabbatical from uu for a while, quite a while. But did you ever end up getting that uke?
Funny you should ask. I moved back "home" to China last August, but I'm just now in Bangkok taking care of unfinished business and vacationing.
So, the short answer is "no" it didn't work out.
The long answer (warning: I will digress.) is that I felt the company was just jerking me around. I'd ask to see it first, they'd say I'd have to order it first. I'd say, "but how do I know what it's like", they'd say, "well we have a prototype we can show you next week." Then "next week" became "next month" and on and on. I can't imagine they're even still in the uke business here in Thailand.
Speaking of which, the uke business seems to have gone a bit sour in Thailand. The two top vendors in Bangkok report sales are down. One of them has drastically down-sized its shop. They both say the prolonged protests which aim to "shut down Bangkok" are hurting their businesses.
From outside media reports, the demands of the protestors don't seem to make a whole lot of sense. Blocking voter registration, demanding an un-elected "people's council" comprised of "good" people to run the government as espoused by the "democratic" parties. But after talking to folks who are neither red nor yellow shirt, it seems that it all comes down to the interests of one family and their friends. I'll say no more for fear of serving 15 years in prison for Lèse majesté.

1300cc
01-29-2014, 08:15 PM
I have a soprano solid mango and sound good bu quality can't recommend unless its a bargain. Mine had crack in the fretboard

drose
02-05-2014, 06:33 PM
Oh man, sorry to hear about both of your rough experiences.

dav_9
02-06-2014, 02:11 PM
Did this company close down? Their Facebook page and home website have all disappeared.

drose
02-12-2014, 08:43 AM
It looks like it.

drose
02-13-2015, 06:10 AM
Their Facebook page is up again!