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View Full Version : Yet another "Help me find my first uke" thread with a bit of twist



Ipcmlr
05-24-2013, 06:34 AM
Hi Everyone!
Looking for help from the nicest forum on the planet!

Yes this is another noob asking for which uke will I buy.
I scanned thru the threads and didnt find much about my dilemma.

Is it better if I just buy one of the solid wood ~$150-$200 ukes (KPK, Mainland,etc)
or do I splurge and get a used K uke for $500-750 (yikes!).

For now i shall pass up on the $1000++ ukes:D

My thinking is this.
I used to be a competitive table tennis player (table tennis makes it sound like a sport vs ping pong which sounds like a ball bouncing on wood :D). There is absolutely ZERO chance you learn it correctly if you just go to a sporting goods store and buy one off the shelf. You might get a more expensive one off the shelf (~$40) and that will last you approximately 2 weeks before the rubber goes bad and you will just tell yourself "why the hell can't i improve?! I was so much better at this last week". Either that or you will "adjust" your swing to your now bad racket which leads to bad habits which leads to bigger problems:D


Thanks!

ukeeku
05-24-2013, 06:47 AM
Buy a mainland.
then when you decide to upgrade and know what you want (if anything different) maybe the marketplace will have something.

Ipcmlr
05-24-2013, 07:08 AM
Buy a mainland.
then when you decide to upgrade and know what you want (if anything different) maybe the marketplace will have something.

Thanks ukeeku!
Sounds like a plan!
Just a quick question for you. I went to your website (really cool btw) Seems like you really like the honu soprano.
Coincidentally a used honu soprano is being sold close to where i live by a uke meetup group member for $300. Good deal? or just stick with the mainland as you said?
Thanks!

wayfarer75
05-24-2013, 07:33 AM
It's hard to choose when you don't have any (or many) ukes yourself. It takes time to figure out what you like or don't like. If I were to buy my first uke all over again, I would go for a used solid wood uke. The Honu sounds like a good idea, especially since you can try before you buy!

fernandogardinali
05-24-2013, 08:01 AM
I think if you can afford you must buy the best ukulele you can. Better ukuleles makes you want to play more and more.

kirbo
05-24-2013, 08:17 AM
Welcome Ipcmlr. I would go for the used K. If you end up wanting to try another size or brand, you'll probably be able to sell it for the same price.
Funny you should mention table tennis. I play recreationally and am thinking about getting my 4th paddle. I think they call it EJ in the table tennis world. In the uke world they call it UAS.

vanflynn
05-24-2013, 08:37 AM
Welcome to UU, glad you joined us. Two questions: Do you know what size you want to play and where do you live? If you aren't sure about the size you should go to a uke group (if one is near by) or a music store and try the different sizes. I would hate for you to spend your good money only to find you don't care for the size. If you live outside the US there are shipping and VATs to consider if you can't find a good dealer locally.

That being said, Pono is a great value http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/brand/pono.html

Good luck and keep us posted

Ipcmlr
05-24-2013, 10:00 AM
Welcome to UU, glad you joined us. Two questions: Do you know what size you want to play and where do you live? If you aren't sure about the size you should go to a uke group (if one is near by) or a music store and try the different sizes. I would hate for you to spend your good money only to find you don't care for the size. If you live outside the US there are shipping and VATs to consider if you can't find a good dealer locally.

That being said, Pono is a great value http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/brand/pono.html

Good luck and keep us posted

Thanks. Have gone and tried out the sopranos, concerts and tenors from lanikai at my local store.
I'll be looking for a concert/tenor. I used to play guitar in high school and the sopranos seem too tiny for my liking.

I live in metro DC.

vanflynn
05-24-2013, 11:00 AM
Oooh. If you are up for a road trip to Floyd VA (just south of Roanoke on the Blue Ridge Parkway) go see Mim http://mimsukes.com/

She's an awesome lady (and a member here) that has lots of ukes (Ponos included). You could test them out and she will make sure they are set up right. Give her a call or email

ukuLily Mars
05-24-2013, 11:08 AM
You should definitely go see Mim. It's worth the trip. She will set you up with a nice 'uke, and she might let you play with the goats.

Seriously, she's awesome and she knows her stuff.

Welcome aboard!

Ipcmlr
05-24-2013, 01:26 PM
Welcome Ipcmlr. I would go for the used K. If you end up wanting to try another size or brand, you'll probably be able to sell it for the same price.
Funny you should mention table tennis. I play recreationally and am thinking about getting my 4th paddle. I think they call it EJ in the table tennis world. In the uke world they call it UAS.

Cool! I haven't changed paddles in a while. I use an old butterfly arylate/carbon wood and just swap out my classic sriver rubbers.

Thanks for the suggestion!

Ipcmlr
05-24-2013, 01:28 PM
Oooh. If you are up for a road trip to Floyd VA (just south of Roanoke on the Blue Ridge Parkway) go see Mim http://mimsukes.com/

She's an awesome lady (and a member here) that has lots of ukes (Ponos included). You could test them out and she will make sure they are set up right. Give her a call or email

As much as I'm game for a long drive my wife is pregnant and due on June 3!
so this is the time to splurge before baby comes!

7warriorlion
05-24-2013, 02:38 PM
I live in metro DC.
Maybe you could hookup with these folks and try out some ukuleles:
Maryland Ukulele Jam: It's all about the joy of playing and singing together!
http://mdukejam.shutterfly.com/
Counting Down the Last Three Days
April 18, 2013
Greetings, Maryland Ukulele Jammers!

Can you believe it? It's only three more days before we launch the monthly Maryland Ukulele Jam!

We are thrilled to announce that Cathy Fink and Victor Litz Music Store have donated door prizes. Also from Victor Litz, we'll have flyers with 20% off coupons for Maryland Ukulele Jammers and a limited number of music stands available at a discounted price ($10). One of our Jammers will also be featuring a few used-but-quality ukuleles for sale. So bring your cash or check books.

mm stan
05-24-2013, 03:51 PM
buy the best you can afford and try before you buy....and buy from hms and "the ukulele site" good luck :)


hi everyone!
Looking for help from the nicest forum on the planet!

Yes this is another noob asking for which uke will i buy.
I scanned thru the threads and didnt find much about my dilemma.

Is it better if i just buy one of the solid wood ~$150-$200 ukes (kpk, mainland,etc)
or do i splurge and get a used k uke for $500-750 (yikes!).

For now i shall pass up on the $1000++ ukes:d

my thinking is this.
I used to be a competitive table tennis player (table tennis makes it sound like a sport vs ping pong which sounds like a ball bouncing on wood :d). There is absolutely zero chance you learn it correctly if you just go to a sporting goods store and buy one off the shelf. You might get a more expensive one off the shelf (~$40) and that will last you approximately 2 weeks before the rubber goes bad and you will just tell yourself "why the hell can't i improve?! I was so much better at this last week". Either that or you will "adjust" your swing to your now bad racket which leads to bad habits which leads to bigger problems:d


thanks!

Kamanaaloha
05-24-2013, 10:38 PM
I vote Pono MS, or MC, or MT depending on your size. I am not sure where you live, but try before you buy, imho. I think you will love a solid mahagony ukulele...your next choice is size. MT for mahagony tenor if you have big hands and long fingers like me. Sopranos are very portable but very small for me...maybe a alto/concert is a good fit, but you have to try them. If you like the feel of a tenor neck with a concert body...start saving for a kamaka or a KoAloha. Good luck!

OldePhart
05-25-2013, 05:39 AM
Ordinarily I would say go for the K-brand on the theory that you should have the best uke you can. However, you do run the risk of buying a soprano and then discovering that you much prefer a tenor, etc. It's not a great risk because you stand a better chance of getting most of your money back on Hawaiian uke.

If you are anyplace where you can get to a uke meet up or club chances are that you will find a lot of people more than willing to let you try out their ukes for a few minutes and you can then get a feel for what size of uke most appeals to you. Next weekend there are major events in Indiana and NYC where you could meet hundreds of ukers. The UWC meetup in Indiana draws hundreds from literally all over the world and is enough fun that I know years in advance where my vacation time is going to be spent. :)

That said, if you can't find a group of ukers to hang out with for a bit, you would be hard pressed to go wrong with a Mainland, or with an Ohana or Kala set up by Mim, Uke Republic, HMS, etc. (Of course, you'd be even harder pressed to go wrong with a good used Hawaiian uke.)

John

Ipcmlr
05-31-2013, 10:14 AM
Thanks to all who replied.

I decided to not go overboard and got a koaloha concert second.
Should be arriving anytime soon!

vanflynn
05-31-2013, 11:56 AM
Great choice. Please post some pic when the New Uke Day arrives.

Also, if you ever get by Floyd VA make sure to stop by Mims

ukuLily Mars
06-02-2013, 07:46 AM
Sounds like a good call! All the best, with both your new bundles of joy!

Ipcmlr
06-12-2013, 09:55 AM
Uke has arrived! Cant play right now as baby is taking all of my time!

5441554416544175441854419

stevepetergal
06-12-2013, 03:35 PM
Uke has arrived! Cant play right now as baby is taking all of my time!

5441554416544175441854419

Wow, did you ever make the right choice!

Ipcmlr
06-20-2013, 01:31 PM
Well that was quick.
Once I got the above Koaloha I immediately got UAS because of the amazing tone it had.
Now have a used mya moe and a kepasa is on its way here soon!

Eeeeek!!!

Coconut Willie
06-26-2013, 08:43 AM
Congrats on your two new babies!!!!!

mm stan
06-29-2013, 05:05 PM
congrats you got Extreme UAS man...Happy Strummings....

PTOEguy
06-29-2013, 05:44 PM
Uke has arrived! Cant play right now as baby is taking all of my time!

5441554416544175441854419

Here's some unsolicited parenting advice (seems like most parenting advice is unsolicited...)

Fingerpicking practice = good way to put kids to sleep

Lime
06-29-2013, 07:48 PM
Practice now before the kid can walk toward, grab onto, or jump on your ukulele!

Okay, seriously though, congratulations!