View Full Version : What to look for in used/"vintage" ukes?

07-14-2013, 06:32 PM
I love going to thrift stores and the occasional garage sale. I recently saw a uke at Goodwill but it looked pretty beat up so I didn't give it much of an inspection.
On second thought, I realized I probably should have looked at it a little closer to see if it might have been something worthwhile.

Being a newbie, I'm not sure what to look for though. It's not like trying one out at the store because the strings are usually shot or even missing. I know some of the more common names so I could look for the label but not even sure how long some of them have been around.

Any advice or should I just leave it until I have a lot more experience in the "field"?

07-14-2013, 06:43 PM
I believe the quickest way to learn if something is valuable is to go the Ebay, type in whatever it is (ie; ukulele) and then sort from highest price to lowest and start looking. Jot down some names and do some quick wikipedia reading. Also search on those names here to read threads that come up.

How much did they want for the uke? If it was $10 or less I'd say it's a must buy so long as not cracked and no other major problems (like say a twisted neck, missing frets, broken tuners, ....)

mm stan
07-14-2013, 07:21 PM
Look at the Condition, maker name, intonation, how it sounds and how it plays comfortly... Cost..

07-15-2013, 01:54 AM
Perhaps some searches on refurbishing vintage ukes would help. I have seen several here and elsewhere. It would give you an idea what to look for and what is involved including the difficulty. The feasibility of doing this will depend on your skill level at the many refurbishing "tasks" involved. Here,s a few to get you started: https://www.google.com/#output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=refurbhing+vintage+ukuleles&oq=refurbhing+vintage+ukuleles&gs_l=hp.3...1777.11250.0.11540. 885.9j18.27.0....0...1c.1.19.psy-ab.pcQrGamiCrM&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_cp.r_qf.&bvm=bv.48705608,d.dmg&fp=9298cc63504b29f2&biw=1280&bih=577

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=how+to+restore+vintage+uke&oq=how+to+restore+vintage+uke&gs_l=youtube.3...4782.19659.0.20121. 429.2254.22j2j4-1.25.0...0.0...1ac.1.11.youtube.jMcjiwJ363E