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bobmyers
08-27-2013, 02:27 AM
“I am not a master player, I am not a designer, or musical engineer. I just love the ukulele in all its forms and ask for more.
So I asked Luis Feu de Mesquita to create me a Baritone Ukulele.
He is up for the challenge but needs our help. In my opinion the perfect baritone has not been made. This will be a new attempt.
We will throw away all previous standards for size, scale etc.
The new design is an open book. Luis would like to follow the successful shape of his Ukaferri tenor design. I agree, size, scale and construction are variable.
So what can this forum contribute to the final product.
Tell us all the shortfalls if any your current baritone has. Tell us the strings you find satisfying. Tell us what has worked for you.
Most importantly tell us what you would like done better. There are many high quality makers out there with baritones in their stable, are you totally happy with them, or could some change get it closer to nirvana?
This column is about collecting your comments and suggestions pro and con on this subject, with the goal of improving the breed, results being available to all builders, string makers and others involved in the process.

All are welcome to be part of this project.
Bob Myers”

Jim Hanks
08-27-2013, 02:50 AM
Wow, clean sheet of paper, eh? I'll just start with a few suggestions from my experience so far.
1. Scale - I prefer the 19" scale of my Bruko to the 20+ scale of my Lanikai.
2. Action - Both are about 3mm but I would prefer lower. The Bruko can't get any lower due to the height of the bridge - saddle just can't go any lower - so I'd recommend a lower profile bridge for more flexibility with the action
3. Side port - I don't have one but my next tenor will - probably anything I designed from the ground up would have it
4. Neck thickness - Bruko is quite chunky - I'd really prefer slimmer

Don't get me wrong, I love my Bruko, but you asked how it could be better. Reading back on this I guess I'm saying I'd like my bari to be closer to a tenor. :p

Radio Flyer
08-27-2013, 12:24 PM
make into a tenor, improved!

LifesShort
08-27-2013, 12:33 PM
Southcoast strings tuned to Bb really make a baritone come to life. To me, baritones tuned to standard DGBE tuning sound dull and the strings sound thunky (is that a word?). Design it so that it either sounds better with standard tuning, or design it specifically for a higher tuning.

hawaii 50
08-27-2013, 12:41 PM
after reading Nongdam's reviews on his new Lfdm...I would say he needs to build into the neck....neck relief...since he uses a carbon rod in the neck...it has to be built in....
I never understood what neck relief was/meant but now I have a better understanding thanks to Andrew who had 4 Lfdm's at his shop

my 2 cents

BlackBearUkes
08-27-2013, 02:31 PM
The first thing you have to ask yourself is, do I want a baritone sound, tuned to DGBE, or do I want a uke that looks like a baritone but sounds like a tenor, tuned like a tenor and plays like a tenor. If the answer is a tenor, then there is no point in having a baritone. The lower baritone voice is unique and quite lovely, why would anyone want to change that except maybe they can't be bothered to learn the chords progressions for that tuning.

Hippie Dribble
08-27-2013, 02:52 PM
If you're going to "throw away all previous standards for size, scale etc" then I question whether you're actually designing a baritone. The baritone ukulele has standards, and a tuning, that by definition, make it a baritone. I confess I don't understand what it is you're asking Bob.

Dan Uke
08-27-2013, 03:54 PM
What is the standard for baris? I don't own a bari so get confused as there seems to be diff't scale lengths and I understand changing the key by a full step but you can go either GCEA or DGBE?

I would put in a titanium truss rod for neck relief.

I personally don't like it when a uke can't fit in several cases. Worse is that it will only fit in the next larger case, which would probably be parlor guitars or regular guitars.

AndrewKuker
08-27-2013, 10:56 PM
I understand your question Bob. With the fresh look and thought being put into it, I am betting it will be epic. I will add a few thoughts.
When I was young there was a musician that would always stop by the shop named Buddy Fo. For many years he was one of Hawaii's top acts and he played a tenor guitar with a high D -GBE strung with Nylon strings. Wow did he make it sing. My dad's favorite instrument is still his old Martin tenor guitar tuned that way with scalloped bracing for Nylon strings and my brother is just finishing up a suprise for my dad to those specs. A tenor guitar is basically a baritone with a 23" scale and a larger body. The tension for DGBE in this scale is much closer to that of a tenor but with the lower key of a baritone. The 20" standard scale is a more relaxed tension for a mellow vibe that's cool. But as you go longer in scale you get more lively, more ukulele brightness. Especially with the high D. Speaking of the high D, Benny Chong would come in with buddy. He plays the high D baritone in a regular scale-
http://youtu.be/e6y0mNVR03A
But my suggestion would be to try maybe a slightly longer scale. Like 21 or 21.5"? Any which way you go I'm sure Luis will make a wonderful, unique, and very musical instrument.

Beau Hannam Ukuleles
08-28-2013, 01:43 AM
Perhaps you should throw away the word Baritone too

cdkrugjr
08-28-2013, 02:30 AM
Southcoast strings tuned to Bb really make a baritone come to life. To me, baritones tuned to standard DGBE tuning sound dull and the strings sound thunky (is that a word?). Design it so that it either sounds better with standard tuning, or design it specifically for a higher tuning.

Southcoast's philosophy is unique. Most string makers try to make the "too small for its tuning" bari sound better by softening the d string a bit, whereas SC says, "That's too low...tune it here..." I would LOVE to see a discussion between a few of the high-end stringmakers talking about why they think their ideas are the best for our instruments.

(I'm loving my SC Machete set for Soprano, High G Aquilas on my Concert)

I'd be interested in seeing a slightly larger bodied instrument resonating below the low E string. But if you do that, you probably should include the case.

You know....a normal bari tuned low G would probably sound pretty sweet...

hawaii 50
08-28-2013, 04:34 AM
I understand your question Bob. With the fresh look and thought being put into it, I am betting it will be epic. I will add a few thoughts.
When I was young there was a musician that would always stop by the shop named Buddy Fo. For many years he was one of Hawaii's top acts and he played a tenor guitar with a high D -GBE strung with Nylon strings. Wow did he make it sing. My dad's favorite instrument is still his old Martin tenor guitar tuned that way with scalloped bracing for Nylon strings and my brother is just finishing up a suprise for my dad to those specs. A tenor guitar is basically a baritone with a 23" scale and a larger body. The tension for DGBE in this scale is much closer to that of a tenor but with the lower key of a baritone. The 20" standard scale is a more relaxed tension for a mellow vibe that's cool. But as you go longer in scale you get more lively, more ukulele brightness. Especially with the high D. Speaking of the high D, Benny Chong would come in with buddy. He plays the high D baritone in a regular scale-
http://youtu.be/e6y0mNVR03A
But my suggestion would be to try maybe a slightly longer scale. Like 21 or 21.5"? Any which way you go I'm sure Luis will make a wonderful, unique, and very musical instrument.


Nice video of Benny

Andrew I guess your Dad does not check the UU...or his surprise not a surprise....haha

hammer40
08-28-2013, 05:05 AM
I'm not sure why the Baritone doesn't seem to get much respect around here. It seems like some folks are always trying to change something about it. If one isn't happy with the scale or tuning, then don't play it. I wonder if those who play the tenor saxophone are always trying to change the baritone sax as well. :)

Dan Uke
08-28-2013, 06:20 AM
Thanks for sharing the video Andrew. It reminded me my last trip to Hawaii as I saw Benny and also reminded me of meeting you and Len at the Ukulele Picnic. I've been listening to a lot of Django Reinhardt lately and I listened to Benny on the way to work today, what a great performer. I would love to hear jazz ukulele on a bari.

If 20" is the standard scale, why do bari scale lengths differ and still called bari? At least for other sizes, they call it long-neck, even though I haven't seen short-neck.

Bari is probably more in Luis' wheelhouse since he's a guitar builder and baris are closer to guitars than tenor ukes.

AndrewKuker
08-28-2013, 08:36 AM
Thanks for sharing the video Andrew. It reminded me my last trip to Hawaii as I saw Benny and also reminded me of meeting you and Len at the Ukulele Picnic. I've been listening to a lot of Django Reinhardt lately and I listened to Benny on the way to work today, what a great performer. I would love to hear jazz ukulele on a bari.

If 20" is the standard scale, why do bari scale lengths differ and still called bari? At least for other sizes, they call it long-neck, even though I haven't seen short-neck.

Bari is probably more in Luis' wheelhouse since he's a guitar builder and baris are closer to guitars than tenor ukes.

Scale lengths are mostly "standard" because there are pre-made templates and jigs for cutting your fret slots. Typical "long necks" are just using the next template up. Tenor neck on concert etc. You don't see a long neck concert with a 16" scale very often because that means the builder has to measure and hand cut all the slots or hand make the table saw jig that you can just buy for the various sizes. When a builder says -why would you do that? then it wouldnt be that size...I just hear, I don't want to do that, that's a lot of work just to experiment. If someone is willing to rethink scale length then I applaud the effort. A baritone ukulele is tuned DGBE and the size and scale have some wiggle room without being considered a different instrument. Why would someone say that this is wrong? One reason might be that they would have to remake their jigs or do a lot of manual math and labor. And I would say, I understand, but don't pretend to know that nothing can be better than the standard way everything is already done. A century ago Chris Martin and Orville Gibson made all kinds of instruments in all kinds of sizes and scales. Experimenting is the first step to innovating. Not to be looked down on.

allanr
08-28-2013, 08:59 AM
I would start by looking at what players consider to be the weaknesses in the standard design.

1) Long neck would benefit from a truss rod.
2) Better (higher) string tension could be achived by making the scale length longer. So I'd go to 21 inches, but maybe move the bridge back an inch to keep overall length the same.
3) Add to the width and depth of the body - just enough to give it more umph.
4) Sound port.

You'd still have a "standard" baritone in DGBE at about 30 inches in length. But it would be mightier.

peewee
08-28-2013, 09:31 AM
I would start by looking at what players consider to be the weaknesses in the standard design.

1) Long neck would benefit from a truss rod.
2) Better (higher) string tension could be achived by making the scale length longer. So I'd go to 21 inches, but maybe move the bridge back an inch to keep overall length the same.
3) Add to the width and depth of the body - just enough to give it more umph.
4) Sound port.

You'd still have a "standard" baritone in DGBE at about 30 inches in length. But it would be mightier.

+1 on the mightier bari, except #4, but that's just me.. I am intrigued by the longer scale Vegas such as this one:
http://antebelluminstruments.blogspot.com/2011/01/c1950-vega-baritone-ukulele-deluxe-solo.html
More tension / longer neck could only help, bigger body too.

bobmyers
08-28-2013, 10:36 AM
allanr and peewee, I agree that the scale length currently inhibits low D, and for better modulation I would also agree greater volume is needed. It sounds like if we were experimenting, we could start wit a 21.25 scale length and and increase in body volume of 10%. But , I can't afford to build too many of these so I am trying the narrow the fields. I would really like to hear from Dirk Wormhoudt of Southcoast strings on this issue, as I respect his knowledge on the acoustics of stringed instruments, I would hope he wants to enter this discussion.
Low D is the issue, the standard baritone design and size does not have enough volume to accommodate the low D modulation. There is just not enough space for the true sound to develope. The sound actually bounces back on itself and muddies the tone.
Bob

cdkrugjr
08-28-2013, 11:46 AM
I don't think anyone wants to "Get Rid Of" or fundamentally change baritones. Heck, I know I want at least two. One tuned "normal" and the other as a Cuatro. Now what'd I do with all those billions I inherited . . .:D

BlackBearUkes
08-28-2013, 03:35 PM
allanr and peewee, I agree that the scale length currently inhibits low D, and for better modulation I would also agree greater volume is needed. It sounds like if we were experimenting, we could start wit a 21.25 scale length and and increase in body volume of 10%. But , I can't afford to build too many of these so I am trying the narrow the fields. I would really like to hear from Dirk Wormhoudt of Southcoast strings on this issue, as I respect his knowledge on the acoustics of stringed instruments, I would hope he wants to enter this discussion.
Low D is the issue, the standard baritone design and size does not have enough volume to accommodate the low D modulation. There is just not enough space for the true sound to develope. The sound actually bounces back on itself and muddies the tone.
Bob

I can't agree that the low D is muddy on a well made baritone. If you increase the scale length and then also increase the body size, guess what is going to happen? You will be right back where you started because you will need the longer scale to fill the needs of the bigger body. The result, pretty much the same sound, just a bigger instrument. Try it, see what happens.

fromthee2me
08-29-2013, 02:38 AM
Different ratios between string thickness and scale length of instrument or
Different ratios between string thickness, scale length of instrument, and thickness of material used as well as type of material used in constructing instrument.

Enormous amount of permutations.

bobmyers
08-29-2013, 10:28 AM
Yes, but some standards have made the sound very variable with different makers, such as a Collings tenor and a Compass Rose tenor assuming same materials in body?
That is where I am going, and maybe this is not where it can be achieved, all other things being equal.
Bob

ukulelecowboy
08-29-2013, 02:56 PM
“I am not a master player, I am not a designer, or musical engineer. I just love the ukulele in all its forms and ask for more.
So I asked Luis Feu de Mesquita to create me a Baritone Ukulele.
He is up for the challenge but needs our help. In my opinion the perfect baritone has not been made. This will be a new attempt.
We will throw away all previous standards for size, scale etc.
The new design is an open book. Luis would like to follow the successful shape of his Ukaferri tenor design. I agree, size, scale and construction are variable.
So what can this forum contribute to the final product.
Tell us all the shortfalls if any your current baritone has. Tell us the strings you find satisfying. Tell us what has worked for you.
Most importantly tell us what you would like done better. There are many high quality makers out there with baritones in their stable, are you totally happy with them, or could some change get it closer to nirvana?
This column is about collecting your comments and suggestions pro and con on this subject, with the goal of improving the breed, results being available to all builders, string makers and others involved in the process.

All are welcome to be part of this project.
Bob Myers”


Bob,

I own the perfect baritone. Built by Tony Graziano. Tuned GCEA. Southcoast Linear strings. MiSi pickup. Burst finish by Addam Stark. I am happy to share the specs if you want.

She is called Ella:

http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b75/ADDmodeler/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0210_zps8c307d80.jpg (http://s17.photobucket.com/user/ADDmodeler/media/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0210_zps8c307d80.jpg.html)

http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b75/ADDmodeler/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0213_zps5b9caba4.jpg (http://s17.photobucket.com/user/ADDmodeler/media/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0213_zps5b9caba4.jpg.html)

http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b75/ADDmodeler/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0217_zps1b839c02.jpg (http://s17.photobucket.com/user/ADDmodeler/media/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0217_zps1b839c02.jpg.html)

http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b75/ADDmodeler/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0214_zpsf2667e61.jpg (http://s17.photobucket.com/user/ADDmodeler/media/Graziano%20Baritone%202/DSC_0214_zpsf2667e61.jpg.html)

Dan Uke
08-29-2013, 04:27 PM
Mike, I remember seeing this uke when you first got it and it still looks stunning.

TheCraftedCow
08-29-2013, 09:28 PM
Luis and I were talking about changes to a baritone. Some changes to a baritone are personal. How wide do YOU want the spacing between the strings? Do you want the side port on the front or rear bout? Would you consider not having a round hole in the middle of the top? Look where, what kind and what MacPherson Guitars does with their sound hole. The vibration of the top is positively improved. Taper the back with an arch from side to side and from the waist forward taper the back as did Martin and Gretsch on their Gretsch American Deluxe models. The increased depth of the Cavaquniho makes a much richer sound...so would making it more like a pineapple than a figure 8. What about getting the fingerboard off of the surface of the top? That also kills an vibration of the top on the front half of the body. Consider playing with a strap so you do not need to snuggle the back close to you and kill the sound which is produced by it. Anchor it at the bottom, and somewhere on the heel of the neck so the neck can be directed out. That allows the back to ot be stifled and muted. Consider a Zero Fret to be placed about 3/16ths of an inch away from the nut. A half of an inch more will make a noticeable difference in string tensions. I would layout a 19 --19.5 --20 --20.5
fretboard on the same piece of paper so you can see the different spacings at the first five frets. Go find a 5 string banjo an play up and down the neck to find out where it and your fingers feel comfortable. Then ask Luis how long would it need to be to get the spacing you like. Play things which are made of various woods. I have a thing against koa. There are other woods with as nice or nicer figure and colour than koa, and they are not as temperamental as koa. Play and listen to the same instrument with a soft wood top and the other with the same wood as the sides and back. I was awestruck to realize I was talking to an artistic engineer who understands form and function. He is capable of thinking outside of the box. I was thrilled to hear how much and why he likes PEGHEDS.

It"s funny to read about the baritone from the owner's side after having a conversation about it from the builder's side. He has some interesting ideas about the shape of the head and the placement of the tuners, and the reasons why.
Stringing through the body rather than tied at the tail on top was also discussed. You are going to have a marvelous intrument. Follow your mind and your heart. He will tell you what kind of finish he prefers and why.

blue_knight_usa
08-29-2013, 09:42 PM
I played Alto and Tenor sax. Never tried to change the Bari. :-). I couldn't make a Bari scream like my 1930 solid brass tenor. Kimo Hussey let me play his Jay Lichty baritone last night in DGBE and it was my first time playing a baritone of that caliber. The tone was rich, deep, and a wonderfully full voice. The tenors last night didn't come close to that sound, so tuning GCEA I think would defeat the purpose of what the bari is accomplishing in that tuning. Also certain scales resonate better at different frequencies depending on string tension on that particular scale.

I don't get people saying a Bari is really a scaled back guitar. It's really a 4 string instrument tuned like the top 4 strings 1-4 if you are in DGBE every day but you can tune it several different ways so the Bari "scale" I think deserves a lot of respect. A lot of folks ordering custom baritones now. I think it's the next big custom market that is just starting to get some exposure from some very awesome players like Kimo Hussey...and I may add one to my collection in short order after last nights experience. DGBE does mean you have learn the chord names for the shapes you know for GCEA which just takes some study time but I played several songs in DGBE and thought "wow, so that's why guys are loving the baritone."

Now I get it.

All depends on what sound you are striving for as to what tuning you use. I just got a bunch of strings from Dirk at Southcoast including their set for Bari he recommended. Now I just have to get a Bari!



I'm not sure why the Baritone doesn't seem to get much respect around here. It seems like some folks are always trying to change something about it. If one isn't happy with the scale or tuning, then don't play it. I wonder if those who play the tenor saxophone are always trying to change the baritone sax as well. :)

drjond56
08-30-2013, 02:52 AM
I agree that there is no need to change the overall concept of the baritone, especially the tuning. I love my Oceana baritone, there is no dullness about it for any of the strings. Why do I like the baritone? 1. Convenient size for a guitarist as a travel instrument 2. Since the tuning is the same, it is easy to play with guitarists, especially if using shared music and you do not want to transpose "on the spot" 3. Without purchasing a baroque guitar, much of the baroque/renaissance guitar literature sounds great on the baritone. 4. I rarely play a tenor uke in high G--mostly I play fingerstyle in low G tuning, so baritone is easy transition. If I were designing a custom instrument, I would want "sustain" as a priority over "volume" On the practical side, I would want it to fit in a case

didgeridoo2
08-30-2013, 03:18 PM
Bill makes some very valid points above. Today I played one of the more perfect baritones I've had the opportunity to play. For me, at least. It was a Kamaka bari for sale at McCabes Guitars in Santa Monica. I was there to specifically play the Kamaka to make sure that I want a 1.5" nut on my upcoming Mya Moe baritone build. Man, what a great sound. Beautiful. If I was smart, I'd cancel my MM build and go back and buy the Kamaka. Alas, I know the instrument MM will build for me will be fantastic too, but or anyone thinking about a Kamaka baritone, I'd suggest getting one. I also picked up some strings to restring my tenor guitar to Chicago tuning ( DGBE ) and I like it, although the string spacing is a little tight for some first position chord shapes. Good luck on your build, Bob. The one thing I'm curious about and if you've mentioned it, I apologize, but what do you feel you've been missing with the baritones that you've played/had?

Dan Uke
08-30-2013, 03:22 PM
I'm glad you've played it. Unless that uke is less than a month old, I've played it and wondered why people would buy it? HAHAHA YMMV

I guess that's where sound and feel is subjective. Of course we agree that our tenor MBUs are awesome!!



Bill makes some very valid points above. Today I played one of the more perfect baritones I've had the opportunity to play. For me, at least. It was a Kamaka bari for sale at McCabes Guitars in Santa Monica. I was there to specifically play the Kamaka to make sure that I want a 1.5" nut on my upcoming Mya Moe baritone build. Man, what a great sound. Beautiful. If I was smart, I'd cancel my MM build and go back and buy the Kamaka. Alas, I know the instrument MM will build for me will be fantastic too, but or anyone thinking about a Kamaka baritone, I'd suggest getting one. I also picked up some strings to restring my tenor guitar to Chicago tuning ( DGBE ) and I like it, although the string spacing is a little tight for some first position chord shapes. Good luck on your build, Bob. The one thing I'm curious about and if you've mentioned it, I apologize, but what do you feel you've been missing with the baritones that you've played/had?

didgeridoo2
08-30-2013, 03:30 PM
I'm glad you've played it. Unless that uke is less than a month old, I've played it and wondered why people would buy it? HAHAHA YMMV

I guess that's where sound and feel is subjective. Of course we agree that our tenor MBUs are awesome!!
They just got this one, actually. I played another a little while back and thought it was nice, but this one blew me away. Maybe because I was really concentrating on whether the size of the nut was amenable. Your not really a baritone guy anyway, are you Daniel?

Dan Uke
08-30-2013, 03:48 PM
They just got this one, actually. I played another a little while back and thought it was nice, but this one blew me away. Maybe because I was really concentrating on whether the size of the nut was amenable. Your not really a baritone guy anyway, are you Daniel?

Yeah, it's totally a different one if it's new. I've played the Martin Bari that they had for a long time, don't know if they still have it and couldn't figure out why people liked Martins baris.

I've owned a Pono Bari and I liked it but sold it as it because I wasn't sure what I wanted to tune it as...those are easy to get so not worried. You definitely know more about baris than I do as I owned that for 2 weeks or so!! hahaha

anthonyg
08-30-2013, 03:54 PM
I don't think there is any such thing as a perfect "anything". I prefer my baritone ukulele's with a 19" scale length tuned DGBE. To me that's the way to go but for someone else its not. You cant override everyone else's personal preferences and say that what works for you is perfect for everyone else.

Ohh, and I'm quite surprised as to just how much volume my baritone's put out despite having relatively shallow bodies. They're certainly not deep.

Anthony

didgeridoo2
08-30-2013, 03:56 PM
Yeah, it's totally a different one if it's new. I've played the Martin Bari that they had for a long time, don't know if they still have it and couldn't figure out why people liked Martins baris.

I've owned a Pono Bari and I liked it but sold it as it because I wasn't sure what I wanted to tune it as...those are easy to get so not worried. You definitely know more about baris than I do as I owned that for 2 weeks or so!! hahaha
You didn't like the Martin, either? Wow. I thought it was a great instrument, too, but I really liked this Kamaka. They did sell that Martin, btw.

Dan Uke
08-30-2013, 04:28 PM
You didn't like the Martin, either? Wow. I thought it was a great instrument, too, but I really liked this Kamaka. They did sell that Martin, btw. Have you played a baritone you did connect with?

I did like the Pono bari but I tend to like spruce so I would get a higher end spruce cutaway w a diff b&s as I think 2 woods are the way to go unless it's beautiful koa! I would take a chance with LFDM. :)

UPDATE:

I checked HMS and this is a beautiful sounding bari: http://www.theukulelesite.com/new-pono-rb-pc-s-baritone-pro-classic-radius.html

bobmyers
09-01-2013, 11:01 AM
There has got to be more said about this subject.
Bob

BlackBearUkes
09-01-2013, 11:27 AM
There has got to be more said about this subject.
Bob

From what I have read on this thread so far, most folks are happy with the baritone scale and sound, especially with the standard DGBE tuning. You are not happy with the low D and also are asking for more volume. You need to be asking your luthier these questions, not the general uke playing public because they don't know. There are ways to make the bottom end less muddy and ways to get a more open sound, and your luthier should be able to answer these concerns.

Changing the scale length, tuning to a different higher tuning, etc will do these things, but then you are losing the baritone voice. The instrument is on the verge of being an over size tenor uke sound to crossing over to a classical tenor guitar sound, not a mellow traditional baritone.

bobmyers
09-01-2013, 01:53 PM
Hi,
I don't want to reinvent the wheel, just isolating the issues and asking for input from those that understand the problem. Typical baritone setup does not support low D. Luis has asked me to ask the baritone lovers what makes them happy. Sure we could continue to play the instrument in other keys or find strings that will play low D in the typical baritone box, but we need to have all four strings playing in harmony and not just sound OK, but as good as it gets.
I currently have two baritones one key in linear A and one in reentrant G. I have not found a baritone ( I have owned 3 others) that will blissfully play Linear G, to my ear.
If you have , I'm asking what is different about your uke. All baritones are not created equal, differences in construction, size, scale, strings and woods have a dramatic impact on sound ( and many other factors). I have had a much easier time in finding tenors that truly satisfy my desire in sound.
My Moore Bettah tenor with low G Southcoast ML-FW sounds better then I ever heard a tenor play. My LFdM Amigo tenor is almost as sweet with Southcoast ML-RW stings. Someday soon I will exchange the strings and see how much impact they actually have on these two near perfect ( to my ear) tenors.
But for now I search for the perfect Baritone.
Thanks for your comments,
Bob Myers

BlackBearUkes
09-01-2013, 03:38 PM
Hi,
I don't want to reinvent the wheel, just isolating the issues and asking for input from those that understand the problem. Typical baritone setup does not support low D. Luis has asked me to ask the baritone lovers what makes them happy. Sure we could continue to play the instrument in other keys or find strings that will play low D in the typical baritone box, but we need to have all four strings playing in harmony and not just sound OK, but as good as it gets.
I currently have two baritones one key in linear A and one in reentrant G. I have not found a baritone ( I have owned 3 others) that will blissfully play Linear G, to my ear.
If you have , I'm asking what is different about your uke. All baritones are not created equal, differences in construction, size, scale, strings and woods have a dramatic impact on sound ( and many other factors). I have had a much easier time in finding tenors that truly satisfy my desire in sound.
My Moore Bettah tenor with low G Southcoast ML-FW sounds better then I ever heard a tenor play. My LFdM Amigo tenor is almost as sweet with Southcoast ML-RW stings. Someday soon I will exchange the strings and see how much impact they actually have on these two near perfect ( to my ear) tenors.
But for now I search for the perfect Baritone.
Thanks for your comments,
Bob Myers

Since the low D string seems to be a concern for you, try using a extra hard tension classical guitar string or strings to give the uke more tension and the sound more snap.. You may have to experiment as to what string works best and is to your liking.

anthonyg
09-01-2013, 08:51 PM
I'm not buying the notion that a typical baritone ukulele "does not support low D". How so?

My baritone's are all 19" scale length so maybe there is a difference there. I don't know.

Anthony

Paul December
09-01-2013, 10:05 PM
The first thing you have to ask yourself is, do I want a baritone sound, tuned to DGBE, or do I want a uke that looks like a baritone but sounds like a tenor, tuned like a tenor and plays like a tenor. If the answer is a tenorà, then there is no point in having a baritone. The lower baritone voice is unique and quite lovely, why would anyone want to change that except maybe they can't be bothered to learn the chords progressions for that tuning.

I have yet to play a tenor with a balanced sounding low G (too boomy).
OTOH it sounds great on most baritones. That's reason enough for me...
...the extra sustain is just icing on the cake.
Sure it turns it into a jumbo tenor, but hell, a tenor is just a jumbo concert, which is a jumbo soprano :)

Hippie Dribble
09-02-2013, 12:07 AM
I have yet to play a tenor with a balanced sounding low G (too boomy).
OTOH it sounds great on most baritones. That's reason enough for me...
...the extra sustain is just icing on the cake.
Sure it turns it into a jumbo tenor, but hell, a tenor is just a jumbo concert, which is a jumbo soprano :)

Yes I agree with this. I don't particularly like the sound of Low G anyway, whatever scale. It just doesn't afford an even tone in my view. The bottom heaviness of the low 4th is just too great for me. But that's why we have a baritone, surely? Because the low D in the traditional bari tuning is just right. Why mess with it?

The other thing is that changing the scale length could be tried, but is hardly anything new. There are makers who are building models between 19 and 22 inches already. And, as Duane said, a longer scale with a bigger body is unlikely to resolve whatever problems you have with current designs.

Maybe you should try a tenor guitar Bob. :confused:

AndrewKuker
09-02-2013, 12:09 AM
Just wanted to make light of a few things. Luis most likely will not brace it traditionally. A lattice bracing done right will be more piano like in sensitivity and projection automatically. Both traditional and non-traditional have their color, but this may get closer to the sound you desire even at standard baritone specs. A sizable center soundhole and side port will also help articulation. Having the first baritone from Luis will be uniquely special. Congratulations on that.

add: thought, perhaps Luis' weak point: listening to customers...? just tell him to make you a baritone and to decide on specs.

NewKid
09-02-2013, 05:36 AM
I agree with Andrew. Let Luis create a baritone version of his ukaferri and I'm sure it will play and sound great.

Dan Uke
09-02-2013, 01:27 PM
add: thought, perhaps Luis' weak point: listening to customers...? just tell him to make you a baritone and to decide on specs.

Agree 100% in that or with any luthiers. They know what works for them.

bobmyers
09-06-2013, 10:39 AM
Moderator please end this thread.
thanks, Bob Myers