Need help with strange uke

Ukulele Jim

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Hi gang. I've got an odd ukulele that I need some help with. It's a nice looking, good sounding zebrawood ukulele. It's one of my favorites, so I want to try to resolve a few things about it.

1. Who made it? It has no identifiable markings other than a pineapple on the headstock and a sticker in the sound hole that reads only "A gift from Hawaii" and nothing more (see pic).

2. The tuners need to go! This is a soprano with a concert neck, so maybe it's supposed to be a little top-heavy on the neck side. But the tuners on this are these really heavy metal geared tuners that literally weigh more than the rest of the ukulele. They throw the balance of the instrument off considerably. The problem is that the shaft(?) of the tuner that goes through the headstock is incredibly wide. The diameter is so wide that any kind of replacement tuner I've seen doesn't fit, they don't touch the sides of the hole. Does this make sense? So how do I resolve this? Ideally I'd like to try some pegheads but I don't know if/how they'll fit. Any ideas?

Thanks in advance!
zebra003.jpgzebra001.jpgzebra002.jpgzebra004.jpg
 
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Ukulele Jim

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Just looked at my records and apparently the ukulele came from http://www.kauwelaukulele.net back in 2005. However, that company appears to have gone out of business and I can find no information about them whatsoever. (I also realize I've asked this before, so I guess unless someone has some new information I'm really looking for help with the tuners, mostly.)
 

Ukulele Jim

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Ugh, check it out... the whole made for the tuners is 10mm wide. I don't understand why any luthier would have used these ridiculous things. I have no idea what to replace them with.
hole 003.jpg
 
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JT_Ukes

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Ugh, check it out... the whole made for the tuners is 10mm wide. I don't understand why any luthier would have used these ridiculous things. I have no idea what to replace them with.
View attachment 19303

Fill the holes with a dowell, and redrill the holes the corect size for the tuners you want...
 

Kekani

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I don't understand why any luthier would have used these ridiculous things. I have no idea what to replace them with.

Accurate tuning, adding weight to the headstock (for good reason), adding cost to the instrument (higher retail price).

Why would you want to replace them? If you install different (specifically, lighter) tuners, you may not like the end result. . .
 

mm stan

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Aloha Jim,
Much easier buying another uke....unless you like the sound of it..Good Luck and Happy Strummings...MM Stan
 

I Ukulista

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It's a nice ukulele I'll bet it sounds good too!
You don't like the tuners. Is that because they are quite heavy metal tuners?
Perhaps getting hold of similar 10mm tuners with ivory type keys will make the problem go away?