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Thread: New MELE 8-string Mahogany

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    65

    Default New MELE 8-string Mahogany

    I bought off EB, beautiful instrument and great sound but the action was high for me 3mm @12th. I took it to my luthier with 50+ years experience and he said there was no room to lower the action, would take a neck reset. I called Cheryl and she quickly handed off the Mike who set it up. He all but insulted my luthier just because I said he worked on all stringed instruments including electrics. In the end he said to send it back, at my expense which I understood when I made the purchase.

    My old Lanikai was able to be set up with much lower action.

    I get why he would send it out with not-so-low action but with no room at the saddle to bring it down?

    I don't think I will be recommending Mele if anyone asks.

    I decided to keep it and live with it but still feel like Mele pulled a fast one on me.
    IMG_1061(1).jpg
    MELE mahogany tenor 8-string
    Eastwood Airline Mandola strung as ukulele "Lucy"
    Lanikai LU-8E
    "Ovation" UAE148M
    K&K Pure XLR Preamp
    Pre DSP Fender Acoustasonic Jr
    Mid-Mo Mandolin

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    65

    Default

    BTW, there was a turtle at my door when the postman delivered it. I wonder what that means?
    MELE mahogany tenor 8-string
    Eastwood Airline Mandola strung as ukulele "Lucy"
    Lanikai LU-8E
    "Ovation" UAE148M
    K&K Pure XLR Preamp
    Pre DSP Fender Acoustasonic Jr
    Mid-Mo Mandolin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Posts
    195

    Default

    Aw, that's awful !
    Stupidly high action ukes are absolutly a curse, especially on a 8-string I think.
    I am sorry about your misadventure and thanks for the info.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
    Posts
    11,949

    Default

    Any specifics on the statement "no room" ???? Can't sand down anything? Nut? Saddle? Deepen nut slots? Have a Mele tenor, and previously, a Mele soprano, with no actions problems. Did you buy it directly from Mele?
    Last edited by PhilUSAFRet; 10-19-2016 at 09:43 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    65

    Default

    They advertised it as having "an oversized bridge design (which attaches more securely and also, on our amplified models, allows the use of a regular-sized guitar transducer, which produces sigificantly superior sound to the smaller ukulele type)"

    But my luthier said you have to have a certain ratio of saddle engaging the slot to get good coupling and that installing a Misi trio uke would not allow him any room to lower the action without sacrificing tone.

    Since I decided to keep it (her) I'll just get a K&K Aloha Twin or Misi air and have him squeeze whatever action he can out of her.

    Yes, I bought it from Cheryl.
    MELE mahogany tenor 8-string
    Eastwood Airline Mandola strung as ukulele "Lucy"
    Lanikai LU-8E
    "Ovation" UAE148M
    K&K Pure XLR Preamp
    Pre DSP Fender Acoustasonic Jr
    Mid-Mo Mandolin

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Queanbeyan, NSW Australia.
    Posts
    1,839

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Geeky666 View Post
    They advertised it as having "an oversized bridge design (which attaches more securely and also, on our amplified models, allows the use of a regular-sized guitar transducer, which produces sigificantly superior sound to the smaller ukulele type)"

    But my luthier said you have to have a certain ratio of saddle engaging the slot to get good coupling and that installing a Misi trio uke would not allow him any room to lower the action without sacrificing tone.

    Since I decided to keep it (her) I'll just get a K&K Aloha Twin or Misi air and have him squeeze whatever action he can out of her.

    Yes, I bought it from Cheryl.
    There is something just not right with the advise from the luthier. If fitting an under-saddle element takes up some of the space in the slot then this REQUIRES that you lower the amount of saddle protruding from the slot to MAINTAIN the ration between in the slot and sticking out of the slot.

    I don't know what's going on but the advise from the luthier sounds ODD at least. At this point I can't hold Mele responsible.

    Anthony

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Queanbeyan, NSW Australia.
    Posts
    1,839

    Default

    Also, I don't think that action is particularly high anyway. An 8 string tenor is principally a strumming instrument (I do pick when playing mine though) and an action high enough to not rattle when strummed hard is desirable. That's the Hawaiian way and a Mele has a great Hawaiian sound.

    Anthony

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    65

    Default

    I play bar chords up the neck and use a pick. May not be the "Hawaiian Way" but it's my way for 7 years on 8-string, I find high action makes it a struggle. I didn't have a problem getting the action right on my Lanikai LU-8E which I'm used to. Maybe it's my 45+ years on various guitars that are driving my expectations.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Queanbeyan, NSW Australia.
    Posts
    1,839

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Geeky666 View Post
    I play bar chords up the neck and use a pick. May not be the "Hawaiian Way" but it's my way for 7 years on 8-string, I find high action makes it a struggle. I didn't have a problem getting the action right on my Lanikai LU-8E which I'm used to. Maybe it's my 45+ years on various guitars that are driving my expectations.
    OK, well the action CAN be lowered. I just don't accept the luthiers story as to why he states that he can't lower it. So far it doesn't make a lick of sense. We need more information to make sense of the claim.

    I have a Mele Koa 8 string tenor with the same bridge I believe. The Mele saddle slot is sitting lower than my other ukuleles with less string break angle but I see no reason for not lowering the saddle height when fitting an under-saddle piezo. Mele do this fitting themselves all the time hence their incredulity.

    Anthony
    Last edited by anthonyg; 10-21-2016 at 01:21 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Oahu
    Posts
    3,672

    Default

    sound like the neck is bowed and no relief in the neck.....
    Kanile'a K-2 Concert,Ko'Aloha Super Concert,Maui Music 1998 Koa Tenor,Compass Rose Koa Tenor,Graziano Koa Tenor,Kamaka HF3-S,Moore Bettah Milo/Sitka Spruce Tenor,DeVine mother of curl Koa/Engleman Spruce Tenor,Ko'olau Indo Rosewood/Sinker Redwood Tenor,Washburn Lyon and Healy 1936 Bell shaped soprano,Lfdm Bastogne Walnut/Carpathian Spruce Tenor,Rollo Scheurenbrand African Blackwood/Adirondack Spruce Tenor

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