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Thread: Martin C1K Review - Quality Control Problems

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2009


    Quote Originally Posted by Choirguy View Post
    I was just noticing that Mim’s, the Uke Republic, and The Ukulele Site do not carry Martin. I wonder if that says something about their opinion about Martin ukuleles, or if Martin requires dealers to carry too much inventory.
    Not entirely sure but you might be on to something there. I know for certain that small dealers (ukulele or guitar dealers, or both) can no longer carry Epiphone or Fender ukuleles because both brands insist that they carry not only significant stocks, but also a range of their instruments - for example, you can only carry Epiphone if you also stock some Gibsons. It totally prices out smaller retailers.

    That said - places like SUS in the UK are NOT huge businesses - yet they regularly stock Martin.
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  2. #22
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Northen California


    The only small independent dealer I know of here in northern California that carries Martin ukes is Gryphon Stringed Instruments in Palo Alto (a great store for acoustic guitars). But they carry the full line of Martin acoustic guitars - it's a virtual Martin paradise. The Martin ukes I've looked at there were, in my opinion, nothing special. The MIM (Made In Mexico) ones were just average in fit and finish. Then there is a huge premium for the USA-made. There was nothing wrong with the playability or tone of any of them. From my experience in the guitar world, there are those that just must have a Martin, and those like me who wouldn't touch one. You pay your money and you take your chances.

    The big box stores run on volume, and returns are just figured into the business model. They are profitable and are not going to change their practices.

    My best experience has been with Hawaii Music Supply. If I lived in HI, like Alohakine, I'd go see them in person and choose the exact uke I wanted. And as others have pointed out, they don't carry Martin.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2012


    Martin requires dealers to buy all kinds of none instrument items not only the guitars/ukes so you have to do as they want or you can not sell the intruments...not sure why they make this rule?

    Andrew at Hawaii Music Supply sends back many many ukes(even expensive ones) as their normal setups are done on all the ukes they send out so if a company sends ukes that require more than normal amount of work on it they get rejected or he stops carrying the brand all together...

    another strange thread from the end he is capping on a uke/company/dealer as usual... IMO but since he has Martin's ear maybe they will change.....
    Last edited by hawaii 50; 12-16-2017 at 07:52 AM.
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  4. #24
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    How R' Ya


    Booli, sorry to hear, and I did talk to an exec level staff member about suggestions, and to be honest, it's all good, I'm not mad or anything, hope no one reading the post was thinking this.

    SamAsh has been great to be honest, all the staff I have spoken to on the phone really helpful, and I just scored a killer deal this time on a Kala Elite Concert, which I hope is going to be good, I can't imagine a bad Kala out of California, seeing all the Chinese ones I've seen in the past that were really nice.

    It's just because I've gotten such amazing deals from SamAsh is why I purchased from them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rakelele View Post
    Threads like these are pretty confusing, especially for readers who happen to stumble upon them via search engine looking for impartial reviews on what and where to buy. Wasn't the original post more like "what a great uke", and "what a great deal"? And now it's a total 180? To be honest, I was sceptical about both endorsements, so I'm not surprised about the flip-flop. Don't you wonder why most stores dedicated to the ukulele don't have Martin in their lineup?
    Sorry, I did say in the post that I was excited and not paying attention to the Ukes when I did the original post and I did mention all this in the original post, so I thought I made all that clear for everyone to understand it was a mistake on my part....

    Martin has a name, and history I'm not going to deny, hopefully it was just a rare thing that happened.

    Choirguy I did edit the post over, but I didn't make it in bold, the title of the post was changed, so I assumed others would read and see the changes, but I went back and made the top bold.

    By the way SamAsh didn't have a big order from Martin when I placed my order, they told me it was just a small order they placed from Martin.

    It would be interesting to ask the other dealers why they don't carry Martin, if it's because they have to buy their guitars too, especially someone as big as the Ukulele Site in Hawaii, when they have carried a lot of brands over the years.
    Last edited by AlohaKine; 12-16-2017 at 10:37 AM.
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  5. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Dayton, OH


    Quote Originally Posted by hawaii 50 View Post
    another strange thread from Alohakine....
    Hawaii 50, may I ask you to stop using the above line when commenting on Alohakine's posts? This is not the first time I have seen this and it is a borderline violation of rule #1.

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  6. #26
    Join Date
    Oct 2018


    Quote Originally Posted by AlohaKine View Post
    SamAsh is a big, box chain, I guess you could say company, according to Wikipedia 45 locations across the USA;

    SamAsh says they don't open the boxes and inspect, they want it to be closed, as in not a broken seal for the customer, and I get the idea/thinking behind something like this. But I did explain that if they didn't inspect instruments, then you can run into problems like this.

    I personally think the Store Inspection and setup aspects of a business are a really good selling point, and something players like, knowing that professionals, cleaned/prepped, inspected and setup their Ukes, this is a good thing, and I tried to encourage SamAsh to looking into this.

    Of course these things happen with other makers, and they should not of left the factory, the thing is, Martin and companies like them, that have these issues, the truth is, this is a Quality Control issue, the company themselves not addressing these problems and allowing these out the door, which should not be happening in the first place.

    Specialist dealer or not, the stores aren't to blame, the makers are, and they need to improve their Quality Control, and for Martin, it should be better. But even if things slip through, I agree, it's nice to buy from places that inspect, and if there's a problem it's dealt with before.

    I won't name names, but I think, or I assume, everyone gets the idea here. I expect something like this, from the smaller Chinese makers, I didn't expect to see this, twice in a row from Martin.
    As far as protruding fret ends goes - I am responding way after the fact, but I believe the following is totally relevant. I strongly disagree that Martin is at fault, at least with your statement on the frets, "Both Ukes frets were not properly dressed, frets are sharp on both sides of the necks, not fun to play on either neck." In fact, in most cases of fret dressing, the dealer is at fault.

    Here is a recent review I posted on Amazon about a Martin S1 I purchased.

    A Great Uke and A Message About Humidifying Your Ukulele
    January 30, 2019

    I recently bought a new Martin S1 from a local music store. The frets were sticking out badly and had very sharp ends. I got a great deal on the ukulele because of this (basically dealer cost). An extremely common reason for sharp protruding frets is an instrument that has gotten dried out. The owner/seller has not humidified it adequately. This is NOT Martin's fault. As wood dries, it does a few things. It shrinks, it cracks and the action can get high or low. Luckily, my Martin S1 was not cracked, and the action was fine. I put the ukulele in a good Protec Max case, put an Oasis humidifier in the sound hole, 2 Oasis humidifiers by the headstock and one by the heel of the ukulele. Within two days, the frets were protruding FAR less. I then brought it to a good luthier and had the frets dressed (about $40). As it is very cold where I live, our forced air heat runs virtually all the time, and the relative humidity in our house is very low. I keep the S1 in a Protec Max case, an Oasis humidifier in the sound hole and by the headstock. I have a number of very good ukuleles, and this Martin S1 is a favorite. Plays and sounds great. Amazon sells very good humidifiers for ukes - the Oasis OH-18 and the Music Nomad MN302 Humilele Ukulele Humidifier are my favorites. Use only distilled water in them for best results. The Martin S1 is a great ukulele for the price.

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