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Thread: Convert baritone ukulele to resophonic

  1. #1

    Default Convert baritone ukulele to resophonic

    Anyone here ever convert a cheap baritone ukulele to a resophonic ukulele? I’m thinking of trying this with a 5.5” cone. I’ve been searching and reading sites loke cigar box guitars and C.B. Gritty. Not sure to start this project. I have to reinforce the top around the resonator hole. This looks like it involves severe luthiery.

    Ed
    Pono MT solid mahogany tenor.
    Pono MBD solid mahogany Baritone Ukulele
    Córdoba 23T Tenor Ukulele
    Kala UBass SSMHG-FS, Solid Spruce top
    Old Kingston Baritone ukulele from the mid-1960’s. Using it as a test instrument.
    Cheap Savannah baritone being converted to resonator.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Posts
    322

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    Not a lot of luthiery, effectively you will be cutting a hole in the top, building a well for the cone. Cover it all up with the cover and you are done. Simple huh? What gets you is the little details though. The big one is to get the depth of the well deep enough so that the biscuit allows the strings to go the right height over the fretboard. Everything else is a piece of cake. Get the measurements of the cone, the uke, figure out if you have enough room inside to build up a well. As long as you have enough room on the top to mount the cover and stick on a tailpiece you should be good. Google people doing a full sized guitar. Do the same thing but smaller.

    http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/...nator-Baritone

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Posts
    1,332

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    I've seen this done to acoustic guitars and they all failed because the bridge on the cone didn't end up where the original bridge was located. The answer was raising the strings and calling it a slide guitar.

    To make a proper resonator instrument it's necessary to start from scratch and make a full scale drawing.
    Building blog - http://www.argapa.blogspot.com
    Music and atrocities - http://www.goodcopbadcop.se

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by printer2 View Post
    Not a lot of luthiery, effectively you will be cutting a hole in the top, building a well for the cone. Cover it all up with the cover and you are done. Simple huh? What gets you is the little details though. The big one is to get the depth of the well deep enough so that the biscuit allows the strings to go the right height over the fretboard. Everything else is a piece of cake. Get the measurements of the cone, the uke, figure out if you have enough room inside to build up a well. As long as you have enough room on the top to mount the cover and stick on a tailpiece you should be good. Google people doing a full sized guitar. Do the same thing but smaller.

    http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/...nator-Baritone
    printer2 - I'm going to use a Charles Atchison Lightening 5.5" cone or the Aiersi 6" cone. The Atchison cone is designed for surface mounts on cigar box instruments. I won't know if the biscuit bridge is too high until I get the cone. I think both will require a sound well, especially the Aiersi cone. I'll probably buy all the parts and design a 2 piece sound well.

    Part of me says to abandon this idea, but it will be a cool project.

    Thanks,

    Ed
    Last edited by Edspyhill05; 12-21-2017 at 05:17 PM.
    Pono MT solid mahogany tenor.
    Pono MBD solid mahogany Baritone Ukulele
    Córdoba 23T Tenor Ukulele
    Kala UBass SSMHG-FS, Solid Spruce top
    Old Kingston Baritone ukulele from the mid-1960’s. Using it as a test instrument.
    Cheap Savannah baritone being converted to resonator.

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sven View Post
    I've seen this done to acoustic guitars and they all failed because the bridge on the cone didn't end up where the original bridge was located. The answer was raising the strings and calling it a slide guitar.

    To make a proper resonator instrument it's necessary to start from scratch and make a full scale drawing.
    Sven - I think this project will require creating a sound well. I'll probably buy all the parts and design a 2 piece sound well. I want the ukulele to be a fretting instrument and not a high action slide guitar. Charles Atchison advised that it me be very difficult to design and fit a sound well without removing the top or back. Part of me says to abandon this idea, but it will be a cool project.

    Thanks for the reply,

    Ed
    Pono MT solid mahogany tenor.
    Pono MBD solid mahogany Baritone Ukulele
    Córdoba 23T Tenor Ukulele
    Kala UBass SSMHG-FS, Solid Spruce top
    Old Kingston Baritone ukulele from the mid-1960’s. Using it as a test instrument.
    Cheap Savannah baritone being converted to resonator.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    central CA
    Posts
    591

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    You don't need a sound well if you use posts like many of the dobro builders use. I have a dobro apart somewhere and I can send some photos if you wish.
    The posts have a pad on each end glued to top and bottom. Posts are glued to the pads. I've seen some instruments without the pads but I for one wouldn't do that.
    My Real name is Terry Harris

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by resoman View Post
    You don't need a sound well if you use posts like many of the dobro builders use. I have a dobro apart somewhere and I can send some photos if you wish.
    The posts have a pad on each end glued to top and bottom. Posts are glued to the pads. I've seen some instruments without the pads but I for one wouldn't do that.
    I think I can see how high the biscuit has to be in relation to the original top of the ukulele. The Aiersi 6" cone measures 15.5mm in height, so some kind of sound well needs to be created. I found a guy on Youtube that uses a 6" plastic pipe plug for a sound well. Search Youtube for Reso Uker, "RESONATOR UKULELE SOUND WELL". I'm also considering using a cheap 6" tambourine, but not sure if the diameter specs are inside or outside measurements.

    Project is on temp hold for the holidays.

    Ed
    Pono MT solid mahogany tenor.
    Pono MBD solid mahogany Baritone Ukulele
    Córdoba 23T Tenor Ukulele
    Kala UBass SSMHG-FS, Solid Spruce top
    Old Kingston Baritone ukulele from the mid-1960’s. Using it as a test instrument.
    Cheap Savannah baritone being converted to resonator.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    central CA
    Posts
    591

    Default

    Right, you will still need a "ledge" for the cone to sit on. Indeed, the ledge needs to be supported by the posts and the posts not glued to the top as I said earlier but glued to the ledge. I'm working off a poor memory, an aging one
    My Real name is Terry Harris

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Posts
    322

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    There is two kinds of cones. One that uses a biscuit, more blues orientated. The other uses a spider, more the bluegrass scene.

  10. #10

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    Hi everybody! Long-time reader and first-time poster here, also frequent musical instrument tinkerer. Jake Wildwood's blog is often a good source of ideas, here's a baritone he modified into a reso: https://jakewildwood.blogspot.com/20...-baritone.html

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