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Thread: Hawaii trip buying advice

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    103

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    Quote Originally Posted by frianm View Post
    I found what I wanted my first day on the big Island by returning to someone I had dealt with two years before. I am very pleased. I am now on Kauai and hope to visit Scotty's before heading home to Vermont. The latter not for a purchase but to see who he is and maybe set up a relationship for the future. That is what worked on the big Island - having a relationship. I have consistently purchased used instruments as I prefer them overall. They also have better prices.
    As was suggested above - avoid the tourist traps.
    We will be visiting Big Island in March and I would like to do some uke shopping there as well. Can you be specific as to where to find some good ukes there? Before Big Island we will also go to Kauai, and Scottys there is always interesting to visit. I considered about buying my first uke there a few years ago, but then he reneged on an offer which was a turn off for me.

    Oh, and to the OP regarding Oahu - it is very worthwhile to get out of Waikiki and explore other parts of the island. The Bus can take you to many places for very affordable fares, so definitely go to the North Shore check out the waves, shrimp trucks, and beaches there as well before you go uke shopping.
    Last edited by merlin666; 01-08-2018 at 11:18 AM.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Ewa Beach, HI
    Posts
    24,411

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    There are factory seconds at Ko'olau/Pono as well.
    Those you will need to drive to though.
    Or find a local ukulele enthusiast who would give you a ride there.
    I just might know someone who would be willing to do that for you
    PM me when you get on Oahu.
    1:5255
    My Quiver: S & J Craft Milo Tenor "Liliu" six string custom and Milo and Lychee concert by Emil Bader
    Pono PKT-1 Koa Tenor w/MiSi, Lanikai LU-21T - Autographed!, Hikare CU 528 Baritone
    R&L all koa mini concert, Mainland Gecko, Epiphone Les Paul Vintage, Kala Concert
    Compass Rose 5 string
    Nothin' left to do but : ) : ) : )

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Kansastan
    Posts
    14,150

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fire lantern View Post
    Hi all,

    I'm traveling to Hawaii for a few days in a couple months and would really like to buy a uke when I'm there. I'll be in Honolulu and will realistically only be able to go to a couple places given limited time and little kids and no car.

    In my ideal world, I'd like to purchase a factory second direct from the factory and would love to get a koa uke.

    My only plan right now is to go to KoAloha, as I've heard you can do that there. My budget is around $500-600.

    Any thoughts or advice!? Thanks in advance!

    Matt
    Quote Originally Posted by Hippie Guy View Post
    Not sure where the other K's are at, price-wise, but I don't know if $600 will even get you in the door these days. A Kamaka HF-1 soprano is over a grand.

    A better bet would probably to try and get up to Haleiwa to Hawai'i Music Supply. That way you could see everything in one spot and look at options closer to your price range. It's on the other side of the island, but from what I've heard (even my dad, who doesn't play, stopped by to check it out!), it's quite worth the effort.
    Something to think about. If you buy at HMS/Ukulele Site you will need to leave the uke for setup. They will then ship to you. You won't have your new uke for a couple of weeks. But you won't have to figure out traveling with your new uke. You will save the sales tax too.
    Dig Infinity!

  4. #24

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    I would also recommend Ukulule Pua Pua in Waikiki if your time is limited and you find it difficult to travel anywhere. i went to a few shops when I was there and that was my favourite.

    I was most keen to go to HMS and drove there to have a look. My trip took about an hour and a half because of roadwork so most of the time was spent idling. We got there about 15 minutes before closing but the staff gave us as much time as we needed. I bought my Kamaka there without any after purchase setup and it plays just fine. If you plan to go, it would be best to go early so that your limited time is not wasted because of traffic and the shop closes.

  5. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pueo View Post
    There are factory seconds at Ko'olau/Pono as well.
    Those you will need to drive to though.
    Or find a local ukulele enthusiast who would give you a ride there.
    I just might know someone who would be willing to do that for you
    PM me when you get on Oahu.
    What an awesome community of folks here. Thank you!

  6. #26
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    NH
    Posts
    922

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    Usually a good selection of Kamaka ukulele at Island Guitars, West on Nimitz from Honolulu. (On the way to the airport)
    Martin OXK Soprano
    Kamaka HF3 Tenor
    Eastman EU3C Concert
    Martin S1

  7. #27

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    I wished I found this site before I bought a Ukulele in Waikiki.... I ended up buying a Uke called HanoHano from Pua Pua. I can't find anything online about this brand but my wife says it sounds nice compared to our Flea... longer sustain. It's a bit hard to play and fret compared to the Flea. Now that I know the difference between high and low action I see why now.

    But out of all the shops I found that Pua Pua was the most helpful - especially if you're a newbie. I would have to say Bob was the worst in terms of service... He didn't even look at us or said one word -- even though we came back to the store a couple of times. It was strange and we were not tire kicking either.


    Quote Originally Posted by SoloRule View Post
    You are doing exactly the same thing I did but 3 years later. You will soon learn that the shops on Waikiki are all tourist trap. They sell Kala and other made in China brand.

    The shop inside Sheraton Hotel name Ukulele Pua Pua has some nice Ko'olau and Kanilie'a. (don't count on seeing Kamaka). The price starts from $750 even 3 years ago. No set-up but you may be OK without the proper set-up as these ukes are well built. They also host uke lesson. If you are lucky you may be able to sit in on Jake's Brother Bruce lesson. I believe it's free lessons.

    HMS is 45 minutes drive from Waikiki to North Shore. You are better off ordering before you leave home so that it is ready for pick up because set up is 1/2 hour drive from the shop and they can't do it the same day you purchase the uke which mean you need to drive back again.

    Another uke shop is located in the Hyatt call Ukulele House. The lady is very nice there. You may get lucky with the K Brand but Pua Pua has more.

    Bob's ukulele located on the second floor of Royal Hawaii Centre has some K brands . I found the asking price is a lot more than Pua Pua.

    The three I mentioned are walking distance on Waikiki . HMS is the only one you need a car. Hope this help!

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Bozeman, Montana
    Posts
    96

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    Quote Originally Posted by sunshiNee View Post
    But out of all the shops I found that Pua Pua was the most helpful - especially if you're a newbie. I would have to say Bob was the worst in terms of service... He didn't even look at us or said one word -- even though we came back to the store a couple of times. It was strange and we were not tire kicking either.
    That was pretty much my experience too. I ended up getting my Kamaka at Pua Pua.

    HMS/Uke Site is surely worth a visit if you can get there though. I would have "bought" my uke from them but I was standing in the shop when my dad offered to buy me another uke as a gift and I was pretty overwhelmed - not wanting to grab the first thing I saw I took time to think it through and by then we didn't have time to go back north.

    I was surprised at how respectable the uke selection is at the Polynesian Cultural Center.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Toronto , Canada
    Posts
    1,591

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    I had the exact same experience at the Ukulele Bob shop.
    May be he is a robot ! He was programmed not to look up from behind the counter.
    Brenda

    Please participate in our Mike Lynch tribute thread :
    http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/...Tribute-Videos

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    29

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    Does anyone know if the HMS store carries more in stock than they show on their web site?

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