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Thread: Kiwaya KSU-1L Long Neck Soprano - REVIEW

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Upper US
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    Not to hijack Baz's review thread, but I ordered the KCU-1 concert version of this last Wed. from Rakuten Global while away on vacation, and was totally amazed when I went to the post office today (Monday) to pick up my mail, because it was already there waiting for me!

    I'll do a NUD later, but agree with everything Baz said about the soprano version: a few finish imperfections, but a very sweet & loud uke. Like all Kiwayas, plays like a dream, with 36.2 mm nut width. This one has notched kerfing inside, but very tidy in there, no excess glue drips. Yeah, it was $119.00, and shipping was $67.00 to MA, but to get a concert uke of such quality/sound/playability for under $200.00 is great IMO. I expect it will sound even better when I put on a set of Martin M600 strings, not sure what they ship with, but they seem just OK. nothing special.

    One thing that surprised me was that nowhere on the uke does it mention Made in China, or any other info about origin; it only says Produced by Kiwaya on the inside label.

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    Last edited by Ukecaster; 08-06-2018 at 09:32 AM.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Walla Walla, WA
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    693

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    Wow, that was fast. And it's a very nice looking uke! It's getting difficult for me to resist buying one.
    Tiny Tenor spruce/mahogany
    Kiwaya KTC-2 mahogany concert
    Kiwaya KS-5 soprano
    Flight Travel soprano

  3. #23
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    Jan 2010
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    Yeah, if it only had friction tuners!

  4. #24
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    Upper US
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    Quote Originally Posted by EDW View Post
    Yeah, if it only had friction tuners!
    Agreed, frictions look way better on sop or concert. These are the geared tuners you see on many cheap ukes: they are unbranded, look like Grover open geared (but aren't), and don't perform as well as Grovers. In fact, when I removed the strings to install Martins, you could easily wiggle the tuner button arms quite a bit in the gears, unlike Grovers, which are much more solid. If I really like this one, I'll probably install UPTs, which are my favorite. I know, some may consider it overkill on a $119.00 uke, but I'm all about utility on keeper ukes, and UPTs are the best. We'll see.

    Strings seem wimpy/cheap too. Gauges are .42 .63 .53 .38. Way thinner than the Martins being installed now, which are .56 .86 .64 .49 An easily solved problem there.
    Last edited by Ukecaster; 08-06-2018 at 05:11 PM.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    UK
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ukecaster View Post

    One thing that surprised me was that nowhere on the uke does it mention Made in China, or any other info about origin; it only says Produced by Kiwaya on the inside label.
    They are made in China though - the Kiwaya distributor to the UK told me himself. They are still building in Japan too as well.
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  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    st. paul, MN
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ukecaster View Post
    Not to hijack Baz's review thread, but I ordered the KCU-1 concert version of this last Wed. from Rakuten Global while away on vacation, and was totally amazed when I went to the post office today (Monday) to pick up my mail, because it was already there waiting for me!

    front.jpg

    back.jpg

    headstock.jpg
    Ukecastor,
    Fun that you got the concert!
    Was there a customs charge on top of purchase and shipping fee? (Not knowing has kept me contained.)
    Where is "upper US"?
    Tracie

    Island Koa Instruments, prototype soprano, Peter Howlett #153
    Weymann soprano, 20's or 30's?
    Martin O, 1960's
    Kiwaya KTS-7
    Lanikai SPS-S spruce top
    Kanile'a K1 Concert
    Kamaka 1969 Tiki Concert
    Kala Elite 1MHG Concert
    Larrivee UT40MHO spruce/hog Tenor
    Guild Bari

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