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Thread: Fan vs Ladder Bracing Tests with Worth Browns and Custom Set-Is there a difference?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
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    Melbourne, Australia
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    1,518

    Default Fan vs X Bracing Tests with Worth Browns and Custom Set-Is there a difference?

    One of the people that I play with when I am in Perth, Western Australia is an amateur luthier. I say amateur only because he never sells any of his work. He either raffles them off to benefit children in hospital who are learning music while there or gives them away to friends.

    He has just completed a batch of Ukes that have either fan or ladder bracing to see how the different bracing affected the tone. Each uke with the different bracing type was strung with Worth Browns or with a Frankenstein set that I have been using for a while now and that has been packaged by a well known online string shop.

    He explains it all in the post he just uploaded to his website on June 3rd.

    I just posted this in the Luthiers section and thought that some of you guys might also find it an interesting read.

    https://jarrahdalestringinstrumentco...wordpress.com/

    If your interested in the string set being tested, here is the direct link so you can see what the custom set is comprised of:

    https://www.stringsbymail.com/custom...uke-21670.html
    Last edited by hollisdwyer; 06-05-2019 at 01:57 AM.
    "All worthwhile things in life should be easy to learn but hard to master"

    Boat Paddle ML tenor - Red Spruce over Cocobolo
    Hoffmann Lutherie - Baritone - Master Grade Ebony and AAA Red Spruce
    Beau Hannam Custom Tenor - Vintage Hand Rubbed Sun Burst all Tassie Blackwood
    Barron River Tenor - Satin Box Maple and Alaskan Yellow Cedar
    Hoffmann Lutherie - Concert - Angry Owl Ebony and Cedar

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
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    343

    Default

    Thank you for the link and honestly I would most definitely pay to get my hands on the pear shaped ukulele as they looked so uniquely his own style. They looked absolutely gorgeous and he needs to post some sound samples.

    I have linked his ukulele images here as I canít help sharing them. Iím a fan of big bottom ukuleles. Let me know if this is inappropriate and I will remove them.

    In regards to the bracing, I would prefer the x brace as he mentioned that there is more note separation than using the fan bracing. I like to have my ukulele with good note separation for playing finger style.

    If he ever start selling, with overseas shipping and also makes in concert size or better a soprano size, you need to announce to the community here. Iím sure Iím not the only one who takes immediate liking to it. Still dying for a sound sample though.



    Kamaka HF-1 || Martin S-1 Uke || Eddy Finn EFTS-20-S || Martin C1K Uke || Enya EUT-M6E
    Check out my ukulele themed paintings in UU forum thread

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Corvallis, Oregon
    Posts
    230

    Default

    I agree. Those are fabulous looking ukes!
    Jan D
    KoAloha KCM-00 (koa concert)
    KoAloha KCO-10 (acacia concert Opio)
    Ohana TK-35CG (mahogany tenor w/cutaway)
    Kala KA-SLNG (long neck soprano)
    Snail SUC (solid top mahogany concert)
    Flight TUS35 (blue soprano)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
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    Default

    Opps, I should have said X bracing, not ladder bracing. Tried to change the title but can’t.
    "All worthwhile things in life should be easy to learn but hard to master"

    Boat Paddle ML tenor - Red Spruce over Cocobolo
    Hoffmann Lutherie - Baritone - Master Grade Ebony and AAA Red Spruce
    Beau Hannam Custom Tenor - Vintage Hand Rubbed Sun Burst all Tassie Blackwood
    Barron River Tenor - Satin Box Maple and Alaskan Yellow Cedar
    Hoffmann Lutherie - Concert - Angry Owl Ebony and Cedar

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    136

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    Those are gorgeous! I am getting ready to start building a baritone in a very similar body shape. Hope mine turns out as well.
    Last edited by tonyturley; 06-06-2019 at 07:45 AM.

  6. #6
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    Jan 2014
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    Melbourne, Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyturley View Post
    Those are gorgeous! I am getting ready to start building a baritone in a very similar body shape. Hope mine turns out as well.
    I suggest that you contact Paul via the website. He’s a great guy and very easy to talk to.
    "All worthwhile things in life should be easy to learn but hard to master"

    Boat Paddle ML tenor - Red Spruce over Cocobolo
    Hoffmann Lutherie - Baritone - Master Grade Ebony and AAA Red Spruce
    Beau Hannam Custom Tenor - Vintage Hand Rubbed Sun Burst all Tassie Blackwood
    Barron River Tenor - Satin Box Maple and Alaskan Yellow Cedar
    Hoffmann Lutherie - Concert - Angry Owl Ebony and Cedar

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Tampa Bay, FL
    Posts
    7,922

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    Those are some of the nicest looking bridges I have ever seen!
    "Those who bring sunshine and laughter to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves".

    Music washes from the soul, the dust of everyday living.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Jarrahdale , Western Australia
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    Hi,
    this is Paul who made the ukes. It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling that they are so appreciated and Austin I'm totally happy for you to use the images on my blog.
    I have made 37 ukes - the first 24 were all long neck sopranos and now 13 of these pear shaped tenors. The pear shape came about from a desire to make some floating bridge ukes. Really it all started with the bit of chrome bling of the tail piece. A bit of reading over at the luthiers forum suggested that floating bridge ukes are a bit mute probably due to the low down force of 4 nylon strings. I took this as a challenge and came up with a bunch of features to try and make a loud floating bridge tenor uke. This included a 2.5 degree neck angle (19mm bridge), 15 foot radius on the sound board, and 18" scale on a tenor and some out there bracing patterns. The body shape was part of the solution in that by taking area from the front bouts and adding it onto the waist I would increase the free vibrating area around the bridge. That batch included 2 floating bridge ukes and 2 fixed bridge ukes as a reference. They turned out well but the floating bridge ones ended up sounding 10% down the road to being banjos. I did another batch of two floaters and two fixed with some refinements to drag them back to sounding more like ukes but they still sounded like banjos. All of the fixed bridge ones sounded fine. I think if I had stuck with the development and reduced the neck angle and bridge height a bit I might have got there in the end. But the fixed bridge ones of both batches sounded really good so I decided to concentrate on developing them instead.
    The previous batch were all cocobolo and mahogany which were bright and clear. Going over to all mahogany with this batch was an attempt to mellow the sound a bit. It worked nicely but now I realise that my personal preference is for a bit of sparkle in the voicing. The X braced versions of this batch landed just where I wanted. Early on in my uke making adventure I started making a carbon fibre/ spruce laminated braces which allowed me to make smaller braces which testing showed were just as stiff as normal sized solid spruce braces but a lot smaller. I like to think this contributes to the sound but that is probably just me self justifying the extra work involved.
    For Hollis and Kevin (Kinnard Ukes- who suggested lighter bracing) I did make a sound sample comparing strings on identical ukes and identical strings with different bracing systems. It was my first attempt at a sound sample and I used a Blue Yeti mic straight into my laptop and Audacity to edit it together. I cant hear as much difference on the recording as I can in real life but that might be down to the cheap ear buds I am listening to it with. If anybody is interested I could make it available. It goes for about 4 1/2 minutes and is about 10 meg. I've loaded pics in the past over at the luthiers forum but never sound samples. If there is any interest I'll need some tips about where to upload it. If I can remember how to do it here are some pictures of the floating bridge ukes I did and the gizzards of this batch. OK, not sure why the middle pic is upside down on the preview. It is fine on my computer. You can turn your screen upside down at your end.

    cheers

    PaulSAM_3399.jpg20190121_192702.jpg20190201_185652.jpg

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Posts
    343

    Default

    Another possible way of sound samples is through YouTube videos and provide the link here. Granted that the sound quality may not be ideal but if HMS is using it, i guess it’s generally accepted by everyone.

    Thanks for sharing your ukuleles with us, Paul.
    Kamaka HF-1 || Martin S-1 Uke || Eddy Finn EFTS-20-S || Martin C1K Uke || Enya EUT-M6E
    Check out my ukulele themed paintings in UU forum thread

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Catskill Mountains, NY
    Posts
    3,600

    Default

    Sound ports seem to be getting more popular. In another couple of years, they probably become a rarity again.
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

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