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Thread: Would you rather vintage or new?

  1. #11
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    Because I prefer tenor with cutaway, new is much easier to find. I'm good with that.


    This is Michael Kohan in Los Angeles, Beverly West near the Beverly Center
    9 tenor cutaway ukes, 5 acoustic bass ukes, 11 solid body bass ukes, 9 mini electric bass guitars (Total: 34)

    • Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children in hospital music therapy programs. www.theukc.org
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  2. #12
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    Jan 2009
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    Both - and lots thereof.

    John Colter.

  3. #13
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    Oct 2014
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    I'd always go for vintage, but not museum pieces, I'm happy for them to have cracks and signs of use because then I don't feel like I have to baby them too much. They were designed to be played, after all.

    And I like friction tuners, even the old cranky ones, once the strings settle I find them much more stable than geared.

  4. #14
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    May 2015
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    London
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    Brand new or recent second hand. I don't want anything older than I am
    Kamaka HF-2LD - Kanile'a Custom 5 string Super Tenor - Koaloha Special Issue Tenor - Mya Moe Maple & Spruce Tenor - Pono MGTDP

  5. #15
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    New all the way - unless it's a real bargain!
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.

  6. #16
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    Apr 2017
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghostrdr View Post
    I love hearing how people have scored deals. I love hearing how people have rehabbed instruments and brought them back to life. Love seeing NUD posts.

    I’ve looked at some eBay and reverb sites and checked out some vintage Martin ukes and vintage Kamaka ukes.

    The prices for some of them are super expensive.

    Would you rather spend your money on a vintage instrument that has seen a lot of life, may not be the most pretty or need additional repair? Or would you rather spend the same money (pristine instrument or instrument plus cost of repair) on a new instrument using the latest innovations and bracing, side ports, etc.

    I can see arguments for both...

    Just curious.
    Thanks, this is interesting question and thread.

    ‘Vintage’ means different things to different people so can confuse the issue. I’m not sure at what point something becomes vintage rather than second hand, it’s a bit of a grey area but second hand is a clearer term.

    All my instruments have been made within say the last decade and I’m not overly fussed about buying brand new, indeed I think it more ecological to buy used and will do so if price and condition are right - I’m happy to do some repairs too. I look after my possessions but over time I have realised that the Ukes that I feel most for are those that show signs of (careful) use / wear. Indeed I have come to think of instruments as items in my care, items to be looked after and passed onto future generations of players. A used instrument that’s restored to playing order, or has it’s defects corrected in some way, and is then placed in the hands of another player is a joy in itself.

    Here in the U.K. decades old Ukes, for restoration or use as is, are either rarely available or ridiculously priced - well that’s my experience. After some months of searching I gave up on the idea of having such an instrument and instead picked up something new at a good price, and it’s working just as I expected it too. If you buy something decades old that was made by a manufacturer who’s instruments you’ve never played before then there’s a good chance that you’re going to be disappointed, of course the same can be said of a recently built item too.

    So, overall, I prefer to buy older instruments, if condition and price are acceptable. However it’s also important to realise that, like now, designs and details vary between manufactures so try to avoid disappointment by buying what you’re familiar with and happy with. The term ‘Vintage’ is not a ‘Silver Bullet’ that guarantees satisfaction.
    Last edited by Graham Greenbag; 06-18-2019 at 11:25 PM.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenn2018 View Post
    At what point does a ukulele go from "used" to "vintage"?
    $$$

    (Now I have to type more to get to ten characters.)
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  8. #18
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    A vintage uke would have to be very special and at the right price. I bought a Martin that was probably/possibly made in 1944, the year of my birth. If it dated from the 1920s, I'd have no interest. I was given a Roy Smeck from about 1940, and I bought a Wabash from about 1950 because it was $50 with a case (from Jim Beloff). Otherwise, I prefer more current ukes. I don't want to be responsible to maintaining something special.

    Wabash (Wabash Ave, Chicago) below -

    01 Wabash.jpg
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  9. #19
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    Aug 2017
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    All the above, please.

    My current “go to” uke is a post-war, pre-Hawaiian statehood Martin concert. I play it more than any other lately, and that by a good measure. It’s currently hanging in my living room along with 4 other ukes that get regular playtime but which are also those that I don’t worry about getting a scuff or two.

    As the Martin has dings, dents, cracks and crazing, I don’t baby it when the humidity is high enough in the house to leave it out. In winter, when it’s dry, it lives in a humidity bag, as do all my ukes.

    But that Martin is an excellent player and has a deep, warm, distinctive voice that sounds like no other uke I own. Yeah the friction tuners are tight, but as another poster observed, they hold tight.

    And then there are plenty of newer ukes, including some I bought brand new. I love them all with a few exceptions ( my Bruko and my Baritone)

    So, I’m not afraid of vintage, though I doubt I’d ever by any “museum” pieces. But some of them Martin “players” are great!
    Last edited by Swamp Yankee; 06-19-2019 at 01:15 AM.
    Sopranos: aNueNue Khaya Mahogany 1, Bruko No. 6; Kiwaya KS-1; Kiwaya KTS-4; Kiwaya KTS-4K; Martin S-O
    Concerts:Cahaya CY-0112; Kiwaya KTC-1; Martin C-1 (ca. 1947-1955); Musicguymic's Kolohe
    Tenors: Cordoba 24T; Kiwaya KTT-2K
    Baritones: Cordoba 24B

  10. #20
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    Im just not nostalgic so I'm not drawn to antiques. To me, a ukulele is a musical instrument and I'm not looking for anything meaningful beyond that. I do however understand why others are attracted to them and want a part of history and I think that is good for them.
    Last edited by Rllink; 06-19-2019 at 03:56 AM.
    I don't want to live in a world that is linear.

    I just want everyone to understand that I am not a ukulele expert, even though it may look at times like I'm pretending to be.

    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...tective+Agency

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