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Thread: The rising cost of "hand"made ukes

  1. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by ukantor View Post
    DPO said:-

    "[UkingViking]Since pretty much all ukuleles are hand made.

    LOL You can't be serious?"

    As I said earlier in this thread, "hand made" is not a useful term. In the widest sense, all wooden ukuleles are hand made. Call it hand assembled, if you prefer, but we are just arguing about the meaning of words.

    A luthier from the eighteenth century would not consider any of today's top range ukuleles as properly "hand made" - unless there are still people out there making ukuleles from the raw timber using non powered tools.

    John Colter
    I prefer the term "Hand Crafted"

    Powered tools are capable of doing exactly nothing without my hands.

    As I use no CNC or computer assisted tools in my builds they are as I stated above "Hand Crafted"
    Last edited by DPO; 09-19-2019 at 12:38 AM.
    Kind Regards
    Dennis

    dponeil@xtra.co.nz
    Southern Cross Banjo Ukes & Ukuleles
    Proudly Hand Crafted in
    New Zealand.

  2. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Sheehan View Post
    So.............. how about those Cardinals?!!
    I thought we had switched over to rabbits.
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  3. #73
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    This is a good article about the cost of making a uke. Nothing shocking, but it puts it in perspective.

    https://liveukulele.com/gear/buying-tips/ukulele-price/
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  4. #74
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    Yes, DPO, 'hand crafted' makes an important distinction and is more precise. I was not suggesting that use of power tools and other labour saving devices and techniques is cheating. I'm all for it. I'll bet Antonio Stradivari would have given his right arm for a band saw.

    John Colter

  5. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by ukantor View Post
    Yes, DPO, 'hand crafted' makes an important distinction and is more precise. I was not suggesting that use of power tools and other labour saving devices and techniques is cheating. I'm all for it. I'll bet Antonio Stradivari would have given his right arm for a band saw.

    John Colter
    The great race car driver Stirling Moss recently turned 90 (No, he's not still racing). I read an article he wrote years ago about woodworking. He was very talented, and he said the main advantage of power tools was speed. He liked doing his woodworking manually, but he didn't hesitate to use power tools from time to time.
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  6. #76
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    Jan 2019
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerryc41 View Post
    This is a good article about the cost of making a uke. Nothing shocking, but it puts it in perspective.

    https://liveukulele.com/gear/buying-tips/ukulele-price/
    That is a great article with a nice discussion of the various costs. Thanks, Jerry!
    Ukes include (but are not limited to)
    • Blackbird Clara
    • Kamaka HF-2A (Koa Concert)
    • KoAloha Opio KCO-10 (Acacia Concert)
    • KoAloha Opio KCO-10S (Spruce Top Concert)

  7. #77
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    FWIW (not much) I once kept a log of the time I took to make a soprano ukulele entirely by hand. Well, not entirely. I started with roughly thicknessed wood for the body, and got it down to size by hand sanding. The only power tool I used was a pillar drill for the tuner peg holes. It took me roughly fifty man hours.

    It makes absolutely no sense to do this, if you have access to a workshop.

    John Colter

  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wukulele View Post
    Alternative title to this thread: the expanding loss of the understanding of value in a mass-produced, instant gratification, disposable human world...

    "the expanding loss of the understanding of value in a mass-produced, instant gratification, disposable human world"

    Oooh! You took the words right out of mouth.

    I like my gratification to be as instant as possible because I don't know how much longer I'll be around to be gratified.
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  9. #79

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    Some of these like the Southern Cross ones, are works of art. If I could afford one of any of these, I'd buy them. You don't find that in mass produced ukes. I'm not saying that some of the mass produced aren't nice, but are they art? All in the eye of the beholder

    People can justify the price if they can get the money. If they can't, they'll drop the price.

  10. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sven-Uke View Post
    IMO some of these high priced ukeleles are more than instruments, they are works of art.
    ^ This is really what drives the high end market. What I find particularly amusing are luthier websites that are littered with dramatic pictures of their instruments. The reflection off the gloss finishes at just the right angles. I’m trusting that they sound and play equally well, and some sites have sound samples, but that doesn’t seem to be the selling point.

    It seems that being able to open your case and have your custom ukulele light up the room is a requirement. This isn’t necessarily bad, I have one tricked out ukulele with inlays, bevels, multi-wood purfling; and all that costs money. Oh... and it sounds good too.

    But it seems rare to find a high end luthier that builds an understated ukulele that simply sounds and plays great. Anybody want a custom ukulele with a satin finish? It might reflect the heritage of the instrument, unfortunately, that isn’t the market today.

    John
    Last edited by 70sSanO; 09-19-2019 at 04:59 AM.

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