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Thread: NUD: Kamaka, concert, white label

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    st. paul, MN
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    791

    Default NUD: Kamaka, concert, white label

    I need another uke like a hole in the head...

    But a national retailer had a listing plus mystery pics (you couldn't really see the condition) for a fairly priced used Kamaka concert... and I hadn't held one for a while... so...
    Given a generous and easy return policy, I couldn't help but bite, just to see what it looked like...

    I picked it up last night. The thing is like a time capsule, sans about three barely perceptible scratches on the opposite from normal side that you ususally see strum wear. I think some dumb kid may have taken a guitar pick to it as it hung on the store wall.
    I don't think it was ever played. The finish and fretboard are impeccable. It really looks like a new showroom instrument.
    Action is great. Tone is loud, rich, and koa worthy, and I suspect it will sound glorious with a new set of strings.

    And the gig bag came with a button for the "5th Annual Southern California Ukulele Festival", LOL

    My only complaint are the clumsy fat friction tuners that look better than they work, and some extremely sharp fret ends.
    Can someone coach me on sanding the fret ends?
    And what about those tuners, anyone know if can they be replaced with UPT's without filler?
    I would also love to date it, advice appreciated. (Nothing is stamped inside.)

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    Last edited by ukeinfused; 01-05-2021 at 05:03 PM.
    Tracie

    Island Koa Instruments, prototype sop, Peter Howlett #153
    Kamaka white label sop (Tiki added!)
    Martin O sop, 1920's
    Martin O sop, 1960's
    Bruko Cedar/Mahogany archback
    Anuenue Khaya I sop
    Kala Elite 1MHG sop
    Lanikai SPS-S spruce top sop
    Blue Frog semi-custom LN soprano #1, Vic Jones
    Sawchyn hog concert (Martin copy), Peter Sawchyn
    Kamaka white label concert
    Kala KA-ASOV-C
    Kala Elite 1MHG tenor SN

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    New England, USA
    Posts
    4,192

    Default

    Wow, nice find Tracie! Looks like a beauty. Not sure on the tuners, but my gold label soprano had tiny post holes, UPTs would have needed reaming.
    John

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    st. paul, MN
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ukecaster View Post
    Wow, nice find Tracie! Looks like a beauty. Not sure on the tuners, but my gold label soprano had tiny post holes, UPTs would have needed reaming.
    Thx, John. I think reaming isn't an issue if the UPT's would be forever tuners.
    Although I confess I kinda hate to change a near perfect vintage instrument, I want more out of the tuners if I keep it...

    Did your sop have these fat tuner heads? My Kamaka sops have had different tuners. These are like the tuners that came with a 2010+ Koaloha concert I once owned. They work but I love to hate on them...
    Tracie

    Island Koa Instruments, prototype sop, Peter Howlett #153
    Kamaka white label sop (Tiki added!)
    Martin O sop, 1920's
    Martin O sop, 1960's
    Bruko Cedar/Mahogany archback
    Anuenue Khaya I sop
    Kala Elite 1MHG sop
    Lanikai SPS-S spruce top sop
    Blue Frog semi-custom LN soprano #1, Vic Jones
    Sawchyn hog concert (Martin copy), Peter Sawchyn
    Kamaka white label concert
    Kala KA-ASOV-C
    Kala Elite 1MHG tenor SN

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Posts
    629

    Default

    [QUOTE=ukeinfused;2261209]My only complaint are the clumsy fat friction tuners that look better than they work, and some extremely sharp fret ends.
    Can someone coach me on sanding the fret ends?
    /QUOTE]

    Firstly, Congrats! Sounds like a good find.
    WRT frets, I'm wondering, it is winter and dry indoors, could your Kamaka just be too dry? If so, then just re-humidify and the fretboard will expand, naturally taking care of the fret sprouts.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    st. paul, MN
    Posts
    791

    Default

    [QUOTE=clear;2261215]
    Quote Originally Posted by ukeinfused View Post
    My only complaint are the clumsy fat friction tuners that look better than they work, and some extremely sharp fret ends.
    Can someone coach me on sanding the fret ends?
    /QUOTE]

    Firstly, Congrats! Sounds like a good find.
    WRT frets, I'm wondering, it is winter and dry indoors, could your Kamaka just be too dry? If so, then just re-humidify and the fretboard will expand, naturally taking care of the fret sprouts.
    That's great thinking. This came from a warmer climate but spent many days on a truck on it's way to a cold dry MN mid-winter. I'll do that first.
    Tracie

    Island Koa Instruments, prototype sop, Peter Howlett #153
    Kamaka white label sop (Tiki added!)
    Martin O sop, 1920's
    Martin O sop, 1960's
    Bruko Cedar/Mahogany archback
    Anuenue Khaya I sop
    Kala Elite 1MHG sop
    Lanikai SPS-S spruce top sop
    Blue Frog semi-custom LN soprano #1, Vic Jones
    Sawchyn hog concert (Martin copy), Peter Sawchyn
    Kamaka white label concert
    Kala KA-ASOV-C
    Kala Elite 1MHG tenor SN

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    New England, USA
    Posts
    4,192

    Default

    No, my gold label sop had smaller tuners, with smaller screw heads. I like the look of the UPTs I've seen on recent Kamakas: black, with white oval buttons.
    John

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