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Thread: Keep the mojo vs. Restoration

  1. #1
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    Default Keep the mojo vs. Restoration

    So I accidentally dropped my sheet holder while holding my uke and it caught the edge of my uke on the soundboard, chipping it a little on the corner of the front where the top meets the sides.

    I e-mailed Kamaka asking them if they could repair it and they said that what they could do is put lacquer over it. My question now is whether I should get the whole thing refinished when I send it in, or could they repair it and refinish just the area without it deteriorating the sound of the uke or making the finish look uneven.

    I just want some opinions and thoughts on how the community feels as far as keeping the mojo or preserving the uke. I don't ever plan on selling it and hopefully will pass it on to my children. I figure that since my uke is going back to it's birthplace they would know best, but what would you do? Thanks for any advice/feedback and thoughts on keeping the mojo vs. preserving it. It already has some love wear on it.
    Could Uke be LOVE?! And be LOVED?

  2. #2
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    Is the wood dented or chipped, or is it just a bit of finish? Lacquer melts lacquer, by which I mean the new lacquer won't just sit on top of the other lacquer or leave a line. The new lacquer will melt the edges of the chipped finish and blend together naturally. In shorthand, the spot repair should look fine.

    "Everything I do gonh be funky from now on" - Allen Toussaint.

  3. #3
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    Default

    Good luck with the repair. Could you take before and after photos?

    I have a Kamaka with some knicks along the binding area of the body and would consider having it smoothed out too by the factory.
    Aloha,
    Ronnie



  4. #4
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RevWill View Post
    Is the wood dented or chipped, or is it just a bit of finish? Lacquer melts lacquer, by which I mean the new lacquer won't just sit on top of the other lacquer or leave a line. The new lacquer will melt the edges of the chipped finish and blend together naturally. In shorthand, the spot repair should look fine.
    Yes, it is definitely a chip. I even kept the little bits that chipped out as much as I could. It didn't affect the sound one bit thank goodness. Is that really the case? Lacquer won't show unevenness and will blend in? If that is the case, then that would be great.
    Could Uke be LOVE?! And be LOVED?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronnie Aloha View Post
    Good luck with the repair. Could you take before and after photos?

    I have a Kamaka with some knicks along the binding area of the body and would consider having it smoothed out too by the factory.
    I definitely will take pix if I go through with it and post them for you all. I am still debating on keeping the mojo or doing a whole refinish.
    Could Uke be LOVE?! And be LOVED?

  6. #6
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    Saint Louis, Missouri
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    Default

    I say you just keep the ukulele chipped if it does not have any affect on the sound. A little wear and tear just shows some love, and you won't be out of an ukulele! Also, I am cheap.

  7. #7
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    While the folks at Kamaka would probably be the most knowledgable about this, I'll offer my two cents.

    If it were mine I'd go for the repair rather than a total refinish.

    That having been said, what I would really do is let the Kamaka folks decide what's best.... If they suggested rubbing it out with peanut butter and then wiping it clean with ten-dollar bills, then that's what I'd do!
    Things get better with age. I'm approaching magnificent....

    Kala KA-SC :: Sapele /ebony soprano, handmade :: Kiwaya K-Wave Tele Uke :: Big Island KTO-TR :: Lanikai LU-8EK :: Eastman concert prototype :: vintage banjolele :: Mainland gloss mahogany concert

    "And if you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there..." - George Harrison

    "Just a few ukulele hooligans getting wild and strummy...." - chindog


    5:2576

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mailman View Post

    That having been said, what I would really do is let the Kamaka folks decide what's best

    I would even send the chipped-off bits in with the uke. They might be able to superglue 'em into place prior to the repair and make the whole thing nearly invisible.

    "Everything I do gonh be funky from now on" - Allen Toussaint.

  9. #9
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    I guess it boils down to what you can live with. If the damage does not effect the sound or playability, me personally, I would leave it alone.

    I look at it like buying a new pickup truck. The truck was made to haul stuff but I don't want to put that first scratch in the bed. Once that first scratch is there though, I can use the truck for what it was meant for.

    My uke is part of my life and like me, will get bumps and scratches along the way. Hope I'm not sounding too deep on this......

  10. #10
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    I can see the tension though. He wants to keep it as an heirloom-quality instrument, so I can see the desire for a professional repair. At the same time, each ding tells a story and the best heirlooms have stories to tell.

    "Everything I do gonh be funky from now on" - Allen Toussaint.

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