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Thread: Captain Backpacker ukes no longer being made

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Honolulu, Hawaii 5min away from waikiki
    Posts
    28,162

    Default

    Hi Stan. Lovely to hear from you!

    I have decided to stop making backpackers, after the current crop.
    My reasons are slightly convoluted, but essentially:

    Since I started making them, almost every backpacker has gone overseas, mostly to the US and South East Asia. On the other hand, almost every standard ukulele has been sold here in NZ. I have enough orders to keep me going with just standard ukuleles.
    The timbers I use are incredibly precious. Not in terms of money - you simply can't buy most of the timbers I use - but in terms of rarity. Most kiwis have never seen or even heard of half the timbers I use.
    I have always been a little uncomfortable about sending native wood instruments overseas. Perhaps it is difficult to understand for most people, but you may know what I mean, as a Hawaiian. Maori people use the word Taonga to describe the 'treasures' belonging to this land. Perhaps you have a similar concept, which could include Koa, and everything else which has been unsustainably stripped from your lovely island for the 'benefit' of others.
    Anyway, I digress. I have decided that:
    1. I'd rather be making normal ukuleles than backpackers.
    2. I'd prefer the majority of my instruments to stay in this country, as 'artifacts' of our rapidly dimishing native flora (being stripped so that we can supply milk to other parts of the world)
    3. I simply don't have time to do both. I'm a one man operation, with about 2.5 days a week at best to make instruments. My kids are young (3 and 5) and I want to hang out with them as much as possible.

    Now, I am still happy to make normal ukuleles for overseas customers. This is simply about adjusting the balance.

    I will obviously be happy to sort any problems that may arise from the backpackers I've made. I don't want any unhappy customers out there.

    Thanks for the email Stan. Always nice to hear from you.
    Hope all is well with you.
    Mahalo, Bevan

    Aloha Gang, Bevan Ukes sound amazing...most all my friends who have played it will not put this uke down....and when then come back, they ask to play it...
    that says alot...considering I have alot of ukes to choose from....perfect intonation and good volume.. crisp tone....just lovely to play....
    Last edited by mm stan; 04-26-2012 at 02:35 PM.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    South Kohala, HI
    Posts
    150

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    I have a lot of respect for that. Kind of like when we ask tourists to leave the lava rocks here so they don't get homesick.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    In the Sky
    Posts
    144

    Default

    Awe,

    i'm so bummed.... i'm so new to the uke world and would have loved to buy one of these.... just a little soprano... stan can you put in a good word for me...



    Quote Originally Posted by mm stan View Post
    Hi Stan. Lovely to hear from you!

    I have decided to stop making backpackers, after the current crop.
    My reasons are slightly convoluted, but essentially:

    Since I started making them, almost every backpacker has gone overseas, mostly to the US and South East Asia. On the other hand, almost every standard ukulele has been sold here in NZ. I have enough orders to keep me going with just standard ukuleles.
    The timbers I use are incredibly precious. Not in terms of money - you simply can't buy most of the timbers I use - but in terms of rarity. Most kiwis have never seen or even heard of half the timbers I use.
    I have always been a little uncomfortable about sending native wood instruments overseas. Perhaps it is difficult to understand for most people, but you may know what I mean, as a Hawaiian. Maori people use the word Taonga to describe the 'treasures' belonging to this land. Perhaps you have a similar concept, which could include Koa, and everything else which has been unsustainably stripped from your lovely island for the 'benefit' of others.
    Anyway, I digress. I have decided that:
    1. I'd rather be making normal ukuleles than backpackers.
    2. I'd prefer the majority of my instruments to stay in this country, as 'artifacts' of our rapidly dimishing native flora (being stripped so that we can supply milk to other parts of the world)
    3. I simply don't have time to do both. I'm a one man operation, with about 2.5 days a week at best to make instruments. My kids are young (3 and 5) and I want to hang out with them as much as possible.

    Now, I am still happy to make normal ukuleles for overseas customers. This is simply about adjusting the balance.

    I will obviously be happy to sort any problems that may arise from the backpackers I've made. I don't want any unhappy customers out there.

    Thanks for the email Stan. Always nice to hear from you.
    Hope all is well with you.
    Mahalo, Bevan

    Aloha Gang, Bevan Ukes sound amazing...most all my friends who have played it will not put this uke down....and when then come back, they ask to play it...
    that says alot...considering I have alot of ukes to choose from....perfect intonation and good volume.. crisp tone....just lovely to play....
    new to the uke world: playing since 3/8/12

    Outdoor Ukulele Soprano 'Tian' (heaven).

    don't worry, keep ukein'!!!!

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Blaine, Washington
    Posts
    2,272

    Default

    I suggest you look at a Griffin travel uke. He can be reached at House and mill tonewoods. Fantastic instruments with a great sound.

    He'll either hand make one for you or sell you one with a line he just started using the same instrument makers that Taylor uses in Mexico.

    My "pinecone" is made from Engleman Spruce top, concave hand carved fiddleback maple back, maple sides, walnut neck and Honduran Rosewood fretboard with Pegheads added later.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Patrick Madsen; 04-29-2012 at 05:50 AM.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Honolulu, Hawaii 5min away from waikiki
    Posts
    28,162

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Dominic Martin View Post
    Awe,

    i'm so bummed.... i'm so new to the uke world and would have loved to buy one of these.... just a little soprano... stan can you put in a good word for me...
    Sent You a PM....good luck....Stan

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    NYC, USA
    Posts
    77

    Default

    As a newbie, While I'm sad that I won't get a chance to experience this mind-bending implementation of the ukulele formula, I understand his need to take a stand on cultural protection grounds.

    In the meantime, can I point our collective attention to the following alternatives to elicit comments (and perhaps reviews):

    A similar shape, with traditional headstock and tuners, there's Strums and Drums' Strum Stick Uke:
    http://www.strumsanddrums.com/index_files/Page1459.htm

    As well as an alternate version of the folding uke, produced by laser punched bamboo:
    http://www.ponoko.com/showroom/chosetec/products
    one of which is currently being assembled by a UU member:
    http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/fo...olding+ukulele

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    170

    Default

    well i had my email of bevan yesterday saying that its almost finished he just had the strings to put on today and then he said he will play it for a couple of days then do a final set up and then post it to sunny wales for me
    i have to admit, since my time joining on here i have read countless posts from other people who get excited about having a new uke and have never understood why, until now......
    i am like a kid at christmas this is my first uke purchase since i got my first ever one which is a brunswick and to be honest i have looked about other music shops and played other ukes with the intention of buying somthing else but have never found one that sounds to me, any better than my brunswick (i have a terrible ear and im sure theres tons of better ones out there)
    but with the backpacker on its way i am so excited to finally have another one that i can pick up and play
    sry in advance lads but ill do an excited review when it arrives
    since i hear that he wasnt doing anymore backpackers i have been on edge weather he woud come through with mine but yayyyyyyyyy!!!!!

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    170

    Default

    well i finally got it (not bevans fault, it got stuck in my customs for 2 weeks)
    looks fantastic and plays nice too
    daz

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Englandshire
    Posts
    3,820

    Default

    That sounds like the kind of bloke you'd want for a mate. Can't fault his logic one bit.

    <edit> in reference to his comments to Stan.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    87

    Default

    Truly hoping I can source one from one of the stores Bevan lists on his site. Kicking myself that I've only JUST discovered the uke, and missed out on getting one that's locally made!
    Zeb A.
    "New to the uke, but loving it"

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