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Thread: Heirloom instrument?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Heirloom instrument?

    I have been checking out various luthier websites/pages, and every now and then I'll see at the bottom of a page the sentence "This is an heirloom instrument".

    What does that mean? I can only assume it's meant to suggests a quality built instrument, but isn't that what we should always expect?
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  2. #2
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    Default

    The only time I've seen that on items for sale, I've assumed the guy is trying to sell me snake oil. It may mean something different in the Ukulele world though.

  3. #3
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    Default

    Saying that, a google search for "heirloom instrument" turned up THIS site for Weber Mandolins. I have to say, it was very difficult not to touch myself inappropriately when looking at some of the instruments, but I can't help thinking the term "Heirloom Instrument" is a bit of an "Americanism".

  4. #4
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    Default

    I always assumed the term meant it a "prized" instrument that has been in the same family for generations or something. I used quotation marks because if it were truly prized it wouldn't be up for sale, IMO.

    I wonder if my grandfather's Gibson counts as an heirloom instrument...

    Uke Size...| Ukes I Play
    -----------+----------------
    Soprano....| Gibson Uke-1
    Concert....|
    Tenor......| Kala KA-TEM & KA-STG
    Baritone...| Pono MBD

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Default

    I think of heirlooms as items that have been handed down for at least a generation or two, through a family. I think "inherit" is a form of the word "heir".
    If everybody wanted peace instead of another TV, then there would be peace.
    -John Lennon-

  6. #6
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    Default

    For me, it means nothing from a marketing standpoint. Like Steve said, a "Heirloom" is something that has been passed from generation to generation in your family. Anything can be an heirloom, and has not one thing to do with "quality". My dog can take a dump in the yard today, and I can scoop it up, set it aside and give it to my son, he can give it to his son, and so on and so on, and technically, it will be a "heirloom". But guess what, it's still just a dog turd. I have seen people cherish a cheap, beat up, horrible sounding and playing ukulele from the 1920s because it belonged to their grand mother. That, is a prized, priceless ukulele to that family, and IS a heirloom, and will continue to be passed down the family as a heirloom. Not worth much to anyone outside the family, but to them, it is priceless as it should be.
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  7. #7
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    Default

    have you tried a heirloom tomato???

  8. #8
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    Feb 2008
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    Default

    I have seen some crazy curly koa sets labeled as heirloom. I think when it is new instrument or wood or whatever it is marketing saying it is better quality or something.

  9. #9
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    When I see something that says 'heirloom instrument' I think of very pretty wood that you will want to keep in the family.

    IE, you will it to your offspring, and they think it's so pretty they want to keep it instead of running to the evil bays.
    Purple Makala Dolphin : Mahalo Camp Uke : Mainland Red Cedar Pineapple Porthos : Lanikai O8-E Honey : Mainland Red Cedar Soprano Panties : Ohana Sopranino Short Round : Islander Soprano : Mainland Mahogany Tenor Tank Jr : Kala KM-FMB : Makai PK-55 Inspiration : Vintage Blackstone Baritone : Bluegrass Cedar top Tenor : Zebrawood Fishuku


  10. #10
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    It's just some marketing schmuck who decided to use a fancy word to try and give their product more class. It's a way for them to try and make it appear that their instruments are or will be prized.

    My personal opinion is that anyone that believes they need to fancy up their stuff by using silly adjectives like "heirloom" are trying a bit too hard to compensate for something.
    I got my wife, my dogs, and my Kanile'a. What else would I need?

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