Is visible glue inside a ukelele normal?

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Hi all! Long time lurker first time poster.

I'd love some opinions about this Mainland tenor that just arrived.
I've been eying it for some time now and decided to pull the trigger during their black friday sale... out of the box it is really lovely, and has a really sweet mellow tone.
However when I gave the inside a glance I noticed some really big glue marks all over the back and sides :( photos below:


I know this isn't a super expensive instrument, but even my $100 cordoba had much nicer finish in the interior.

This is only my third ukulele so I'm not sure if I'm being too pedantic here. What do you guys think?
 
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Is it normal? Well, finishing standards have certainly improved over the past decade, but it's not uncommon. Sloppy, yes, especially where it isn't simply a bit of excess glue around a joint, but I wouldn't consider it anything to worry about, particularly as the instrument sounds good to you: it's unlikely to be part of a structural issue.
 
Hi all! Long time lurker first time poster.

I'd love some opinions about this Mainland tenor that just arrived.
I've been eying it for some time now and decided to pull the trigger during their black friday sale... out of the box it is really lovely, and has a really sweet mellow tone.
However when I gave the inside a glance I noticed some really big glue marks all over the back and sides :( ….

I know this isn't a super expensive instrument, but even my $100 cordoba had much nicer finish in the interior.

This is only my third ukulele so I'm not sure if I'm being too pedantic here. What do you guys think?

This isn’t a cheap instrument (circa $350?) and the glue shouldn’t be there, as such I think photos to both the dealer and Mainland would be in order - you’ve paid for better than you received and sometimes minor blemishes escape quality control. Did you get much of a discount in the sale?

On the other hand Mainland Ukes are (for what you normally get) a bargain, a bit of excess glue does no harm (it’s just ugly) and it might later be carefully removed by some suitably able person. In the broader picture it’s not a fault that’s worth much thought and one that could soon be forgotten once you start playing.

Edit. Perhaps the sale discount might encourage you to give others a bit of slack?
 
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Some of the major guitar brands will have glue drips and spots.....occasionally. Personally it does not bother me unless it was excessive. I'm more interested in the mechanical aspects of a new guitar(action, neck angle) You probably are too as you were looking closely at your new gear. It looks nice overall. How does it sound and play? Welcome to the group!
 
I had a chat with a ukulele dealer who told me that Barry Maz and I have caused issues by offering internal photos (Barry) and videos (Me) of ukuleles in our reviews.

Internal glue mess doesn’t impact the sound or playability or usually even the appearance of a ukulele; it does demonstrate the care taken in the building process at the factory. Ultimately, to build with little mess requires more attention to detail, a longer process, and usually a higher price tag for the labor.

But 95% or more of that “mess” is only seen with an internal camera.

Not so with yours. The stain above the label is visible.

THAT ALL SAID (emphasis intended), Mike is one of the truly good guys in the ukulele world. If you didn’t buy the ukulele as a “second,” I would encourage you to send him an e-mail and some photos and ask what can be done. I’d also suggest asking for this thread to be deleted until he gets the chance to answer that question. Posts like this can inadvertently cause permanent damage to a brand—regardless of its prior reputation.

My thought is that when he (or his wife) was filling orders, he (or she) wasn’t inspecting insides, but checking all of the external aspects, and it was missed.

My guess is that he will either send out a different instrument or offer you a discount as a “second.” But I would bet that if you reach out, he’ll take care of you.
 
Musical tone, playability and durability are my priorities. 🎶

Internal glue blobs don’t bother me. I don’t consider them to be defects. Shows that enough glue was used so that parts won’t separate and rattle. 🫣

If the blob is bothersome it can be scraped with a paint scraper or window scraper. I wouldn’t risk that a tidier other uke would sound as good. 🪛

Couple years ago my guitar tech commented about fixing buzzy internal struts that didn’t get enough glue from the glue roller used in a tidy factory 🫢
 
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It's about a $350.00 uke. Yes, its a little sloppy. Seeing some of it it through the sound hole by the label it may have escaped a good inspection. That one maybe should have not made it out the door or at least should have been noted and/or possibly discounted I would think.

I'd concur with another comment. Contact the dealer you bought it from, or Mainland if you purchased it direct from them and see if they will exchange it for you, take back for a refund or possibly discount it to your and the dealers mutual agreement and satisfaction.

Inspect the Uke well and make sure there are no other defects. If it really bugs you now, it will bug you later. I'd return it for an exchange or refund if it's bothersome to you.
 
not out of the ordinary for inexpensive ukes, although maybe not to that extent... but does it really matter if it's otherwise "really lovely" with "a really sweet mellow tone"?

if it was bought from a retailer and it bothers you maybe consider returning it, because it may always be in the back of your head. if it was bought second hand, I'm not sure it's fair to go back to the mfger to ask for compensation.. for all we know the first owner may have gotten a discount because of it.
 
Hi all! Long time lurker first time poster.

I'd love some opinions about this Mainland tenor that just arrived.
I've been eying it for some time now and decided to pull the trigger during their black friday sale... out of the box it is really lovely, and has a really sweet mellow tone.
However when I gave the inside a glance I noticed some really big glue marks all over the back and sides :( photos below:


I know this isn't a super expensive instrument, but even my $100 cordoba had much nicer finish in the interior.

This is only my third ukulele so I'm not sure if I'm being too pedantic here. What do you guys think?

Unless the glue is all over the inside, I wouldn't mind at all. If the glue is oozing out on the outside, that's different. When Baz does reviews, he usually shows the inside and lets you see how it looks. Neatness shows attention to an almost meaningless detail. When the part you don't really see is neat or sloppy, some people think it matters - just because.
 
Let it go,
Let it go,
No one but you will ever know (or care)
Let it go.
:)
Welcome to UUF from Atlanta, where it currently feels a bit like Buffalo, sans the lake effect snow.

And, don’t take me wrong. The excess glue would bug me too but the parts of the uke that really matter all look great and, as others have correctly opined, the sound is really all that matters. I’m a fan of rope binding, even tried a painted version on my DIY kit uke. The end result is far nearer tapeworm than rope:ROFLMAO:.
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The glue near the label is unfortunate since its more visible, but in that price range (and higher) I think some glue internally is OK. If it sounds goos and plays well, I personally wouldn't have an issue with it.

My KoAloha has glue visible between the neck block and the back, and its a more expensive instrument. Heck, if you ever have a chance to look into a 30's-50's Gibson acoustic guitar, you'll often see glue (they're somewhat infamous for their "sloppy" builds, though I disagree with that broad generalization). And those are , IMO, some of the best sounding guitars ever made.
 
Well, I just looked inside one of my very nice ukuleles and the first thing I noticed was that it is really dusty inside. The dust is a lot more noticeable than the glue that is visible upon close inspection.

Fortunately, neither bothers me at all.
 
Hi all! Long time lurker first time poster.

I'd love some opinions about this Mainland tenor that just arrived.
I've been eying it for some time now and decided to pull the trigger during their black friday sale... out of the box it is really lovely, and has a really sweet mellow tone.
However when I gave the inside a glance I noticed some really big glue marks all over the back and sides :( photos below:


I know this isn't a super expensive instrument, but even my $100 cordoba had much nicer finish in the interior.

This is only my third ukulele so I'm not sure if I'm being too pedantic here. What do you guys think?

If it is lovely and sounds good and one has to peep inside and stare to find a human left behind a little glue it's ok... these things don't bother me personally. If the intonation is right, action is right and I like the sound, I really don't care how it looks. Vice versus does not work.
 
Hi all! Long time lurker first time poster.

I'd love some opinions about this Mainland tenor that just arrived.
I've been eying it for some time now and decided to pull the trigger during their black friday sale... out of the box it is really lovely, and has a really sweet mellow tone.
However when I gave the inside a glance I noticed some really big glue marks all over the back and sides :( photos below:


I know this isn't a super expensive instrument, but even my $100 cordoba had much nicer finish in the interior.

This is only my third ukulele so I'm not sure if I'm being too pedantic here. What do you guys think?

Hi - I own this exact same Mainland tenor ukulele which I purchased about 6 years ago. It arrived with just one very small blob of glue ooze on the inner purfling - in short nearly perfect externally and internally. If yours wasn’t purchased as a ‘second’ I would ask for a replacement - once you know it’s there, you will always see it. Every instrument has issues with humidity, dead notes, intonation etc - so give yourself every reason to embrace your instrument rather than resent it. PS. I absolutely love mine.
 
As I like to keep my instruments in near “mint” condition, that much glue would bother me.
That said, I would probably take the strings off and gently remove it with a right angle scraper, taking care not to damage the label.
 
I'm a little surprised at a number of comments saying no big deal if it sounds ok. But I wonder if they bought this uke themselves if they would keep it. Easy to speak for somebody else when you have nothing invested.

I would be disappointed if I ordered and got this uke. You didn't have to search to find the sloppy glue. You can see it readily through the sound hole. You did not have to search hard to see the sloppiness inside. You could see it with simple visual inspection and the big smear by the Iabel is very apparent. I think this might hurt resale to some degree if you want to sell it later.

If it bothers you and is not acceptable to you, send it back for an exchange or refund. Apparently it bothered you enough to post here. So I'd say send it back. If it bugs you now, you will probably at least have some misgivings about it later.

The glue is seen easily, it makes me wonder how closely the instrument was inspected. What else may have been missed ? Are they lax checking instruments in general or is this a one off outlier mistake on sending instruments out. $350 is a decent amount of money. This is isn't an Amazon cheapo special. You should get what you pay for.
 
If it bothers you and is not acceptable to you, send it back for an exchange or refund. Apparently it bothered you enough to post here. So I'd say send it back. If it bugs you now, you will probably at least have some misgivings about it later.
At the very least, as mentioned earlier, contact Mainland and see what they have to say. Sounds like they've got a good reputation.
 
I'm sleeping in the guest room this week while getting over a cold. It became very evident that this room needs a bedside table. But the wall is at a funny angle so normal tables wouldn't work. Yesterday morning I went into the garage, scrounged up some lumber scraps and had the table put together and stained by lunch time. Today I put a clear coat on it and now it's in place. But here's the thing... I knew the back side would be against the wall so I was really sloppy with the staining and didn't even sand down the wood at all. From the front side it's a pretty nice looking little table, but if you look where no one looks, it looks like crap. But hey, it's a table right? It still holds up a lamp, my reading glasses and maybe my phone while it charges. It could even handle a magazine or two and that's all that matters, right!?

Then again, I'm not trying to sell this table to anyone... and definitely not for $350!
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