So I really wanted a uke, traded a pair of earrings for a broken one - lucky me


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Jul 15, 2020
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I knew it was broken, saw the photographs. A terrible job someone put this poor uke through. Apparently the bridge came off so they DRILLED a hole and when that didn't work they lathered it all down with some horrific glue which was a job and a half to remove.

So, hi - I'm missbliss in Israel. Living a life on a mountain top, love music very much. Almost as much as I love nature and animals. So here I am with a saddle-less uke. This particular one is an Omega - and the bridge across measure 6cm. No stores open, so am putting the word out if anyone has an extra saddle and can mail one to me - will gladly reimburse if it's not too costly.

BTW - the earrings I traded for were uber cool - pearl and sterling. The barter gal got the better deal methinks, but I am determined to fix this uke and make her sing. I am inspired by Eddie Vedder's ability to put some angst and soul into this instrument and hopefully will be able to learn how to do the same.

Hi and welcome to the forum.

You might well have the better of the deal yet. IIRC Omega Ukes were a ‘house’ brand, supplied by Omega Music of Cumbria England, they were good instruments. A little before they closed down their ‘luthier’ set himself up in business in Carlisle (Cumbria England), he’s a well regarded chap and might well be able to make suggestions (try an email and see what happens, World of Ukes Carlisle).

If you could post a picture of the Uke that would be good as would one of the label (look inside the sound hole) and one of the bridge area. You will need a new bridge and a saddle (bone preferably) to fit in it. Clamping the bridge to the soundboard isn’t simple but folk will advise you on it. Positioning the bridge isn’t simple but Ken Timms (Timbuck) has an excellent video. Remember to add an extra few mm’s of distance in when positioning the bridge, it’s needed for string compensation. Replacement bridges are available off of eBay for very little, but you might have to search around for the exact style that suits your taste.

There’s a lot to understand and take on board.

Edit. Here’s an Omega Soprano being rather expertly played:
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Hi, Thanks for replying and with so much good information. Will start with what I did - did watch the video on bridge repair - got the info down. Because I'd seen photos of the uke prior I knew what I was up against and got the carpenter's glue. I knew there'd be a drill hole but didn't think it would be necessary and cost-effective at this point - not to mention difficult to procure another bridge, so even though there's that drilled hole, I gingerly unscrewed it - scraped and gently Dremel sanded off everything - bridge and uke's rectangled empty space, wiped everything down, checked for bumps and (gulp) used the same bridge. I just placed it exactly where the edges of the original placement were. Didn't do any measuring. Only after the work did it occur to me that the saddle was missing and that now I needed to find one. Not something I had anticipated but then again, not familiar till now with ukes.
Regardless, it's now weighted down with a book and a weight on top of that. Otherwise, she's in good condition.

Thank you also for the name of the person at Omega. Hopefully they're in business and will able to source the saddle. If not, it's going to be a sad situation. I really want to play. Also, will take a photo tomorrow - right now too tuckered out.

Edit: just watched the video - that's just so beautiful. Thank you for sharing that.
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I buy bone saddle blanks from China, but they can take a while to arrive. Various other materials are available or can be pressed into service. The saddle needs to be filed down (on its base) to give the correct string height over the 12th fret (3.0 mm or just under will be about right).
Welcome MissBliss!
You've got yourself a nice little project. It's a valuable learning opportunity and once it's repaired this little instrument will be invaluable to you.
Good luck with the rest of the repair, and with your personal ukulele journey!
Welcome to UU! It's always nice to learn about someone like you who puts an ukulele into working order!
Welcome to the forum! Saddles aren't really brand-specific or bespoke parts, no need to source one from the original maker - you can just use any old generic saddle blank and file it to the correct height to set the action you want. You can even use a too-wide or too-long blank and file it down as well (so - say - if you got a blank for a guitar, it would likely be much too big, but you could cut it down). In fact, it doesn't really even have to be a saddle blank that you use, you can just as easily make your own from a raw material. You could use any durable, stable material. Many saddles are bone, some are just hard plastic. Dense wood (like ebony) works very well too. Don't get too hung up on finding the "right" saddle - if you're confident enough to reglue a bridge, making a saddle or cutting down a blank will be easy!
How about a pic. That would help assess your situation. Just to be sure.
Welcome MissBliss,

Be careful about piling too much weight on your uke. The wood used for the sound board (top) is thin and has thin wood braces glued tot he underside. Too much weight can pop braces loose or just loosen an end of one.

Hopefully the glue has dried. And you can remove the books.

Good luck with your project. You'll probably have to sand a saddle down to fit the slot and the gradually sand the bottom to adjust the height of the saddle to put the strings at a good height. Which is measured from the top of the fret wire to the bottom of the string.

Barry Maz (aka: Baz) has a video about adjusting a saddle to lower string height on his website/blog
The critical part is to keep the bottom perfectly flat and perpendicular to the front side. So that it has full contact with the bridge, and sits at the right angle in the slot. He also has a ton of information and tips for beginning players.
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