Soprano Gourd Ukulele


First order of business: I’ll be raffling this off at my album release show in Los Angeles (Saturday, 30 Sept 2017, 7pm at the Hotel Cafe).

This was my first soprano-sized uke, a nice change of pace from making tenors, which are a bit bigger.  Hence, the sound is a bit more treble with a more responsive high frequency.

The body is constructed from a gourd, stained red using leather dye, which, it turns out, works pretty nicely on wood and gourds, too.

The soundboard and neck is of mahogany, while the fingerboard is of lacewood, sometimes called snake wood or leopard wood–lacewood was what my mother and I build out first guitars out of.  Turns out she was allergic to it and broke out in hives when sanding it, so I ended up doing all the sanding for her.

Position markers and side dots on frets 5, 7, 12, 15 (double position markers on 7, and 12, my usual).

Tried out using twine as a decorative embellishment.  It works alright, but I’m not sure if I’ll ever do it again.

The nut is rosewood, while the bridge–I have to be honest–I did not make.  I haven’t been loving the electronics I’ve been using lately, and this Peruvian walnut piece had a built in rod piezo pickup (in layman’s terms, “microphone”) as opposed to the disc piezos I had been using.  The result is a much cleaner and clearer amplified sound, as the pickup is right underneath the brass bridge, so it is much more responsive to each individual string’s vibrations.  And the input jack doubles as a strap button, too!



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