Dating a kamaka ukulele

Kamaka and a some other companies still make very nice hand-made ukes in Hawaii.

The older ukuleles are made of thinner wood and mostly glued with hide glue and so you must use low tension strings on them.

dating a kamaka ukulele-76dating a kamaka ukulele-32

The older ukes have shorter decay after the string is plucked than the new ones yet often have a more mellow sound.

The mahogany and koa ukes will usually have splits and cracks that can be easily repaired and when repaired have no effect on the sound.

As is usually the case, the top and back were coming apart. The rod and wood blocks are used to pull the neck into the proper position so that the action will remain easy. Don't tighten the clamps too much or you may crush your uke.

If your uke has wooden pegs which are missing they can usually be replaced with 1/2 size or 3/4 size violin pegs but you will have to drill a small hole near the end of the pegs for the strings.

This decal was used in conjunction with an interior gold label bearing the words "Kamaka Ukulele" in red and black lettering that matched the font of the decal. I think that price is on the high end, but I didn't think I'd ever find another in such excellent condition and have the chance to play it before buying it. For reference, here's what mine looks like: Thanks for all the info.

This combination of decal and label was used until 1969. It looks a lot like yours, except the koa fretboard sits on top of the soundboard. I've seen other gold label sopranos on ebay for 0-0. The big question I have, and why I am wondering how significant this uke is, is the fretboard.

This picture shows a typical no-name ukulele probably from the twenties.

It is made from a hard wood, likely birch, stained to resemble mahogany or koa wood.

I have searched around the Internet and I know that it's a Kamaka gold label uke from around the 50's. I found one that looks similar here on Kamakas website: Historic Early Model Soprano I also am curious how much this one is worth.


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