My ‘I’iwi Super Tenor Ukulele

The last “my” ukulele went to good friend Steve.  So, I replaced it with My ‘I’iwi Super Tenor Ukulele.  This one will stay.

my 'I'iwi super tenor ukulele

Craig Lavin ‘I’iwi Bird head stock inlay.

I actually kinda fumbled through this build.  The ‘I’iwi Bird inlay by Craig Lavin is the first part of the build.  I didn’t know what I was going to use it one so saved it for awhile while I finished Christmas orders for Hale Ukulele and my backlog of customs.

my 'I'iwi super tenor ukulele

Salvage, curly, old growth redwood sound board.

I was anxious to try another stain on maple, but different from the Purple of last.  Red bird, red ukulele–of course. With this beautiful quilted maple from Vince at Pacific Coast Woods, I couldn’t resist.

my 'I'iwi super tenor ukulele

Curly maple stained with black and red.

The Top

The top had to be redwood.  The Purple had Swiss Moon and I wanted a different look for this instrument. This particular sound board is not my first choice.  The most spectacular one that I first picked out was just too far gone and had to be discarded.  I prefer rift sawn  curly redwood to straight curl.  This top is straight curl with some very unusual black streaking.  Taking that into consideration, I left it a bit thicker and braced carefully.  It is so brittle that I was sure that it would explode when the strings were tensions.  Fortunately, that did not happen, but I am still handling it carefully.

Simple red/black accents.

The neck is a solid curly maple, not stained.   The accents are a simple red and black since there is already enough to look at on this instrument.

Red, quilt maple backstrap.

Ah, the sound:  like the ‘I’iwi–clear, distinctive and with  more volume than I expected.   My ‘I’iwi Super Tenor Ukulele.