Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele - Summer Special--Sold

Summer is here and here’s the first of the season, the Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele.  It’s a standard shape.

Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele

Crinkle and compression Koa.

It’s all about the Wood

Body:   Hawaiian Koa.  I haven’t done an all koa instrument in some time.  This particular set of crinkle and compression was originally started as a custom build.  Well, stuff happens. The sides had some dry rot that made it impossible for me to use as a full thickness (3 1/8″ lower bout) instrument.  So the build was cancelled and now what.  A thinner body instrument of course.  Can’t  waste a nice set of Koa.  Now it measures out at 2 15/16″.  I haven’t built a tenor under 3″ for about 15 years.

Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele

Haven’t done an all koa instrument in a long time.

Fret Board and BridgeMacassar Ebony radiused to 16″ with gold “evo” frets.

Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele

Macassar Ebony radiused fret board.

Accent woods and BindingMasur Birch.  Here’s a wood you’ve probably never seen or even heard of.  This stuff doesn’t come around that often and, of course, as soon as I spotted it at Tropical Hardwoods I had to have some.  Originally I was told that the figure of this birch (probably silver birch) was due to beetle damage but I’m now reading that it is a genetic feature in some species of birch.  Makes for some fun looks.  I used a little blue and black to set the mood.

Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele

Masur Birch binding with blue/black purfling.

NeckHonduran Mahogany with carbon truss rod.

The rest of the Build

Nut and Saddlebone stained brown.

Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele

Masur Birch and Hawaiian Koa combo.

StringsPepe Romero flourocarbon with wound low “G”.

CaseCrossrock ABS in blue.

Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele

Crossrock comfort.

TunersGotoh UPT.


I guess I’d have to call this a “thinner body” tenor  and not a thin body instrument like the one that Kala makes.    I believe now that instruments with more total volume do have a bit more richness and depth of tone.  They are not necessarily less loud.  This particular instrument still has all the tonal qualities of koa with good voice and sustain.  Go figure!  As I’ve said before, they are all different and that’s appropriate if you have more than one instrument.  It’s a Summer Koa Tenor Ukulele thing.