Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele - Custom Build-Sold

Here ya’ go gang-a-roony–Never enough Koa!  This is the latest custom uke which I’ve named the Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele.  This is a standard size.

Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele

Yikes, talk about Koa!

It’s All About The Wood

Body:  all Koa exhibiting a variety of curl, color and figure.  The client likes to pick out and purchase his own wood from Volcano Guitar Works.  Since I’ve used this source many times before I didn’t complain.  Honestly, the pictures don’t do it justice.  The center of the instrument just positively glows with gold Koa chatoyance.

Oh, you might ask, “why another off-center sound hole”.  I think on the last post I said that this was a standard for me about 17 years ago.  I’m bringing it back with my current builds since I’m a bit bored and also I’m trying to determine weather it is actually better than the center sound-hole.  There are so many variables that I’d have to say that this may be more for appearances than sound.  The bracing remains the same but the transverse brace that I use above the sound hole to stabilize that area is deleted.  This might make for a more active bracing pattern?

Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele

Yikes, more Koa.

Fret Board and Bridge:  Too much Koa?  I got approval for this project before attempting.  I think it works.    It’s radiused, 1.5″at the nut and sealed.  I’ve done this before with burl woods and it seems to be holding up pretty well now 2 years out.   I’ve got more planned but am changing to a stabilized wood process for even more durability.

I’m a big fan of rosewood for fret board and bridge because of their strength, appearances and brilliant tap tones.  The koa used here doesn’t have the tap tone but I don’t believe it interfered with the overall sound of the instrument.

Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele

Curly Koa fret board and bridge.

Binding:  more curly Koa.  Purfling all around is blue/black fiber although I added blue paua abalone to the rosette and headstock inlay.

Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele

Curly Koa binding with blue/black fiber purfling.

Neck:  Honduran Mahogany.  Koa would have been nice, of course, but getting matching wood of the right thickness is difficult at least.  Not to mention, it’s a “b” to shape. Carbon fiber truss rod.

The Rest Of The Build

Head Stock:  here I used a standard hibiscus flower inlayed into black and bound with paua abalone and of course Koa.  Paua abalone LOGO–my last.

Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele

Hibiscus on black with paua abalone accernts.

Tuners:  Gotoh UPT.

Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele

Koa backstrap, blue accents and Gotoh UPT tuners on Honduran.

Strings:  Pepe Romero tenor with wound low “G”.

Nut and Saddle:  unbleached bone.

Fret Board Markers:  paua abalone.

Case:  Crossrock ABS.


Fun, fun, fun.  Sounds good with looks that keep you looking–especially that fret board and bridge.  I’m loving a Koa And Koa Tenor Ukulele.  Might just have to do something like this again?