Quilted Mahogany Tenor Ukulele Build blog:


Febuary 14th 2015

Early last year I purchased a grab bag of ukulele sets from a luthier getting out of ukuleles. I got 10 sets mixed of tenor, concert and soprano sizes. All of the plates were joined and loosely profiled. The first ukulele I am building out of this set is a tenor all quilted mahogany ukulele for a friend that picked the set out of that stash.

The sides were profiled for a thinner ukulele than I make (I use the martin tapered back dimensions so I took care in bending the sides and I installed the linings proud on the top and the back so that I could make the ukulele the size I wanted. I am following the template from a Peter Howlett ukulele I made from plans I purchased from him. It has a narrower upper bout than a Martin; the preprofiled top\back fit this template.

I had a bunch of fancy flexable A4 ukulele size kerflings and installed it a bit proud so that I could have the right depth after profiling the rims. Ultimately the missing sides would have been routed out any way for the bindings.

The rosette was a simple herringbone trip that I bent on a pipe and installed. Sorry no picture of the routing.

I sanded the top flat and profiled the back with a 15' radius dish. I braced the top and the back in my go-bar dish and got everything ready to close the guitar.

Whoops, I do not want to forget the end wedge. Here is a stupid ip that everyone probable knows (but I just started doing): When using a ruler a marking device put some sandpaper on the bottom to help the ruler stay in place.

While waiting for the glue to cure I rough profiled the neck.

My ebony end graft:

From here I routed the rims for the transverse braced and closed the box.

A little rework and configuration to turn my guitar cradle into a ukulele cradle.

Not pictured but I routed out the channels for the bindings. The back will just have ebony bindings and the top will have the bindings, a maple and a black fiber strip.

I have the bindings fitted but not glued in yet.

I finished the day cutting the slots and profiling the fret board and profiling the neck.

Febuary 16th 2015

Thank you all. I usually do not use CA to glue in the bindings but have seen a bunch of builds where people do. So I went ahead and used thin CA. Before I did any gluing I did the best I could with tape to get the bindings fitting the way I wanted them. Then I only put a small amount of CA in between the tape. I worked slowly making sure that each place I glued was in its proper position. There were a few areas where I used clamps to get the bindings in. I clamped before gluing. When the glue cured I removed the tape and ran more CA along the bindings.

I decided to add a figured back strap to the head stock.

From Luthiers Supplies I bought a bunch of neck profile tools including a handy one for a tenor ukulele. I used the shape at the nut and the 10th fret to figure out good facets to cut. I used a spoke shave where I could and a rasp in the tight areas to cut the facet. Not shown but I drew out some secondary facets and cut those. From there I just used the template to guide my carving.



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