Monthly Archives: April 2013

Cookie Tin Ukulele

Difficulty:  Easy

Cost:  $

This is quick and easy project.  Most of the parts came from a Grizzly Ukulele kit.  I found a suitable tin that was sturdy enough and had an interesting design.  The neck was attached to the tin with screws and epoxy.  A small piece of moulding was slotted and shaped to serve as the floating bridge.

See it in action!

Cedar and Mahogany Ukulele

Difficulty:  Advanced

Cost:  $$$

After building the Koa Super Soprano ukulele, I was asked to make a concert sized acoustic ukulele for my sister’s birthday.

The back, sides, and neck are made of mahogany.  The top is cedar and the fretboard is bubinga.


I’ve built dozens of ukuleles, but I might be hooked on these acoustic ones.  They are really satisfying to build and they sound awesome when I string them up.


The colors of the woods and the style of the bridge remind me of a classical guitar.


I gave this uke a Tru-Oil finish.  Tru-Oil gives the instrument a great look and you don’t need any special equipment.


After building the ukulele, I decided that it needed a custom case.  I got some hints from an article on the UKEonomics blog.  It will now travel in style and protection.


See it in action!

Skateboard Ukulele

Difficulty:  Intermediate

Cost:  $$

I’ve made instruments out of all sorts of stuff.  When I saw an old skateboard deck at a garage sale, I had to have it.  I thought it would make the perfect body for an electric ukulele.


Because both ends curve back, I didn’t have to do anything to angle the headstock.  Using a scroll saw, I cut out the space for the neck, headstock, pickup, and Stratocaster-style jack plate. I kept the wood above and below the neck to give the instrument more stability and to the keep overall shape of the skateboard.  A fretboard with a 17 inch scale was epoxied to the neck.


Most of the grip tape was left on the board.  I stripped the grip tape from the bak of the neck.  I was going to add about 1/4 inch of wood to the back of the neck, but that would have made it too thick.  Instead, I just carved the neck a little bit and stained it black.  A board with rounded over edges was attached to the back to cover the wiring and components.


I made a pickup ring for the single coil pickup with some black pickguard material.  The pickup  is connected to a volume potentiometer.

Out of all the electric ukuleles that I’ve made,  this was the fastest to make.  Not having to rout out the body, carve and shape the neck, and apply a glossy finish really cut down on the build time.

See it in action!