This is a video that people need to check out. Even if you don’t speak German (which I do not), you can understand pretty much everything going on in this video.
He builds a ukulele with a retractable neck that slides into a vintage bed warmer that serves as the body.
This video caught my interest because I have also ventured into making a ukulele with a retractable neck.
This is another video from his channel where he builds an entire ukulele with scraps found on the street in Istanbul, Turkey. My favorite part is when he scrounges remnants of fishing line from people fishing in the Sea of Marmara.
Check out and subscribe to Peter’s YouTube Channel. According to Google Translate, his channel tranlated from German to English is called “The Amateurs – definitely botched tutorials”. So look for some cool projects that don’t take themselves too seriously.
Over the years I have accumulated a collection of specialized tools for building ukuleles. But for this project, I wanted to scale back the needed tools and see what I could build with simple tools. I am a big fan of Leatherman Multi-tools, so I decided to build a travel style ukulele only using the Leatherman Super Tool 300. This tool is one of their “heavy duty” multi-tools, and it has a great selection of tools.
Even if you don’t have a Super Tool 300 (or its little brother the Leatherman Rebar), you can still build this instrument with the tools most people will already have in their garage.
- Wire cutters
- Slotted screwdriver
- Phillips screwdriver
- Awl (for drilling holes)
Parts and Supplies:
- 9.75″ by 1.5″ by .5″ wood (for neck)
- 2″ by 1.5″ by .25″ wood (for where the neck meets the body)
- 16″ by .75″ by .75″ wood (this will be cut in half for the body)
- A set ukulele strings
- 4 – beads for the ukulele strings
- 4 – ukulele friction tuning machines
- 1 – 5/32″ by 1.5″ cotter pin (for zero fret nut)
- 6 – 3/32″ by 1.5″ cotter pins (for 12 frets)
- 1 – 1/4 by 3.5″ carriage bolt
- 6 – 1/4-20 jam nuts
- 10 – 1/4 by 1″ fender washers
- 4 – 1/4 by .75″ nylon washers
- 2 – 3/16″ ground wire straps
- 3″ aluminum or steel tube (for bridge)
- 2 – 3/8″ screws
- Wood glue
- Super Glue (also known as Cyanoacrylate glue, or CA glue)
- Cut 16″ by .75″ by .75″ wood in half to make two 8″ pieces.
- Drill holes for the turnaround and two tuning machines on both of these 8″ pieces. .5″ from the end, 3″ from the end, and 5 ” from the end.
- The neck is glued to the two 8″ body pieces with a 2″ overlap.
- The 2″ by 1.5″ by .25″ wood is used to fill in the overlap area to flatten out the back.
- The string slots up by the headstock should be 1/4″ to 3/8″ deep.
- The jam nuts, fender washers, and nylon washers can moved around to adjust string spacing at the bridge.
Printable Fret Template:
Print this template at 100% size on 8.5″ by 11″ paper (normal printer in the USA) for a 13.5 inch (soprano) scale length.
Watch this video to see how this ukulele was built.
I’ve teamed up with the Steve’s Strings YouTube Channel to do a giveaway.
He is giving a candy tin ukulele that he made, and I am giving away a Jowoom Smart Tuner.
Make sure to subscribe to both of our channels, and make a comment on both videos.
This contest will run through the end of November 2019, with the random drawing taking place in early December.
After planning, gathering the parts, and designing this ukulele, I was finally able to start build this LEGO ukulele.
Here is the ukulele before I glued the top on. As you can see in the picture, I followed the traditional building method and installed bracing on the top and back.
This is the completed ukulele with Strings.
Any idea why I used these shirts for this picture?
I hired a new setup technician to help me adjust the string action.
Here is a video about the building of the LEGO ukulele. Towards the end there is a playing demo.
I had a great time at this year’s Utah Uke Fest. I taught a workshop where we made fretboard keychains. I then played two songs at the main evening concert.
Fretboard Keychain Workshop:
I built a ukulele for the Waterjet Channel. Naturally, they cut it in half.
A couple months ago, I submitted a few videos to collaborate with fellow ukulele enthusiasts. As luck would have it, both of the videos were completed and uploaded to YouTube close together.
Check out the videos below. And make sure to subscribe to both Pismo and Pockets.
I’m not exactly sure how it happened. How I found the channel. I mean, where is the start of a circle? Where does the answer exist before the question is asked?
It’s as if I awoke from a slumber, struggled to see through blurry eyes, then everything finally became clear.
I found Pismo Ukulele.
Pismo Ukulele claims to merely offer “easy and simple ukulele tips and trick for the pre-beginner”. And it does do that…in spades. But he also presents material that challenges paradigms of conventional ukulele groupthink. Part time traveler, part ukulele sage, part Kaufman.
I subscribe to a lot of ukulele channels, but I always make time to partake of Pismo’s latest offerings.
Pismo Ukulele YouTube
Let’s get him to 200 subscribers!
Scott has a great YouTube channel that features awesome songs. He asked for song suggestions, so I asked for Home by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros.
He made a great version, and even gave Circuits and Strings a shoutout.
Scott also started a channel where he is documenting his quest to grow an avocado tree. His accent, the subject matter, and the theme song all make it a winner. Go and subscribe.
SCOTT GROWS AN AVOCADO TREE
I just added three handmade travel ukuleles to the FOR SALE TAB.
Get them before they are gone.