Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Cigar Box Ukulele

I got a cigar box from my Grandfather that came out of his attic.

It is a "Havana Seconds" cigar box made of solid cedar. It is sometime before WWII, I imagine. I thinned the original top, braced it, inlayed a simple walnut rosette and built a maple/walnut neck, bridge and fingerboard.

It took me four tries to glue the neck on! It turns it the cedar panel I was gluing it to was too soft and flexible to take the butt joint. Instead I replaced the pannel with a piece of cherry with a nice big mahogany heel block. I then sunk two bolts through it into the neck and its solid as a rock!

I put a fret wire saddle, bone nut, gotoh friction tuners and aquila strings. I tuned it up to D tuning and it sounds great. Decent tone and volume for a small box.

Also, I built it with a scale that is one fret short of normal soprano scale and 13 frets. It will be for sale at the Denver Uke Fest and then on Ebay if needed.

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