3/04/2011

c.1930 Oscar Schmidt "Stella" Seaplane Ukulele



Oscar Schmidt was the king of decalomania instruments "back in the day." Some of their most collectible guitars and instruments are not their best builds or most quality intensive products, but their most outlandish... hence the huge demand for their relatively inexpensive, but fancy-looking "blues" parlor guitars, c.1915-1930s.

This Stella brand uke (made by OS), probably c.1930s, follows in that fine tradition and is emblazoned with floral decals down the fretboard, a weird deco sun-like decal under the soundhole, and a passenger flying boat decal under the bridge.

It's entirely made from birch, lacks any bracing whatsoever, is pretty lightweight for an OS uke (usually they're heavier than their competitors' products), and sports its original bakelite tuners. It sounds fantastic, though, is pretty loud, and plays nice.



I did a bunch of work on this uke... glued up a lot of open/poorly-"reglued" seams, cleaned it up, and set it up. The bridge had been reglued previously and didn't need regluing... though the previous fix left a small area all around the bridge with finish that was sort of mucked up.







Fun!



Gotta love the flying boat!








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