6/30/2011

c.1925 Regal Fancy Mahogany Soprano Uke





Yum, yum, another cute and hot-to-trot little Regal-made soprano uke from the '20s! This one shares the typical Regal features: body shape/depth/bracing, fancy solid curly mahogany throughout, and usual thin Regal neck and headstock shape with frets-in-neck build style.

Work on this included a bridge shave, new tuners, cleaning, and setup.


This uke has some nice-looking solid mahogany with a bit of curl/figure throughout, all throughout the uke. It's also bound on the top edge with a wide band of cream celluloid, and bound on the fretboard/headstock with 2-ply black/yellowish celluloid. The soundhole has a multicolored rosette and binding and there are Martin-style mini-dots inlaid into the fretboard.


The finish is in nice, original, glossy shape -- and overall the uke presents itself with upscale elegance and class. Did I mention it also plays great and sounds great, too?


I love the mini dots!


Cute rosette gives it a touch of fun.


The bridge is, unfortunately, a piece of oak, so when I cut it down to improve action it was entirely the wrong color to simply add finish and hey-presto, done... so I "ebonized" the top edge (where I cut down/sanded/etc.) black to match the neck details and tuner buttons, then added a new fret saddle for correct intonation.

This is not a perfect solution (which would have involved matching stain/etc.) but it looks just fine and the fret saddle added a bit of punch and clarity at the same time.



Pretty 'hog, eh?


New Grover 2Bs... and that's not worn finish on the neck... that's gloss reflecting the cloudy day.



I'm always surprised at how nice the wood is on these old Regal ukes.


And unlike a lot of Regals, which had mahogany bodies and poplar, cedar or stained-hardwood necks, this one actually has a mahogany neck as well. Nice touch!



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