9/12/2013

c.1925 Regal-made Glee Club Fancy Soprano Ukulele



Mmm, who doesn't like flamed mahogany? Fools, maybe!

This purty uke was made by Regal, probably in the mid to late 20s, and is built from solid mahogany with some nice curly/flamed stuff on the top and back. The fretboard is rosewood, though.

Work on this one was surprisingly light: fret level/dress, light bridge alteration, and setup. A 4" hairline crack in the treble side had already been cleated and repaired and it looks like the bridge and neck were reglued (a good job, too) in recent history.

This uke has that bell-like, forward, loud tone I associate with 20s Regals that're nicer quality: they can easily chop-chop chords right alongside openback tenor banjos and the like for that jazz-age sound.


The top, soundhole, back, and fretboard/headstock are all bound in creamy-white celluloid binding.


Note the usual Regal headstock shape and cute celluloid-inlaid "Glee Club" logo.


The pearl mini-dots look snappy, as does the fun little Martin-y extension. The frets are in good order (now) and are the tall, thin stock typical of Regal ukes. Action is set at a hair over 1/16" at the 12th fret.



I had to shave the profile of the bridge to set action correctly. Despite the way this looks (stark), the contrast between the old finish and the new isn't as big in person.



Pretty stuff, huh?


Wooden friction pegs -- they work just fine.


The neck was reset in the past but it shows the usual slight gap/fill at the heel's bottom. This is often the case because I've noticed many Regal heels are sort of convex along the body joint. Most of my own resets show the same thing. I'm pretty sure this is because they were sanded off on a belt sander freehand!




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