Sharkfin Uke Build – A Bridge too Far

I’ve moved indoors to try and finish off my Sharkfin Ukulele build. I don’t think that Mrs Uke has realised. Please don’t tell her… she’ll have my guts for garters! I sneaked the workbench upstairs whilst she was out at her Wrestling classes. :-O

I will NEVER give in!!!!

Time for  quick update. I feel like I’m getting really close to finishing this. When we last spoke, I’d done some more work on the bridge. I’m not sure that I’d completely finished it… but it was close enough. Soon after that I restrung the uke and this time using the proper bridge I did a very quiet sound check (video below). Doesn’t it sound wonderful! I haven’t fitted the piezo at this stage, so you’re hearing it completely acoustic. The bridge is being held in place with clamps which is making it a little bit difficult to strum. I felt a bit like Ray Davis with his Gibson Flying V…

I think I’m falling in love with the Sharkfin! See here the refined bridge.
Also see the tuning pegs. I’d mentioned a problem with the ones I had…
the heads were burring. Well… I took some longer shafts from another set
drilled the smaller head to make them fit and it only seems to have solved
the problem! What a recovery!


I dug out the drill to put the hole in for the jack. It took me about an hour to line it up
the way I wanted it and thankfully the drill didn’t conk out or anything. It was sparking a
bit, but I was brave and after a while I had it done. I almost blew my cover though by
setting off the smoke alarm. “What are you burning upstairs,” was the cry. “Nothing dear…
the battery must be going…”
Heh heh heh…


Here’s the hole I drilled for the piezo lead. I drilled it at an angle facing back to the jack,
cleverly aimed to join up with the jack hole.  Surprisingly it did, but I found that I had
a little too much of an angle on it to allow the jack plug on the end of the piezo
lead to fit through. After much working with the Dremmel, I finally got it to fit through…


See here the piezo and bridge in place. Look at the length of that piezo
lead. It’s a monster! Daniel Hulbert said that I could cut it shorter, so that’s
what I did…


Here’s the jack sat in place with it all wired up. It’s probably worth pointing
out that I did check the piezo, both before and after I cut the lead to make
sure that it was working. Will it do what it should with the strings on?
There’s only one way to find out…


The last thing that I did was to drill some recesses in the head for the string knots to rest
in. See that wayward top hole… what an eyesore!!! I decided not to redrill the hole.
I’ll learn to love it… I’m sure.


I’m getting close. I need to fit the head pin and sand the whole thing down properly. Then I’ll glue the bridge and wonder how the hell I’ll lacquer it without being caught. Can I get this finished before the end of the year? Watch this space…

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