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Project by Johnny75 posted 10-29-2012 03:08 AM 8997 views 0 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Guitalele built of poplar. Despite all the experts online saying that poplar isn’t a good “tonewood”, it has a rich deep sound, better than the storebought Yamaha guitalele I own. I built it out of boredom basically. It has a soundboard transducer mounted inside so I can amplify it if I want to. If you know much about guitars, you can see that borrowed (ripped off) the lines of a very famous American guitar company. Over all, it has good intonation and very warm sound with plenty of natural volume. It’s fully acoustic and as I said earlier, made of poplar bought at Home Depot. Being a guitar/ukulele hybrid, parts aren’t really available for making such an instrument so everything had to be handmade from the rosewood bridge to the fretboard. I think next I may make a baritone uke.

18 comments so far

View treaterryan's profile


109 posts in 3576 days

#1 posted 10-29-2012 04:55 AM

I have the Rickenbacker 370 to match that! Very cool.

-- Ryan - Bethel Park, PA

View Johnny75's profile


21 posts in 3844 days

#2 posted 10-29-2012 06:00 AM

Very cool Ryan. Thanks for the comment. I have a Fireglo 360/12, the ‘64 reissue. Wish I had a 6 string of the same model or a 370 to go with it. Love em!

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30651 posts in 3627 days

#3 posted 10-29-2012 06:30 AM

Looks cool. As long as you like the sound, all that matters. Have fun playing.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Richard's profile


11310 posts in 4322 days

#4 posted 10-29-2012 07:07 AM

Very Nice Work! Thanks For Posting.


-- Richard (Ontario, CANADA)

View Tennessee's profile


2936 posts in 3804 days

#5 posted 10-29-2012 12:02 PM

As a builder, I know a local acoustic luthier who also went to a HD and bought the greenest poplar he would find, for the heartwood, and the color. After resawing and planing it into the proper thickness, the acoustic he built had many of the tones you might expect with a maple acoustic, bright and snappy, with good mids and clear definition of the notes.
Nice job!!

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

View PhiltheLuthier's profile


57 posts in 4058 days

#6 posted 10-29-2012 12:51 PM

Very nice! Don’t listen to those neigh sayers, you can use whatever wood you want (or can afford :), and as long as you build it approximately well it’ll sound good. Just think of how many mass produced instruments are made of plywood, and most people don’t complain about their sound, in the hands of a good player no one even knows the difference!

Keep up the good work!

View Surfside's profile


3389 posts in 3463 days

#7 posted 10-29-2012 02:26 PM

I’ve been planning to buy guitar for christmas present. But now I’m wonderin’ , what is the difference between guitar and your guitalele? I know the meaning of it but does it really produce better sound than normal guitar or yukelele?
By the way, that’s a very cool stuff and you’re really good huh.

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View Ivan's profile


17063 posts in 4157 days

#8 posted 10-29-2012 02:52 PM

Awsome guitar , I admire your skill.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Mip's profile


454 posts in 3367 days

#9 posted 10-29-2012 04:48 PM

Now this is cool. I like the color of the poplar, too.

View Johnny75's profile


21 posts in 3844 days

#10 posted 10-29-2012 05:32 PM

Surfside…... The guitalele basically the same as using the capo on the 5th fret of a guitar. The chord shapes are all the same, except that when you are playing an E on a full scale guitar, the same shape and position on the guitalele is in the key of A. The small scale and body have a mostly ukulele sound though. It’s just a fun little instrument that is small and travels well. Yamaha sells one for $100 that isn’t too bad if you put good strings on it. I’ve had a blast with mine, until I built this one.

Phil….Thanks….I made it out of poplar just see if I could. The nice tonewoods are pretty pricey. My brother-in-law has a cabinent shop full of tools and a scap bin full of maple, ash, alder, spruce, etc….He even recently tore down a house for a customer to build a new one (he’s a contractor too)...anyway, one room was finished mostly in zebra wood. He saved all that and said I could whatever of any of it I wanted. I may try to work with that next…

View a1Jim's profile


118297 posts in 4866 days

#11 posted 10-29-2012 05:40 PM

This is the first time I’ve heard of a guitalele ,a very interesting instrument and you work looks great.


View Surfside's profile


3389 posts in 3463 days

#12 posted 10-29-2012 05:49 PM

Oh I see . I’d love to try playing that instrument. It’s kinda intriguing because it’s my first time to hear guitalele . I assume there’s already an electronic one .

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View Ben's profile


273 posts in 5003 days

#13 posted 10-29-2012 08:20 PM

I bought a uke in hawaii and love playing it. I also brought home some koa and have an idea for making one with some of it. I may have to steal your guitalele idea.

-- Do something nice for somebody

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 3465 days

#14 posted 10-29-2012 09:16 PM

How great can you be? You produced something fantastic like the guitalele when bored!

View solardave's profile


77 posts in 3333 days

#15 posted 10-30-2012 12:41 PM

Killer build. Great job, I love it. It really does have the “Ric” vibe.

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