Back in the spring of 2013 I started talking to Rob Collins, a luthier in Hebden Bridge in the UK, about a commission for an eight string tenor ukulele to be built entirely out British woods. Last week I received this beautiful instrument from him. I’m very pleased with it and am just getting to grips with the extra precision to play an 8 string cleanly. But even though I’m still learning it’s immense fun, and a beauty to look at, and play.
For the enthusiasts here are are the specifications
Soundboard and sides – cherry (Prunus avium)
Back – cherry again but a piece of timber from the graft where the favoured variety meets the rootstock. Inspired by seeing Ben’s baritone on Rob’s site.
Rosette – London plane (Platanus x acerifolia typically a hybrid of P. occidentalis and P. orientalis)
Fretboard and bridge – laburnum (Laburnum anagyroides)
Headstock faceplate – yew (Taxus baccata)
Neck – yellow poplar or tulip-tree (Liriodendron tulipifera)
Hampshire Wood Supplies has the full story about sourcing the wood for the neck.