Preowned – 2018. Custom ‘I’iwi Tenor Ukulele. Phenomenal player uke! Custom ʻI’iwi Tenor Ukulele handcrafted by luthier Charlie Fukuba of Makakilo, Oahu. This special piece is the premier model offered by ʻI’iwi Ukuleles and is a testimony to Charlie’s commitment to the finest materials and craftsmanship in skilled luthiery by one of Hawaii’s foremost custom ukulele luthiers, Charlie Fukuba.
Gorgeous master grade 2-piece back of curly Hawaiian Koa wood from Charlie’s special ‘reserve’ of premium woods, matching 2-piece curly Hawaiian Koa wood sides and soundboard; this full custom ʻI’iwi ukulele also boasts an instrument grade West African Gabon ebony fretboard, bridge, and headstock veneer. Elegant and complimentary Hawaiian Koa wood top and back wood binding with an classy top, back, and side profile b-w-b purfling line for aesthetic appeal. The fretboard has been radiused for ease of play and is an exclusive attribute of Charlie’s best works. The radius on the fretboard provides added comfort on the wrist angle, especially at higher positions up on the neck. A slight radius on the soundboard also contributes to increased resonance. The neck has been carved from Honduras mahogany wood and has a graphite composite rod insert for increased structural integrity and added sustain with a bolt-on neck that is accessed through the strap pin at the butt of the instrument. Classy single bowtie-shaped abalone shell position marker on the 12th position. Side-of- neck position markers on 5 and 12 for a quick and accurate top-down reference for each chord. Gorgeous paua shell triple rosette on tone-tapped upper bout porting system for an elegant appeal. This unique porting system creates additional sustain with a sweet, warm tone and slightly accented bass notes perfect for the professional musician or recreational player. The body design is also one that is entirely unique to I’iwi and resembles that of a dreadnaught style guitar, giving it tremendous power and volume.
The aesthetics of this Custom I’iwi Tenor Ukulele brings you back to a time of simplicity in ancient Hawaii. A time when the feathers of ʻI’iwi birds were gently plucked for the ʻahuʻula (feather cloaks) and mahiole (feathered helmets) of the Hawaiian monarchs or ali`i. A special inlay of the ‘I’iwi bird and the native Hawaiian ‘Mamane’ flower pay homage to the beauty of Hawaii, its culture, and it’s natural resources.
Tonally, this piece is a true gem and has really opened up over the last few years. It bears some strum marks over the upper bout that can be seen in certain angles with high lighting, which is a testimony to how much this instrument was enjoyed and played – a remarkable ukulele for recording musicians or weekend jam sessions. Full recording level instrument with a sweet, warm tone and the traditional attack of Hawaiian Koa wood – balanced highs and mid-range notes as well with exceptional low end. Excellent projection. Very well balanced structurally and tonally with refined notes all the way up the neck and spot on intonation. Professional Gotoh UPT 1:4 geared ratio for smooth and precise tuning. Highly recommended piece for the seasoned player or aspiring ukulele enthusiast. ID#230096