In being on the look out for nice Ukuleles I see the work of a number of full and part time luthiers. The instruments they make look very nice and worthy of note.
Crist Pung - Kula
This is a family run business from the Big Island, Hawaii, with Crist being the main luthier, (there is a long explanation of the name Kula on the website). He is largely self taught, though he has learned from some of the other luthiers on the Island, and has been making Ukuleles since 2006, having been in wholesale koa production for many years previous to that. He is a member of the Big Island Ukulele Guild and some of his Ukuleles have a lot of inlay work on the headstocks and fretboard. The website says they make Soprano, Concert and Tenor Ukuleles, but from what I have seen I think the output is mainly Tenor. The website also says they make custom "one off's" they call the specials and "on spec" batch builds of 6 to 8 they call presentation
Located on Oahu, he is a restorer of Old Ukulele who makes a few very good homages to the old makers every year, (he even puts a tabu mark on his work). He doesn't stick to the old Standard Scale though he makes Concerts and Tenors as well
This is the brand name used by luthier, Sonny Dahlin and his son Dwayne, (Sonny is getting old and his son is taking over) of Waipahu, Hawaii. Sonny started the firm in 1969 and does mostly custom work in all scales including the superscales and all string combinations. They are known for the boxy Dreadnought shape he calls the "Bell". They have a reputation for being very good, apart from a period in the late 2000's when Sonny was cutting back on the wort and Dwayne was still perfecting the art. (There use to be a website but now there is just a facebook page)
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