The Ukulele

An Illustrated Workshop Guide to Building Four Sizes of Ukulele 

The Ukulele is now available and details the construction of soprano, concert, tenor, and baritone sized ukuleles. The four instruments can be made with an integrated neck (in the style of a classical guitar), or with the neck constructed separately and attached with a violin style mortice or a small bolt and threaded insert.

The printed copies book has more than 140 pages with almost 300 black and white photographs and diagrams. The ePub version has the same text with full colour illustrations. There are downloadable full-sized drawings for all five types of ukulele, as well as sections on making rope binding, tuners, finishing methods and calculating fret positions for four different scale lengths.

The link to the downloadable drawings in the printed book may be wrong, as the book was sent to the printers before I realised my new ISP insisted on all lower-case file names. The correct file name is ukuleleplans.pdf not UkulelePlans.pdf. Later print runs have the link corrected.

Click here for a pdf of the introductory chapter, a chapter with comprehensive information on tools and materials as well as a chapter on building ukuleles in the style of the early Hawaiian builders, based on the 1917 film produced by the Ford Motor Co.

Retail price for the print version is US$24.95 and available in the US and Canada through Independent Publishers Group in Chicago. Any bookshop should be able to get copies, as well as on-line stores such as Amazon.

In Australia the RRP is A$30 for the print version, plus $15 postage. Copies can be sent overseas from Australia, but the postage will be prohibitive and Amazon is likely to be cheaper.


The ebook version is available for iBooks and Kindle for US$9.99. It comes as a zip file with the pdf of the drawing and plans. After the PayPal payment is finalised, you will be redirected to another page to select your download.

On the right are the six ukuleles constructed for the book. 

Anticlockwise from the top right: An Old Island Style soprano ukulele, another soprano based on a 1920s Regal, a concert size inspired by a CF Martin model, a 12 fret to the body tenor with a body after a Gibson LG-0 guitar, a 14 fret tenor with a pin bridge and a more modern styled baritone.

Graham McDonald Stringed Instruments

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