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Gibson Ukulele


I didn't know where to go for this question, but I found these forums on google.
I have and old Gibson Ukulele that has been in my grandma's basement for god knows how long. Anyways, I found a similar one on ebay a few months ago for quite a bit of money and I'm looking to find out how much mine is worth. Only one problem though, there is a giant crack down the side of the body.
Does anyone here know much about old instruments, or know of any place where I can go to get more info?

June 9, 2009 @05:54pm

Guy name George Gruhn, he's in Nashville. Or was. Googly him, he'll tell you probably pretty quickly that it isn't wortha whole lot with that kinda crack in it. Good luck.
June 9, 2009 @06:00pm

Seems like it wouldn't be worth much to a "non-Ukulele" player. Fixing the large crack on the Ukulele may cost you a bundle, too. Repairing and restoring your Ukulele for sentimental value would be one thing as the cost may be more than the instrument is worth. However, keeping such an instrument for sentimental value can be a good thing though.
I played a Ukulele as a teenager, but once I discovered guitar and later owned my own guitar, I bid my Ekulele goodbye.
Hope you find price information you are looking for.
Best wishes,
June 9, 2009 @08:31pm

Joined the forum just so I could post here.
Just bought a very similar Gibson Uke at a garage sale. Mine's slightly different- no binding around the body, and pins at the bridge indtead of the tied strings yours looks to have. I got what I believe to be the original fiberboard case, alligator style cover, with a brown, bakelite handle (which is broken off, but still present.) Mine has a small crack on one side- obviously the result of the uke being hit or hitting something, but it is much smaller crack than on yours.
Just showed it to the owner of banjo.com (yes, they are on the net) and he said he thought it was worth about $200- I suspect more because the case is here, but I could be wrong.
On the back of the headstock (where the tuning pegs are) should be a 6-digit serial number, and inside the body should be a ink-stamp that says something like "TU-1." That particular model number is from mine, and means "Tenor Ukuele Model 1." Yours having the white body binding make me think it is a a Model 2 or above- an up-scale instrument from mine.
It will probably cost you about $100 to have the crack repaired, which you should do, but do NOT have it refinished- the value will plummet. It is worth more repaired but not refinished. I feel you should spend up to it's value on repairs- that would mean selling it is, at best, a break-even proposition, but you would be rescuing an important instrument from the trash pile.
Then, find a good case (NOT one like mine- a hard-shell case, or even a wooden box it fits in) and put it in, with a humidifier of some type- even a plastic soap dish with holes drilled in it and a wet sponge put inside, will be good. You must keep the instrument properly hydrated (about 35% relative humidity, as I recall) to keep it in good shape.
And for heaven's sake, PLAY the thing. It's a musical instrument, not a museum piece.
EDIT: A bit more checking revealed a shop in Denver that sold one for around $695 or something, and one in Nashville that sold for $900- so my "friends" at banjo.com... well, maybe they just don't know uke's. Well, they aren't called ukes.com...
June 19, 2009 @05:13pm