Also, I am very pleased that my work is represented in some of the finest ukulele and guitars shops in existence. On the Big Island they include Hilo Guitars and Ukuleles in Hilo, and The Hulualoa Ukulele Gallery in Hulualoa. On Oahu, I am pleased to announce that my work is now proudly represented at Ukulele Puapua in Waikiki and also through Shawn Yacavone at Ukulele Friend. On the Mainland you can find my work at Schoenberg Guitars in Tiburon, California and at The Music Emporium in Lexington, Mass. Please contact any of these fine stores for availability.
I also occasionally accept custom orders. I try not to maintain a long waiting list but rather accept them on my whim as my schedule allows. Please contact me to discuss your needs further.
And finally, if you live in Hawaii or plan on vacationing here, you are welcomed to visit my shop. I try to keep something on hand at all times. Call ahead for directions and availability of instruments.
Shipping with insurance to the US Mainland is via USPS Express Mail and costs $100.
Prices and Options
My ukuleles are built of solid Big Island Hawaiian quarter sawn koa with bookmatched tops, backs and sides. Honduran mahogany or Spanish Cedar is generally used for necks and are carbon fiber reinforced for unsurpassed stability. Fingerboards can be made of ebony, cocobolo or Indian rosewood. Nut and saddle material will either be micarta or bone. Rosettes are pearl or wood to match purflings if any. Bindings are either ebony, cocobolo, koa, or faux tortoise shell. Inlays are composed of a variety of materials including several kinds of solid pearl shell (not laminates), composite stone, hardwood and ivories.
The lacquer I use is an instrument grade nitro-cellulose instrument lacquer and is traditionally the finest and most durable finish you can have on a stringed instrument. The high gloss finish averages six to seven coats, all grain pores will be filled for an absolutely flat and mirror like wet finish for a classic look that is unsurpassed. Especially suited for instruments with decorative inlays and highly figured wood.
Base priceincludes top, back and headstock binding of your choice, B/W/B purflings, rosette, end graft, fret position markers on top and side of fretboard, Grover tuners and High gloss nitrocellulose lacquer finish. Koa grade AA or AAA or better. Deluxe hard shell case and a Moore Bettah T-shirt included.
Prices are subject to change. A $500 deposit is required on custom instruments before building can begin.
Shipping via USPS Express Mail is currently running close to $100 for most US destinations.
Pickups: LR Baggs 5-0...........................................................$200
Exceptionally figured or curly Master Grade AAAA or AAAAA koa,
when available, can add an additional $200 to $500 to any model.
Custom inlays available at $75 per hour and can range from
$100 to $3000 and up.
Here are some pictures of this year's People's Choice Award and Artisan's Choice Award winning ukulele presented at the 4th annual Big Island Guild Ukulele show in Kainaliu, Hawaii.
4-String Tenor Ukulele
"The Three Mermaids"
This all koa ukulele was challenging yet immensely satisfying to build. Living so close to nature in this beautiful Hawaiian environment was naturally very influential in my choice of whimsical designs depicting two mermaids frolicking in the sea and one dreamingly relaxing in a banana moon. I use AAA Big Island curly koa for the body and ebony elsewhere including the fretboard and headstock veneer. Paua abalone is use unashamedly throughout, adorning the entire front and back of the instrument. The seahorse on the end graft was an afterthought that occurred to me only after I sprayed the first couple of coats of lacquer. The mermaids are made up of composite stone and 10,000 year old fossil mammoth ivory. After the ukulele was finish sanded, I scrimshawed the details in the bodies, remembering the art form I was involved in years ago. Other inlay materials include gold mother of pearl, abalone shell and fossil walrus ivory.
This instrument is sold.
Haines Beefy Tees
Available in Medium, Large, XL, and XXL
$20 plus $6 shipping (USA only)
This page was last updated: April 13, 2014
I built these ukuleles in response to customers interested in a ukulele that is a little more simple than what you are used to seeing on this page. Here I've featured a simple peg head inlay while a single black and white stripe adorns the top of the body and head stock adjacent to the binding. The super thin glossy lacquer finish make these ukuleles really stand out sonically. Bone nut and saddle also lend a loud, bright and well balanced tone. Paua abalone rosette and either open or closed geared Grover tuners. Hard shell case included.
Photos are representative only. I can send out pictures of the actual ukulele when available. I try to have a couple of these on hand at all times for sale. Contact me for availability.
All SOLD at this time.
The Not So Basic Ukulele (NSB)
(Many more ukes on my GALLERY page)
TERMS: Prices are in $USD and include case, an extra set of strings and one year limited warranty but exclude shipping and sales tax if any.
All ukes are subject to current availability and prices are subject to change. Accepted forms of payment are Paypal, cashier's check, money order or bank draft.
How to buy my ukuleles
There are several ways to own one of my ukuleles.
The first and most obvious way is to choose one that might be for sale on this page. About once a month, when my schedule permits, I will post any ukes I have available here. These are ukuleles that I've built on speculation to give me a break from my custom work. Since I am able to build anything that pleases me these are often my best ukuleles and may represent the best value. I try to include one or two spec ukes every building cycle so check this page often to see what's new.
The important stuff you need to know
Please note, these prices are guidelines only. Prices are subject to change.
With Internet sales, upon reciept of one of my instruments you'll have a 48 hour inspection period during which time you will play, inspect and fall in love with your ukulele. If after this time it fails to exceed your expectations, your money will be refunded. (It hasn't happened yet!) This does not apply to personalized (names, etc) ukuleles. My work is guaranteed for one year to the original owner. This does not cover normal wear to parts or finish or damage caused by extremes in temperature or humidity, abuse or accidents. I will repair or replace, at my discretion, any instrument found to be defective based on my evaluation.
Guarantee -- The not so fine print.
All ukulele purchases include a free T-shirt!
Matt Dahlberg's NSB Tenor Ukulele
with AAAA koa upgrade, side sound port and MiSi pickup installed. ($3150 as shown) SOLD
My wait list is full at the moment and I am not taking any new orders.
Occasionally I will build instruments that are not pre sold and I will post them here.
Enjoy the pictures you'll find here on these pages but please do not copy any of my designs or images in any manner without my permission. Mahalo!
Honu Tenor with Side Sound Port
This unique combination of woods features "bear claw" Sitka spruce combined with milo, macadamia nut & curly koa. It is bright and responsive with good volume. Bear claw (so called because it looks like bears have scratched the trunk of the tree) is actually figure in the grain pattern. Just like the curl in koa, bear claw figure is rare in spruce and is found only in a small number of the trees harvested. It is highly sought after for it's stiffness and excellent tonal properties. Milo, (a relative of hibiscus), used to flourish along the beaches in Hawaii until development eliminated most of the trees. The wood has become increasingly short in supply and has become more scarce than koa lately. This particular set of milo is the result of a windfall from Hurrican Iniki that hit Kauai in 1992. Both of these unique woods are beautifully off set by the curly koa binding around the body, fret board and slotted head stock. Curly koa is also used for the rosette. I've chosen macadamia nut wood for fret board and head plate to compliment therse unique woods. The neck is Spanish cedar with carbon fiber reinforcement. I've installed a bound side sound port in the upper bout which adds a bit more volume for the player. Perhaps the most unique feature is the off-set sound hole. By locating the sound hole high on the upper bout I am able to arrange the bracing to allow for a larger resonation surface. Gold mother of pearl top and side fret markers. Bone nut & saddle, Grover Sta-Tite tuners, Worth low G strings. Glossy nitrocellulose lacquer finish.
With hard shell case. Shipping within the USA only.
Milo & Bear Claw Spruce Slotted Tenor
With just one look there is no mistaking that this is a Hawaiian ukulele! It was especially fun for me to incorporate the "honu"inlay on the "tapa" inspired background, both of which are significant in Pacific Island cultures. The fine red & black prufling nicely contrasts with the curly koa binding that I've used throught the uke. The side sound port acts as a personal monitor allowing for a bit more player feedback. The Spanish cedar neck is reinforced with a carbon fiber rod for added stability and better tonal response.
This is a well balanced instrument that has great volume and is an easy, comfortable player.
Comes with hard shell case. Shipping with the USA only.
Unless marked "SOLD", the following ukes are available as of 2/13/14
Slotted Tenor with Zircote
This classy ukulele features a hibiscus inlay made of mastodon ivory which I then scrimshawed. The bindings for the body, fret board, head stock overlay and bridge are made of Zircote, a dense tropical hardwood with exquisite grain figure. Side sound port and custom rosette. The neck is Spanish cedar with carbon fiber reinforcement. Bone nut & saddle, Grover Sta-Tite tuners, Worth low G strings. Glossy nitrocellulose lacquer finish. This ukulele has exceptional volume and clarity.
Comes with hard shell case. Shipping via USPS Express mail to US destinations is approximately $100.
The Lily Pond
This fantasy uke was inspired by the pond we have next to the shop. It's filled with white and pink lotus blossoms and attracts a lot of dragonflies. I only ever seem to get a fleeting glimpse of the fairies, so that depiction is largely from my imagination. This particular fairy was made of 40,000 year old mastodon ivory in which I've scrimshawed the details. This is truly a magical ukulele with an exceptional sound.
This uke is currently available through Hawaii Music Supply. Please contact them for purchasing details.