Q: How do I tune my ukulele?
A: Tune your soprano, concert, or baritone ukulele strings to G-C-E-A standard tuning with either a handy clip-on digital portable tuner (like this one by Kala), an online tuner (like this one at ukebuddy.com), or an app. Focus on one string at a time: strum it and gently turn its tuning key to tighten or loosen the string until it emits the correct note as noted on the digital tuner or matches the correct pitch on the online tuner.
Q: How can I keep my ukulele in tune?
A: New ukuleles often do not stay in tune due to tight strings not yet broken in through play. Help keep your ukulele in tune with the following steps:
Watch this helpful demonstration on how to stretch your new ukulele strings.
Q: How do I take care of my ukulele?
A: Treat for your ukulele well and you’ll enjoy years of beautiful playing. Follow these simple maintenance tips:
Q: When should I loosen ukulele strings?
A: You do not need to loosen ukulele strings, even when taking the ukulele on an airplane. When the ukulele strings are new and tight, though, you may want to stretch them. You can do this by running your fingers up the length of each string and gently pulling it side by side or up and down no more than a half inch from its normal position.
Q: How do I repair broken ukulele strings?
A: If an ukulele string breaks, you will need to replace it. If you are in a pinch (e.g., do not have time or replacement string) and need a quick and temporary fix, here is a video on how to fix a popped string.
Q: Where do I find replacement ukulele strings?
A: Each Ukutune ukulele comes with four replacement strings. If you want to buy more, search for your desired brand. we recommend “Aquila,” specifically the “Aquila Nylgut” type. Be sure to purchase the correct string set to match your instrument’s size and tuning.
Q: How do I change or install replacement ukulele strings?
Q: What is the best strings for beginners?
A: We recommend Aquila Nylgut. This popular and widely used brand combines the sound of gut strings with the advantages of nylon (e.g., durability, stability, and economy).
Q: Which wood creates the best ukulele sound?
A: The “best” wood is for ukuleles can be subjective and depends on personal preference. Native to Hawaii, koa is the traditional wood for ukuleles but expensive. Mahogany is less pricey, lighter, and excellent, emitting sweet mid-frequency sounds. Spruce and maple produce bright tones. Cedar has a warmer, and rounder tone. In any case, look for an ukulele made of solid—not laminate—wood.
Q: What is the best wood for beginners?
A: Beginner ukulele players will not go wrong with any of the wood types listed above. Nonetheless, mahogany is kind to both the ear and the wallet.
Q: Is my Ukutune ukulele under warranty?
A: Yes, all Ukutune ukuleles are covered by a one-year (from date of purchase) warranty covering defects in workmanship and materials. Read details about the claims process and exceptions on our Warranty page.
Q: What is the quickest way to learn ukulele?
A: The quickest way to learn an ukulele is to start off familiarizing yourself with the four most frequently used chords: C chord, G chord, F chord, and A chord. Learn how to arrange your fingers to form these and more chords as well as how to read ukulele chord diagrams/notation at the Ukulele Tricks Chord Library.
For a very helpful demonstration on how to tune, strum, and form chords on your ukulele, watch this five-minute video.
Q: Do I need to use a pick to play the ukulele?
A: You can strum the ukulele with your fingers or a pick. Some instructors and purists believe you should strum the strings with your fingers only. Others recommend a pick for comfort. Choose what feels and sounds better for you; strings strummed by fingers yield a soft, smooth sound while strings strummed by a pick create a sharper sound.
Q: Is playing the ukulele like playing the guitar?
A: The strings pf a baritone ukulele are tuned like the four highest strings on a guitar: D-G-B-E. Therefore, the transition between playing the baritone ukulele and the six-string guitar may not be a big leap, depending on the player. The strings on smaller model ukuleles (e.g., soprano, concert, and tenor), however, are not tuned like those on a guitar and thus cannot be played the same way.
Q: How do I tune my kalimba?
A: Gather your kalimba, tuning hammer, and tuner (portable tuner or app like VITALtuner). Play each tine; listen and see if—according to the tuner—it emits the correct note. If a tine’s note is too high in pitch, then tap down on the top end of the tine to slide it downwards slightly and lengthen it; this lowers the pitch. If a tine’s note is too low in pitch, then tap up on the bottom end of the tine to slide it upwards slightly and shorten; this raises the pitch. Additional helpful instructions are available online at wikiHow and in this video demonstration.
Q: How do I maintain my kalimba?
A: Take care of your kalimba and be rewarded with years of lovely notes from its tines. Follow these simple maintenance tips:
Q: Is my kalimba under warranty?
A: Yes, all Ukutune kalimbas are covered by a one-year (from date of purchase) warranty covering defects in workmanship and materials. Read details about the claims process and exceptions on our Warranty page.
Q: What is the quickest way to learn kalimba?
A: If your kalimba is in tune, you can get started playing right away! Read and practice with the included manual of instructions. Additional helpful instructions are available online at wikiHow and in this video demonstration. This second video has good beginner warmup exercises (scales and arpeggios).
Q: How can I play the kalimba without hurting my thumbs?
A: You can pluck the tines with either the flesh of your thumbs or your thumbnails; it is a personal preference. Playing with thumbnails produces a crisper sound. Many experienced players recommend using your thumbnails to preserve the pads of your thumbs. When most people start playing the kalimba, their thumb flesh hurts even if they are using their thumbnails. Over time, of course, their thumbs develop small calluses hat make plucking the kalimba painless!
Q: What if my thumbnails are not long enough to play the kalimba?
A: Here is where the included finger protectors (a.k.a thumb picks) help. Playing the kalimba while wearing finger protectors/thumb picks comes down to personal preference. Some players find them comfortable while others do not. Finger protectors/thumb picks may good for practice but not necessarily for sounds in performance.
Q: What are the enclosed stickers for?
A: The stickers are to help you, so use them however you find them helpful. The stickers with letters and numbers mark tines notes and fingering. Use the long colored stickers to mark different tines according to what matches up with printed notations and/or helps you visually.
Q: How do I apply stickers on tines?
A: Plan where you will place the stickers. Then carefully press down on one end of the sticker and slowly slide your finger across the rest of the sticker to push out any air and prevent trapped air bubbles. You may want to tune the tines before putting on the stickers; a sticker’s added weight can affect the pitch of the note emitted by a tine.