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Left Handed Ukulele: The Complete Guide
In case you are a lefty who needs to play the ukulele and you thought there are not many good choices for you, let me correct you because there’s more than only one great left-hand possibility for left-handers.
Some left-handed people try to adapt to the standard ukulele; however, even if they succeed, it won’t be nearly as good as using a left-handed ukulele. This also means that more people like to use their stronger hand when playing their instruments and a left-handed ukulele may be the right choice for them.
In this guide, we’ll speak to you about why it’s better not to go along with a regular uke if you’re a lefty, and we are going to allow you to in on the perfect left-handed ukuleles you will discover available on the market.
So, without further ado, let’s get right to it.
Why You Need a Left-Handed Ukulele?
It’s a question that quite a lot of lefties may ask. I mean, you probably heard from someone that you do not need a left-handed ukulele, and you may work around things.
Lots of lefties play the ukulele right-handed, so first, you need to try to play right-handed ukuleles. If things worked out, then that is good; if not, you’ll be able to try to restring a right-handed uke for a southpaw. Some people even attempt to flip the musical instrument and leave the strings.
While a few of these options will make it easier to get a better sound when you’re not comfy with playing a right-handed ukulele, then instead of attempting this, why don’t you try something that you already know for sure that it’ll work? Simply get a left-handed ukulele and focus your efforts on learning new techniques. Learning those techniques will help you play ukulele left-handed with ease.
Best Left Handed Ukuleles
1. Ortega K2-MAH-L Soprano Ukulele Set
Nice tonewoods with an elegant finish
Use mahogany wood to craft the top side of the body and Okoume to construct the neck and headstock. These tonewoods deliver a sound full of warmth, depth, resonance, and clarity to this left-handed ukulele.
Synthetic ABS is used for the edges, back, fretboard, and bridge for an added dose of sturdiness and clarity of sound.
These left-handed ukulele wood surfaces feature a natural satin finish, the back and sides have a textured black finish, and the neck is finished in smooth, matte black.
Open gear tuning machines
The 4 white nylon strings on this left-handed ukulele, are tuned with open-gear tuning machines.
Open-gear machines add much less weight to the headstock, permitting the neck to resonate more freely.
This type of tuner additionally has a throwback look to create a subtle classic vibe.
The dimension of this left-handed ukulele (scale 364 mm / 14.33″) is simple to deal with while delivering a full sound rich with a warm tone for strumming and definition for picking.
This dimension is nice for any stage of player from newbie to advanced and left-handed uke is also excellent for traveling.
Play in nearly any situation indoors or outdoors and solo or with a band.
This left-handed ukulele will even look great out on display in your house, studio, classroom, or workplace.
- Mahogany top, satin finish
- ABS body, barely arched
- Okoume neck, satin finish
- ABS fretboard & bridge
Ortega K2-MAH-L Soprano Ukulele Set features
2. Cascha Concert Ukulele Premium Mah LH
This bundle contains all the things you need for playing the ukulele. If you are on a tight budget and looking for your first ukulele this may be the right choice for you. The CASCHA Premium Concert Ukulele impresses with its prime quality and the wonderful sound properties of the used wooden types.
Because of the precise, encapsulated tuning mechanism and the excellent sounding AQUILA nylon strings, it all the time stays in perfect tune. A ukulele strap could be quickly and simply attached to the existing strap pins.
The CASCHA Premium Ukulele is appropriate for beginners and advanced players who play left-handed. This bundle includes a 5mm padded carrying bag to keep safe your left-handed ukulele and three picks.
- Body: mahogany
- With high-quality AQUILA strings
- With 2 strap pins
- Precise, encapsulated tuners
- Incl. padded bag
- Incl. 3 picks
3. Harley Benton Kahuna CLU-Bass Ukulele LH
Are you a lefty ukulele player who needs to try your hand at a couple of bass riffs? The Harley Benton Kahuna CLU-Bass Ukulele LH is a Bass Ukulele with a Left-handed model, Custom Line Kahuna Series, Arched back, Dot fretboard inlays, 20 Frets & Black open-geared machine heads.
This attractive instrument produces some astounding bass sounds. This left-handed ukulele features special strings made by Aquila in addition to a Fishman pickup. The top is manufactured from spruce, and the body and the neck are from mahogany.
Selected hard blackwood for the 20-fret fretboard. This bass is good for laying down a solid foundation for your next track – and not only for Hawaiian music!
- Top: Spruce
- Body: Mahogany
- Arched back
- Neck: Mahogany
4.Ortega Keiki K1-MM-L Sopranino
There’s clearly a passion on the market in ukulele land for tiny instruments as no matter who places out sopranino/piccolo/pocket scale ukes the market seems to lap them up.
The K1 Keiki is smaller than a soprano-sized ukulele with a scale length of about 11 inches. Sopranino, Sopranissimo, Piccolo, Mini, call them what you want. What we’re speaking about here are ukuleles with scale lengths smaller than a normal soprano.
Like so many different sopraninos, it follows the usual double bout ukulele shape and is basically a shrunk-down soprano. It is made from Okoume wooden in the body and is a full laminate with a warm sound.
In what’s a pet peeve for me, some shops that list these are less than clear with their product descriptions and drop the ‘laminate’ part to be able to make people assume they’re getting something they are not.
To be honest with Ortega, their website used the term ‘plywood’ so at least the precise brand is playing fair. I simply want stores would do the same because that’s what it is. The top, back, and sides are each constructed from two pieces, and you will also notice that the body depth front to back is quite slim too at about 40mm.
- Left-hand model
- Back and sides: Okume
- Top: Okume with laser-engraved sea turtle
- Neck: Okume
- Fretboard: Walnut
Ortega Keiki K1-MM-L Sopranino features
5. Kala U-Bass Exotic Mahogany 4 LH
This U-bass is an excellent-looking instrument! The exotic mahogany creates quite an attraction with its stripes and texture which is captivating for left-handed ukulele players. The most important pro of this left-handed U-Bass in comparison with others is that you can order it with either a round wound or rubber strings.
For someone switching from an electric bass guitar or other instruments to U-Bass, round wound strings are very similar and take little getting used to just like ukulele chords.
They are often slapped and tapped with ease and assist harmonics very well. In case you choose to order this left-handed U-Bass with rubber strings, you’ll be able to expect to hear a warmer tone in comparison with the brighter metallic round wound strings.
The “Shadow” pickup in this left-handed U-Bass works very properly and helps lots of low ends when plugged in. The U-Bass also comes with an inbuilt tuner and a padded gig bag with backpack straps.
Though these strings are easy to adjust to, they still have 2 quirks: They roll once you try to bend them, and the E and the A strings are hard to slide on. The one different con is that in a live setting, the shadow pickup appears to lack midrange: It has plenty of lows and highs, however, the mid-range limitations make the tone a bit thin sounding.
I’d suggest this left-handed U-bass for bass players switching over to U-bass, for ukulele players looking to play some bass lines, and for kids considering taking part in any bass guitar-type instrument.
The ease of playability makes it versatile for all ages, and the round wound strings provide a strong sound that has an upright bass tone of high quality.
- Top: Exotic mahogany
- Sides and back: Exotic mahogany
- Neck: Mahogany
- Fretboard: Laurel
- 16 Frets
Kala U-Bass Exotic Mahogany 4 LH features
How to Choose a Best Left-Handed Ukulele
Now that you’ve got a background on the most effective left-handed ukuleles you’ll find, let’s speak about the right way to decide which one is best for you
You don’t need to get an expensive left-handed instrument if you’re still a beginner playing the ukulele. A left-handed ukulele that has a great construction with a great sound that can cost you a maximum of $150 is a good entry-level choice.
2. Material and Composition
As you could already know, solid wood or laminated wood can be used to make the instrument. When you decide what your budget is, you need to begin looking into one of the best ukulele models which you can get for this budget.
The least costly wood that’s most commonly used in beginners’ models is mahogany. You may discover an instrument that’s completely made from mahogany, however, others might have rosewood elements as well.
As your finances will increase, it is possible for you to get a solid wood instrument maybe with laminated sides first then full solid wood ukuleles which are much more expensive. Lastly, the perfect ukuleles are those made from spruce and even the standard Koa, which is the perfect ukulele sound you may get.
Ukuleles are made in 4 sizes; soprano is the smallest, followed by a concert, then tenor, and at last, baritone. You need to decide which one you need, conserving in thoughts that sopranos are too small for some people and baritones sound quite a bit like guitars.
The Soprano is the smallest instrument at around 21 inches in total length. That is the size that most people will associate the ukulele with because it makes that typical basic ukulele sound. Due to its smaller dimension, it’s excellent for traveling with.
The Concert is slightly a bit larger at 23 inches, which makes it a little less cramped than the Soprano above. It additionally produces that basic ukulele sound, however, is a bit louder and deeper than the smaller Soprano.
Even bigger again is the Tenor at 26 inches. At this dimension, the Tenor begins to sound a little less Uke-like and slightly deeper, like a classical guitar. It’s usually favored by professional players.
Lastly, we’ve got the Baritone at 30 inches. Its larger size and completely different tuning make it sound closer to a classical guitar than a ukulele. It’s also tuned slightly differently from the three smaller types above.
Need A Left-Handed Ukulele?
There are two schools of thought in terms of southpaw ukuleles:
1. Get a right-handed uke and flip it over – however, don’t restring!
The big advantage to this is that you will be able to play any uke, wherever you are. The drawback is that you’ll have to be taught the chords upside down. Nevertheless, as there are fewer strings, this isn’t a hugely daunting task.
Another downside, while you play the ukulele, is that when you flip a righty, (most often) you’ll have no side dots on the fretboard to assist guide you. The dots which should be helping you navigate the fretboard are now facing the floor. It doesn’t sound that troublesome, however, believe me, you’ll miss these little dots!
2. String a righty for left-handed ukulele play, or simply get a lefty.
Ukes are fairly simple instruments that might be as a rule just about symmetrical in design. Because of this unlike with a 6-string guitar, flipping a ukulele usually will only involve reversing the strings.
In some circumstances, if the strings aren’t sitting snugly, it’s possible you’ll have to also flip the nut. On most left-handed ukuleles, the nut is held in place by string tension, so you must be capable to take away it just by loosening the strings.
The benefit right here is that learning chords will likely be easier. Watching ukulele lesson videos is made simple by the fact that the teacher will mirror you on-screen. However, you won’t be capable to walk into a store and testing out other ukuleles without a quick restring.
If possible, it will definitely be preferable to get a lefty (or ambidextrous!) design simply to make sure that you may utilize the side position markers. However, if you need to flip a righty you may always add your personal dots with a permanent marker, or some small round stickers.
How To Tune A Left-Handed Ukulele
In case you’d wish to buy a separate tuner, I like to recommend the Fender FT-1 clip-on headstock tuner. Works perfectly on a ukulele, and costs less than the price of a pack of good strings!
Normal tuning on a ukulele is G-C-E-A (from top to bottom). For extra clarity, take a look at the video which reveals tuning on a lefty uke.
As a left-handed individual, your decisions are there to discover. You simply have to try and see which one will make you comfy to play the uke. Don’t ever think that being left-handed is a handicap as some people do.
The world of music is gifted with so many gifted left-handed players. Take into consideration Paul McCartney, Jimi Hendrix, and Kurt Cobain to name a couple. Now have a go and grab a lefty uke!