1920s Jose Serratosa Concert Ukulele

Jose Serratosa was a builder in Barcelona from the 1890s through the 1920s. This one, judging by its label, was made sometime in the '20s. If you "Google Translate" this Spanish page (click here), there's a nice writeup on his history as a builder.

I'm not sure if this was built as a ukulele or a Spanish interpretation of a cavaquinho, but it's basically a concert ukulele build along the lines of a Spanish classical-style guitar. It has rosewood back and sides, a spruce top, and very light fan bracing. This gives a sweet, mellow, luxurious quality to the sound. It's very silky or velvety but still strong and with good volume.

The build quality is very high and the tiny details add-up to a very slick instrument -- tight, thin purfling and and an exacting rosette give it a restrained but upscale look.

Work included: installing a set of Pegheads 4:1 geared tuners, a fret level/dress, mild cleaning, and a setup with D'Addario fluorocarbon strings.

Setup notes: it plays perfectly with 1/16" action at the 12th fret and a straight neck.

Scale length: 14 5/16"
Nut width: 1 7/16"
String spacing at nut: 1 1/8"
String spacing at bridge: 1 7/16"
Body length: 10 1/8"
Lower bout width: 7 3/8"
Waist width: 4 7/8"
Upper bout width: 5 5/8"
Side depth at endpin: 2 3/4"
Top wood: solid spruce
Back/sides wood: solid rosewood
Neck wood: Spanish cedar(?)
Bracing type: fan
Fretboard: rosewood, bone nut
Bridge: rosewood, bone saddle
Neck feel: medium D-shape, flat board

Condition notes: some wear and tear throughout -- especially playwear on the upper-bout-top -- but overall in good order. I only found one tiny hairline crack on the back. Its original fittings are all there (including a pearl-inlaid bridge), but the tuners are swapped.