Frequently Asked Questions


The following are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive here at Islander ‘Ukulele.  If you don’t see the answer you’re looking for, please submit your question via our contact form and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

What makes Islander ‘Ukulele’s instruments different than any other brand?

Every Islander ‘ukulele instrument is made with the trusted sound of Kanile’a ‘Ukulele but at an affordable price. Accurately measured, fitted, and built to the specification of the same designs that took decades for Joseph Souza, the founder of Kanile’a and Islander ‘Ukulele, to perfect.

Islander ‘Ukulele specification:

  1. Kanile`a 1st Generation Bracing System
  2. 1 ½ inch at the nut
  3. Bridge Pin method of fastening the strings
  4. Grover 14 to 1 Gear Ratio Tuners
  5. Radius Back
  6. The highest quality of parts

Find an Islander ‘Ukulele Dealer near you to see the quality of our instruments.

What strings do Islander 'Ukulele Instruments use?

All Islander ‘ukuleles use Italian-made Aquila Corde Super Nylgut ‘ukulele strings. These Aquila strings are a contemporary synthetic string that carries the same acoustic properties as a traditional gut string, but with the durability and longevity expected of a modern string. It also carries brilliant tones that are unique to Islander ‘ukuleles.

For our guitarleles, we use custom GHS strings, which only a few retailers carry. You are able to purchase these custom GHS strings on

Our mini guitars use D’addario strings.

What kind of bracing system do you use?

All Islander ‘Ukulele Instruments are designed with Kanile’a ‘Ukulele’s 1st Generation bracing system, a miniature version of the V bracing system. This type of bracing system helps the instrument achieve a sustain and tone that is unprecedented in this price range.

What makes the Bridge Pin string installation method a more viable option than the Tie Block method?

All Islander ‘Ukulele instruments use the Bridge Pin method because it allows the energy of the string to transfer into the soundboard, which protects the bridge. The Tie Block method is known to put a strain on the bridge, which causes the bridge to lift off the soundboard over time.

The Bridge Pin method is also the simplest string installation method – one overhand knot and you are done!

Why is your thickness at the nut 1 ½ inches?

While most ‘ukulele builders use a 1-3/8” nut width, Islander ‘Ukulele uses a 1-1/2” nut width. There are two reasons for this:

  • Better playability. With the strings spaced just a little farther apart, this allows for better playability and finger clearance between strings.
  • Avoid roll off. The extra spacing helps a player to avoid the G and A strings from rolling off the fingerboard while playing, especially when it comes to intricate fingering.
What is humidity and why should I care about it?

Humidity is the amount of water vapor present in the air and depending on the relative humidity of the environment, the measurement of the humidity relative to temperature, it can cause damage to your Islander ‘Ukulele instrument.

The unfinished parts of your ‘ukulele (inside the body, fingerboard, and bridge) are suspect to taking on moisture or losing moisture. Once the instrument is out of our climate-controlled facility, even properly dried wood will take on a certain amount of moisture from our Hawaiian air, often measured at a relative humidity of 70% and higher. If a ‘ukulele is moved to a much drier region and moisture is lost too quickly, cracks, shrinking fingerboards, and sharp frets can occur.

One or two properly maintained humidifiers in the `ukulele case are the best way to avoid these problems. Please read and follow the instructions on the packaging for the humidifiers to know when to refill them or change them out. And while you may be tempted to display your Islander in your home at all times, in its case with the humidifiers is the best place for it.

Can I install a pick-up into my Islander ‘Ukulele instrument?

Yes, you can install any pick-up into your Islander ‘Ukulele instrument. We recommend that you take your instrument into a musical retail shop to get any alterations done to your instrument for the best results.

What are the most popular Islander ‘Ukulele instruments?

Our most popular Islander ‘Ukulele instruments are the  MC-4 and AC-4 concert ‘ukuleles, GL-6 guitarlele, and the ASMG mini guitar.

However, all Islander ‘Ukulele instruments are designed with the same trusted quality and sound of Kanile’a ‘Ukulele. Browse through all Islander ‘Ukulele instruments on our Shop page.

Do you really reforest?

Yes, Islander ‘Ukulele made a commitment in 2019 that for every Islander ‘Ukulele built, we will plant one Koa tree in our reforestation ranch in Kealakekua, Kona located on the Big Island of Hawai’i.

If you would like to learn more about our reforestation project or you would like to sponsor a Koa tree, visit the

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