Make a Ron Jon Ukulele More Usable!




Introduction: Make a Ron Jon Ukulele More Usable!

About: I'm an amateur DIY-er, but thoroughly enjoy new concepts and ways of creating new things or just amping up old things. I almost always forget to document the projects I work on, but when I do I love posting th…

Do you have a Ron Jon Ukulele just sitting around, not using it because frankly, it's pretty crappy?

Well, this instructable is here to show you how to make a few simple adjustments to it to make it more playable and enjoyable.
For those of you who like to just browse through and glance, we will be basically just changing the tuning pegs.

Please be aware that this is my first instructable; so please, no hate comments or other things like that.

Also, this Instructable has been submitted to the Musical Instruments Contest! Feel free to vote for it!

DISCLAIMER: If you break your ukulele while attempting this, I am NOT liable.

Step 1: Parts & Tools

For this instructable you will be needing the following items:

 - Four tuning pegs
     (Guitar tuning pegs on amazon; guitar pegs are a bit cheaper, and should do just fine)
     (Ukulele tuning pegs on eBay; Uke tuning pegs are a wee bit more)
 - Some ukulele strings; Soprano/standard ukulele strings are good for basic Ron Jon Ukes
 - A Ron Jon ukulele (duh.)

 - Screwdriver
 - Drill
 - A drill bit that is a fraction smaller than the screws used to hold in the tuning pegs
 - A pencil or other marking utensil
      *Note: no screws are necessary, as per the picture; they are optional for holding the strings in to the bridge, but not required.

The tuning pegs and strings that I used came from a dulcimer kit I had laying around, so your items may be a bit different than mine.

Step 2: Taking Off the Pegs...

The first thing that needs doing is taking off the awful tuning pegs. All that you need to do to take off the pegs is unscrew the little handle thing and pull out the peg itself. From there take out the little nut on the top that helps to hold the peg steady; and you're done! Now just repeat that for the other three pegs.

After that, simply pull out the string from the groove of the bridge for each string.

Step 3: Putting on the New Pegs!

Now here comes the semi-tricky part: putting on the new pegs! This part is trumped in tricky-ness only by putting on the new strings.

First thing you need to do is to position the pegs how you want them to be on the head of the Uke. After that, take your marking utensil (mine is a pencil) and mark the holes on the head where the screws will be put for the tuning pegs.

Next, drill the necessary holes for the screws, but only enough to go about 3/4 of the length of the screw. This is done so that the screws have an anchor and won't rip out of the head.

Test to see if the nut that was pulled out of the head will fit around the new peg. If so, use it the same way as it was used with the older pegs. For me, the nuts didn't fit the new pegs, so I didn't use them.

Now screw in the new pegs and make sure that there is no jiggling.

Step 4: Putting on the New Strings...

I don't have any shots of me putting on the new strings, but here is a very helpful video on how to put on new ukulele strings.

I do, however, have shots of the uke before I trimmed the strings!

Step 5: The Finished Project!

After many minutes of toil and work, you are at last finished! Revel in your awesome, and throw a cake party for the tedious task you have finally completed!

Note: When I finished mine, I noticed the strings kept on becoming untuned. I found that that is the strings just setting into the bridge groove. So play it a while and they will tighten up and be fine after a few plays (if you had this issue).

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    9 years ago on Step 5

    Guitar tuning pegs have a longer shaft than ukulele tuning pegs by a quarter of an inch so you will get a nearer result with ukulele tuning pegs.

    You can also fix most of your problems with a friction tuner by tightening the tension screw and/or inserting an additional friction washer. That being said, geared tuners are more better.:)
    Sometimes with a new uke that will not stay in tune taking the string off and putting it back on properly will fix it.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the feedback you guys! I'm not much of a guitarist, so I wouldn't know about all that stuff; but thanks for informing me!


    9 years ago

    Another option with the new tuners you put on: if you swapped them over
    (i.e mounted them so the tuning peg was BELOW the shaft instead of above) so the 2 you chose for the left side were swapped to the right then you could have mounted them straight on the head instead of having to angle the top 2 tuners in that crazy way