Eat My Uke

Different Parts Of The Ukulele Explained

So you just got your new ukulele and every piece of it is exciting to you. You NEED to know what every parts of the ukulele is called and what it all does. You’ve come to the right place as in the article we are going to explore your new instrument in depth and increase our knowledge of the ukulele. It’s really handy knowing this kind of thing as its going to make it much easier when you want to talk to other ukulele players about your uke.

It might be worth grabbing your own uke and using it as a reference when identifying the parts!

What we will learn

  • What each part of the ukulele is called.
  • What its purpose is.

Getting To Know Your Uke

This image below details all the the important parts of the ukulele.

Tuning Pegs

As you can probably imagine, this is what you use to tune your ukulele (maybe the name gave it away). Where they are located depends on the type of ukulele you have. The can either be pointing out the side of the headstock or be facing up. Most tuners are geared which means they are very easy to turn, unlike ones that rely on friction. As a general rule, the more you pay for a ukulele, the better the tuning pegs will be. They work by threading your ukulele string at the bridge end and tying it up, Then bringing it up to the tuning peg and putting it through the hole in the peg and wrapping it around slightly. You then begin to tighten the handle until all of the string is wrapped around the tuning peg. Now it’s time to get the ukulele in tune. Check out this guide that tells you exactly how to tune a ukulele.

Headstock

You could also refer to it as the head of the ukulele. It tends to be really sturdy as its one of the parts that hold all the tension of the uke. It’s also home to the tuning pegs. This is usually where the brand will put their logo or model number. You can sometimes find a strap button the back of the headstock so you can wear a strap while playing. Often people will tie some string around the base of the headstock and use that as a way of connecting the strap on

Nut

The nut is used to keep the strings apart at an equal distance. It’s usually made of plastic and has small ridges where the strings sit. Its located at the top of the fretboard and the bottom of the headstock. It’s also used to raise the strings of the fretboard so you actually fret them. This tiny little piece is a very important part of the ukulele and it’s essentially impossible to play without it.

Neck

This is the curved piece of wood or plastic that connects the headstock to the body of the ukulele.It’s curved so that players are able to comfortably get their hands around it when fretting the strings. More often then not the neck and the headstock are made of one solid piece of wood.

Strings

These are what allows us to make actual music out of the ukulele. Sure we could bash it to bits like a drum but that would soon get boring! So instead we delicately pluck or strum the strings. Most of the time they are made of nylon due to its soft nature. Believe it or not, some of the very first ukulele strings were made from gut which is actual animal intestines. It’s very important that the strings keep their tension as this is what allows us to play high notes. Its recommended that you change your strings at least every 6 months.

Fretboard

This is the part that creates the frets. It’s a smooth, often black piece of wood that is glued onto the neck and has ridges for the frets to sit. It’s wise to clean this part every time to change your strings as its very common to get a build up of dirt and dead skin from your fingers.

Fret

The frets determine what pitch the note we play will be. They are spread apart at very specific intervals which allow us to play notes in a scale. They are made of metal and they are placed into the fretboard at a distance that means they stick up a little bit. So when we place out fingers in-between them, the metal fret to the left will stop the string and not the finger. Which allows the note to be played.

Fret Markers

We use fret markers as visual guides so we know where we are on the fretboard. They are usually found on the 3rd, 5th, 7th, 10th, 12th and 15th fret on the ukulele. These tend to be super helpful when you are travelling large distances up and down the fretboard. They are often a white dotted inlay but some more expensive ukuleles tend to have fancy designs.

Body

The nut is used to keep the strings apart at an equal distance. It’s usually made of plastic and has small ridges where the strings sit. Its located at the top of the fretboard and the bottom of the headstock. It’s also used to raise the strings of the fretboard so you actually fret them. This tiny little piece is a very important part of the ukulele and it’s essentially impossible to play without it.

Soundhole

You could also refer to it as the head of the ukulele. It tends to be really sturdy as its one of the parts that hold all the tension of the uke. It’s also home to the tuning pegs. This is usually where the brand will put their logo or model number. You can sometimes find a strap button the back of the headstock so you can wear a strap while playing. Often people will tie some string around the base of the headstock and use that as a way of connecting the strap on

Bridge

The nut is used to keep the strings apart at an equal distance. It’s usually made of plastic and has small ridges where the strings sit. Its located at the top of the fretboard and the bottom of the headstock. It’s also used to raise the strings of the fretboard so you actually fret them. This tiny little piece is a very important part of the ukulele and it’s essentially impossible to play without it.

Saddle

You could also refer to it as the head of the ukulele. It tends to be really sturdy as its one of the parts that hold all the tension of the uke. It’s also home to the tuning pegs. This is usually where the brand will put their logo or model number. You can sometimes find a strap button the back of the headstock so you can wear a strap while playing. Often people will tie some string around the base of the headstock and use that as a way of connecting the strap on

EQ

The nut is used to keep the strings apart at an equal distance. It’s usually made of plastic and has small ridges where the strings sit. Its located at the top of the fretboard and the bottom of the headstock. It’s also used to raise the strings of the fretboard so you actually fret them. This tiny little piece is a very important part of the ukulele and it’s essentially impossible to play without it.

Input Jack

You could also refer to it as the head of the ukulele. It tends to be really sturdy as its one of the parts that hold all the tension of the uke. It’s also home to the tuning pegs. This is usually where the brand will put their logo or model number. You can sometimes find a strap button the back of the headstock so you can wear a strap while playing. Often people will tie some string around the base of the headstock and use that as a way of connecting the strap on

Now you know what all the parts of the ukulele are called. It’s time to play the uke faster. I spent 20+ hours working on this technique that is guaranteed to increase your speed on the ukulele