Here’s a brand of ukulele so obscure no one is 100% what it’s name is. It looks like Maranugi to me, but you can look at the headstock and judge for yourself. All that is clear is that these instruments were sold in New Zealand and don’t seem to have appeared anywhere else.
– It’s almost certainly mahogany. We think the back at least is solid and probably all solid.
– Binding and rosette are plastic
– Saddle and nut might be bone
– Unusual tuners – cant quite work out how to remove them yet – the tightening mechanism isn’t working but I think we can sort that.
– Spit headstock – not a bad repair – and the back is separated and very badly repaired with what feels like hotglue.
– Brand name is just a transfer.
– Sounds quite nice. Nice “woody” sound.
And he got in touch with other owners who had their theories:
– It’s ..ugi and Japanese and someone in NZ imported a container load once but the Japanese company was short lived.
– It’s ..ugi or uci and someone imported a container load from somewhere and labelled them here and then disappeared from the scene
– It’s uci or ugi and was simply such a short lived country that the only place that ever got any exports was NZ
– Someone in NZ set up a short lived factory
..which basically means we have NO idea.