You’ve probably seen ukulele players who use uke straps to support their instruments. That’s quite common nowadays, and more and more people search for the best ukulele strap and means to acquire knowledge on how to utilize its benefits to the fullest.
The sole purpose of this article is to give you the know-how regarding the topic of ukulele strap attachment process, so, without further ado, let’s get straight to it.
The main difference between installing a uke strap and a guitar strap
More and more people are embracing ukulele straps in hopes it will make playing them easier – these straps are much akin to those guitarists use, but they’re installed in a very different way. On the other hand, guitarists can’t play their guitar without a strap while in an upright position, whereas uke players can, but don’t really have to.
A guitar strap is very easy to install – each guitar model (regardless of whether it’s acoustic or electric) features two buttons on each end where the strap should be attached. Ukuleles, on the other hand, don’t come with such convenient features – they’re traditionally meant to be played without a strap.
So the most important difference in the installing process of a uke strap and a guitar strap is the effort you’d have to put in the former. Some straps require you to drill a hole, others are in form of adhesives – consult the “uke strap types” section for more info regarding the topic.
There are different uke straps – depending on the type, the installation is different
Just like there are different types of ukuleles, there are also quite a few uke strap types. Basically, each type requires a different installation process, and each type will grant you different benefits. Some, like no-drill straps are best for those players who don’t want to drill holes in their ukuleles, but even if you choose the one that requires one, it’s so small that you’d barely even notice it.
Regular uke straps
The “regular” straps are the ones which are meant to be installed on the “strap buttons”. Ukuleles that don’t feature these buttons can’t accept a “regular strap”, which is why you should consider installing these buttons first. If you’re unsure how to do that, please follow this link.
One of the best benefits of using regular ukulele straps is affordability. They’re very cheap, and they’re perhaps the best ukulele strap types if you value simplicity.
Ukulele “strap button”
Note that “regular ukulele straps” require two-point installation. That means that you’ll have to install the buttons (if your ukulele doesn’t have them already) on each end of your uke before you could even start the strap installation process.
The only difference between “regular ukulele straps” and “single-button straps” is that the latter don’t require two buttons. The reason why this form of ukulele strap was invented is because regular straps can imbalance ukuleles if the player doesn’t know how to use it properly. In this respect, single-button straps are simpler to use.
Most single-button straps are hybrids of regular straps and no-drill straps (adhesives, hooks, etc.), but they cost pretty much the same as regular types.
A great hands-free option that doesn’t require you to drill holes or even have a ukulele with buttons. Hug straps hug the uke right beneath the strings, forming a sort of a sling. This uke strap type is quite useful as it leaves the body of your ukulele intact, but it has some flaws that shouldn’t be neglected.
A “zebra-like” hug strap – one end attaches to the nut, the other “hugs” the body underneath the strings
The only thing you need to know about hug straps is that they can’t be used on pineapple ukulele types, as they’re too wide. Another disadvantage of hug straps is that they cost quite a lot, especially when compared to regular and one-button straps.
Much like uke leashes, hug straps don’t require any holes to be drilled, but they provide sufficient support and pressure-relief, making them superior to most no-hole strap types.
The ukulele leash represents a hybrid form of ukulele strap. It is installed in a very easy way – you’ll just have to wrap the headstock with one end, and wrap the other one in a specific way – start over your shoulder (the one on the headstock’s side – left for right-handed people) and wrap it underneath your other shoulder.
Uke leash – it resembles a small leather strap that attaches to the headstock (right) and ends underneath the player’s shoulder (left)
Note that ukulele leashes only support one end of the ukulele – the headstock. Hands-free play is impossible, you’ll just be able to benefit from enhanced stability and shoulder support.
One of the main disadvantages of ukulele leashes is that they don’t help out your fretting hand by relieving some of the pressure from supporting the uke. On the other hand, leashes don’t require any drilling, which is one of their advantages.
Basically, installing the ukulele strap attachment isn’t too difficult, although there are factors that could make it even easier (or harder), such as having uke strap buttons (or the lack of them), woodwork talents which could be used to drill holes without damaging the ukulele’s body structure, and so on.
Regardless, the sheer process can be taught, and we intend you to show you simple means of acquiring the know-how in the easiest way possible – there are but a couple of things you need to consider before you can proceed.
The bottom line is – installing a strap solely depends on two factors. The first is the type of ukulele you have, regarding its style, length, and features. The second is the type of a strap you want installed – some require holes, others come with looks, adhesives, and whatnot. The sheer process is quite simple, although we recommend going with no-hole straps unless you really know what you’re doing.