Ahhh, ukulele straps... if ever there was a subject to divide opinion. Readers of my blog will know mine - want to use a strap, then use a strap! I do! I have been aware of this particular product for some time now, but only recently got around to having a closer look at one. The Mobius Strap.
The mobius uses a simple but clever bit of mathematics based on the 'mobius ring' to create a support system for the uke that I must say, is pretty decent.
The strap consists of simple bit of webbing as used in so many straps with velcro closures on the ends. But the closures don't match in a way that allows you to create a basic loop - they require you to put a half turn into the loop creating a twist, that rather cleverly helps this to work.
The strap is passed underneath the strings on the front of the uke, then attached in the loop with the all important half twist in the loop. When the strap is then put over the head in the right way (I got it wrong first time) and held in place in the waist of the uke, the twist kind of resolves itself around your body and feels very comfortable. And because of the way the strap runs and twists, it doesn't flap about under the strings, or cover the sound hole - it naturally, and lightly presses down on the soundboard behind the uke, thereby not affecting the sound projection and actually holding the uke against your body. Devilishly simple I thought and it just works. (And whilst I got it wrong first time, that was because I, typically, didn't read the instructions properly - thankfully they are included and very clear to understand!)
The system comes with a standard strap buckle adjustment for length, allowing you to have the uke held just where you want it.
In play, I didn't really notice it was there and it didn't interfere with my play at all. I would say that I would class this as more of a support than a full strap. It does allow you to go hands free, but you need to ensure that the uke is balanced as I found it quite easy for the uke to tip one direction or the other. Thankfully the instrument is not going to hit the floor as the strap will be stopped by either the neck or the bridge, so it is quite safe, but isn't quite so sturdy as using strap buttons. But really, this is aimed at people who don't want to drill their ukes for whatever reason.
I like this as an alternative to the sound hole hook (something I have NEVER liked as I don't want that kind of pressure on my sound hole, nor does it offer hands free support), and whilst I was apprehensive before it arrived, was pleasantly surprised at the comfort and ease of use.
It won't suit every uke though - pineapple body shapes may be tricky to keep the strap held, and the makers advise that ukes like resonators may be too bottom heavy to hold too. But for the vast majority of ukes, it will work just fine.
I like simple ideas put to good use and this fits the bill very well. If you are wanting to avoid the drill option, then I think you should check them out.
They are available through the Mobius Strap website at http://www.mobiusstrap.com/index.html. They retail at $16.95.