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I want to buy a better mandolin

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Scabby Douglas 15 Nov 00 - 08:02 AM
Bernard 15 Nov 00 - 08:17 AM
Willie-O 15 Nov 00 - 08:25 AM
John P 15 Nov 00 - 09:17 AM
JedMarum 15 Nov 00 - 09:17 AM
Lady McMoo 15 Nov 00 - 09:41 AM
Big Phil 15 Nov 00 - 04:17 PM
annamill 15 Nov 00 - 04:59 PM
Jon Freeman 15 Nov 00 - 05:23 PM
annamill 15 Nov 00 - 05:36 PM
Rollo 15 Nov 00 - 07:01 PM
LR Mole 16 Nov 00 - 12:02 PM
GUEST,cookieless Scabby D 16 Nov 00 - 12:22 PM
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Subject: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: Scabby Douglas
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 08:02 AM

Hi all

I've been playing a really cheap (and I mean Reeeeeally cheap ) mandolin for a couple of years now. I want something better. Asking around, I get all sorts of conflicting advice. I've seen the work of some local builders - Freshwater - for example, and I've also a notion that I quite like an electro-acoustic that Crafter do.. it's sort of guitar-bodied and fibre-glass back.

I'm looking to spend £200-£300 (but don't tell my wife - she thinks that I might get to spend £100-£200)

Any thoughts? Any new builders that anyone knows of who are establishing a rep, but are still inexpensive?

I'm in Scotland, but don't mind dealing worldwide....

Thanks for any thoughts

SD


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: Bernard
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 08:17 AM

My 'spare' mandolin is an 'Ozark' - cheap import, but quite good after a little setting up work. The frets were uneven, and the action a little high, but those are easily sorted.

I would say that, as it cost aound £150 three or four years ago, you'd have to spend at least £500 to find something better.

My 'proper' one is quite old - the label says 'Mareno, made in Saxony'. It's the Portuguese 'flat back' style - and VERY LOUD!!

You should be able to source an 'Ozark' through most music shops - they may not stock them, but they could get one to order.

I appreciate you prefer to try before buying, but mandolins don't sell well - you'd be hard pressed to find a stockist!

Unfortunately I cannot comment on any others - being happy with what I've got means I don't look!

Good luck!


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: Willie-O
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 08:25 AM

Peter Cox in Orillia, Ontario builds nice no-frills instruments that would be within your price range. I bought a very nice cedar-topped mandola from him a few years back at a RIDICULOUS price (his prices aren't quite so low now, but still very reasonable). Since then I've discovered that half the working acoustic musicians in Ontario seem to have one of his eight-strings in their collection. They are tear-drop, roundhole, flat-tops more suitable for Celtic/folk than bluegrass.

Hell of a nice guy, too. Since his instruments are hand-crafted, selecting one is difficult by mail order. However if you get in touch with him and it sounds promising, there are a number of Mudcatters in the Orillia area--I bet someone would be happy to check out the stock for you (any old excuse to go visit a luthier is fine by most folkies I know).

Willie-O


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: John P
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 09:17 AM

The mandolin guy at the music store I work in sells a lot of Mid-Missouri mandolins. They seem to be very functional, no-frills instruments that I think would be well within your price range. And they make enough of them that you may actually be able to find a music store that stocks them so you can try before you buy.

John


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: JedMarum
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 09:17 AM

check out Elderly Music they'll have lots to choose from, and I hear very good things about 'em from folks here (I have never dealt with them). You can do everythinng on-line, and if you look carefully you can even go to the various manufacturuer sites for additional info. I punched in mandolin and found loads of new and used instruments here. Good luck!


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: Lady McMoo
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 09:41 AM

Dear SD,

Freshwater mandolins are OK and are, I believe, sold also through Hobgoblin music where I think they are called "Sherwood" mandolins. These should be within your price range. Also very much worth looking at in this price bracket are mandolins by Paul Hathway who works out of East London. These are rather plain looking but extremely well-made instruments with a good tone and solid wood (choice of pine, spruce or cedar) tops. I was playing in a session last night with someone who had one and I have a Hathway octave mandola which I'm very happy with. This might be a tiny tad above your limit but they are good instruments and its worth shopping around, you might find a nearly new one. I think I still have a Hathway catalogue at home which I don't especially need any more. Please PM me if you'd like it and I'll send it to you.

Best regards,

mcmoo


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: Big Phil
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 04:17 PM

Just bought a new Mandolin myself. dozens to choose from,new and second hand, various prices info@the-music-room.com www.the-music-room.com... Hope this is some help to you. Big Phil


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: annamill
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 04:59 PM

Thread Creep Warning****
My son's birthday was Oct. 22 and he called my house and left the message that he would very musch like a 'mandolin' for his birthday????Now my son is in no way musically inclined. After 3 years of saxaphone lessons he can barely play 'Tequila", so what's up with this, I wondered????
At the present, and for the future, I hope, he is at the Culinary Institute of America learning to be a wonderful chef.
Turns out, 'Mandolin' is also the name of a cooking tool that very strongly resembles (though I'm not allowed to say so) a vegematic. It rices, dices, julians(SP) with the best. Point is, he wanted a better mandolin too. **BG**

Sorry!

Love, annamill


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 05:23 PM

LOL annamill. I knew what a mandolin is but have never heard of vegematic BTW.

As regards the other mandolin. I had a look at Hobgoblin and the Sherwood accoustic mandolin is quite a bit over the £300 mark although it is probably a nice instrument. The only Freshwater I have played was an octave Mandola and that was a nicely made instrument although I found the bridge too high for my liking (the action was fine - it just seemed to have been designed to take a high bridge).

I wish I could come up with other suggestions to add to mcmoo's but the ones like Fylde are around the £450 mark.

Reading Jed's post leads me to ask whether anyone here from the UK has ever dealt with the likes of Elderly and how the prices work out with shipping and presumably some form of duty to pay.

Jon


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: annamill
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 05:36 PM

Never heard of a vegematic?? You must go to bed early. ;-)

Usually seen on very late night commercials. Actually since I became an ADULT, I haven't seen the commercial either..drag!

L., A.


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: Rollo
Date: 15 Nov 00 - 07:01 PM

Why buy a better mandolin? Buy an adult instrument instead of sprinkling it regularly while hoping it will grow! *GGG*


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: LR Mole
Date: 16 Nov 00 - 12:02 PM

The vegematic might be the same thing as a blizhacker.Yow!


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Subject: RE: I want to buy a better mandolin
From: GUEST,cookieless Scabby D
Date: 16 Nov 00 - 12:22 PM

Thanks for all your thoughts...

Interesting research side-alleys.. I found a builder that sells kit mandolins, and Looooots of realy nice really expensive builders....

Also... Freshwater have a shop in Beauly, near Inverness, and their prices there are more reasonable... mandolin from £260 ( I think), Octave mandolins from 320-ish..

I know the Ozark brand... they're OK, although I did see a shop in Glasgow was selling the Ozark bouzouki for around £100. Which was pretty good value...

Still looking..

Cheers


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