LM - 0002 ca. 1920 Leland "Brilliantone"
Mandolin EXC This is a fine example of the Larson Brothers
work. Beautiful straight grained crack free spruce top with colorful marquetry, original bridge, tailpiece,
and tortoise shell pickguard. Gorgeous bookmatched Brazilian rosewood
back and sides also crack free as is
the entire instrument. It's completely original with the enclosed tuning pegs and interesting style heel construction. Elegant plain Brazilian rosewood
headtock veneer. The
label is in wonderful condition.
As typical of Larson instruments the
serial number (#12033) appears on the little brace underneath the fingerboard
extension. It came to us with no case but we'll find something in which to ship it safely.
HO - 00012 ca. 1895 Howe
Orme Style 3 Mandolin (Mandolinetto) EXC +++
This is a museum quality condition example of this cylinder top
design but it also plays and sounds terrific with fine volume.
Classic aged Adirondak spruce
top is crack free as are the brazilian rosewood back and sides. Simple
rosewood peghead overlay
and original tuning pegs
that work just fine. The
label is in fine shape and the serial number #0976 appears there as
well as being
stamped into the top of the headstock. Original bridge is fitted perfectly to
the 'humped' cylinder top. Original tailpiece with the May
15,1894 Patent stamp. And the hard violin style case is
also in fine shape including the perfectly working spring latches.
VM - 0006 1935 Vivitone Mandolin
by Lloyd Loar VG These are found less often than the
guitars that were produced by Lloyd Loar's Vivitone company in the mid thirties.
This one plays well and sounds better than the others I've heard (a couple of which
were equipped with pickups). One of the two labels insides guarantees full credit for
an upgrade to the electric model provided it is done by the end of 1935. The radical
design has the odd soundhole in the spruce
top and violin style f-holes in the spruce
back which is inset into the sides.
The sides have aged with an odd rippling effect. There is one un-repaired
up from the bottom on the back. The headstock
has the art deco Vivitone logo and the
tuning pegs are original as is the pickguard and the
case. The very nicely intonated
bridge is likely a replacement as is the
Gibson tailpiece from the twenties. There is a well repaired longitudinal crack
running along the neck that is solid and poses no issue.
RW - 0001 1971 Randy
Wood Loar F-5 copy VG ++ In 1971 my band was
playing a gig at Vanderbilt University in Nashville and I got to visit
GTR the coolest guitar store around. GTR stood for George, Tut, and
Randy. I was making money in 1971 and that afternoon I picked out a nice
1941 000-28 and a Gibson Mastertone tenor and ordered (to be made by
Randy) a 5 string neck for the banjo and an F-5 Loar copy. About 5
months later the mandolin arrived. I sold it in 1981 but got it back
again in about 1995 and had the neck re-shaped by Chris Berkov to be the
same profile as David Grisman's 1922 Loar. It has plenty of cut and
good deep chop, like a good bluegrass mandolin should. The top has lots of crazing
lines in the finish but no cracks. No big scratches either just a few
nicks and dings and one little gouge on the lower point. The flame
maple back and sides are also crack free
and the back has the same crazing but not as pronounced. After much
begging, Randy agreed to inlay The Gibson script and flowerpot into the
peghead. It still has
it's original tuning
pegs which work fine. Old twenties Gibson tailpiece. Nice hardshell case with cover.
This is an exceptional instrument.
GM - 00144 1932 Gibson A-50
Mandolin EXC Here is the earliest version of the A-50 and
last Gibson A model with the oval hole.
This one has a good deep strong sound
and fine setup. Beautiful sunburst
top and dark stained maple
back and sides. There is one scratch / dent in the side that's
impossible to photograph and another scratch on the top. It's got the elevated fingerboard. There is a
small professionally repaired stable crack just underneath the elevated
fingerboard and one other on the treble side. It has its original
adjustable bridge, and pickguard, and tailpiece. Gibson script graces
the headstock and it has its
original tuning pegs. It also
has a nice original hard shell
Consigned at: Price: $2495.00
GM - 00141 1925 Gibson F-2
Mandolin   EXC - Serial number 82669 which is a
little hard to read on the
label dates this to just after Mr. Loar had parted company with the
Gibson folks to soar on to the greater heights of ViviTone. Unusual
super slanted Gibson pearl logo on the headstock and truss rodded neck
with 1 3/32" nut width. There is the common headstock scroll repair
well done and not very noticeable. There is also one tiny surface crack
at the bottom of the back also
not very noticeable. The lacquer on the back has a lot of checking which is
typical of many Gibson finishes of this era. The beautiful sunburst top is crack free with original
pickguard, tailpiece and
adjustable bridge. It also has it's original hard shell case is
fair condition. This mandolin is set up beautifully, plays easily and
sounds exceptionally good.
Price - Consigned at: $4950.00
GM - 000140 1906 F-3
Artist Model Mandolin VG++  : This is the best
sounding and nicest playing example of one of these old 3 point Artist
Models that I've run across. The top is crack free with
original finish worn at the sound hole and pickguard(s) there's a
cute little added one. The
back and sides are mahogany and also crack free. There is a
hairline repaired heel crack and the common headstock scroll repair
but this one is really expertly done. There is also a virtually
invisible repair to the treble side of the neck below the peghead. No
headstock crack, just a little chunk replaced where it was all grunged
up. Like I said, you can't see it or feel it. The headstock and the
area just below it have been refinished. The original engraved Handel tuning
pegs have one replaced gear and screw. Original end pin and original compensated bridge and "pineapple" tailpiece.
The hard shell case is
nice and looks maybe like it was custom ordered or even home made. And
it's got the "Orville
Label" serial number 4841.
Price - Consigned at: $5750.00
GM - 00071 1919 Gibson F-
2 EXC- Sn # 49891 A fine sounding and playing example of a
late teens Gibson F model with the reddish sunburst top and red
stain birch back and sides.
This one has the nice carving on the rear scroll as well as the front one. Original engraved tail piece and
replacement Schaller tuning
pegs and adjustable bridge. Pearl angled "The Gibson" script inlayed on the headstock. There is some 'honest play wear' and a few
nicks and scratches and one typical hairline coming up from the treble point and another
teeny hard to see
hairline across the back of
the peghead which has been closely inspected, sealed and pronounced
Nice original hard shell case with replaced
Gm - 00095 1915 Gibson F-2
Blackface Mandolin   EXC - This one has the
checking or crazing on the original top finish that some people (like
me) really like. And it also has the binding that ends on the inside of
the scroll which likewise
appeals to some of us. It has one solidly repaired hairline crack next to
the bass side of the fingerboard that is no biggie. It's got the desireable Handel tuning pegs with the
inlaid buttons and its
original tailpiece ,
endpin and a Loar period replica adjustable bridge. Nicely figured
slab cut birch back and sides.
And the headstock does NOT have
the typical repaired scroll crack neither big nor little. The
label is in nice shape. It lives in a
sturdy travelite style
Price - Consigned at: $4350.00
GM - 00089 1928 Gibson A
Model Blackface EXC A little wear on the black
top and a bit as well on
the birch back and sides
which like the rest of the mandolin are crack free. This is a real good
player with a good strong sound. Silver stenciled "The Gibson" on the
truss rodded headstock
and original tuning pegs.
Adjustable bridge with
1921 patent stamp and nice engraved tailpiece. Good label with
serial # 87208 nice and
clear. Good newer shaped tweed hard shell case.
MM - 00017 1936 Martin
Model 2-30 Mandolin EXC - These are lovely instruments and
we don't see many of them. This one is a fine example with a beautiful sunburst crack
free spruce top and spectacular
flame maple back and sides.
Original tuning pegs and Martin Decal
on the Brazilian rosewood headstock
veneer. Diamond / snowflake inlays grace the ebony fingerboard. Original
ebony bridge and engraved tailpiece.
Pickguard is long gone. Plays easily with a comfortable low action and sounds sweet as
can be. Straight neck, good frets. Rare instrument. Newer tweed hard shell case.
Price - Consigned at: $4500.00
MM - 00014 1929 Martin
Style 20 Mandolin VG+ Here's a first year of
issue of this model. Crack free with well aged spruce top and flame maple back and sides. Ebony
fingerboard with abalone dots inlaid. Nice engraved tailpiece, original
tuning pegs, ebony bridge,
replaced pickguard and brazilian rosewood peghead overlay.
This one plays very easily, really sweet and beautiful tone. Non
original hard shell case.
Price - Consigned at: $2800.00
GM - 00106 2007 Corrado
Giacomel Octave Mandolin EXC+ A beauty from
Corrado Giacomel of Genoa Italy. Red Sunburst spruce top and flamey maple back and sides, all crack
free. Maple neck and ebony fingerboard, pickguard and adjustable
bridge. Super comfortable ebony tailpiece. I think if the
classic Loar design two point body with a scroll is the American
equivalent to the Corvette, then the Giacomel design is equivalent to
the Ferrari. He has given an Italian flavor even to the 'flowerpot' on
the headstock and certainly to the
classic scroll. Gold
plated tuning pegs.
This mandolin has great power and fantastic tone that has plenty of
depth in the low end and develops nice reverberation at the high end.
20" Scale Length 1 5/16" Nut Width. Gig Bag.
KM - 0002 1989 Everett
Kettler Model TF-2 EXC + This mandolin is a
real hoss with tons of volume and plenty of bass and a nice fat high end
that develops a bit of reverb to it. Spruce top and flame maple back, sides and neck. Note the
small f-holes and unusual carve to the top. Pearl inlaid rosewood peghead overlay as well as
rosewood fingerboard, and pickguard. Allen style tailpiece and ebony adjustable bridge. Beautiful heel treatment. Fine
workmanship throughout. Everett Kettler of South Woodbury, Vermont is
quite a character and is no longer making mandolins. If you go to
www.mandolincafe.com and search the forums you will find a few
interesting articles about him. He makes furniture, wooden boats, Amish
horse carriages, as well as musical instruments. He has signed and
dated the label March 6,
1989, serial number 0133. This is an unusual and powerful mandolin.
Hard shell case.
DM - 0004 1911 Dayton Style B
Mandolin VG+ A rare item and a unique design.
This one is fancier and in nicer shape than the
Pair in the Museum. It's black top original finish is in nice
shape with some wear and the mahogany back is excellent and nicely
figured. Viewed from side
the white divider would appear to be simply ornamental but there is a
false back - secondary sound board - in the middle of the instrument
that has almost impossible to photograph cats eye shaped sound holes
The label is fairly well
It has a good full strong sound and plays easily with straight
neck good frets and good action. It has attractive fingerboard and headstock inlays and original
tuning pegs and a very nice
TM - 0003 ca. 1920
Rafaele Tieri Bowl Back Mandolin EXC but for a
crunch in the 33
flame maple ribbed
back. It is only about 6 inches long and affects 5 ribs and it
doesn't hurt the sound, playability, or structrual integrity of the
instrument a bit and ... it would be a bear to fix. So we leave it be
and appreciate that this is a fine quality instrument that has a great
setup and bold sound. The spruce top is crack free as is
the rest of the instrument. Nice piece of (maybe) walnut inlaid into the
bottom where the
ribs join together. Masterful replica bridge and probably original
tailpiece. The label
is beautifully intact. Rosewood overlay with the "Tieri" banner
inlaid on the headstock
and original tuning
pegs which work fine. Inlaid 'you know what' pickguard. No case
but we'll pack securely.
SM - 00018 ca. 1905 Stahl
Style 8 Mandolin EXC but for one very hard
to see (and even harder to photograph) crack in the bowl back that has been expertly repaired. Email for a large picture
that shows it better if interested. It does not affect structural integrity nor
playability. The rest of the instrument is splendid with the abalone trimmed
top with it's ornate inlaid
tortoise shell pickguard and
abalone trimmed soundhole. The
fingerboard is also trimmed in abalone. Tasteful inlay on the
headstock and original
tuning pegs with the engraved
Looks like a medalian of some sort was once placed above the back plate, perhaps
a dealers emblem. There are some hairline
surface cracks on the bottom of the ivory trimmed skirt but that's all they are. Exact replica bridge and original
engraved tailpiece. The label
is also in fine shape. It plays easily with comfortable action and intonates fine. An
exceptional instrument. Unfortunately, no case but we can ship very securely.
HO -0005 ca. 1900 Howe Orme Style 4
Mandolin EXC - These little old things put out
a lot of sound for their size. Lower Bout = 7 1/2". Nut Width = 1 1/8".
Scale Length - 13 1/8". The Style 4 sports the
spruce top with the "cylinder" hump being
partially responsible for it's fine tone. It also has gorgeous Brazilian rosewood back and
sides and fancy engraved inlays on the ebony fingerboard as well as the headstock. Lovely soundhole rosette and five
ply (white/red/black/white/black) body binding. Original tuning pegs. The label is in good shape and
the serial number is
#0785. There are two repairs, both typical. One at the
and one at the back of the
peghead. Both are solid and professionally done. It has it's original violin
case in fairly decent
SM - 0009 Oscar Schmidt
"Sovereign" Mandolin EXC From the mid to late
twenties, this rare little beauty plays just great and has a really nice
full mellow sound. Pearloid fingerboard and headstock and beautifully
grained book matched mahogany (or maybe it's koa) back and sides. The wide
grain spruce top is
crack free as is the rest of the mando and has an inlaid pearloid
pickguard, fancy diamond trim around its border and soundhole, an
intricate carved bridge
and an engraved
tuning pegs with one replaced shaft. Old end opening case has about had it.
NM - 0005 1930 National
Triolian Mandolin VG+ This is a rare little beast and
it is one of the loudest mandolins I've ever heard. Plays good too. 15" scale length so
it sounds real bluesey tuned down to F or E. (E sounds great but F is easier for
transposing 'on the fly' in jams) It's got
the rare early 8 grid coverplate with the
usual worn pick area, some chipping on the sides, just a few nicks on the back. Original tuning pegs and the
National Triolian Shield on the peghead. No case.
KM - 0006 1915 C. Knutsen
Harp Mandolin EXC- Here is a beautiful museum piece
that is also a cool playable instrument. The label states "C. Knutsen
Sole Patentee". The beautifully aged spruce top is crack free.
There are a couple of minor old repaired cracks in the attractive mahogany back and a couple
more old repairs in the bass side. The elegant fingerboard inlay and
cosmic peghead inlay really set
it off. Not to mention that gorgeous butterfly with it's wispy antennae inlaid
into the pickguard and
one (or is that two?) of the sexiest bridges ever. It has its original
tuning pegs and twin tailpieces.
Many Knutson instruments have a funky heel setup but this
heel is solid and nicely done. The action
is good and it plays in tune so the
adjusting bracket can be left alone. The
label thankfully is still intact.
I've seen quite a few harp mandolins but not
many with actual harp bass strings on them. Experimenting with different tunings
is great fun. It is all original and ready to rock. No case.
Price: $8750.00 SOLD
HH - 0007 ca. 1900 Hammond
Harp Mandolin EXC A custom order for an
imaginative player? A stroke of genius by the builder himself? herself?
One can't help but wonder. But it combines extreme innovation with an
acutely unique sense of design. From the H. Hammond Company of
Sioux City, Iowa. Red stained spruce top has a couple of repaired
cracks as does the Brazilian rosewood back. The sides are crack free.
The headstocks have
beautiful burl veneers, perhaps walnut. The bass harp strings are
arranged in three double courses and have their own 5 fret fingerboard!
Original tuning pegs work fine and
the back plates on the set of 8 match
the back plates on the set of 6 whereas the
top curves of the pegheads are
exquisitely complimentary. Tasty pearl inlays on the main
fingerboard and by the way
the frets are good and the action is low and it plays quite nicely.
Beautiful heel arrangement.
Dual tailpieces. One of
them patented 1891 .
Interesting wood octagonal
soundhole rosette and inlaid maybe tortoise pickguard. And the label is mostly intact and
proudly states "Work Guaranteed". This is also put on the heel block
and there are some Made in Sioux City labels inside as well. No case.
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