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F-4 Octave Mandolin
(Thanks to Stan from Maine)
There will be more of these
some time later this summer.
These are tuned the same as a regular size Mandolin…but an octave deeper.
The body size is much larger giving it a nice, deep “Guitar Like” sound.
The scale length from nut to fret is 20 inches.
I've been using D'Addario Octave Mandolin strings, but you might want to consider using Guitar
strings to compensate for the shorter scale.
There are carved scrolls in the top and back of the peg-head.
In-lays are made of local clam shell from the Watonwan River.
The scrolls on the top and back of the body are more exaggerated than
Mandolins. Just something I've been experimenting with to enhance the
The sides are deeper than my older Octaves: These are 2 - 1-8 inches wide to get a deeper sound.
And 2 side-port sound holes have been added
for extra tone.
The top is made of Redwood.
The top sound-hole is also bigger than ones I've made in the past.
The tuners are inexpensive but good quality Guitar tuners from China.
The back, neck and sides are made of highly figured Maple all stained a wine-colored burgundy 'Merlot'.
The neck is made of a combination of stained Maple with thin
strips of Ebony. There is No adjustable truss rod. However...there are two 1/8 by
1/2 inch steel rods imbedded in the neck.
The tail-piece is made of bronze
by Allen Guitars
All reports coming in agree: These heavy bronze tail pieces really
add to the tone and balance and sustain of an instrument.
If you look close enough, there
is a slight discoloration around the edge of the top. This happened
during the very first layers of varnish.
(You can really only see it in certain light)
Price has already been discounted due to this barely detectable cosmetic flaw.
The Ebony bridge is adjustable for varying string heights.
The inside bracing on the top is my own
experimental version called an X-Spyder. It may be slightly over-doing
it a bit, but so far I haven't had any complaints on the final sound
quality. And it's a good bet the top won't be collapsing any time
The case itself is constructed of carved cedar 2x4's and plywood.
The inside is padded with foam and lined with felt. Brass hinges and latches
make a secure lock and the little rubber legs will prevent any scratching of floors or furniture.
The neck on this one is a little
wider than most:
String width is 1- 3/8"
Here is the measurement of the string spacing on the bridge.
On the inside of the lower right rib, there is a wooden block that can be used to attach an internal pickup.
On the outside, there is a tiny black dot so you can pin-point the exact location to drill the hole for the pick-up.
Prices will range from
$2900 to $3400.