I think I have finally talked myself into ordering a Mandolblaster from Elderly. They had a 4 string in stock in a store here in England, but I am thinking I would prefer the 5 string. I would be shipping through the US postal service since I work with the US Govt. Is there anything else out there in that price range that is of equal quality? I do not have the skills/tools etc to get a mandobird etc and then fix it up.....nor the patience to have it taken in to get the nut/pickup adjusted etc. The Mandoblaster seems to be that step up from the birds/casters that gives better quality for the buck. However...I am not flashy enough to want one of those "vibrant" color schemes...just need something to sit in my spare bedroom to play with. Also need to sell an old Rigel A+ Deluxe that I never played much....guess I need to get around to putting that on the classified site. If nothing else it should cover getting the Mandoblaster or its equiv.
Check out John Smith and Tom Morici. I think John was looking to trade an electric for an acoustic.