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Thread: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

  1. #1
    Registered User Roger Wheeler's Avatar
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    Default Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    I'm headed to the Fur Peace Ranch tomorrow so today I visited Don MacRostie's Athens, OH Red Diamond Mandolin shop. This is the mando that Chris Hillman currently plays and says of it: "The absolute best Mandolin Luthier in the world.........I'll put my "Crusher" up against anybody's instrument...Don is a great guy too!". I haven't played one but Hillman can make his wail. I will agree with Chris about Don being a great guy. He was gracious enough to spend about an hour with me talking about how he hand-makes his Red Diamonds and other general topics (including SEC football. He grew up in Florida and is a Gators fan). The mandos hanging are repairs. The one without a top is one of Don's first ones (serial #45). He will be putting a new top on it.
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    "and we'll have a few doubles to ease our troubles and see who's the first one to cry"

  2. #2
    Registered User Yellowmandolin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    Roger, were you able to play any?
    Play, play, play!

    Jacob Hawkins

  3. #3
    Ben Beran Dfyngravity's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    Great pictures! I have never met Don but he is a really nice guy. I had a custom built Red Diamond and it definitely was an awesome mandolin. I had it built about 6 years ago, but sold it a few years back to fund another mandolin. At that time Don had not started his vintage series much less his Loar replicas either. But from what I hear that a monsters.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    I wish I had one, he a great luthier. Great pictures.

    Thanks

  5. #5
    Registered User fredfrank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    Great to see some of the shop where my mandolins came from. One of the ones hanging on the left side in the first picture is mine. I had Don send me a Crusher voiced A-model to play while he worked on my vintage F. I ended up buying it and have not regretted that decision one bit. It's definitely a 'crusher'.

    I'll echo the sentiment that Don is a great guy to work with, and all-around nice guy.

  6. #6
    Registered User David M.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    Great photos, Roger. I bet it was fun to meet Don and see his place. Wish I had a Crusher...
    David Mehaffey
    -------------------------------
    ...I wonder how the old folks are at home...

  7. #7
    Registered User Rex Hart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    I had the chance to meet Don at IBMA this year.Don truly is a nice guy and his mando's are awesome well crafted instruments. He is truly leading the field in exact Loar replica's. The crusher he had was a monster !
    08' Gibson Fern
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    www.potterswheelgospel.com

  8. #8
    Registered User Rick Crenshaw's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    The photos of the shop look just like the shop in his videos... wonder why? I met Mr. McRostie at IBMA last year. I had just finished changing strings on my Daley in a lobby Saturday morning (roommates still sleeping) and was picking and waiting for a JD Crowe video to start. Don walked by and I recognized him and thanked him for his videos and the Stew-Mac kits which helped me build my camper/beater (the Pos'm). He stopped and took great interest in my Daley mandolin and played it for a little while. A friend has an early A model Red Diamond and it was the best mandolin I'd ever heard up close for many years. It's still a killer mandolin but I've been around some top notch mandolins lately. That Red Diamond A model is every bit as good a mandolin as any of the best mandolins I've ever played.
    Rick in Memphis

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    I have the "Crusher" prototype F5, and it has never let me down or made me wish I had brought something else instead.
    A wrong note played timidly is a wrong note. A wrong note played with authority is an interpretation.

  10. #10
    Registered User Roger Wheeler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    I was not able to play any. He didn't have one that was finished. He was intrigued by by left handed Collings MT.
    "and we'll have a few doubles to ease our troubles and see who's the first one to cry"

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    I have one of the few Crusher "22" F-5's and it is a monster that just keeps getting better. Very special mandolin in every way. Best I've ever played and I expect it to get better over time.
    2001 Gibson Master Model F5 #V70311
    1996 Heiden F-5 #F-023
    2008 Red Diamond Vintage 22 Model F-5, serial #190
    2009 Stanley V-5 #44

  12. #12
    Ben Beran Dfyngravity's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by woodysny View Post
    I have one of the few Crusher "22" F-5's and it is a monster that just keeps getting better. Very special mandolin in every way. Best I've ever played and I expect it to get better over time.
    Looking at your signature line woodysny you have quite the collection of mandolins. That 2008 Red Diamond is kind of like the cherry on top of a very good ice cream sunday.

  13. #13
    Registered User Tracy Tucker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Don MacRostie's Red Diamond Mando Shop

    I am fortunate enough to be borrowing Brian Aldridge's Red Diamond (while my mandolin is with Will Kimble getting a little work done) - and I think he's going to have to fight me to get it back!

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