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Thread: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

  1. #1
    Registered User belbein's Avatar
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    Default Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    OK, so I got my Saga AM-10 kit in the mail this evening, and like a lot of other people, there were no instructions. I know I can buld without it using this source and that, but this is going to be my first mandolin and on the first one, I always, always follow instructions. (Not true: I always INTEND to follow instructions, but then screw up.) So I'd like to find someone who has the instructions. I don't care if they're stained, torn, drooled on, or whatever ... I'd just like to have them as a security blanket.

    So if you have them, please contact me and let's see if we can come to some sort of agreement. You can respond here, or send me an e-mail at BMELBEIN@GMAIL.COM.

    (Please, please, don't tell me that I really don't need them. I take that as a given. Anyway, it's like telling a neurotic that he shouldn't be neurotic!)

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    Moderator JEStanek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Contact Saga. They may have it as a PDF you can download and print out. Alternatively, that kit looks a lot like the International Violin one I got (with no instructions) but I bought the Siminoff book to go with it which was more comprehensive.

    Jamie
    There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and, after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second. Logan Pearsall Smith, 1865 - 1946

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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    I Would send you mine if I could find them.. But the Siminoff book is a "must have" if you are going to fine tune your instrument for optimum sound and to understand how the whole thing works. It is the same kit as the IV kit. THe instructions are minimal but you need them if you have nothing else. If you have any doubts or questions about the procedure please ask. There are a few pitfalls which can be problematic in the build.
    Bart McNeil

  4. #4
    Andrew C. Jerman
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    StewMac has a set of instructions in the free section of their website. I think they'll meet your needs. I understand what you're asking because you can get excited about the process and say, "Well, I'll just go ahead and do X while I'm waiting for Y to dry and the next thing you know you're trying to figure out how to carve tone bars with the back on.

  5. #5
    Are we there yet..... bigskygirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Call Saga - they sent me some pretty quick. They are pretty basic but it was my first build too so I did use them for reference. Also, check out my thread of my build and search the web for Al Ingham's blog - he posted a pretty good narrative and pictures of his AM-10 build.

    Have fun, it was not very difficult and I had minimal tools. The only thing you may need a saw for is trimming the back and shaping the headstock. I went to my local woodworking shop for those. I've been playing it a bit and it sounds pretty good.

    Post some pics when you can.

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    Registered User belbein's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Thanks, folks. I've tried to contact Saga ... as you know, no telephone numbers. How do businesses get away with this? I know WHY, I just don't understand how they think it's ok to maintain radio silence! (I was multitasking and Saga just sent me the link to their instructions. Great suggestion, thanks.)

    But anyway: I've ordered the Simonoff book, hope it have it in my hands soon. I've looked at your building post, Bigskygirl, and was very impressed. And I've probably seen every single AM-10 building site on the web. I was at a music festival last weekend and was playing next to a guy with an AM-10 and was really, really impressed. They sure dress up nicely!

    I just want those darn instructions. I guess the reason I'm so compulsive about this is that the last thing I built was a 16 foot sharpie-hulled boat. I drew the plans myself ("drew" and "plans" being somewhat misleading, since it was more like "scribbling" a "sketch"). The boat turned out nicely, but also turned out to be 17 1/2 feet. Where the extra 1 1/2 feet came from, I have no idea. I suspect that kind of mistake on a musical instrument would be somewhat problematic.

    Have no fear: if I can figure out how to post pix, I will (to quote Kruschev) bury you.

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    Moderator JEStanek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Make that mistake on your mandolin and you'll have a mandola!

    Jamie
    There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and, after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second. Logan Pearsall Smith, 1865 - 1946

    + Give Blood, Save a Life +

  8. #8
    Are we there yet..... bigskygirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Saga was good about responding to my email - they mailed me instructions right away. The other thing is you could return the kit for a new one or go to a local music store and ask the owner to call the Saga people for you. I will look for my instructions and email them to you - may take a few days as I can't locate them - I didn't throw them out so it's just a matter of finding them.

    I'll try to hurry as I know you are anxious to get going....I was. You will have fun and learn alot. I really didn't expect much so it came out alot nicer than I thought it would.

    Edit - I just saw you got the link from Saga. If you have any ques just ask...have fun!!

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    Registered User Tommando's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    How about posting Saga's link to the instructions so it will be here when others need it?

  10. #10
    Registered User belbein's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Great idea ... wish I'd thought of it. On Monday, when I'm back in the office, I'll do that. I got the Simonoff book in the mail today, so along with the Saga and other stuff I've gathered, I'm ready to make a mess.

  11. #11
    Infrequently Smelt Gregory Tidwell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    May I ask which Siminoff book you have? Just curious because he has a few, I think, and I wasn't site which one to buy.

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    Registered User StevenS's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Consider renting the Don MacRostie video showing construction of a StewMac kit from www.smartflix.com . Lots of great tips!
    Steve
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  13. #13
    Registered User belbein's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Tommando suggested that I furnish the website for StewMac instructions. Here it is: http://www.stewmac.com/shop/Kits/Man...ctions#details.

    They also gave me this link to the CDs they sell. http://www.stewmac.com/shop/Video,_D...101&xst=3&xsr=

    WARNING: If you're a new SAGA builder, they do not respond to customer service inquiries. So if you don't have the instructions, you (and your buds at Mando Cafe) are on your own. Which, to my way of thinking and building, is not necessarily a bad thing. Hell, it's only wood.

  14. #14
    Registered User Hobo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Hello everyone... this my first post to the forum. I purchased the AM-10 kit, and like others, did not get instructions. I've built several ukuleles and several banjos and a couple of dulcimers over the years -- but this my first kit mandolin. I'm not sure why the instructions should be so difficult to get? I searched google and the forum and can't find anything. If anyone has a link to a PDF of the instructions, it would be very helpful. Thanks!

  15. #15
    Are we there yet..... bigskygirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    I found my copy of the AM-10 instructions and will copy them. Will probably take me a day or so tho' - sorry for the delay.

    Also, I called Saga on another matter today and I always get right through to a very helpful guy. Try and maybe he will send you the instructions 800-BUY-SAGA (289-7242).

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  16. #16
    Registered User Hobo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    I guess I'll use my second post to the forum by saying I'm sending my AM-10 kit back to Amazon. Luckily they have a generous return policy. My kit had an awesome neck and the top was tight, straight-grained spruce. It appears both the front and back panels looked to be carved, with very visible tool markings and not pressed. Unfortunately, the back panel had a very dark discoloration right in the center that went clear through to the inside. So, no amount of sanding would have fixed it. It was just a bad piece that should have not passed quality-control. In addition to the nasty dark discoloration, the back panel was cut too narrow and had a nice sized chip that it would barely fit the side panels when glued together. Sorry to say I'll not be building one of these kits anytime soon.

  17. #17
    Are we there yet..... bigskygirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Too bad Hobo, try again with another kit. Mine had a very nice top and back....I added a few "shop worn" features during the build...LOL

    It seems the back being cut short is an issue, mine was as well but I managed to fill it with some sawdust and glue paste before I discovered the Minwax wood filer http://www.minwax.com/wood-products/...le-wood-filler

    Mine had alot of tool markings but on the inside - I suppose one could sand it and "tune" the top but that was out of my scope of knowledge.

    Eastman MD-315
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  18. #18
    Registered User belbein's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    That was exactly my problem. They must have given you the clone of my kit. In fact, I will bet that yours and mine were both either "seconds" or QC rejects that someone got hold of and sold on Amazon (where I also bought mine). I chose to build it anyway, just because I was rarin' to go and stubborn and I figured, OK, it's already ugly, there's not a lot that I can do to f*** it up.

    Well, I'm certainly testing that last hypothesis.

    Anyway, what I did was to put an inlay right over that big discoloration. You can see pix above. That worked well. I wanted to learn to inlay anyway, so it was a good excuse. Now if I can just learn to GLUE . . .

    The International Violin kits have a good reputation; many people on the Cafe love them. Siminoff has kits at the same build level as the Saga, and Siminoff himself has answered my e-mails, so I'm willing to bet he'd be responsive to customer service requests. And Don Kawalek has also been great--I ordered one of his Octave Mando kits for my #2--and he's also been very responsive. His kits are a little different than the others, but good traditional mandos. Don't give up!

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    I have built three Saga kits from International Violin. Normally IV has a few kits for use as parts kits to take care of customer complaint about flaws in wood or poorly cut parts or whatever.... I would say their (IVs) customer service is first class from what i have observed on this site.


    The kits cost roughly 1/4 the cost of the high quality kits from Siminoff and as cheap kits I think they are excellent kits for beginners... That said, you have to work "with" or "around" the flaws in the wood. Mine were very minor flaws and I did not feel I needed to hide them. In any case my experiments were focusing on tone, not appearance, but they turned out great, in my opinion. And by the way... I would definitly buy the Siminoff book and custom fine tune the front and back plates.... It will make an enormous difference, tone wise. On my first I did very little customizing of the plates. On my second I did more and saw that it did make a difference tonewise. On my third the tone was outstanding. In essence you have an instrument with the capabilities of very good tone and with a bit of extra effort you can get it.
    Bart McNeil

  20. #20
    Are we there yet..... bigskygirl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    As promised, Saga AM-10 instructions.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails SAGA Mandolin instructions.pdf  

    Eastman MD-315
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  21. #21
    Registered User Hobo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    Quote Originally Posted by bigskygirl View Post
    As promised, Saga AM-10 instructions.
    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.... very much!!

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    Default Re: Need Saga AM-10 instructions!

    bigskygirl thanks for posting these. I needed them too. I have the Siminoff book but I like having the original instructions too...Thanks Mike

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