View Full Version : The Latest BRW

May-10-2005, 12:44pm
Howdy Folks,
After lots of lobbying (and cajoling), I convinced my loving wife to let me order a BRW of my very own. Here's the first photo I received from Ben. MAS can be a terrible thing but it can also be a very good thing. I will post more as I get them. Enjoy! - JD

May-10-2005, 12:47pm
Excellent, just when things get dull someone starts another BRW thread!
Very nice headstock inlay. Reminds me of a Trillium octave mandolin. Keep the photos coming.

May-10-2005, 12:57pm
Here's the Trillium logo from Robert Abraham's website.

May-10-2005, 1:00pm
Very cool. It was the first time Ben had ever tried something like that and I think he did a great job. He is quite a craftsman (and very good to work with, too).

May-10-2005, 1:23pm
Does Ben cut/engrave his own inlay?

I was recently at a local instrument show and passed a table of pre-cut inlays. I never would have thought there was money to be made in pre-cut inlay.

That one looks nice!

May-10-2005, 1:35pm
Looks like Ben's changed the font somewhat? And the underline is new. Very classy!

Scotti Adams
May-10-2005, 1:53pm
looks very sweet...congrats..!! Im pretty sure Ben cuts and engraves his inlays..

May-10-2005, 2:42pm
That is sweet!

May-10-2005, 2:48pm
Very cool!!! Refreshing and original. I like that.

Baron Collins-Hill
May-10-2005, 3:21pm
MORE PICTURES! http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wow.gif http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif

May-10-2005, 3:25pm
Very Very nice JD. Like to see more.

Jim Roberts
May-10-2005, 5:21pm
Beautiful work by Ben. #I played one of his mandolins at Mandolin Symposium last year that was less than a month or so old and it was really sweet. #Congratulations and keep the pictures coming!

The two-point mandolin he builds gives me a severe case of MAS drool!

May-11-2005, 1:19pm
OK, it's been at least 24-hours since that first photo. We've asked you nicely for more photos. If something isn't posted by the end of the day I'm going right to Ben about this.

May-11-2005, 3:10pm
Well, here's the one I received this morning. I think Ben is sending my MAS into overdrive by sending these incremental shots. Excuse me while I wipe the drool off my keyboard. http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

May-11-2005, 4:03pm
Ah, very nice JD! The flamey back of the neck is a nice touch. And methinks Ben's scroll would pass anyone's scrutiny.
Yummy indeed!

May-11-2005, 8:58pm
Looks really nice, and I must report that #30 is opening up quite a bit. I can really tell a difference ,she is now over a year old and is getting serious play time under her belt (probably around 20 or more shows)...sounds better every day!

Brian Ray
May-11-2005, 9:04pm
Love it! Welcome to the fold... I've been wondering where the new owners were. Haven't seen a BRW post in some time.

Baron Collins-Hill
May-11-2005, 9:09pm
hows yours doing dass?

Kevin K
May-12-2005, 8:41am
Dasspunk, How's your BRW doing? Please post a updated picture as well.

Brian Ray
May-12-2005, 10:24am
It's been just over 5 months and Orange is beginning to open nicely. You can take a listed to her here (http://www.dasspunk.com/music/me/NapaValleyRag.mp3) if you like. I must make time to take some proper photos of her... here's a quickie but it pales in comparison to the real deal...

Tom C
May-12-2005, 2:42pm
If remember that is the same intense orange as the case.

Brian Ray
May-12-2005, 8:25pm
Yes sir, it is...

But I want to see more of JDs! How 'bout it JD, let's see that top...

May-12-2005, 9:00pm
Nice one JD, my second BRW is in this batch too. I'll post a pic whenever I get one. Been about 14 months waiting for this one.

May-12-2005, 11:05pm
#45 here. Still as proud as day 1. Nice, nice, nice JD!

May-13-2005, 6:15am
dasspunk, i love that orange, and the 'thumb' markers are a really classy touch....looks like the old orange gretch chets.

btw, enjoy your web site.

May-13-2005, 9:36am
Beautiful work by Ben. #I played one of his mandolins at Mandolin Symposium last year that was less than a month or so old and it was really sweet. #Congratulations and keep the pictures coming!

The two-point mandolin he builds gives me a severe case of MAS drool!
I believe that was mine you were playing at the symposium. #41 was finished and delivered on July 28, 2004....which made her only a few days old when you played her. We have a baby coming in a few weeks so she hasnt gotten much play lately, but when I do play her she sounds amazing!

May-13-2005, 8:34pm
Wow Marie congratulations on the baby, we have one due on May 31st! Which is getting really close... when is yours due?

May-14-2005, 8:12pm
Hi Ethan...Congrats on your upcoming arrival! Our son is due in July, so about 8 more weeks or so.

Jun-03-2005, 12:39pm
Howdy Folks,
I apologize for the long delay between shots but here are the latest and greatest. It just arrived yesterday and is it ever SWE-E-E-ET!!! It is truly pristine and I've not been able to put it down. My compliments to Ben and his craftsmanship. Enjoy! - JD

Jun-03-2005, 12:41pm
Here's another...

Jun-03-2005, 12:43pm
Check out those curves!

Jun-03-2005, 12:45pm
OK, one more...

Jun-03-2005, 12:47pm
And for those of us keeping score at home, this one is Number 48. I am proud to be on the list. Great work Ben!

Jun-03-2005, 1:04pm
Beautiful. The inlay on the peghead is my new favorite. Congrats!

Jonathan James
Jun-03-2005, 1:16pm
Really gorgeous. Ben's finish work is outstanding!

Jun-03-2005, 1:47pm
Sweet JD, tell us a little about the sound!

Jun-04-2005, 12:05am
That is great and the scroll rocks it!!! Nice to see Ben making great mandos.

Jun-04-2005, 8:10am
Very Nice, I like the new logo with the shrinking letter size, it gives it some dimension...cool.

Jun-09-2005, 5:37am
That is a beautiful job. The HS inlay is very classy. Congratulations!

Jun-19-2005, 7:43am

What Kind of Tailpiece is that??

I have been talking to Ben the last few days, and it looks like I am going to be part of the fold pretty soon....OF course I didnt ask permission I figured that she could forgive me later http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Scotti Adams
Jun-19-2005, 8:03am
..the last I talked with Ben I believe he said he was going to use some Bill James TP's...

Jun-19-2005, 7:43pm
Thats what I was hoping for.

That is what I asked him to use on mine...

Jun-20-2005, 7:51am
I aint going to touch that one...We all have our differences and I think that both have made theirs right.
To be honest that is one of the reasons I chose BRW. If a fella was that interested in making something right that wasnt his fault, how hard is he going to work to fix a problem that was his fault.

All I can say is that I am very excited about working with Ben. Heres a little story....I was dead set on having a Flowerpot inlay and of course with a certain companys ownership of that inlay, he could not do it. But what he did was within 4 hours of my email, responded with several designs that are very similar to it without stepping on Gibsons toes.As we shot emails back and forth he was actually excited about my ideas...wow "I am not just another picker in line and he will get it out to me when he can"

I recently waited on a particular builder for a mandolin for 2 years who kept promising and promising...Needless to say somewhere between the Builder and Dealer my deal went bad so there was alot of heartache there.My total wait on that was almost 3 years from when I started saving $$ to when I found out it wasnt going to happen.

Long story short.... that good service and old fashioned business sense goes along way....

Bill James
Jun-20-2005, 9:03am
FYI, that is the James tailpiece. It's a custom version with Ben's own cover design that we're building for him.

From what I know of Ben through working with him, I'd say you're in good hands, and I sure like the look of that mandolin!

Nice work Ben.

Jun-20-2005, 9:12am
I've never got to meet Ben in person, but he only lives about 2.5 hours from me. I do plan on visiting him sometime soon. I to was very impressed with the way he handled that little incident a few months back. Only a person that is very dedicated to his work and name would've done that. I believe he's only about 25 years old and already turning out work like this is simply amazing. I remember seeing his instruments on eBay when he first started out and I can tell you what he's building today with his past experience should be killer mandolins.

I encourage anyone looking for a new, custom built mandolin to include Ben and BRW mandolins in their selection process. My next mandolin will most definately be a BRW.

Jim Watts

Jun-20-2005, 5:02pm
You are absolutely correct JimW, I don't think you will find a more sincere person than Ben. #He has given me a completion date of Oct 1 for the #6 replacement mando. #I went ahead and sent him money to cover all the materials because I felt it was the right thing to do, I felt bad about him taking another hit so it was the least I could do. #I do want to mention that Ben did not ask for anything, it was totally my option and I feel a whole lot better for doing so. #You will never go wrong with Ben as your builder.

Jun-21-2005, 12:16am
I will agree with the previous posters- Ben is great builder and person in general. Mine is almost a year old and it was wonderful to work with Ben. He knew I needed it in time for the symposium last year and even though he was busy he was able to get it to me with a few days to spare. Not only did he do an amazing job, but he also hand delivered it to my door (special circumstances)! I also had issues with inlay and really wanted the flowerpot. I ended up going with his fern (which I love), but he did send me lots of his own inlay ideas before I finally chose. I was nervous about going with a builder because it is only my 2nd mando (my 1st was a Hondo!), but Ben was great and in the end I was very happy about my decision.

Jun-21-2005, 1:15am
Isn't it amazing how posts I read early this morning aren't there when I read the thread later in the day?


Jun-21-2005, 1:23am
Actually, I took them out myself Jim so there is no big conspiracy theory going on. I just thought it would be better to leave those things in the past even though I hated them and not bring it all back up. Just practicing some self-restraint!

Jun-21-2005, 1:33am
and I definitely don't think Ben should get the short end of the stick!

Jun-21-2005, 1:40am
Thank you MandoJeremy for being your own editor. #I can hear Ted and Scott breathing a sigh a relief all the way here in California.

Jun-21-2005, 1:47am
I don't think they were worried about it at all because they hopefully knew what I posted was the truth and they could have deleted it but didn't....I just thought I shouldn't be as blunt as I am sometimes and it is that simple. #They run a great board and that don't just delete things away like others say on other sites. #Believe me, I am probably one of the most opinionated and blunt people on this board and I have posted some pretty harsh things and I have only ever been contacted by Scott twice in five, or so, years. #The guy has a LOT of patience and I appreciate the patience he has shown me, even though I still like to call it like it is.

Jun-21-2005, 6:21am
My Grandpappy used to say " Always say less than you think"...after almost 40 years of living I understand that one.

Now lets get back to arguing about

1. Why Nickle Creek isnt bluegrass
2. How bad Gibson Corporate is
3. and How My BRW will sound better than yours http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif

Jun-21-2005, 9:49pm
Hey I just wanted to say thanks for posting the picture of the new BRW, it looks fantastic! I bet the tone and playability are excellent too. I have a J-16 on the way, Ben said that he will have it to me on Thursday and when it gets here, and my fingers are numb from playing it, I will post some pictures of it on a new thread.

Jun-23-2005, 12:20pm
Howdy Folks,

I just wanted to let everyone know that Ol' No. 48 has already played live at a Bluegrass Festival and received 2 ovations. Ben was right when he described how the sound would "open up" the more it gets played and I am really witnessing that. You should hear it when someone who really knows what they're doing gets a hold of him! Sweet!

We have more shows coming up in the next couple of weeks and I look forward to showing him off some more. Nice work, Ben! Thanks. - JD

Jul-05-2005, 5:16am
Hey folks, posted some pics of BRW #50 on the "My new F is here......." thread. Check it out!

Jul-05-2005, 6:35am
Very nice, elegant look.