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Graham McDonald
Mar-30-2016, 4:34pm
These two are half of the four mandolins being built for the generous folks who made the major contributions to my Kickstarter campaign last year to get The Mandolin published. The first is a Lyon & Healy inspired two point with a spruce soundboard and Tasmanian streaky myrtle body and neck. Ivoroid binding and an ebony fingerboard

The other is a canted top mandolin based on a Washburn Model G from the 1920s with the head of a Lyon & Healy Style B. Sitka Soundboard and body from another Australian timber Tulip Satinwood. Tortoise celluloid binding and an ebony fingerboard with ivoroid position markers echoing the top of the head.

Several days energetic sanding ahead and then the polishing as well as working on the other two.

cheers

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Charles E.
Mar-30-2016, 7:07pm
Graham, they look beautiful! I am really digging the L&H style B headstock. I think that stair step would be fun to make.

Steve Sorensen
Mar-30-2016, 7:34pm
Graham,
Nice to see you getting your nose out of the books and into the sawdust! Love 'em!
Steve

Tavy
Mar-31-2016, 3:25am
Those look sweet!

Skip Kelley
Mar-31-2016, 5:41am
Graham, nice work!

billhay4
Mar-31-2016, 10:49am
Nice, Graham. Let's hear them when they're strung up.
Bill

amowry
Mar-31-2016, 11:23am
Beautiful work Graham! I'm loving the book!

Graham McDonald
Mar-31-2016, 4:45pm
Having effectively retired from my sound archivist day job a month ago, it has been great to get back into the workshop on a more continuous basis. There are several of the classic 1920s mandolins like the Washburn G I want to build just because the designs are so out there. A new Regal smurfhead perhaps and the early Stromberg-Voisenet asymmetric model are in the pipeline after I get the other two mandolins made. There might well be another book or two.

Cheers

harper
Apr-08-2016, 9:58pm
Graham just sent me photos of the flat top mandolin be is building for me. It has a Monzino body shape, slotted head, and 13 inch scale. The top is Englemann spruce and the back and sides are tulip satinwood. It has wood binding with black purfling. Very elegant, yes?

Thank you, Graham. I look forward to receiving it this summer.

Regards,
Evelyn

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darylcrisp
Apr-13-2016, 3:40am
Graham just sent me photos of the flat top mandolin be is building for me. It has a Monzino body shape, slotted head, and 13 inch scale. The top is Englemann spruce and the back and sides are tulip satinwood. It has wood binding with black purfling. Very elegant, yes?

Thank you, Graham. I look forward to receiving it this summer.

Regards,
Evelyn

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that is amazing! love the tulip satinwood.

harper
May-08-2016, 10:33pm
Graham will be bringing my mandolin to the States this month. :mandosmiley: Here are 2 pics of the completed instrument. I am eagerly awaiting it.

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harper
May-21-2016, 10:55pm
I played it today for 3 hours with friends (the flat top mandolin that Graham built for me with a Monzino body shape). It is very easy to play, projects very well, and feels great in my hands. Thanks so much, Graham.

Jim Garber
May-23-2016, 1:39pm
Nice work, Graham!!

Graham McDonald
May-25-2016, 4:30pm
Delighted that it works for you. It was a fun project. After a week and a half in the US, heading home today, with a chunk of 40 year old mahogany filling half my suitcase. That will be an interesting discussion at quarantine at Sydney Airport.

peter.coombe
May-25-2016, 6:42pm
Well I don't think Australian quarantine is likely to be any problem so long as there is no bark or worm holes. The issue you might have is with Customs and CITES if you don't have CITES paperwork and the customs guys are on the ball. From what I have been told, they are not always on the ball at airports. They are more concerned about shipping container loads than suitcase loads of wood. Good luck.

Graham McDonald
May-25-2016, 7:03pm
I'm not too worried. No bark and no bugs. Just a 600x300x75 block of mahogany. I did bring back a suitcase sized billet of spruce a few years back. They were a bit concerned about that until I started telling them how it was split from the log and the perfect quartering and the grains per inch. " On yer way, son". The TSA people were more worried that I had all my clothes in a guitar case, because the spruce took up all the room in the suitcase. Both had been opened with the little TSA Inspection piece of paper inside.

Graham McDonald
May-26-2016, 10:34pm
Mahogany successfully (and legally) imported. The inspector wanted to know what I was going to do with it. "make mandolins out of it" I replied, and I was sent on my way.

Graham McDonald
Jun-02-2016, 6:07pm
The two carved mandolins ready for delivery. One with spruce soundboard and streaky Tasmanian myrtle (the pinkish coloured one) and the other spruce and blackheart sassafras.

Cheers

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Jim Garber
Jun-02-2016, 10:07pm
Those are beautiful. Graham. Can you describe the difference in tone of the two back-woods? That sassafras is very sassy! You know, of course, that I am a big fan of the L&H look. Wonderful!

Actually the two soundboards looks different. They are both the same kind of spruce?

Tavy
Jun-03-2016, 11:59am
Love those back woods, they look very sweet indeed. Like the look of the finish too... out of curiosity... what are you using?

Graham McDonald
Jun-03-2016, 5:55pm
The sassafras bodied one is definitely Sitka, the myrtle body may be Sitka, though there is a chance it might be Engelmann. Both soundboards were bonging around the same note when carved and braced (X braces) before being glued to the sides at about where I hope to have them bonging and they sound quite similar. The Myrtle is a little louder and perhaps a bit more 'solid' in the sound. In terms of weight myrtle is close to hard rock maple or even a rosewood, sassafras closer to mahogany and the tonal differences are likely to be as much a product of that as much as any other variable. The finish is a few coats of Hard Shellac with Scandinavian Oil over the top.