View Full Version : Blue IV Kit Finished

Nov-29-2005, 2:59am
This is my second mandolin, which I made for my girl friend's son, Eric, who is 13 and wants to learn to play the mandolin. He's also really into Warhammer 40k, a sci-fi miniature wargame. So to keep his interest, I made this mandolin with a sci-fi feeling to it. Blue moonburst, Ultra (short for Ultra Marines) logo and banner for inlay, black binding around top and back, chrome Grover tuners (I couldn't bring myself to put the stock ones on this mandolin), bone nut instead of plastic one, and a skull inlay on the button. The finish is an oil varnish.

Turned out nice and its loud! Has a good tone to it and I got the action down quite a bit. Very happy with it and having a hard time parting with it! I'm holding on to it right now - told him I had to let the varnish cure some more before I could rub it out. I'm working on 2 more from scratch (which are going to be blondes I think...)

Nov-29-2005, 3:01am

Nov-29-2005, 3:02am

Nov-29-2005, 3:04am
Secret skull on the button. My gf didn't want me to put this on the peghead... ;)

Nov-29-2005, 3:05am
Back of peghead and neck.

Nov-29-2005, 3:07am
Side view...

Skip Kelley
Nov-29-2005, 7:34am
Looks cool! Love that blue stain! I've been wanting to do that but haven't found the nerve!

Mark Franzke
Nov-29-2005, 8:19am
Nice job. Very creative. Who says a kit has to look like a kit?

Nov-29-2005, 10:11am
Very Cool! Like the blue, like the skull. Dare to be different, I always say!


Nov-29-2005, 10:42am
Wicked! Glen Danzig does Mando!


Nov-29-2005, 11:06am
I hope he's as proud of this as he should be! Lucky kid.

Lane Pryce
Nov-29-2005, 11:19am
Thats gonna be one proud kid. Just think a custom mandolin to learn to play on----he go along way with this lil beaut. Very nice job. Lp

Nov-29-2005, 1:09pm
Hey Skip. You do decide to do one and want to get rid of it, remember that newbie that ya met in Winston. http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

I'll gladly "hide" it if you don't like it. But of course, haven't seen anything "bad" that you've done.

NICE mando kit. And like others have said. Who says a kit is supposed to look like a kit?

Nov-29-2005, 1:40pm
A very nice job!!! Thanks for stretching the limits a bit and offering your work. It is tough to put something on the page, especially with the high level of craftsmanship of some of the builders. Your girl friends son is one lucky dog.

Nov-29-2005, 2:05pm
Thanks for all of your kind words! I didn't want to have just ANOTHER IV kit - wanted to have fun with it, which I did. I put a label on the inside that says IV Kit as the model, though. For $90 the IV Kit is pretty good, but I had to make certain modifications - the tuners that came with the kit just didn't fit the feel I was going for. I found the chrome tuners and Ebay, and they are exactly what I was looking for.

I like the blue color - makes it stand out a bit. I hand rubbed the moonburst in, but the back is a bit uneven and I have a small burnthrough. I'm planning on getting an airbrush and sprayer (Christmas is coming...), so the finish job will be a lot cleaner next time (I hope).

Thanks again - mandolin cafe is such a supportive community of builders!


Dec-05-2005, 12:17pm
I got to play this one a couple of times now. It does everything I think a mandolin should do. The low action (without buzzing) is really a treat.

This past weekend, Rick was able to let an expert mandolinist play it and I was able to watch and listen. Wow! He could make that thing really talk. Passed his inspection also.

I look forward to Rick completing a few more. He gets better with each project. He takes his time and puts his heart into each piece.

I'm proud to call him a good friend.

Dec-07-2005, 7:29am

That is one COOL looking mandolin. #I am imagining how great it would look if it were an F style.

For some reason I have always loved these Blue colored mandos. #While browsing different builder websites I came across Mr. Ludewigs website and he has a mando that is just stunning. #Check it out http://www.ludewigmandolins.com/mandolin%20gallery.HTM

I think that Blue F Style he has with those block inlays and the rest of the custom touches is one of the most beautiful mandos I have ever seen. #If I had that mando I would probably carry it around with me everywhere I went because I wouldn't want to stop looking at it and of course I would want to show it off to everyone. #I wish I could afford one just like it. #I would get rid of my Weber Bitterroot in a New York second if I thought I could get one like that.

Didn't Michael Kelley have a Dragonfly a few years back that was blue like the one pictured? #I am not talking about a faded blue, but blue like what is on the one above? #I thought I seen one when I bought my MK.
Great Looking mando by the way. #Congrats.


P.S. #If Santa is reading this thread you can bring me that Blue Baby from Mr. Ludewig....I've been really good, I promise I have.

Dec-07-2005, 11:03am
Al, thanks for the comments! I'm working hard on my #2 Torzyn, which will probably be a blonde.

Nala, yes, Dale's mandolin are indeed stunning! I hope someday my mandolins will look at least half as beautiful as his!

Rigel is also coming out with a blue mandolin, http://www.rigelmandolin.com/This%20week.html, so it looks like blue is becoming a stylish color for mandos.


Dale Ludewig
Dec-07-2005, 7:38pm
I almost hestitate to comment here. Thanks for the compliments and the link. That's all very kind and generous. But this thread was about Rick's mando, not mine. Not that blue being done by Rigel, me, or anyone else, isn't becoming more popular as the mandolin in general seems to be more accepted, and more accepted in different "forms".

My point is, congratulations Rick on a job well done. You should be a happy man, and proud of what you've done. And, IMHO, spurred on to the next mando that comes out of your workshop. Carry on! http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Ted Eschliman
Dec-07-2005, 10:51pm

Dec-08-2005, 5:35pm
You may want to think about selling some of your Blue mandolins made from these IV kits, LOL Your mandolin would look great in anyone's hands!

Dec-08-2005, 6:14pm
Wow that looks very nice. I like the peghead and inlay.