View Full Version : Gibson mandola with F-type headstock

Bert Deivert
Sep-12-2006, 4:08am
I was recently offered a Gibson mandola by a reputable instrument builder from his collection. He sent me some pics of it but they weren't clear, BUT the strange thing was that the mandola had an A type body but an F-type headstock and neck.
I was wondering if this was possibly a modification on a repair job, or if there are some made that way? I just don't know enough about these fantastic instruments.

thanks. He thought the estimated year of the instrument was about 1912.


Sep-12-2006, 4:20am
Well, there is one custom-job instrument like that in the Gruhn book, but if it's original and not a repair, it would be one of only 2. I'd be curious to see images, to see if all the other features line up and are both obviously from 1912/match the serial number, maybe a factory order number with an "a" at the end (usually to denote special orders), the word "Special" on the guarantee label, etc.

Probably non-factory work, but if you can post pictures there are several of us who'd love to comment http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif

Bert Deivert
Sep-12-2006, 10:22am
Hi Dan
I only have a bad fuzzy pic I can upload, and he hasn't gotten back to me about any of the other details. I have met the man selling it and he is an honest guy. I just want to know a little more about mandolas before I commit.


Sep-12-2006, 10:38am
Very very weird. Inlaid pickguards were gone by 1912; I'm not sure if that tailpiece was in use as early as 1912. Nothing Gibson-ish about the bridge. Not sure about the soundhole decoration. Sunburst looks like a bad non-factory job.

Sep-12-2006, 10:44am
Lots is wrong in terms of originality there. Even with the fuzzy picture, that's no Gibson peghead. The scrolls are way off.. the finish is definitely not Gibson work from the teens either. The inlaid guard would put it 1902-1909 or so, serial probably 4500-7500 if that's an original gibson top. I'd guess it was damaged.. refinished & renecked by someone other than a Gibson factory type

What's the serial # and neck-block stamp #?

Bert Deivert
Sep-12-2006, 3:01pm
Hi Mr. Mando and Dan
my seller's digital camera is out of whach right now bue he sent me some info for the time being. The mandola has been resprayed, the "scratchplate" is an inlayed wood veneer, (some early Gibsons had this feature), label is " GIBSON MANDOLIN-GUITAR MFG. CO , KALAMAZOO, MICHIGAN, USA with a lyre logo and Orville inset, some faint pencil marks but indistinct.

Since I suspected too that the peghead is not original, don't think I want to go for it.


Darryl Wolfe
Sep-12-2006, 3:10pm
The neck/body joint at 11 suggests a reneck by someone, but that may be because of "mandola". The The Gibson script looks original though

Sep-12-2006, 4:04pm
Something funky where the peghead meets the nut too. I'd say from the shape of the peghead it's not by Gibson. A total redo top to bottom. Labels don't mean much these days. I think Darryl can get you any blank label you want and you can put any serial number you want on it.

Professor PT
Sep-12-2006, 11:25pm
How much is he asking for it? Hopefully not a lot in that condition.

Bert Deivert
Sep-17-2006, 4:38am
Asking price 1200 UK pounds or so.


Sep-17-2006, 5:13am
I still think that Peghead is at best a reworked F2.. the little scroll is way off, and the gap on the big one is way too wide

Also- there was never an inlaid wood veneer pickguard! The fake tortoiseshell/celluloid ones certainly did exist though!