View Full Version : Bowl back fans

Dec-24-2007, 10:24pm
Hi All,

I decided to put all my Bowl Backs on the piano for a group shot(JimG eat your heart out)Most of these were real basket cases, but over the years I have restored them, paying close attention to maintan as much originality as possible.

Merry Christmas

Jim Garber
Dec-24-2007, 10:59pm
(JimG eat your heart out)
Hey Mike:
Which JimG are you referring to? http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif

Nice piano...

How about some ID? The one in the very front looks mighty fine.

Dec-25-2007, 7:04am
Why that would be you Mr Garber.I know your a big bowl back fan so I through that in there for fun. I'll try to get some close ups with the ID's soon.

Dec-26-2007, 3:46pm
Yes details please, enquiring minds want to know.

Until I joined the cafe I did not realize the fun of getting the whole family out for pictures.

Dec-30-2007, 11:16am
Heres a few more pics to keep this thread alive http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Dec-30-2007, 3:22pm
Was all that ingraving on the pickguards ?? I picked up two thinking making one out of them but maybe restoring them both. Where did you find your info ??

Dec-30-2007, 4:28pm

The front mandolin has a metal fingerboard. It was made by Wolfram in Chicago around the turn of the century. Its pretty cool and has wonderful inlays as well. Most of my info came from right here on the cafe, and just common sense approach to repairing. One old time luthier told me if your not sure how to go about a particulr repair, WAIT, and an idea may come to you later. Have fun with your project.

Jim Garber
Dec-30-2007, 10:41pm
All right... you let on about the Wolfram. How about the others?

Dec-31-2007, 11:44am
Lets see...The mandolinetto is a Ditson(made by ?) then theres a Regal, Washburn, Mark Stern(NY) and a really cool no name with wild inlays and maple ribs.

Dec-31-2007, 11:48am
Heres the headstock of the no name

Jim Garber
Dec-31-2007, 3:27pm
Hmmmm... I think Mark Stern was a music publisher back then so likely it was made for that company. I would love to see more pics of that one and the no-name -- those are rather interesting inlays on the headstock.

Dec-31-2007, 5:34pm
Hmmmm - I'm no expert on such things, but judging by the inlay on the headstock, that no-name could be from the luthiers at Mad Magazine.

Dec-31-2007, 5:47pm
Did you have any tops that were in pieces that had to be reglued ??

Jim Garber
Dec-31-2007, 5:55pm
Did you have any tops that were in pieces that had to be reglued ??
Why... do you need some? I have plenty (hint...)

Dec-31-2007, 5:59pm
I might need some pieces , dont know yet . When I take off the tops to make flat again and reglue maybe ?? Just was wondering if yours ended up like the two I have stored in a very dry place ??

Dec-31-2007, 6:39pm

Fortunatley all the tops on these were uncracked, most of the problems were in the neck set and ribs being seperated.
You can always fix a back, but when the tops are cracked it always shows up even after the best repair, not a bad thing, just adds some caracture(sp)

Dec-31-2007, 6:42pm
Hmmmm - I'm no expert on such things, but judging by the inlay on the headstock, that no-name could be from the luthiers at Mad Magazine.

Your right!, what was his name...Newman or something

Your right....what was his name...Newman or something like that

Jan-30-2008, 8:55pm
The Wolfram.......

Jan-30-2008, 9:00pm
heres an experiment


Jan-30-2008, 9:04pm
and another


Jan-30-2008, 9:09pm
A no name


Jan-30-2008, 9:12pm
I can finally post halfway decent pics with the help of a teenager


Jan-30-2008, 11:03pm


Jan-31-2008, 10:30am
Very nice Mike and thanks for sharing them with us. Some way cool stuff there, I really like the look of that metal fretboard.

Martin Jonas
Jan-31-2008, 11:43am
That Wolfram is wild! Any chance that fretboard is made from tungsten (Wolfram being the German for tungsten)? Is the headstock carved wood or cast metal?


Jan-31-2008, 12:11pm
I always learn the most interesting things here. #This from the wikipedia entry on tungsten:

'Tungsten (Swedish tung sten meaning "heavy stone"), even though the current name for the element in Swedish is wolfram (sometimes spelled in Swedish as volfram), from the denomination volf rahm by Wallerius in 1747, translated from the description by Agricola in 1546 as Lupi spuma, meaning "wolf's froth" after the way tin is eaten up like a wolf after sheep in the process of its extraction.[5]

It was first hypothesized to exist by Peter Woulfe in 1779 who examined wolframite and concluded that it must contain a new substance. In 1781 Carl Wilhelm Scheele ascertained that a new acid could be made from tungstenite. Scheele and Torbern Bergman suggested that it could be possible to obtain a new metal by reducing tungstic acid. In 1783 Josť and Fausto Elhuyar found an acid in wolframite that was identical to tungstic acid. In Spain later that year the brothers succeeded in isolating tungsten through reduction of this acid with charcoal. They are credited with the discovery of the element.[6][7]

In World War II, tungsten played an enormous role in background political dealings. Portugal, as the main European source of the element, was put under pressure from both sides, because of its sources of wolframite ore. The resistance to high temperatures, as well as the extreme strength of its alloys, made the metal into a very important raw material for the weaponry industry.'

Amazing, Mike. More photos please.....


Jan-31-2008, 12:15pm
beautiful restorations - wish i had even half your patience

Woody Turner
Jan-31-2008, 12:21pm

Have you read Uncle Tungsten by neurologist (and chemist prodigy) Oliver Sacks? More good stuff on a curious substance. As you probably know, Sacks has a new book out--Musicophilia.

Jan-31-2008, 12:41pm
That explains why the chemical symbol for Tungsten is W... one of my favorite trivia bits from college chemistry.


Jan-31-2008, 1:07pm
That Wolfram is wild! #Any chance that fretboard is made from tungsten (Wolfram being the German for tungsten)? #Is the headstock carved wood or cast metal?


The headstock is carved ebony and the fingerboard looks like tin or some type of thin metal

more pics to follow