View Full Version : Soares' y

Eddie Sheehy
May-07-2008, 7:55pm
Anyone got a Soares y tenor guitar? What are they like? Good value? I'm thinking of an archtop F-hole one.

May-07-2008, 9:50pm
Their products have been discussed a few times here (http://www.mandolincafe.net/cgi-bin/ikonboard.cgi?act=Search&CODE=02&SID=482269f849ba094c). There may not be a specific thread regarding the tenor guitars yet.

Eddie Sheehy
May-11-2008, 12:42am
Well I got it. It'll arrive this week. Wife has already started her grumblings....might not be able to keep it long..... wish it wasn't so big....

Eddie Sheehy
May-13-2008, 6:51pm
It just arrived. It's a beauty. I have to say I was little worried after reading some reviews about them them - bad finish, bad frets, bad nut, bad bridge, bad bigsby etc. Everything looks and feels great. I dropped the tuning to GDAE - the strings are really light - no twanginess on the bass string. It feels so "RIGHT"!

Barbara Shultz
May-16-2008, 10:06am
I play the mandolin, tenor banjo (irish tuning) and octave mandolin & cittern. My O/M & Cittern are both Petersen's, and I LOVE them! However, I do a lot of traveling by car, and have been looking for a travel instrument, that would enable me to keep my fingers calloused and nimble while on the road. I bought a vintage 1960's harmony tenor, and it's got some bridge/intonation issues, and I read about the Soares' y guitars, and decided to try the baby 8 string. I contacted Mike, and he was MOST accomodating to work with. Told him I wanted one set up GG DD AA EE, like an Octave Mandolin, and that I needed it quickly, as I was about to leave again. I got it yesterday, and I must say that I think this instrument will totally fit the bill for what I'm looking for! It's still in the breaking in period, and right now, my only complaint is the strong SMELL! Solvents or finish or glue, but I'm sure if I keep it out of it's bag, that will dissipate! At a cost of $125 + shipping, you can't beat it!

Eddie Sheehy
May-17-2008, 4:33pm
Mike Soares is the coolest guy on the planet to deal with.

Jim Garber
May-17-2008, 10:18pm
Where are you finding these... on eBay? They are located near me or at least in my county. I recalled that they had a web site but can't seem to find it.

The prices for the instruments seem to be higher also... the octave mandolin is $300.

May-18-2008, 3:51am
Mike has several different suppliers, and the quality varies widely. I think (though he says differently) that all of them are made of plywood. That being said, the ones made in China are much better than the (smelly-gig-bag) ones he gets from Portugal. But all are decent values for the money. If you really want one of his instruments, join the Tenor Guitar Registry. He gives discounts to members, as well as heads up when new shipments are due. Otherwise, he sells on eBay.

Eddie Sheehy
May-18-2008, 4:43pm
I've no idea what the woods are - mahogany, plywood? But it looks and plays great.

Bernie Daniel
May-30-2008, 7:02pm
Claughaun: Mike Soares is the coolest guy on the planet to deal with.

Do you think I could get one like yours - full size tenor guitar without the cut-away? -- or would that be more than even the coolest guy on earth could deal with? # http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif

Seriously I like what I read on the web site the comments above are encouraging.

Your axe looks beautiful.

And I support your right to have a tenor guitar! -- I do not think I would allow my wife to say whether I could have one or not! #http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif

Jim Garber
May-30-2008, 8:48pm
I checked on the TG Registry and Mike posted this announcement (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=220239958000) of one on eBay.

Mike says in the comments:

Hi from, Mike. Thank you. YES. This was one of the higher grade ones. Made by Gibson of China before Gibson US. Bought them out. We can no longer get them and they are all sold out. Your buy it now price is very low. Guitar is well worth $1,200.00 Or more. It is 1 of only 12 Made. In fact it was a mistake. They were ordered with a Spruce Veneer top. But came in the Mahogany. While most of them were in Maple. The Mahogany has a warmer mellow tone. Not as sharp as the Maple. Surprised it hasnít sold yet At the buy it now. But it is the Spring time. But would be a great guitar for any pro player. Good luck with it. Just a tip. On shipping. Loosen the strings and put the guitar in the case. Put some packing under the peg head so it can not bounce back. Then push the guitar up from the bottom so the top Solders hit the case. Then pack the lower space at the strap holder so the guitar is snug in the case. We did have some problems with guitars moving around a little in the case.

I also found his web site (http://soaresyguitars.com/).

May-30-2008, 10:00pm
Does Gibson actually import guitars from China under the Gibson name? Just curious.

Jim Garber
May-31-2008, 10:40am
I don't know about that Gibson connection but the one in the eBay auction has a lot more style and grace than the others shown on his site. Just compare the f-holes on this one to the one above (not to mention the typo):


May-31-2008, 2:10pm
Yeah, those are the smelly-bag-throw-away-the-stock-strings-made-in-Portugal ones. "All Mahogany Solid Core" = plywood.

BTW, the Chinese one I have (flattop J45 style) is very high quality and came in a very nice hardshell case, but it was also a lot more expensive. Mike's had to change suppliers now, so I'm not sure what the new ones will look like.

Eddie Sheehy
Jun-03-2008, 7:13pm
The Chinese factory used a Gretsch mold - no cutaway - for some models before Gretsch moved their operation to Korea and took the molds. The Chinese then used Gibson molds for the 12 "specials" until Gibson bought them and stopped their production....or something like that. I got that info from Mike....So, Mandolin1944, it's a Gretsch model you'll be looking for then?