View Full Version : First mandolin you built

Jan-04-2009, 5:56pm
This is for the builders, I would like too see some pictures of the first mandolin you ever built.

Jan-04-2009, 6:03pm
Here's my first one... Oh, wait, my only one... ;) I'm not sure I count as a builder, yet, but I'd certainly like to build a few more, so here it is, http://www.bestofboards.net/forum/images/smilies/tada.gif No.1!

Magnus Geijer
Jan-04-2009, 6:47pm
My #1. It remained my favorite until i completed #4, now I'm undecided.


Jan-04-2009, 7:15pm
Great job to both of you. I love the designs. Magnus, is that your sortof signature mandolin? i like it. Reminds me of a futuristic Rigel

Magnus Geijer
Jan-04-2009, 8:24pm
Thank you!

Yeah, I guess you could call it that. When I first drew up the design I hadn't actually seen a Rigel, so I was quite annoyed when I realized it wasn't quite as unique as I originally thought. I've only completed four mandolins to date, and they've all been of this design. I'm currently doing something more F-like, but I suspect I'll go back to this design when I'm done with them.



Gail Hester
Jan-04-2009, 9:14pm
Here's my first and it was from scratch. My husband still plays this one a lot. Big Leaf and Englemann.

Bill Snyder
Jan-04-2009, 9:20pm
I would not be surprised if several of the luthiers that have been doing this for several years don't have photos (at least not digital) of their first.
I am not a luthier although I have built a few instruments and have some more underway and hope to build several more.
Here is a photo of my first. It is pretty simple, but I still play it some.

Jan-04-2009, 10:14pm
sounds great magnus.

I couldn't expect anything less from you Gail. That mandolin looks flawless. Im wondering how that is a first mandolin!

I really like the design of that. It is simple but traditional. Reminds me of the navy mandolins.

Jan-05-2009, 3:25pm
This was built while I was hobbling around with a cast on my right leg. First from scratch, Mahogony back and sides, King William Pine, Jarrah Fretboard, bridge etc. Sounds good considering I knew so little about the art... I also dont have any finished pictures, hmmmm

Jan-05-2009, 5:34pm
Bill's right, but you can take a photo of a photo...
Here's my first from 1973. Owner plays in a local BG band.

Jan-06-2009, 12:05am
this is my first attempt and yes , i still have it.....it took me almost a year and a half to complete this using the siminoff plans....after retoping it twice because a too thin top and then a major crack , i came away with what i thought was a keeper.....but the thing weighed a ton , and yes , that is black paint for the sunburst....learned a lot about building thu , and am now working on #10 and #11, ......no more paint,watch that thickness, never stop learning stuff,don't be shy about asking questions.........keith

Bill James
Jan-12-2009, 9:15am
I found this on Paul Jacobson's (classical builder) site.

"When I made my first guitar almost a quarter century ago I was bursting with new ideas: I was going to reinvent the guitar! I, uh, still own that guitar. It's falling apart at the seams, literally. It's been unplayable for years. I love that guitar. It contains all my youthful hubris, on display for the world to see."

Jan-12-2009, 10:04am
Hey Bill,

I know a guy named Hubris, but he builds b**jos.

Oh, wait, that's "Huber" . . .

Steve Smith

oldwave maker
Jan-13-2009, 12:35am
Traded off#1 for a martin 000-18, but built #2 shown here at the same time, full of mid-life hubris. Recent shiny #447 beside it either has geezer hubris, or heezer gubris !
huber geezers uber alles!

Jan-13-2009, 1:53pm
It was real close to my first it's the one eveybody wants to play. What a fluke. It was done for a joke and ended up being a good player If your in to 8 string cigar box electrics. Go-Bo-did-what-ly?

Jan-13-2009, 2:26pm
What a great thread!
Mine hangs in the shop. A clunker if there ever was one. I ruined some very nice wood from Spruce.
Maybe I'll tear it apart some day and fix it.

Dan Voight
Jan-13-2009, 10:02pm
Heres Chris, Me, and #1.

Jan-13-2009, 10:39pm
These are all beautiful and hard to believe theyare your first mandolins. Dan, # 1 is flawless... was that from scratch?

Jan-14-2009, 2:04am
here's my first F5 completed last month. A local bluegrass musician asked me to build it for him and I'm glad he did - way more interesting than guitars! I think I'm hooked.


Jan-14-2009, 2:32am
Here's the new owner seeing his new F5 for the first time.

Dan Voight
Jan-14-2009, 3:02pm
These are all beautiful and hard to believe theyare your first mandolins. Dan, # 1 is flawless... was that from scratch?

Yup. I built it during my tutoring with Grady Jones, builder of Grady mandolins.

Jan-14-2009, 8:10pm
Here's the new owner seeing his new F5 for the first time.

Hey!!! That's Chainsaw Chuck!!!!!

This is a cool thread... keep the pics coming.

Jan-15-2009, 8:48am
heres mine and boy it was a chopper!

Jan-16-2009, 1:36pm
Here's mine....copied an old Gibson A4 and used the Scott Antes drawings from Elderly Instruments. This was completely scratch built ...sitka top and European maple back and sides (viola wood I got from a supplier here in the UK.). Sounds OK, but I haven't put a finish on it yet....finishing has always been my downfall...........

Started another this month........John

Jan-16-2009, 1:46pm
....and here's the inside showing the pinned and tapered mortise and tenon neck joint, and the chaos that I usually work in..........