View Full Version : Converted short scale mandos

Dec-03-2009, 6:39am
You will certainly have seen the classified ad by grandpa banana (Lowell Levinger). It concerns this mandolin.


It´s an F-7 mandolin. The F-7 was Monroe´s choice before he came across his Loar. The F-7 has a short scale. This specific instrument has been modified. The most visually notable modification and the one I am interested in is the long (F-5) scale neck.

Mandolins of this sort have been around on the market. Lowell Levinger had a converted (retopped and renecked to F-5 specs) F-4, this F-7, John Duffey had a converted (long neck) F-12 (prewar) if I´m not mistaken.

In the vintage guitar market re-braced or intentionally converted from straight to scalloped braced guitars are considered maimed and command much lower prices than their untampered brothers (like this F-7). From the originality standpoint I agree. Take this as a sidenote though.

What are/were your experiences with these converted instruments (sound, playability, feel etc.). If possible post a soundfile and/or video. And feel free to ad your general comments.

I´ll appreciate your input. (By the way; I´m not mandolin poor and I am not interested in buying the above mentioned instrument. My question is purely based on general interest)

D C Blood
Dec-03-2009, 7:18am
I had the Duffey F-7, back in '68 or so, and traded it off (like an idiot)...it was loud, loud, loud. John set the neck angle waay back so the string height at the bridge was a little higher than usual. The currenwt owner considers this mando a priceless piece and would not (at last check) sell or trade it...

Rob Gerety
Dec-03-2009, 7:56am
Is it the scale length that has been changed or just the neck length?

Darryl Wolfe
Dec-03-2009, 8:48am
Scale length is the same. All we are really talking about is that the neck sticks out of the body 1-1/2" or so further on an F5 (the distance from the 12th fret to the 15th fret)

Rob Gerety
Dec-03-2009, 9:18am
That is what I thought he meant - so the bridge is placed about 1 1/2 inches more toward the top of the body and the scale remains the same. This seems to be a frequent source of confusion.