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Thread: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

  1. #26
    acoustically inert F-2 Dave's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

    Score indeed. Congratulations. I was hoping to look at it when I'm in Nashville in a couple of weeks. I wasn't looking to buy, just looking.
    "Mongo only pawn in game of life." --- Mongo

  2. #27
    Registered User mando1man's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

    Thanks Dave, I made a video of the mandolin.

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  4. #28
    gary nava; luthier GarY Nava's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

    Great video- thanks for posting

  5. #29
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    Default Re: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

    Congrats on getting a great one! 1953, one year after Tiny's was made. Enjoy!
    Paul Glasse
    Driftwood, Texas
    http://paulglasse.com

  6. #30

    Default Re: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

    Totally wonderful and I love the iconic Bigsby whammy bar, not at all like Leo's.

    Len B.
    Clearwater, FL

  7. #31

    Default Re: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

    What would be the chances of getting Eastwood to do a crowd-funder on one of these?
    VerneAndru.com | oKee.ComX

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  8. #32
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    Default Re: 1953 5 String Bigsby Mandolin

    Yes--I completely agree. My "Hampstercaster" below has 15 frets and a Bartolini guitar humbucker.
    A pickup next to the bridge would capture the string where it is barely vibrating. Its sounds "plinky".
    A pickup next to the fingerboard [especially if there are only 15-17 frets] captures the string where
    it is more fully vibrating. Better tone. I spent some time with Tiny Moore. He rarely played above
    a violin 3rd position -- a scale beginning with the first finger on the 5th fret, and used the bridge pickup. The flip side of the coin is Ricky Skaggs' Glaser mandocaster which has about 30 frets. Never thought much of his tone, but it has that soprano Telecaster sound I guess he was after.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Wright View Post
    I note that the Bigsby looks to have only 17 frets, which brings me to a point I have been considering posting on.

    The shorter fingerboard allows the neck pickup to be farther from the bridge, which gets a better tone for that pickup, more bass and less like a weird-sounding treble pickup. I have two Buchanans, and I prefer one which is 17 frets instead of 18 for the other, because with identical pickups the shorter fingerboard makes for better pickup location.

    My solid-body instruments are scaled-down emulations of guitars, basically, and have 20 frets. Neither gets the rich tone from the neck pickup than does the Buchanan, with identical make and model of pickup.

    Has anyone considered this point? I experimented with pickup location when I ordered an EM-45 from Steve Ryder, for which I specified positions that would match the bridge and middle pickups from a Stratocaster. They sound fine, but still don't get to that great neck tone. Ditto my Almuse, although Pete fudged the proportions a bit to get a little more room for pushing the pickup farther from the bridge. On both I like the treble pickup not too close to the bridge---1.5" for the centerline. The bass pickups for both come in at around 3.75" from the bridge, as well as on the 18-fret Buchanan. The one I prefer has the soundhole pickup 4.5" from the bridge....

    So, to discussions about the "Florida" and who needs those frets, anyway (hardly anyone*), I ask, why have more than 17? It was good enough for Tiny, and I love my rig. And they get in the way of better tone when locating that mag pickup.

    *OK, Calace and so on.
    Last edited by Joel Glassman; Nov-21-2016 at 5:32pm.

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