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Thread: My first OM: a series of daft questions

  1. #26
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Looks to me as if removing the rubber matting has also taken quite a bit of the finish with it and it's been bodged up which might explain why he "hasn't had time". Apart from that, do I spy a screw hole on the back; just south of the heel, from a removed strap button?

    Personally, I'd be thinking of no more than half the current retail for something with no issues.

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  3. #27
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray(T) View Post
    Looks to me as if removing the rubber matting has also taken quite a bit of the finish with it and it's been bodged up which might explain why he "hasn't had time". Apart from that, do I spy a screw hole on the back; just south of the heel, from a removed strap button?

    Personally, I'd be thinking of no more than half the current retail for something with no issues.
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    Here are the two images he sent me of the back. I think you may be right. You reckon somewhere in the region of £375?

    He's told me there are 14 people watching, which always makes me suspect I'm being hustled.

    I really appreciate everyone's help on this.

  4. #28
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Looking at those I think that Ray is right and there has been an a half hearted attempt clean it up. To get it back to the original you would probably want to take it most of the way back to the wood and refinish it. From memory the mandolins, in good condition, seem to go for around £350 or 60% of new, given the damage on this mandola I would have thought £350 - £375 a reasonable starting point. I would point out that I am rubbish at bargaining and this advice is worth what you paid for it

    That said the damage shouldn't affect the sound.
    - Jeremy

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  5. #29
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Professional re-finishing isn't cheap. To give you an idea, I recently had part of a guitar top re-finished (it had already been sanded and just needed spraying) and that cost me £275. Fortunately the original finish was nitrocelulose - there's no guarantee that the OM we're talking about is nitro - my guess would be it isn't - and a simple spray job might not be so easy.

  6. #30
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    It didn't sell at £545. The finish on my Hathway is pretty thin and I think the newer ones are the same, not sure whether that makes it easier or harder. Paul would probably give you a price for re-finishing.
    - Jeremy

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  7. #31
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray(T) View Post
    Just a quickie on loop end v ball end strings; having been there, I think you'll find that it's difficult to find ready made ball end string sets in a variety of gauges. From memory, there was only one choice and that didn't suit the scale length of my Clark GBOM so I use custom sets of Newtone strings.

    The logical solution would be to put together your own ball end sets from singles but this can prove prohibitively expensive in the UK. I would advise that you check out the string options before you settle on any particular instrument.
    Hi Ray, I always use ball ends, I make up sets from guitar singles but I find the opposite from you as it usually works out cheaper than buying sets! My LMS sells D'addario plains for £1 ish & wounds for around £1.80 ish

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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Quote Originally Posted by fox View Post
    Hi Ray, I always use ball ends, I make up sets from guitar singles but I find the opposite from you as it usually works out cheaper than buying sets! My LMS sells D'addario plains for £1 ish & wounds for around £1.80 ish
    That sounds to be more or less £13 a set. I use Newtone and I don't think the last lot I ordered cost that much. The last lot of Mandola strings they made for me were £9 a set + £1 postage.

    (It must be 30 years since I last played the folk club in Guernsey!)

  9. #33
    but that's just me Bertram Henze's Avatar
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Shan Andy View Post
    There was some non slip rubber matting glued to it ,which made it easier to control,highly polished n kept slipping.
    No question can ever be as daft as doing that to an instrument. Whoever did that, may have done worse, invisible things...
    the world is better off without bad ideas, good ideas are better off without the world

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  11. #34

    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Bertram Henze View Post
    ... Whoever did that, may have done worse, invisible things...
    That's what I was thinking too.

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  13. #35
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    The usual way to prevent an instrument of that shape from slipping is to use a strap.

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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    OR, for us bowl back types you lay the rubber matting or other non slip on your lap, no need to stick it anywhere.
    - Jeremy

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  15. #37
    Shayan Givehchian
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Just got a Apc from Moloney Music is Ireland. Pretty happy with it check out my review of it on the forum
    In love with the mandolin since Feb 2016
    Eastman MD514
    APC MOC308 Octave

  16. #38
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Budget and options
    I have a small builder (Joe Mendel) OM and I really like it. But they are quite a bit more expensive. I have not played the Asbury, but they look similar to the Asian-made Trinity College brand we have here and I think those are great for the money. They lack bass response, but some of that can be helped by experimenting with string gauges.

    Scale Length
    Mine is 22.75", on the long side for an OM. The longer it is, the harder it is to play at first, but the tradeoff can be better tone. For your first OM, I would go shorter.

    Sympathy vs octave strings
    OMs are usually not in octaves. I tried octaves for a few months once. Joe Mendel even made me a saddle that was intonation corrected for the octave strings. There was a "cool" factor at first that quickly wore off. I switched back. If I were to go octave pairs again, I think I would want a really long scale. a 'zouk. The longer scale seems to work better when there are intonation issues.

    Floating vs fixed bridge
    Foating: Gives you options.

    Tailpiece
    I started with a tailpiece that does both. I never used it until I tried the octave strings and now that I e changed my strings back, I am back to only using loop ends. I'd say it's a nice to have.

    Strap
    I went with metal strap buttons in the tail block and the underside of the neck heel. I have them professionally installed and I recommend that. Works fine.

    The the one other option you might have is a Hora, made in Eastern Europe, but I don't recommend it. I had one. The tuners were bad and could not easily be replaced, the neck was bad, I didn't think the tone was all that great and the top sank on it.

    If I were you, I'd go with the Ashbury and perhaps upgrade to the strap buttons and tailpiece.

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  18. #39
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    I'd like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who answered my long string of questions at the end of last year. I thought you'd like to hear an update.

    I went back to Hobgoblin and had a long play with the Ashbury OM. It was fine, not setting my world on fire but still nice.

    The week before last, I went to see Paul Hathway in London. Ostensibly the trip was to see whether I was able to hear the difference between his instruments and the Ashbury, and whether I was willing to pay the premium for it. Paul was excellent, listening to my story and what I was looking for. He suggested that I try the short scale bouzouki that he does as well as the octaves. He left me with this selection of instruments

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    (l-r Bouzouki unison strung, bouzouki octave strung, OM, OM OM electrified)

    I was there for about two hours trying them out. I have to say that they all sounded fantastic. The sound alone was enough to justify the price over the Ashbury. I could feel the bouzouki through my rib cage and the sustain went on what felt like forever. I may well be easily swayed but I knew straight away I was leaving with a new instrument. The only choice was which.

    I managed to narrow it down to this OM and this bouzouki.

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    That choice took about two hours, given that both were above my original (and enhanced) budget. Eventually, the additional sustain and warmth of the sound from the bouzouki, given that I imagine much of the use being for playing alongside song singing) won me over.

    So, apparently I'm now the proud owner of a short scale bouzouki! It's strung GDAE, so you might call it a very long scale Octave. Either way it's lovely. Needless to say, I had days of buyer's remorse, convinced that I'd bought the wrong instrument. I am now converted. And a very happy man. With very sore fingers.

    More pictures are available if anyone is interested. But thank you again to everyone who chipped in with help and advice.

    All I need to do now is learn to play it.

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  20. #40
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Cool, good choice.. did I miss the bit about the actual scale length?

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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Glad you're happy with it. I wouldn't worry about the scale length and call it whatever the tuning you use indicates.

    For what it's worth, I've never regretted spending money on a decent instrument - as long as you're not the sort of person who buys something and swaps it a couple of months later. I learned this lesson many years ago when I spent an absolute fortune on my first Martin guitar. It came without a case and, brand new, it cost me £190.

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  23. #42
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Well done, Paul is a good man to deal with. What's the scale on the bouzouki?
    - Jeremy

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  24. #43
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Good choice! I hope you’ll be very happy with it. Since you started this thread I’ve also become a happy Hathway owner, of a mandolin. I tried various Eastmans (Eastmen? ), most of the Ashbury range and a couple of Kentucky models but it was the Paul Hathway that sang to me best.

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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Quote Originally Posted by fox View Post
    Cool, good choice.. did I miss the bit about the actual scale length?
    Quote Originally Posted by derbex View Post
    Well done, Paul is a good man to deal with. What's the scale on the bouzouki?
    No, I forgot to include it. 590mm (~23 1/4").

  26. #45
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    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Quote Originally Posted by OneChordTrick View Post
    Good choice! I hope you’ll be very happy with it. Since you started this thread I’ve also become a happy Hathway owner, of a mandolin. I tried various Eastmans (Eastmen? ), most of the Ashbury range and a couple of Kentucky models but it was the Paul Hathway that sang to me best.
    That was very much the experience I had with it: they sang to me. I spent much longer working out which one I wanted than whether I was going to get something. Paul is a lovely man to deal with.

    I'm sure I'll get used to the scale (f chords are something of an embuggerance at the moment, but we'll get there).

    Thanks again for all the hand holding. Now all I have to do is get good enough to do it justice.

  27. #46

    Default Re: My first OM: a series of daft questions

    Great choice! Buying a quality instrument means you get to play it longer without thinking of upgrading! Now you can obsess over plectrums (much cheaper)

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