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Thread: Bowlbacks of Note

  1. #26
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Can't seem to locate the "workingman's Ceccherini" -- do you have a URL? -- I am not interested at the moment in pursuing, but I always like to play the game at home, so to speak.

    The Uruguayan guy told me that shipping would be about $76. Not sure who this maker is but itlooks all right. I don't knwo much about uruguay either tho this seller has a 100% rating with 65 transactions.

    The Vinaccia will go for close to $2k, I predict.

    Jim



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  2. #27
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (jgarber @ May 04 2004, 17:49)
    The Vinaccia will go for close to $2k, I predict.
    Hey, I am not quite as dumb as I look, eh? It closed at $1900. Seems like a war of relatively new (to eBay) Italian bowlback enthusiasts. Either that or they were reading our threads.

    Anyone out there?

    Jim
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  3. #28
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    Hi Jim

    Most folks agree that I'm "out there".

    Workingman's Cccherini: type "mandolin walnut" at ebay and it'll appear. I don't think it's really walnut, but who knows.

    Tried to cut and paste, but my scissors just bounce off the monitor.

    Glad I didn't get sucked into the Vinaccia.

  4. #29

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    Just for "ogling value", can someone post the URL of said (and gone) Vinaccia?

    And no, I, too, doubt the "walnut" bit regarding the Ceccherini. It is virtually identical to mine, other than some curious crudeness to the finish, some rough edges, and the de Meglio-esque bar across the strings beneath the bridge— vs. that is, the Ceccherini-esque metal "anchors" holding the strings down to the soundboard(s). But, then again, the characteristics of mine may go hand in hand with the "double-soundboard model" it is and all its correlated paramaters and gizmos.

    Somehow, the "workingman's" designation falls short of some, ehm... more substantive description.
    It is not man who lives, but his work. (Ioannis Kapodistrias)

  5. #30
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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  6. #31

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    Many thanks, Jim.

    I must admit I am not on the MAS-path at present. A grueling run at the opera has left me starved not for mandolins but for some desperately needed mandolin-playing.

    Not to mention that the check has not cleared yet...
    It is not man who lives, but his work. (Ioannis Kapodistrias)

  7. #32
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Victor,
    I know exactly what you mean. I have to stop looking and start playing more. And I need to put some money toware fixing the ones I have.

    Jim
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  8. #33
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Another rather plain figlio Vinaccia (ostensibly) just arrived on eBay. This one in Napoli with very small pics. I asked for larger ones esp of the cracks.

    Jim
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  9. #34
    Registered User Martin Jonas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Bob A @ May 05 2004, 10:16)
    Workingman's Cccherini: type "mandolin walnut" at ebay and it'll appear. I don't think it's really walnut, but who knows.
    The auction on the Ceccherini has just ended, and it looks like I'll be joining Victor in the C owners' club imminently. #I just hope it's playable without too much work; if it is, that price should be a good deal. #I'll give an update once I got it in my hands.

    Now, the next question is: how can I get decent light classical strings in the UK? Any ideas? A quick web search came up blank, except for Newtone Lights. #I have actually used them before on my mother's Miroglio, but I thought they were a bit too light even for an old bowlback -- they're 0.008 to 0.030. #Does anybody know a UK web shop for, say, Lenzners (or indeed a European one with decent postage rates to the UK)?

    Martin
    (with many thanks to Victor for his kind off-board advice!)




  10. #35
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    It looks like the Vinaccia I mentioned above has a neck that had been at the least cracked or possibly broken off altogether. The seller says that he found a luther in Napoli that would do all the work for 400 euros. Sounds about right for the amount of work that would need to be done to make it playable.

    Congratulations to Martin for his new Ceccherini. May it make wonderful music.

    Jim



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  11. #36

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    Please also accept my on-board congratulations, Martin. I hope that this instrument warms your heart and life like only a sweet-singing mandolin can!
    It is not man who lives, but his work. (Ioannis Kapodistrias)

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    Suddenly Ceccherinis abound! Congratulations on your new instrument, Martin. Sorry I have no info on string availability.

    I just noticed another Ceccherini; appeared in the new Classical Mandolins site.

    Watch this space for more news on Ceccherinis.

  13. #38
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Here is another Ceccherini clone. This one at Pamela's Music in the UK. Labelled L. Romito & F. Carbone, 1900. Has the side vents and the characteristic pickguard. How many disciples of Umberto were there?

    Jim
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  14. #39
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    Hello all,

    The Albertini Lombardian is on sale again. Let´s see what it does. Click on the smily to get there fast! .


    Jim, am I right in thinking that you meant that the above mentioned "clone" looks like a De Meglio mandolin?

    Best,

    Alex




  15. #40
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    Hello MartinJonas,

    I see you are ´on line´! The Ceccherini you recently aquired looks like a fine instrument to me.

    Congratulations!


    And regards,

    Alex

    PS. It looks like the top is lightly shaved with sandpaper (just a little bit) and that afterwards the soundboard has been given a thin varnish. Is that the case?




  16. #41

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    [QUOTE]"the soundboard has been given a thin varnish"

    In fact, Alex, that was one of the remarks I made to Martin off-board, as he was considering buying this instrument. I have seen that done to more than a few, exactly as you describe: a light sanding of the top, to remove the patina, then a thin coat of varnish.

    The surface of the bowl also looked a bit rough, making me suspect the later application of some varnish in order to "smooth out" the original, which may have chipped away over the years.

    Still, the instrument looks fundamentally healthy. I hope it sounds as healthy as it looks!
    It is not man who lives, but his work. (Ioannis Kapodistrias)

  17. #42
    Registered User Alex Timmerman's Avatar
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    Yes, that could also very well be possible, but as you say the Ceccherini looks just great! These are very fine instruments.

    Just came for sale at eBay England another cav.Giovanni de Meglio e figlio. To view it, click here:

    Best, Alex




  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Alex @ May 10 2004, 07:00)
    Hello MartinJonas,

    I see you are ´on line´! The Ceccherini you recently aquired looks like a fine instrument to me.

    Congratulations!
    (...)

    PS. It looks like the top is lightly shaved with sandpaper (just a little bit) and that afterwards the soundboard has been given a thin varnish. Is that the case?
    Thanks, Alex!

    I haven't received the Ceccherini yet -- it'll probably be another week for the seller to clear the check and send the mandolin to me. I'll let you know about the top once I receive it and I'll also post some more photos.

    Concerning strings, I think I'll try to get Lenzners (Consort or lights, I haven't decided yet). I've had a look at your homepage, Alex, and found the e-mail link to Henk van den Broek as a source for the Lenzners (if my Dutch is right, that is). I have e-mailed him to ask if he does international orders to the UK, which, if he does, should be the easiest way of getting hold of them for me.

    Martin

  19. #44
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Alex @ May 10 2004, 07:34)
    Just came for sale at eBay England another cav.Giovanni de Meglio e figlio. To view it, click here:
    So strange and annoying when seller provide such small pictures and none of details.
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  20. #45
    Registered User Alex Timmerman's Avatar
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    Yes I agree completely, Jim!

    The mandolin looks like it hasn´t been toughed for ages. I can hardly see any frets, so they are probably oxidized through the years.

    The only thing I miss is the "string-tentioner" beneath the bridge.


    Greetings,

    Alex

    PS. Romito & Carbone were apprentices of the De Meglio workshop in Neapels.




  21. #46
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (bratsche @ May 03 2004, 12:19)
    Here's a rare Martin on eBay, with interesting fretboard inlay.
    The one that bratsche mentioned went for $1600+. Sounds like a decent price. Like everything else, on eBay, one begets another. Tak a look at another Martin Style 5.

    This seller is hedging his bets with a $2500 starying bid. I predict no bids on this one but a late-in-the-game, behind-the-scenes deal that shuts the auction down.

    Actually, this seller also has a Style E mandolin, tho he insists on calling them ukuleles. Prob because he in in Hawaii.

    Ah, the entertainment of eBay.

    Jim



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  22. #47

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    [QUOTE]"This seller is hedging his bets..."

    Erstwhile an avid student of the free market, I fail to see the effectiveness of such "hedging". Posting something, anything on eBay comes with a cost, proportional to the opening ask price; why, then, open with such an unreasonable minimum ask?

    An expert seller on the other hand, who might in fact have hard knowledge of pricing, might have approached a dealer to act as an intermediary— I do not, that is, question whether said Martin deluxe is worth the 2.5K; I AM questioning the avenue this seller is pursuing.

    If you overprice in order to strike a deal "on the underbelly" of any predictable price-curve, you are effectively merely announcing that you have an instrument for sale, not initiating a #bona fide auction. In the seller's position, I would simply post the instrument on the Café's classifieds, on CMSA's magazine, or elsewhere of that sort, as a "best offer" sale, without any binding "put/call" clause: If not satisfied with the best offer, I could always hold on to the merchandise.

    My guess, corroborated by the hilarious "ukelele" subtitle: Forgive them, O mando-community; they just don't know..."



    It is not man who lives, but his work. (Ioannis Kapodistrias)

  23. #48
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    Well, I mentioned Ceccherini news earlier: as luck(?) would have it, I was able (not unexpectedly, but a LOT sooner than I figured) to pry the rococo Ceccherini that was posted on Bernunzio's site (pictures now evaporated) loose from John's collection. (He's too good a dealer to actually hang onto the instruments he attempts to collect!).

    It arrived yesterday, and is a veritable jewel-box of an instrument. In nearly perfect condition, the only flaws being a couple chips on the tortoise trim: one from the plate that covers the ends of the strings, one on the edge of the pickguard, and a couple tiny ones on the binding.

    Double board, of course; good intonation, wonderful delicate sound, with a surprisingly decent bass. I suspect it is not capable of the volume I can pull from the Pecoraro, but it may be that I ought to change the stringing before I set that in stone. I'm very pleased to report that it gives every evidence of actually having been played - there's finish wear all along the thumb side of the neck. But that's all.

    There are no soundholes in the side of the bowl, which makes me wonder whether the bowls so marked might have originated in the De Meglio establishment, or perhaps there was a common source for them?

    At any rate, it is sort of breathtaking to hold and play a piece which seems more to belong in a museum than in my living room. Certainly it is a throwback to an era now vanished, perhaps for good and all; though I suppose there are a few luthiers still extant who could produce or reproduce such an instrument, I doubt that there would be a market for something like this, even if you could get the now-proscribed materials with which to fashion it.

    It is comforting to know that Sr Ceccherini was capable of forming such a piece, and that. ornament aside, the piece itself is a worthy example of what a mandolin should sound and play like. (Did I mention the perfect action? It is SO thrilling to get a hundred-year-old instrument that has no need to visit the restorer; that was obviously cared for for its entire existence; that could be taken for new if only it hadn't been played enough to show signs of use).

    I've now reached critical mass on these things: Tom Crandall tells me he has only to apply a few more layers of French polish to the Vinaccia he's been restoring for the last 18 months, and it'll be ready to ship. Fortunately there are a couple instruments I can send off to him for his magic touch. Now I won't mind at all if he spends the next couple years working on them, as I'll have more than enough toys to play with, meanwhile.

    That said, I assume you all have seen Onorato's ad for a Cristofaro in the classifieds? He's asking $350 for it, which seems reasonable, but it may need some work. (Fretboard looks a little shrunken, and there may be a bit of work needed on the top). If he'd advertised it last week, I'd have leapt for it, odd though it may be. That fish-tail peghead is something only a mother could love, but it's akin to a bulldog - so ugly it's cute, somehow. And I know there are those among us who have a strong opinion about asymmetric soundholes. Still, I bet it'd be a decent player.

  24. #49
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by (Bob A @ May 11 2004, 11:48)
    I've now reached critical mass on these things.
    I think you may mean critical MAS. Unfortunately, it wears off after some time.

    Congratulations, Bob on a real coup. You are the Bowlman.

    Jim
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  25. #50

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    Man, I've been out of this game too long. You lot are all making me really jealous!

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