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Thread: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

  1. #26
    Registered User NotMelloCello's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    Broke my camera, Bernie..... but, soon!
    The difference between death and taxes is that death does not grow worse every time Congress convenes. - Will Rogers

  2. #27
    Certified! Bernie Daniel's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    Super. Love to see it!
    Bernie
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    Due to current budgetary restrictions the light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off -- sorry about the inconvenience.

  3. #28

    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    I recently "finished" some work on an Eastman, and I thought folks might be interested in it. I might get a little beat-up for doing this kind of modification, and there's a chance that it'll back-fire, but in the meantime, the mandocello plays really well, now, and there's no way I'd be picking it up nearly so often if I'd left it as is.

    I took the specs that someone posted of Mike Marshall's Monteleone, cut a new nut, then took down the neck to match the width. It meant a lot of time on a bench sander, but the width of the fret board, without the binding, is about spot on. From there, it was a matter of re-finishing the back of the neck.

    Again, I figure it's possible that the neck'll warp (I'm hoping that the truss rod can correct most of it if it does), but in the meantime, it really does play nice, rather than feeling like you're trying to find strings and frets in the midst of a soccer-field sized fret board.

    Pictures to follow if anyone's interested.

  4. #29
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    nblauss: that is the kind of work that Eastman should have dine in the first place instead of cutting corners and just using a full-width guitar neck. I could not play the one that was lent to me as-is but i didn't own it. If you took just the neck width down and not the depth I would think that it would be fine and not warp. Let us know, tho. Not that I am getting one of these but just for curiosity's sake.
    Last edited by Jim Garber; Nov-05-2017 at 12:46pm.
    Jim

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  5. #30
    Registered User NotMelloCello's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    Some of us like WIDE NECKS. I get so tired of people thinking one size fits all.
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  6. #31
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    Of course some like those wider tho I doubt that Eastman was customizing for you and doing anything but using existing parts. That neck was way too wide for me and, in addition, they never bothered with setting it up properly for actually playing, especially the lower two courses which were spaced too wide.
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  7. #32

    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    I have had my Eastman for a while now. I found no problem with the spring spacing at all. The neck is ever-so-slightly wider than some others, I guess, from what I have heard, but no wider than my Martin HD28.

    The only thing I adjusted was the bridge height.

    On the other hand, the stock strings are way too light. They are also pretty bright, at least for my tastes. I tried a set of flat-wounds sold here at the cafe and definitely take their advice -- go for the heavier set. They sound like cannons LOL, and very bright and clear. If you want to be heard, and in a good way, they can't be beat.

    In the end, I ended up with a set of Thomastiks -- not quite the volume, but a slightly sweeter sound and better suited to my needs.

  8. #33
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    I'm probably the only one who has ever done this, but I converted my Eastman mandocello into a 6 string archtop jazz box. I still have the original nut and bridge so I can convert it back any time.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #34
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    I bought my Eastman mandocello about 4 months ago from Bernunzio’s in Rochester. I must be new to this instrument, but the only problem that I’ve had so far is that Thomastik strings will not slot into the tuning pegs. After playing Mandocello, mandolin is much easier to play!

  10. #35
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Sterling View Post
    I bought my Eastman mandocello about 4 months ago from Bernunzio’s in Rochester. I must be new to this instrument, but the only problem that I’ve had so far is that Thomastik strings will not slot into the tuning pegs. After playing Mandocello, mandolin is much easier to play!
    Bernunzio is a top-notch shop as well as probably one of North America's largest Eastman fretted instrument dealers. I would guess that they set your mandocello perfectly including action and string spacing.
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  12. #36
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    Bernunzio is a top-notch shop as well as probably one of North America's largest Eastman fretted instrument dealers. I would guess that they set your mandocello perfectly including action and string spacing.
    Good to know! Itís funny we donít realize how lucky we are living near to good resources.

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  14. #37
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    So sad that my daughter had to graduate college. Now I don't know when I will ever get up to Rochester to spend time at Bernunzio's. I was also lucky to spend a great afternoon there with Mr. Hopkins. He gives a great tour of the city. Ah, someday...
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  16. #38
    Registered User NotMelloCello's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    I'm probably the only one who has ever done this, but I converted my Eastman mandocello into a 6 string archtop jazz box. I still have the original nut and bridge so I can convert it back any time.
    Looks great to me. Nothing wrong with having a dual purpose instrument. How does it sound?
    The difference between death and taxes is that death does not grow worse every time Congress convenes. - Will Rogers

  17. #39
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman Mandocello MDC805 - setup questions

    Quote Originally Posted by NotMelloCello View Post
    Looks great to me. Nothing wrong with having a dual purpose instrument. How does it sound?
    I use Newtone .013's to really drive it - I don't know if its braced any different than an Eastman AR610 or AR805. Its got a good punchy archtop sound. I like the way the floating humbucker sounds plugged in - good jazz sound. I should record it and post here.

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