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Thread: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

  1. #1
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    Default I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    Fun story ....

    So, I'm in Newberg OR visiting my in-laws and I stopped by the local music store (Newberg Music Center) an hour ago to see if they could rent me a mandolin for the few days I'm in town ... there was a 'gent in the store looking at tuners and having a general tuner discussion with the staff, and seeing as my wife was waiting in the car, I thought I'd cut to the chase and butted in to ask if they could rent me a mando for a couple of days (unfortunately, no), but the 'gent says "I just got a new mandolin" and he had it with him in a case. I asked what he bought, and he says a 1929 (I think 1929?) Gibson F5.

    I may have the date wrong, but I've hung around the Mandolin Cafe long enough to know that if true, this was not the average mandolin. I asked to see it and he opened an old-looking rectangular case and sure enough, it is a mighty fine looking old Gibson F5. (This is where my resistance to get a smart phone is unfortunate, as I'd have liked to take a picture) The staff guy asked how much he paid and he said he got it from the Mandolin Bros and it was ... a LOT of money. The 'gent said it's was not Loar signed but is in the registry. I asked him to play it, which he did, and of course, I asked if I could play it, and he said sure.

    So, I played it a minute of so and it was ... well.. pretty nice! Sorry, I don't have enough experience to say much more about how it played. My wife was still waiting so I had to end the fun sooner than I wanted, and dang, I should have gotten the 'gents name, but I wasn't thinking. And no, he wouldn't lend it to me for the few days I'm in Newberg (I jokingly asked) !!!!

    So, I'm sitting at the in-laws this very moment, wondering how I can artfully find my way back down to the store. All I can think of is playing anything at this point ....

    Happy Wednesday....
    - 2013 Eastman MD 505
    - 2013 Fender MandoStrat

  2. #2
    Loarcutus of MandoBorg DataNick's Avatar
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    Default Re: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    Nice story!...too bad you didn't get contact info...might have hooked you up with a loaner or at least a jam where you could test drive the Gibby without the wife waiting...LOL!
    1994 Gibson F5L made by Bruce Weber's team


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  3. #3
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    Default Re: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    Yeah, I boneheaded in not getting his name. It would be nice to meet some people who play in this neck of the woods, although I only make it here once a year. He wasn't a stellar player, but heck, I'm a novice and he owns a beautiful Gibson !!!!

    I went back to the shop during some 'in-law' downtime and played a number of instruments ... a Kentucky 1000 (??) was nicest. I played some octive mandolin / mandolas for the first time... the distance between frets seems cavernous for my small hands but I liked the sound. I'll stick to mandolin....
    - 2013 Eastman MD 505
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  5. #4
    NY Naturalist BradKlein's Avatar
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    Default Re: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    Perhaps you played THIS recently sold 1925 Fern? It looks like a lovely instrument. I wish I'd made it into the store to give it a try.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Default Re: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    And that folks is why you NEVER let your wife tag along when you are mandolin shopping/testing....`nuff said!!!

  7. #6
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    Default Re: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    Brad, that does look like what he had, and the price is right.

    Can't blame my wife ... I really didn't have the time but it was a fun experience. I don't suspect I'll play one of those for a long while yet....
    - 2013 Eastman MD 505
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  9. #7
    Registered User Joey Anchors's Avatar
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    Default Re: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    Quote Originally Posted by mtm View Post
    Brad, that does look like what he had, and the price is right.

    Can't blame my wife ... I really didn't have the time but it was a fun experience. I don't suspect I'll play one of those for a long while yet....
    mtm I hope to be able to play and old F5 one day just to see how it compares with my KM900. You are a lucky man.
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  10. #8
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    Default Re: I played a 1929 Gibson F5....

    Quote Originally Posted by Joey Anchors View Post
    mtm I hope to be able to play and old F5 one day just to see how it compares with my KM900. You are a lucky man.
    I had the Gibson F5 jitters, for sure, ..... I could have managed the situation much better. I was with some friends of the in-laws who think they know the F5 owner and said he has a stunning collection of instruments. Had I just asked his name .... dang.

    I don't play well enough to appreciate how it played, I just was so impressed that I had the opportunity ... did you watch Statman play it in the video that Brad provided? Based on that, 'it' and 'he' play rather well !!!

    The guys in the local shop have been very good to me ... I sat there for a couple hours again today with the store to myself noodling on their stock. Again, the KM-1000 is very nice. But, they feature instruments by a local luther, G D Armstrong, so I had some fun with his electric mandolins and octive mandolins. Some pics of his instruments are here:

    http://www.newbergmusiccenter.com/local/index.html

    And, a couple of pics from the site of two instruments I played ... I'll bring a camera if I'm there tomorrow...

    Click image for larger version. 

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    - 2013 Eastman MD 505
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