Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 27

Thread: Macafferri shaped mandolins

  1. #1
    music with whales Jim Nollman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Friday Harbor WA
    Posts
    1,605

    Default Macafferri shaped mandolins

    I own this one: Click image for larger version. 

Name:	81675.jpg 
Views:	267 
Size:	106.5 KB 
ID:	141568

    It's a 4 string Bussman mandola, which I currently have strung with Thomastik Starks to turn it into a fully functional octave mandolin. I may eventually add 4 more strings.

    I spotted another Macafferi-shaped mandolin today on EBay, which prompted me to start this thread. This one is a Randy Wood built Octave mandolin. What a gorgeous instrument.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	s-l1600.jpg 
Views:	237 
Size:	235.2 KB 
ID:	141569

    Then there's the Draleon Royale, which I lusted after, although briefly, a few years back. After a bit more research on the body shape, I actually bought a Godin electro-acoustic which seemed a more versatile instrument for the kind of recording I was doing at the time. The Godin too is almost/kind of like a macafferi. I used it a lot over 4 years, then sold it for no good reason. Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Roy_Top-thumb-2.jpg 
Views:	131 
Size:	44.2 KB 
ID:	141570Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Godin_A8_mandolin.jpg 
Views:	111 
Size:	26.7 KB 
ID:	141571

    I'm curious what other Macafferi style mandolins are out there. If so, I'd love to see more examples. One thing they all seem to have in common, is that they are all beautifully made.
    Explore some of my published music here

    óJim

    BRW 3-point #65 (2009)
    Altman 2-point (2007)
    Portuguese fado cittern (1965)

  2. The following members say thank you to Jim Nollman for this post:


  3. #2
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Outer Spiral Arm, of Galaxy, NW Oregon.
    Posts
    16,511

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Seems most above are more Jazz Guitar themed, than Selmer Maccaferi


    I have a David Hodson Made 'D'Jangolin' , Mr Hodson also made Selmer style guitars ,

    this one is made, as I understand , like the guitars were ..

    Back and sides, a shop made laminate of Mahogany Inside and Indian rosewood outside .
    though flat top rather than the induced arch of the French guitars ..

    found a picture of one via G'gl http://www.mandolin.org.uk/images/hodson_img0.jpg
    Open and Post if you are more able than I.



    I got mine with a wild looking Red metalflake Case .. A Thermoplastic I think.

    one from the past on this site http://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/at...ntid=30922&d=0

    This has a Blue Case... Their shape is more Selmer like , bridge across widest Bout

    I have seen one of the plastic Mac Guitars Mentioned Here http://www.lutherie.net/is_a_mac.htm
    Last edited by mandroid; Dec-08-2015 at 7:15pm.
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

  4. #3
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    23,716
    Blog Entries
    55

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    The Paris Swing mandolins were meant to capture the general vibe, while still being F style mandolins. Not the shape though, just the vibe.
    Having something to say is highly over rated.

    The entire staff
    funny....

  5. #4

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Greg Rich [formerly of Gibson Custom Shop IIRC and later designing The Loar] designed the Paris Swing line with more than a casual nod to the Selmer/Macaffari guitars used by Django, etc.

    I have this John Jorgenson signature model, which was top of the line. All solid woods, ebony fretboard, all the good stuff. Plays and sounds fantastic.

    It has the squared off body cut on the treble side and a petite D soundhole.



    This is how it was before modifications:



    They also had a grande bouche version, but the tops were prone to collapsing from what I've read:





    And then there was this version:



    I was originally after this one but missed the eBay auction.

    They also had a traditional F-Style, but it seemed out of place next to these.
    VerneAndru.com | oKee.ComX

    - ---==< V >==--- -

  6. The following members say thank you to Verne Andru for this post:


  7. #5
    Barn Cat Mandolins Bob Clark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Beautiful Salem County, NJ
    Posts
    1,875

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Nollman View Post
    I own this one: Click image for larger version. 

Name:	81675.jpg 
Views:	267 
Size:	106.5 KB 
ID:	141568

    It's a 4 string Bussman mandola, which I currently have strung with Thomastik Starks to turn it into a fully functional octave mandolin.
    Hi Jim,

    What's your scale length on that one? I think it is a real beauty!

    One good thing about having it four-strung is that the Thomastiks have two sets per pack. Seems like a bargain that way.

    Best wishes,

    Bob
    Purr more, hiss less. Barn Cat Mandolins Photo Album

  8. #6

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    The closest thing to a Maccaferri guitar seems to be the mandolin the French builder Maurice Dupont offers
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	mandoline-dupont.png 
Views:	106 
Size:	36.5 KB 
ID:	141578

  9. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to crisscross For This Useful Post:


  10. #7
    Middle-Aged Old-Timer Tobin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Kerrville, TX
    Posts
    4,004

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Would the Weber cutaway style mandolins count?

    http://webermandolins.com/instrument...away-mandolins

    I think these were first introduced at 2014 Winter NAMM as the "Mustang" models. Photo below borrowed from jazzmando.com , taken at NAMM.


  11. #8
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    3,186

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    To me those guitar shaped cutaway Webers look great; I've never heard one but would like to. I would say they are archtop-like but not SelMac-like. A well built gypsy jazz guitar is a real canon, my Altamira is way louder than any Gibson or Martin or frankly any non-resonator acoustic guitar I've heard. I've never held or played one of the SelMac inspired mandos shown in this thread. Are any of these real loud like their guitar counterparts? The form is great, how's the function?

  12. #9
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    London, UK
    Posts
    44

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Paul Hathway in the UK makes a flat-top mandolin in this style: http://www.paulhathway.com/mandolins/.

  13. #10
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Outer Spiral Arm, of Galaxy, NW Oregon.
    Posts
    16,511

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by crisscross View Post
    The closest thing to a Maccaferri guitar seems to be the mandolin the French builder Maurice Dupont offers
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	mandoline-dupont.png 
Views:	106 
Size:	36.5 KB 
ID:	141578
    One of the 2 styles the above a 12 fret to body , the smaller oval Has 2 More frets to the body..
    In both D'Jangplins and (AFAIK) the guitars they are patterned after.

    as Paul Hostetter points In article linked to(above) the D sound hole is entirely Selmer ,
    Mario Maccaferri influence came into the game to influence the small hole variant. ..

    Mario was a concert player, who had studied Lutherie in his youth,
    His own Guitar (shown on Paul's site) was classical strung not steel .


    Quoting Mr H..
    Maccaferri only became a "brand name" after he emigrated to the US ...

    The only guitars bearing the brand name of Maccaferri were either made of plastic in the U.S. in the 1950s, or made in Japan in the 1970s.
    Last edited by mandroid; Dec-09-2015 at 12:43pm.
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

  14. #11
    I may be old but I'm ugly billhay4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    University Place, WA (with no university and very little place)
    Posts
    4,098

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Eric Folke makes a nearly exact replica of a Macafferri. There are only a few of these, but he's a very good builder.
    Bill
    IM(NS)HO

  15. #12
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    28,450

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    As others have noted, these are more generally guitar-shaped mandolins, maybe more specifically jazz-guitar shaped mandolins (rather than very specifically Maccaferri ones) vs. mandolinetto types. A friend of mine last month got a beautiful blonde-finished Lestock 5-string Jazzbo. I have pics but here is what a four-string would look like, really more like a mini-L5 guitar.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	JB4wstand.jpg 
Views:	215 
Size:	100.5 KB 
ID:	141598

    Info on the model here ó i think Lestock's web site is non-existent at the moment.

    BTW true Maccaferri instruments actually have bent tops, not carved.

    I do have Maccaferri-style tenor guitar made by Joel Eckhaus/Earnest Instruments.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	JG2f.jpg 
Views:	141 
Size:	171.6 KB 
ID:	141599
    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  16. The following members say thank you to Jim Garber for this post:


  17. #13
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Outer Spiral Arm, of Galaxy, NW Oregon.
    Posts
    16,511

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    interesting .. Eric's is a 15" scale , Hodson 14+ ish at 365mm ..
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

  18. #14
    music with whales Jim Nollman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Friday Harbor WA
    Posts
    1,605

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Yah, everybody is correct who pointed out to me that what i call a Macafferi is really only a quasi-macafferi. Mine is an archtop, with s-holes.

    My Bussman mandola is quite loud and very clear sounding. Its frequency range is in the same niche as a guitar or piano, which sometimes makes it hard to hear, without power, in a band situation. The sound of it, in its octave incarnation, reminds me more a lute than an octave. Then again, who knows, maybe every 4 string octave strung with Thomastik starks is going to sound like a lute. Yes its true, I only use 4 strings at a time. And they last a very long time with great tone. But they still cost a whopping $72 for a set of eight.

    I love that Folke model. And likewise, the quality of the Djangolin. I'd love to see other creative luthiers make an instrument with this body shape.

    With one big caveat. Although the shape grabs me as a concept, experimental luthiers need to make a living as much as luthiers who stick to the bluegrass world. I wonder what percentage of mandolin players would actually buy or order from scratch, a brand new Macafferi mandolin rather than an F5 or an A. It's probably low.

    The Paris Swing seemed to have a lot of promise when it first appeared on the scene. Verne's gorgeous black model was where I had hoped they were heading. But somehow, the execution only occasionally met the promise. They also made a few with ff holes, but I never got to hear one played.

    The Weber? No doubt it has typical Weber quality. But it seems a stretch to fit it into this jazzbo category where all the others here rightly belong.
    Explore some of my published music here

    óJim

    BRW 3-point #65 (2009)
    Altman 2-point (2007)
    Portuguese fado cittern (1965)

  19. #15
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    28,450

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    I found the pics of my friend's 5-string electric Jazzbo mandolin. Here you go! Paul often makes his mandolins with longer scales. This one might be 14.5-15". It sounds great acoustically too.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_1854.jpg 
Views:	118 
Size:	217.5 KB 
ID:	141601Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_1855.jpg 
Views:	111 
Size:	210.7 KB 
ID:	141602

    I have not heard it through an amp. Jason Anick plays one tho and he sounds pretty good.

    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  20. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Jim Garber For This Useful Post:


  21. #16
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Outer Spiral Arm, of Galaxy, NW Oregon.
    Posts
    16,511

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Mario seems to have contributed a double back (tone-gard ish function) and a port and reflector baffle in the D Hole .*

    Selmer was the factory making them .. http://www.lutherie.net/resonate.html

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selmer_guitar

    It was the Reinhardt brother Joseph on the D Hole, D'Jango on the small oval..

    edit * seems I reversed some things in 10th .
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

  22. #17
    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Asheville, NC
    Posts
    2,243

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    I always liked the subtle simplicity of my friend and Portland neighbor the late John Sullivan's take on the idea in an A style mandolin format.

    j.
    www.condino.com
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	sullivan selmer mandolin back.jpg 
Views:	105 
Size:	17.2 KB 
ID:	141610   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	sullivan selmer style A.jpg 
Views:	115 
Size:	56.1 KB 
ID:	141611  

  23. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to j. condino For This Useful Post:


  24. #18

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Eric Folke makes a nearly exact replica of a Macafferri.
    I do have Maccaferri-style tenor guitar made by Joel Eckhaus/Earnest Instruments.
    as Paul Hostetter points In article linked to(above) the D sound hole is entirely Selmer ,
    Mario Maccaferri influence came into the game to influence the small hole variant. ..
    There seems to be a little confusion as to what exactly is a Maccaferri and what is a Selmer.
    As Paul Hostetter points out in his article http://www.lutherie.net/is_a_mac.htm
    The rule of thumb for describing Selmer guitars: the 1932-33 models with the D-hole are called Maccaferri, or Selmer Maccaferri, guitars, while the later oval-hole model is simply called a Selmer guitar. The only guitars bearing the brand name of Maccaferri were either made of plastic in the U.S. in the 1950s, or made in Japan in the 1970s.
    The large D-hole (grande bouche) and shorter scale gives the Maccaferri style guitars more bass response, what makes them attractive to rhythm players.

    The small oval hole (petite bouche)and longer scale Selmer style has a more focused upper midrange sound, good for piercing leads.

    Maccaferri style guitars had originally 12 frets to the body, while Selmer style guitars had 14 frets.

    Contemporary builders like Maurice Dupont build hybrids, 14 fret guitars with d-holes but longer scales.

    So, strictly speaking, a Maccaferri style mandolin would only be a 12fret large d-hole mandolin.
    A 14 fret oval hole would be a Selmer style.

  25. #19
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    28,450

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by grandcanyonminstrel View Post
    I always liked the subtle simplicity of my friend and Portland neighbor the late John Sullivan's take on the idea in an A style mandolin format.

    j.
    www.condino.com
    That one is a real beauty, James, esp with the slothead and vertical oval hole. I also liked the vertical oval hole on Peter Langdell's Q95 mandolin. I liked the way it sounded too.

  26. #20

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    I guess the question is whether you are just interested in the look or do you want the sound too?
    I want both. It was the sound of the Selmers that first attracted me; somewhere "in-between" an archtop and a flat top, with a fast attack/ short decay and a little "dryness" to the tone. I want my instruments to sound like they look. If I built an archtop version, it would sound like an archtop, not a Selmer.
    I am currently using a 14.75" scale with a 12th fret neck joint- for me the longer scale, in combination with lighter strings is an integral part of the Selmer sound.
    To answer another question, Sel-Mac mandolins are definitely a niche instrument. All of my clients own another mandolin (or five). I don't do this for a living (and I have tremendous admiration for those who do.) so I feel free to experiment and leave the F5s to the pros.
    Here are a couple in progress:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Nuage 2.JPG 
Views:	140 
Size:	91.2 KB 
ID:	141655

    ps: John Sullivan had an amazing sense of style.
    Eric Foulke
    Boots Mandolins

    "Outside of a book, a dog is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx

  27. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Eric Foulke For This Useful Post:


  28. #21
    Registered User Rick Jones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Rochester Hills, MI
    Posts
    285

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Great looking stuff, Eric. I tend to agree re: the differences between SelMac and Archtop. I owned a Djangolin for a few years, and though I love the Gypsy-style music, that mandolin and I never really bonded. Later I built a couple archtop guitar-shaped mandolins, and I still have and love the one I kept. Warm and woody - much more like an archtop guitar. (By the way - thanks again for your invaluable guidance back when I began that project, back in the early 2000s!). I still think about building a Sel-Mac mando sometime, a D-hole to match the guitar I built in 1999 - but if it sounded like the Djangolin, I probably wouldn't like that either. I just listened to the Nuages model clips on your site, and they sound great. The Djangolin was all treble and ice picks. I was not a fan, and my wife was thrilled when I sold it.
    "I don't want to get technical or anything, but according to chemistry, alcohol actually IS a solution."

  29. #22
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    28,450

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    I would guess that the Selmer/Maccaferri styles would be closer to Brazilian bandolims in construction with maybe the difference of a longer scale & lighter strings.
    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  30. #23
    music with whales Jim Nollman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Friday Harbor WA
    Posts
    1,605

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Jones View Post
    The Djangolin was all treble and ice picks. I was not a fan, and my wife was thrilled when I sold it.
    Somewhat off the subject, but this quote makes me recall the time I bought a Stuart Wailing resonator mandolin. It was so physically beautiful. But very rough sounding — all ice picks and bombast. My wife made me sell it after just a few weeks of ownership.

    Two questions. First, I notice two (or maybe even three) alternate spellings for macafferi. I got this spelling from a gypsy jazz website. Anyone wish to give us the actual true spelling?

    And second, the original models were all guitars. Correct? Or did Selmer make a mandolin with that same shape, as well? I had thought they never made mandolins. If not, then I have to wonder about the statement from Eric, who says that working with that unique form is not enough, and he mostly seeks to use the form to capture the original sound of the Macafferi. Please say more about this.
    Explore some of my published music here

    óJim

    BRW 3-point #65 (2009)
    Altman 2-point (2007)
    Portuguese fado cittern (1965)

  31. #24

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Rick,
    Thanks! I'm glad I could help. The Selmer-styles definitely have their own "sound", but I try to avoid the "ice picks" side of the spectrum. I do find myself bouncing back and forth between them and archtops. I have a Jacobson right now that has really captured my ear. (Luthiers usually have the worst form of MAS)

    Jim G,
    I don't know exactly how bandolims are constructed, but for what it is worth, I do think my mandolins would be great for choro music.

    Jim N,
    I believe the correct spelling is two "c'"s and one "f".
    Selmer did not make mandolin versions of their guitars (they did make tenors), although it might be argued that the ladder-braced bent-topped guitar design was somewhat inspired by the bent top Neapolitan mandolin.
    As far as I know the first Selmer-style mandolins were made by the late David Hodson, the "Djangolin". Unfortunately, I have never had the opportunity to actually play one of his instruments.
    When I refer to the Selmer "sound", I am referring to the sound profile of the guitars. When I play up the neck of a Selmer-style guitar, I start to hear mandolin-like tones; a somewhat compressed, singing tone. It is a tone that flat-top and archtop guitars just don't seem to have. That is what inspired me to go down this path; to make a mandolin that was "in-between".
    Last edited by Eric Foulke; Dec-11-2015 at 3:01pm. Reason: Spelling
    Eric Foulke
    Boots Mandolins

    "Outside of a book, a dog is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx

  32. #25

    Default Re: Macafferri shaped mandolins

    Just discovered: the German builder Henning Doderer also builds Selmer style mandolins.
    Name:  thumbs_jazzmandoline4.jpg
Views: 673
Size:  16.8 KB
    http://doderer-gitarren.de/category/mandolinen/

  33. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to crisscross For This Useful Post:


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •