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Thread: Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

  1. #1
    Registered User Miltown's Avatar
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    Jun 2015
    North America

    Default Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

    I recently played an old Harmony a-style mandolin. I dug it. 200 bucks. What do people think about Harmonies?

  2. #2
    poor excuse for anything Charlieshafer's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
    Madison, Ct

    Default Re: Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

    I have a couple that I share with kids or fiends who just want to bang away and see what mandolins are all about. They sound fine, work well (needed some tiny adjustments) but on the whole, 200 smackers will give you good value if it's in playable condition.

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  4. #3
    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Mar 2006
    Rochester NY 14610

    Default Re: Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

    The Harmony Monterey models were one of the few options for student mandolins when I first got interested in the instrument; I didn't need to get one, because I'd "inherited" a decent 'teens Gibson A-1. Overbuilt, IMHO, and with somewhat blocky necks, but solid, and the ones I played had good tuners. Two hundred's about as high as I'd go, but worth that, IMHO.
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  6. #4
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

    First off, all older American made Harmony mandolins (pre about 1970) are solid woods. Plus point. There are some imports labeled Harmony that came in after that that are honestly crap ( minus point) so it's always best to post pictures. Not every Harmony model mandolin is a stellar instrument. They were for the most part entry level student grade instruments. With that said some of the models including the Monterey models were pretty decent with a little work. There were series that were built in the 20's that are really decent. Those are the Shutt style madolins built by Harmony. Most of them had pretty decent necks. Harmony mandolins aren't known for their slim necks. I had a friend that played a 30's model that he had reworked the neck on for years. It sounded great. I'm not a fan of the little oval hole model they built from the 20's through the 60's. Most of the later models are on eBay weekly.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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  8. #5

    Default Re: Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

    $200 is probably the upper limit, but some of them play and sound nicer than you would think!

  9. #6
    Work in Progress Ed Goist's Avatar
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    Mar 2010
    Northeast Ohio
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    Default Re: Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

    c.1965 Harmony Monterey H410 Mandolin
    "What a long, strange trip it's been..." - Robert Hunter
    "Life is too important to be taken seriously." - Oscar Wilde
    Think Hippie Thoughts...
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  11. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2002

    Default Re: Harmony Mandolins -- opinions?

    I bought one in the BX when I was in the Air Force and stationed at Lackland AFB in San Antonio Texas, paid $24.95 for it and it traveled with me everywhere I went, until the neck pulled loose so I gave it to a friend after I bought my first Gibson so he could try and repair it, he didn`t/couldn`t so it went into the trash can but it served me for around 10 years and at $24.95 it was a good investment, @ $2.45 a year, cheaper than the strings for it...In those days I knew nothing about set ups etc so I just played it and it had a pretty decent tone....There is a "Batwing" in the ads right now...


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