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Thread: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

  1. #1

    Default Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    My son has a 1940s Gibson mandolin (which he loves) but is looking for a second mandolin, mainly to keep in a different tuning but also possibly for performances on stage. He has been looking at the Luna Moonbird F Style Acoustic Electric Mandolin (he's interested in the electric element for performances), but we can't find much info about it and haven't seen any locally to try out. Does anyone out there own one, or have any experience with this instrument? Thanks in advance for any feedback! If you have any other recommendations for an instrument in this price range, they would also be welcome.

  2. #2
    Registered User Roger Moss's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    Pretty high priced for a laminate instrument. You might want to look for something more reasonable. This one might be a better pick.

    https://www.amazon.com/Ibanez-STYLE-.../dp/B000T4K908
    When the sun beats down and I lie on the bench, I can always hear them talk.
    Me, I'm just a lawnmower - you can tell me by the way I walk.

  3. #3
    Registered User Roger Moss's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    Alternately, this is a great little mandolin. Not electric, but you can put a pickup in it for not much more than that luna thang and have a great instrument.


    https://www.amazon.com/Loar-LM-310F-.../dp/B06Y5M4GTZ
    When the sun beats down and I lie on the bench, I can always hear them talk.
    Me, I'm just a lawnmower - you can tell me by the way I walk.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Moss View Post
    Pretty high priced for a laminate instrument. You might want to look for something more reasonable. This one might be a better pick.

    https://www.amazon.com/Ibanez-STYLE-.../dp/B000T4K908
    Thanks for the replies; we had been looking at Loar mandolins. I think Luna is solid wood though: Body: Solid Maple
    Top: Solid Spruce
    Chrome/Black Hardware
    Fretboard: Rosewood
    MOP Moon Phase Inlays

    Just hard to find anyone who actually own one or who has played one.

  5. #5
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    The Luna instruments have been described as a "Dean in a dress" after the company that owns the brand name and imports them. All of the past threads that discuss them can be found here.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  6. #6
    Registered User Roger Moss's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    Quote Originally Posted by annetteangela View Post
    Thanks for the replies; we had been looking at Loar mandolins. I think Luna is solid wood though: Body: Solid Maple
    Top: Solid Spruce
    Chrome/Black Hardware
    Fretboard: Rosewood
    MOP Moon Phase Inlays

    Just hard to find anyone who actually own one or who has played one.
    Actually the manufacturer doesn't say "solid spruce". They say "select spruce". That's not the aame thing. If it was solid they would say so specifically. That's a selling point that raises the price dramatically. "Select" is a dodge to lure unsuspecting nubes. That price just doesn't say "solid".
    When the sun beats down and I lie on the bench, I can always hear them talk.
    Me, I'm just a lawnmower - you can tell me by the way I walk.

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  8. #7

    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeEdgerton View Post
    The Luna instruments have been described as a "Dean in a dress" after the company that owns the brand name and imports them. All of the past threads that discuss them can be found here.
    Thanks Mike; that thread is really helpful. There's a possibility that we can get a new Eastman at trade price from the music shop where he works part-time; any recommendations on Eastmans?

  9. #8
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    Play them. Many times a lower model Eastman sounds as good as the more expensive models.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  10. #9

    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    The Eastman is not available for 6 months and the Luna not until the end of January. We're looking at mandolins on craigslist and ebay in the $500 range. Any recommendations? There is a Washburn near us that we could look at for $550 "Washburn F style mandolin made in 1997 model M3 SW/TS. Beautiful finish and quality tone". We want something that will be at least as good as his Gibson though and that's probably not it.

  11. #10

    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    It will be hard to find Gibson quality for $500. Kentucky mandolins are another good option in that price range. If he's interested in the electric aspect, perhaps a solid body mandolin would be a good option as you can get higher quality for less money.

  12. #11
    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    I would avoid the Luna. I have seen more than one from that brand with structural problems. Serious structural problems. They seem more oriented towards how they look than how they sound or how long they last.

    Not impressed with Washburn either.

    "We want something that will be at least as good as his Gibson though"


    A pretty tall order in that price range..... depending on which model Gibson it is, of course.

    The perennial favorite Kentucky KM-150 is a very good bet, though... these are well-made, sound very good indeed, and when set up correctly play really nicely.
    Gibson F5 'Harvey' Fern, Gibson F5 'Derrington' Fern
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    '39 & '45 D-18's, 1950 D-28.

  13. #12
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    The worse thing you can do is to rush into buying something that will not work. I know he wants a 2nd mandolin for alternate tunings but in the meantime might he consider just getting a quality pickup set up for his Gibson?

    As for Luna, they seem to be carried by larger retailers like Guitar Centers. Not that I recommend GC for mandolins but they are Luna Dealers. Perhaps if you let us know approximately where you live someone might be able to locate a dealer for decent mandolins for you.

    Frankly, if he loves his 1940s Gibson I highly doubt he will like this Luna or other lower end mandolins.
    Jim

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  14. #13

    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    I would check out the Seagull S8 Sunburst with EQ

    http://www.seagullguitars.com/en/pro...in-sunburst-eq

  15. #14

    Default Re: Anyone know about Luna mandolins?

    Pardon me, but wouldn't it be better to buy something like a Kentucky or Eastman, where there is a high probability of a good sounding instrument, and then put a K&K pickup in it (or something similar)? I am new to mandolins and I try to save money yet get something with solid tops and sides (I have a The Loar). It seems that this arrangement would allow you to come out within your budget with a good sounding mandolin.

    https://www.walmart.com/ip/Kentucky-...Brown/49129018

    Walmart has the Kentucky 256 for a very good price right now. You would need to get it set up, maybe. That would only be 50 bucks if it needed it, and install the pickup.

    Here is a Fender with the pickups installed at Elderly.com. It has solid spruce top and solid maple back and sides and is inexpensive (I do not know anything about Fender mandolins, only guitars):
    https://www.elderly.com/collections/...s/fender-fm63s
    Last edited by DocT; May-17-2019 at 3:15am.
    Loar LM-370

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