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Thread: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

  1. #1

    Default NEMD Eastman Mandostang

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    First off, in my brief stint filling in for a bass player about thirty years ago I had a Fender Mustang bass so the body shape and four strings seems very familiar. It is in like new condition; what I thought were scratches polished right out. I really like the look of it.

    Reading available information puts this as an early one, so getting the right intonation on the G string means moving back the bridge piece until the end of the screw is jabbing into the string. The guy whose report I read solved the problem by grinding down the bolt end. I'm going to shorten the spring and put some washers between the bottom of the bridge and the bolt head. Later models appear to arrive with correct intonation but as I prefer the tortoise pick guard to the black, I'm happy to have an early model.

    The strings are way too skinny. Eastman recommends 10/14/24/34. I have no idea what is on there now but yesterday I picked up a pack of Hybrid Slinky electric guitar strings and will use 11/16/26/36.

    I'll be reporting back on this from time to time for the benefit of those considering an electric mandolin purchase. Since I have four tube amps and way too many pedals I HAD to get one. Off Reverb this was $220 plus $30 shipping plus tax so around $270 total.

  2. #2

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    The good: maple perfectly straight neck, dark rosewood fingerboard (I wish it was this nice on all my guitars), alder body with transparent cherry stain, very nice appearance and functions well with a few tweaks.

    The bad: bridge too far forward/bolts too long - in order to get intonation correct on G string I had to add washers under the bolt head and cut spring in half (those with a nice shop would grind down bolt and re-thread), pick guard cheap plastic which took some time to clean up, bolt holes in bridge plate a little off as is the mating of the chromed controls cover to the pick guard.

    I've been playing mandolin for a month so when I tuned up the slack strings as received I didn't at first realize that I was an octave low. Sounds much better now.

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  3. #3

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Just tried it out through my Tweed Deluxe clone. The pickup is hot. I had to roll down the Mandostang's volume control about 25% with my amp volume on two to keep from disturbing my wife in the next room. The pickup looks cheap but has no more hum than most single poles. The volume and tone controls are very smooth, have good range and are silent when being turned. When I had it apart I couldn't make out any maker marks on the pots and 1/4" jack. Has about 15 seconds of unenhanced sustain compared to 7 seconds for my acoustic.

    One reason for the electric is so I can practice with it unamplified while watching TV. My wife objects to me doing that with my acoustic.

  4. #4
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Very cool but (and correct me if I am wrong): the manufacturer is Eastwood, not Eastman.
    Jim

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  5. #5

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    Very cool but (and correct me if I am wrong): the manufacturer is Eastwood, not Eastman.
    Oh yeah, you're right. Don't think I can change the title.

  6. #6
    Americana in France? Daniel Nestlerode's Avatar
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    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Welcome to the joys of emandos!

    Daniel

  7. #7

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Thanks. I'm into it. Just ordered a strat form factor 2 blade 4 wire humbucker to replace the single coil. I'm scheming about how I'm going to wire it up and what replacement / additional controls to use.

    The new pickup was $4.50 and is on a slow boat from China. Once I know how well I like it I may splurge for a more expensive model.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg P. Stone View Post
    The good: maple perfectly straight neck, dark rosewood fingerboard (I wish it was this nice on all my guitars), alder body with transparent cherry stain, very nice appearance and functions well with a few tweaks.

    The bad: bridge too far forward/bolts too long - in order to get intonation correct on G string I had to add washers under the bolt head and cut spring in half (those with a nice shop would grind down bolt and re-thread), pick guard cheap plastic which took some time to clean up, bolt holes in bridge plate a little off as is the mating of the chromed controls cover to the pick guard.

    I've been playing mandolin for a month so when I tuned up the slack strings as received I didn't at first realize that I was an octave low. Sounds much better now.

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    You can easily replace those saddle screws at any guitar store and if you put a little heavier gauge string on it then you can move the saddles forward some. I'd also look at shortening the saddle height adjustment screws so they don't cut your hand up.

  9. #9

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Thanks, I'll look for replacement screws next time I'm in Seattle.

  10. #10

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg P. Stone View Post
    Thanks. I'm into it. Just ordered a strat form factor 2 blade 4 wire humbucker to replace the single coil. I'm scheming about how I'm going to wire it up and what replacement / additional controls to use.

    The new pickup was $4.50 and is on a slow boat from China. Once I know how well I like it I may splurge for a more expensive model.
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    I put a couple of Artec's like that in my Fender FM60E. Korea or Chinese made. Work very well. I have a more expensive Seymour Duncan Lil 59'er in my strat and these are certainly as good. More expensive doesn't always translate into better.
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  11. #11

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    So mine came in on friday. Love the cherry look. I did a small setup, lowered the action slightly. No trouble with intonation here.

    I must say I love the sound, it is my first 4-string emando. Playing a clean tone with reverb and delay effects is a lot of fun. As a worship player this will be a very usable sound for me, and will be a nice contrast to the folksy sound of an acoustic.

    One of the guitar players in our band (we are all acoustic these days), is shopping for a tele, so we are in a race to see who gets there first onstage with this sound. :-)

    Remember the Indian guy here who posted a while back? With the amazing playing that had a lot of rapid slide-up-and-back work? I find that lick useful when used tastefully in bluesy playing. :-)

    To get a bit technical, I lightened up the strings slightly, from about 18-19 lbs per string to about 15, helps with bends. Gave up a slight amount of sustain for playability, but had to keep the E string at 19 lbs, it sounded too weak and thin when dropped to a .09. I was struggling with the jumbo frets too, but with the lighter strings and some time to adjust it feels pretty good now.

    The beautiful sound and expressiveness of a single string electric is something I now realize I missed greatly, but now I am wishing it had a whammy bar... :-)
    Last edited by kurth83; May-13-2019 at 6:22pm.
    Trinity College TM325 Octave Mandolin (converted to 4-string tenor guitar).
    Eastman MD-605SB, MD-604SB, MD-305, all with Grover 309 tuners.
    Eastwood 4 string electric mandostang, 2x Airline e-mandola (4-string) one strung as an e-OM.
    DSP's: Helix HX Stomp, various Zooms.
    Amps: QSC-K10, DBR-10, THR-10, Sony XB-20.

  12. #12
    Registered User mandolinstew's Avatar
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    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg P. Stone View Post
    Thanks, I'll look for replacement screws next time I'm in Seattle.
    Is there shielding paint in the cavity?

  13. #13

    Default Re: NEMD Eastman Mandostang

    Quote Originally Posted by mandolinstew View Post
    Is there shielding paint in the cavity?
    In Reno right now, but IIRC when I took it apart I didn't see shielding of any kind. Something I need to do.
    199? Ike Bacon F5
    1945 Levin 330
    192? Bruno (Oscar Schmidt) banjo-mandolin
    200? Olympia OM6-SW
    early Eastwood Mandostang
    2005 Tacoma CB-10 acoustic bass guitar
    Fender Tweed Deluxe clone

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