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Thread: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

  1. #26
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    Here is another unknown maker who sort of knew what he/she was doing. Nice birdseye. It plays but is no tone-monster.

    I have had it repaired to playing condition since these photos. Top is arched, back is flat.
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    Jim

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  3. #27
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    Nice one Jim! Love the style is that 40's?

  4. #28
    music with whales Jim Nollman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

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ID:	177138 I can’t resist adding my own oddity, built by Ben Wilcox for a professional jazz player. It was the color of the top that first caught my eye when it was offered for sale. I bought it instead of an L & H A style that was also for sale when the money was burning a hole in my pocket. I’ve now owned it for ten years. X-braced. I’ve never heard another mandolin that sounds quite like it. I use it for solo playing and learning new tunes. A long sustain and a big pop in the attack, but not a lot of volume, and the sound quickly gets lost in my usual string band setting.
    Explore some of my published music here

    óJim

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  6. #29

    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    Quote Originally Posted by William Smith View Post
    I remember them posts Mike, Mine wasn't the evilbay one, Mine has all original hardware and is pretty nice,Click image for larger version. 

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    i love the funky lump!!!

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  8. #30

    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

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    ok here's my most recent weirdo. this was a special order from an odd customer of my lutheir friend. she wanted a mandolin body with a six string guitar neck, full scale. he suggested an idea we had both been kicking around of a cylinder carved top and a cylinder bent back. she agreed but then crapped out. so he offered it to me. he made it a 22 inch scale octave mandolin. so the neck block was such that the bridge was too far back, but he went for it. red srouce top from a beam in a 150 year old barn that his wood seller friend demolished. and birds eye maple back. he light braced it and even with the back ward bridge it came out amazing. so we are plotting a better one. with a wider body(this is 11 inches wide) and a neck block that allows the bridge forward a few inches. but it's a strangest instrument right now. powerfull bright tone with great balance. way beyond expectations .

  9. #31

    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

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    here's my weirdest serious player. a 23 inch scale, five course octave mandolin. with big round back from maple staves. it sounds amazing. it has no label or marks of a maker. that big spruce top(red spruce) makes it boom. the set up was tricky with no adjustable truss rod but it had decent action. i found a case when on holoday on greece!! a greek laouto hard shell case at a flea market music store. hard to find a case for one of these.

  10. #32

    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    Here is my late 30s Harmony- based on the current Monterey model- the more Ritzy one, at that time. It is in almost perfect order- just a bit of play wear on the back of the neck. Sold as an S S Stewart- there was a slightly Ritzier version- all mahogany with a carved plastic plate on the headstock. This mandolin sounds amazing and it is easy on my left hand as the action is a mere 1.5mm at fret 12 under the G strings.Click image for larger version. 

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  12. #33
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    Nice Harmony NickR! I like those segmented F-holes, you see that on loads of budget friendly depression era mail order mandolins and guitars! I gave my dad a 40's Harmony Monterey that he took the back off and put in light tone bars as when I got it one bar was off in the mando and it was like a 2x4! He fixed it up, took some meat off the inside and it plays great and for what it is tone sounds great. He said the top was real wood but thought the back was laminate?

  13. #34

    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    By all accounts, virtually all Harmony guitars and mandolins etc were made of all solid wood. However, there were exceptions- the first f hole archtop- called the De Luxe from about 1933/34 had a laminated sides and back. I know this is the case as I own one- and the outer flame maple laminate has worn away in places. It's just possible these bodies were bought from another Chicago maker! At the end of the company's life some laminates were definitely used. I would be very surprised if that Monterey you mentioned had a laminated back. Generally speaking, you see horribly cracked examples of old Harmony instruments which remind us that they were solid wood!

  14. #35
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    Here is a rare bird, my 1935 F-12, not exactly a Gibson budget brand but this is not seen everyday, there may only be 3-4 left original, more rare than the period F-10 as the 12's were more expensive, just a bit under the period F-5?

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  15. #36
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    Ok I have no idea why there is 3 of the same photo? What did I do, I didn't hit the button 3 times? Anyway this 35 F-12 is super clean and all original with the original shaped case also in almost like new look, very little wear on the mando and case, It has a gorgeous flame maple back and sides, with the same coveted gold, engraved, pearl button, worm over gear, bump end tuners as the F-5 of the period. There is a repaired dryness treble F-hole crack but still very nice, and good sounding as it wasn't played too much. There sure isn't too many of these left as of the few even made they've been converted to F-5 style. As long as I have this one it WILL remain original!

  16. #37

    Default Re: Kel Kroydon KK20. Early 30s

    That mandolin is so beautiful, that the uploading genie decided it needed to be shown in triplicate!

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