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Thread: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

  1. #1
    Registered User Matt Livingston's Avatar
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    Default Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    In the past few months I've noticed this design on a few different mandolins from Gerald Anderson, Spenser Strickland, Ellis, and a 2004 Heiden for sale in the classifieds. I think it looks like a whale if a lefty was playing, (but not so much for a righty) and really like it. Anyone know the history of it? I assumed it was a custom design by Gerald, who sent me the pic, and when I saw it on Spenser's website it wasn't a far stretch because of their history together. But I was surprised to see it pop up on the Ellis (in the classifieds a few weeks ago) and now a 2004 Heiden. Any info?
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    It was on the Gibson A-3 model but I'm not sure of the dates.

  3. #3
    Registered User dustyamps's Avatar
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    I always liked these Gibson A3 headstocks
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    Quick look through Google and found this from 1908. Inlay was positioned low on the peghead. A 1906 in the Archive has a flower inlay instead.
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  5. #5
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    Here's one from 1920.

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    Martin Stillion mrmando's Avatar
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    I've always called it the vine inlay, but upside-down whale has a nice ring to it.
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  7. #7

    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    Always reminds me of Kokopelli
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    Didn't Will Kimble use that type of design on some of his mandos?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    Hi Folks-

    I think the white top A-3 was discontinued by Gibson for the year 1923, and the distinctive curlicue headstock inlay below "The Gibson" went with it. It's certainly possible that some "back stock" partially or nearly completed instruments may have been "sold" and/or assigned serial #s after 1922.

    Bob

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    Along with the originally mentioned builders, Will used it, and I just saw it on a Kentucky.
    I did a version that was a little different. Someone once said mine looked like a frollicking person in a jester's hat throwing a ribbon in the air.
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  11. #11
    Gummy Bears and Scotch BrianWilliam's Avatar
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    Default Re: Upside down "Whale" inlay on headstock - Where from?

    Indeed he did!

    Quote Originally Posted by V70416 View Post
    Didn't Will Kimble use that type of design on some of his mandos?

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