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Thread: Suzuki Mandolin

  1. #1

    Default Suzuki Mandolin

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    I bought this Suzuki Mandolin from a lil old lady yesterday. It seems to be in good condition. She said her husband bought it in 1969 in Japan. I wanted to find out more information about it if possible. Thank you.

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    After Raffaele Calace toured Japan, performing in concert and giving demonstrations, the Japanese were so impressed that they began copying his designs. If you look up Calace's instruments, you will see the similarities to your Suzuki. That said, I've never played a Suzuki and have no opinion on their sound or value.

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  5. #3
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    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    I agree that they are imitations of the Calace mandolins that so influenced Japan's mandolin culture. However, they do not sound like Calace instruments.

    Some players feel that Suzuki mandolins are overly heavily built, and are therefore tonally are less lively-sounding than either Italian or American bowlbacks.

    I had one that I bought for my father decades ago, well before the coming of the internet; that being so, it was the only bowlback I could find at the time. Ater he passed I reclaimed it. In comparison with my other bowlbacks, I found it wanting, and eventually gave it away.

  6. #4

    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    Thank you very much for the information. I absolutely love the history behind these vintage instruments. I find it enthralling!
    Would anyone have a ballpark estimate how much my Suzuki is worth?
    I did look online. It seems that a lot of Suzuki Mandolin's aren't very valuable.
    I did see a few that resembled mine for around $400 - $500.

  7. #5

    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    Thank you very much for the information. I absolutely love the history behind these vintage instruments. I find it enthralling!
    Would anyone have a ballpark estimate how much my Suzuki is worth?
    I did look online. It seems that a lot of Suzuki Mandolin's aren't very valuable.
    I did see a few that resembled mine for around $400 - $500.
    I don't plan to sell it anytime soon. I love the history behind them more than a profit.
    I was just curious.

  8. #6

    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    $400-500 is far too optimistic. Those old Suzuki usually sell in the vicinity of $100-$250

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  10. #7
    mando-evangelist August Watters's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    I think of these as solid, entry-level instruments. I have had several, since I like to collect good instruments for students. Good materials, good workmanship. Yes, heavily built, but that's typical of entry-level instruments; shouldn't be compared to finer bowlbacks.

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  12. #8
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by vic-victor View Post
    $400-500 is far too optimistic. Those old Suzuki usually sell in the vicinity of $100-$250
    Yup, that price is in Hollywood.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  13. #9
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    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    $100- $200 is probably still more than they cost new back in the 1970s.

  14. #10

    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    Ebay prices are in the $100-250 range for the ones that have actually sold, FWIW.

  15. #11

    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    Cool. like I said, I'm not looking to sell. I find the history behind them fascinating. I paid 50 bucks for this Suzuki.

  16. #12
    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suzuki Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by EnMedia View Post
    ...I paid 50 bucks for this Suzuki.
    You got a deal. Can't go wrong for $50.
    Allen Hopkins
    Gibsn: '54 F5 3pt F2 A-N Custm K1 m'cello
    Natl Triolian Dobro mando
    Victoria b-back Merrill alumnm b-back
    H-O mandolinetto
    Stradolin Vega banjolin
    Sobell'dola Washburn b-back'dola
    Eastmn: 615'dola 805 m'cello
    Flatiron 3K OM

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