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Thread: Brentrup Mandolins

  1. #1
    Registered User JAK's Avatar
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    Default Brentrup Mandolins

    There have been a couple of Brentrup F models in the classifieds lately. Ten years ago they would have been scooped up in a week or less. I'm wondering if the newer generation of mandolin players don't know anything about them, or if they have been eclipsed by other mandolin makers that have flooded the market in recent years?
    John A. Karsemeyer

  2. #2
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Hans built a decent mandolin. I had one and only one opportunity to grab one of the Brentrup's I wanted but my wife needed a new car. I kick myself for it all the time.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Not sure if this is one of the ones your are taking about? I have never heard one live but seemed like he was well respected. Thought this one would not last long.
    There are lots of really good mandolins being built now and it seems mandolins are not necessarily selling at a brisk pace lately?

    https://themusicemporium.com/mandoli...f5c_distressed

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  5. #4

    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    I played the TME one. Bit too dry for me. Played a new Girouard G5 next to it, and at 60% of the price it just overpowered it.

    You can’t go by what’s listed on sites either, because lots of instruments never make it to the web.
    Good Advice: Play before you pay, and know your product and your market.

  6. #5
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    This is the only Brentrup in the classifieds right this minute.

    I am glad that the stars aligned when I got my A4C but I could have easily missed that one, too, like Mike had to. Life does, at times, get in the way.
    Jim

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  8. #6
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Hans had a snake he had built that had a small flaw. It was affordable. (Kicking myself)

    When I had enough money to buy another he had stopped building and told me in no uncertain terms he wouldn't make me one. I started to ask and he just said "No" before I could finish the question.

    By that time I believe he was building guitars (they look beautiful) because they didn't take a toll on his body like carving mandolins did.

    Nice man, great builder, I miss his presence here.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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  10. #7
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeEdgerton View Post
    Hans had a snake he had built that had a small flaw. It was affordable. (Kicking myself)

    When I had enough money to buy another he had stopped building and told me in no uncertain terms he wouldn't make me one. I started to ask and he just said "No" before I could finish the question.

    By that time I believe he was building guitars (they look beautiful) because they didn't take a toll on his body like carving mandolins did.

    Nice man, great builder, I miss his presence here.
    Yes, I was in touch with him after he announced retirement from mandolin building. He told me that he intended to try making only three a year but I guess that was too hard. He eventually stopped making guitars too. He made his guitars similar to Larson ones. I thought I saw a guitar for sale recently but I can't seem to find it.
    Jim

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  11. #8
    Registered User doc holiday's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Once a long while ago I saw a Brentrup F mando in Greg Boyd's place in Missoula. It was said to have belonged to Scott Tichenor. It was beautifully made and one of the better sounding mandolins in the shop that day....

  12. #9
    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    Yes, I was in touch with him after he announced retirement from mandolin building. He told me that he intended to try making only three a year but I guess that was too hard. He eventually stopped making guitars too. He made his guitars similar to Larson ones. I thought I saw a guitar for sale recently but I can't seem to find it.
    Dakota Dave Hull was selling one on Facebook. A copy of a Washburn parlor. Not sure if it's still available.

    I played a couple of the Larson inspired/copy guitars. They were incredible, IMO. Never got one as I'm not a fingerpicker.

    Always liked his mandolins. Even when I wasn't playing mando, lusted in my heart after one.
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  13. #10
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Platt View Post
    Dakota Dave Hull was selling one on Facebook. A copy of a Washburn parlor. Not sure if it's still available.
    That is the one I saw. I am on Dave's mailing list and he mentioned it.

    There is 2010 V-8 (brrrrmmm... brrrrmmm...) at Carter's.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Jim

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    1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- 1937 Gibson L-Century -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

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  15. #11
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Brentrup Guitars on his site.

    https://www.brentrup.com/page2/page2.html
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  16. #12
    Brentrup Evangelist Larry S Sherman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    That is the one I saw. I am on Dave's mailing list and he mentioned it.

    There is 2010 V-8 (brrrrmmm... brrrrmmm...) at Carter's.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I can't believe that I was there and didn't see this one!

  17. #13

    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    That one has been there several years.

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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    I have stopped and visited Hans a few times, and played some of his instruments. The guitars are great and I wish I could have afforded one at the time. I prefer small guitars for fingerstyle. I have an A mandolin of his and love it. It has been seriously played. Hans is a wonderful person and great to talk to as is Maureen, his partner. I am fortunate to have one of his mandolins.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

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  20. #15
    Moderator JEStanek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Cafe Member Larry S Sherman curates the Brentrup Archive. It's a pretty great resource for his mandolin work.

    Jamie
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  21. #16
    Registered User grassrootphilosopher's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    - I think the V8 at Carterīs is overpriced at 14.000 USD (It is on the website for a couple of years and had a higher price some time back)

    - I think that Hans Brentrup built wonderful instruments. I played a PML (Poor Manīs Loar) that was for sale at TAMCO. It was not set up to the optimum but it sounded very nice and quite on par with the Heiden TAMCO had a that time. The PML was priced right (I guess around 5.000 GPB).

    - I donīt see many Brentrup mandolins hitting the market, just the one at Carterīs, the one at The Music Emorium and the one in the classifieds. Thatīs a lot less Brentrups on the market than other builderīs mandolins.

    - I find it interesting that the Brentrup mandolin appearance changed significantly. The early millenium coloring looked more organic to me yet less pleasing than the later (before he quit building) effort to recreate the "classic" Gibson color scheme.

    When I thought about buying a higher priced mandolin in the early 2000s I thought about a Brentrup. Bought a different mandolin instead that Iīm extremely happy with. I seriously considered a Brentrup though.

    On the side: Hans Brentrup took very (!) nice pictures of his instruments. ... quite a potographer...
    Olaf

  22. #17
    Expert on my own opinion Bogle's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Regarding Hans' last F model, I posted comments (below) along with a few more photos in 2015:

    Hans has shared photos with me on prior occasions, so here is a photo of the last Brentrup F5C (the C is for Classic). It's based on a July 9 Loar, and I understand it is quite powerful. As you can see, it's tastefully distressed with a few small dings in the proper places, yellowing binding, neck wear, tarnished tailpiece, weathered tuners with MOP buttons, bone points dovetailed into the binding , quad sidebound, and violin varnish. For balance, Hans also created some other body finish wear in the proper areas, along with a bit of tarnish!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  23. #18
    Registered User JAK's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Anyone besides Mandobar played the Brentrup F5C at Music Emporium? 2nd opinion on that one would be interesting.
    John A. Karsemeyer

  24. #19

    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    If you are interested in the TME one, call and ask for Jordan. He will give you an honest assessment.
    Good Advice: Play before you pay, and know your product and your market.

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  26. #20
    Registered User robert.najlis's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    I have played the mandolin a few times. I think it is a fantastic instrument with real depth and range of sound.
    It is meant as a Loar type sound, which I believe Hans Brentrup does an excellent job of capturing.

    Hans says that his instruments will open up over time.
    I can say that right out of the gate this is a fantastic instrument, and I believe that the sound will continue to grow richer and stronger.

    This is the last mandolin that Hans built. Sadly, there will be no more.

  27. #21
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Played one at Gruhns. Just okay. Of course that was just one example. No where close to the Ellis mandolins I played
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by yankees1 View Post
    Played one at Gruhns. Just okay. Of course that was just one example. No where close to the Ellis mandolins I played
    How long did you play it? If it has been sitting a while it likes to be played to open up. Play it often and it will stay that way. I love mine.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  29. #23
    Registered User JAK's Avatar
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    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    My experience is that you need to play a mando at least 1/2 hour to have it open up and get into its "best voice." That's even if you play it regularly. If it hasn't been played for months or years, it takes way more than 1/2 hour (days? months?) to warm up and let you know "what it really can be." Much like a human voice?
    John A. Karsemeyer

  30. #24

    Default Re: Brentrup Mandolins

    There are so many great instruments out there, and more being made. What we believed was the end all and be all ten years ago, even five years ago continues to be refined and new building techniques bring so much more to the table. Warm up or not, we all tend to gravitate to a sound we find pleasing, and the attributes that we prefer. Personally, I am not a fan of those little bar frets, and shy away from the drier sounding instruments. Those are my preferences, but I know within the first few minutes if the instrument even has the potential to be something I would be taking home. Sometimes all it takes is that first chord, even if it has dead strings, you just know.
    Good Advice: Play before you pay, and know your product and your market.

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