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Thread: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

  1. #1

    Default Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    This looks like it many have been made by United- or whoever took over the Oscar Schmidt works in the late 1930s. It is a low budget mandolin but it has those recessed tuners that you would see on an instrument 20 years older. It appears to have its original case- again from about 1940. It just makes me wonder if a whole stash of these tuners was discovered and so a decision was made to use them. I think it somewhat unusual to see these tuner units on a low cost mandolin of this era. I think I can see a collection of braces inside the mandolin! The engraved tuners are the sort you see on a Weymann Style 50 Mandolute from the WW1 era.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-MAN....c100667.m2042
    Last edited by NickR; Dec-05-2019 at 11:49am.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    Very interesting.....and odd! They don't even match the peghead shape.

  3. #3
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    It looks like somebody swept the factory floor. What's with that brace on the back?
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    I assume the braces have fallen off and are stacked up inside! I would imagine the tuners are the best part of this ensemble- although the case might suit someone- it appears to be okay. All very odd and I am sure this was a way of using up some surplus tuners that may have been discovered after a rummage about- perhaps, after Harmony took away a whole load of stuff after purchasing the names Stella and Sovereign. Of course, this mandolin may not have been made in the old OS works but that is my best guess.

  5. #5
    Full Grown and Cussin' brunello97's Avatar
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    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    The faux finish job is pretty good, too. Avoids the 'grilled mandolin' look of later attempts.

    Parts is parts.

    Mick
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    The bridge on this mandolin also appears to be the same as on a Weymann Mandolute. Here are the same tuners on a Mandolute from 1914. Quite frankly, anybody in need a a mandolute bridge might want to buy this instrument. That other photo which I uploaded by mistake and cannot delete is of western singer Louise Massey. I have the 1941 Wards Louise Massey guitar! Very good too- similar to a Kalamazoo Oriole- maple body, spruce top- very bluesy.

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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    I have an S.S. Stewart with the same bridge. Just made a lower one so it plays better and put the original in the case.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    I would assume that like tuners, bridges were made by other specialist makers and bought in- so, they might be common to a number of mandolin makers. Certainly, this cheap mandolin has a bridge that does not look to belong to such an instrument. Again, this suggests that surplus parts were used in its construction as it does not look to have been played much, if at all- or modified.

  9. #9
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    Weymann, Bauer and Stewart (all connected) seemed to be among the Philadelphia makers that used these front loading tuners.
    Jim

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    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    My Stewart if form 1920 and has the same bridge as I said, but the tuners are sunk in the rear with the large single plate on back. Were the front loaded tuners from a later period?
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  11. #11

    Default Re: Circa 1940 Mandolin- Flat Top- recessed tuners- very odd.

    Those front enclosed tuners in my photo above are from a 1914 Weymann but I think they were used for quite a while.

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