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Thread: What's The One That Got Away?

  1. #1
    Registered User JAK's Avatar
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    Default What's The One That Got Away?

    What's the ONE and only mandolin that you wished you would have got, but somebody else got it first, and IT was gone, and never showed up again?
    John A. Karsemeyer

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    Purveyor of Sunshine sgarrity's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    This one....


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    Registered User John Soper's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    A refrigerator white A3 that I bought in college and sold to a friend so that I could afford a U-Haul truck rental for a move with my family from Iowa to Utah for my residency. Always regretted that one - the person I sold it to traded it in on a Fender Deluxe Reverb and that mandolin was never seen again.

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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    A 20's Loar. Around 1986. It was at a music store I drove by every day, and never stopped in. Till one day I stopped and played around on a mandolin. The shop owner showed me the pics of the mandolin. It was not pristine, had been rebound on the back. But He had sold it to Gruhn I think for $6000 the week before I stopped by. Then It was out of reach. Oh well, a clean miss.

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  7. #5

    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    That particular scenario hasn't happened to me yet, for two reasons:

    1. There just aren't a lot of quality mandolins to be found in my area; (although a poor Gibson Loar passed through my hands about 25 years ago).

    2. I learned a long time ago that if something REALLY nice comes your way - buy it! My problem is that my financial situation and/or my style of play is constantly in flux, so the nice stuff often disappears to make room for unexpected bills and/or for the next 'perfect' instrument.

    Other than that - the one mandolin I owned that 'got away' was a stunning Rigel R-100 Custom. In the end it was probably best that it (hopefully) ended up in the hands of a real mandolin player, instead of a hacker like me.

  8. #6
    Registered User Mark Seale's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Interestingly, I've only really targeted a few mandolins over the years, but I've ultimately been able to get them by keeping tabs. The Gil Shaun posted leans toward to one that got away, but I didn't pursue it and by not pursuing it, I've got two that are lifetime instruments. (Including one I got from Shaun...)

    I did sell a '53 Gibson J-45 that I'm still kicking myself for selling. I let myself be talked into selling it, but I should have stayed my ground on that one.

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  10. #7
    Registered User JAK's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    In 2014 Carter Vintage Guitars had a video of Chris Thile playing a number of Lloyd Loars, and one 2003 Gilchrist F5. Even though Chris was playing it at Carter's it wasn't for sale. BTW, that video is still around. While Chris was playing the Gil he said, "Wow. Plays like a dream." And the sound was incredible. Last year (2018) I think, that Gil showed up in the San Francisco Bay area for sale, pretty sure it was listed at the Mandolin Café. I got real interested in it, but waited about six hours to try and pursue it, and by that time it was gone, gone, gone!
    John A. Karsemeyer

  11. #8

    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    There was a screaming good deal on a Red Diamond A style in the classifieds about 6 months ago. I hesitated too long and it went fast, not surprisingly. I can't complain because I've already got the mando of my dreams, but if that opportunity came around again I would not hesitate a moment.

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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    I thought too long about a Duff F style “Scout” that was supposedly the only one he’s ever built without back binding. I would have had to traded a few instruments I really liked to swing the price tag, and though about it for a day too long. It was probably the only “economical” way to get a Duff F, and someone got a fine mandolin. Doesn’t really haunt me, though, as I really like what I’m playing now...
    Chuck

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  15. #10
    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Gibson F-7 ('30's) at a good price, that I passed up because I "had to have" an F-5. Shoulda jumped on it (well, not literally), but didn't know any better.
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  17. #11
    Registered User Joe Dodson's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    I don't think I've had that experience with a mandolin I was contemplating buying. I've sold a Collings MT and an Ellis F5 Deluxe that I wish I had back.

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    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Yeah. Closest was missing an A3 earlier this year. Way under priced. Went to a friend and I ended up with his Kalamazoo. So, it wasn't all bad. And I did pass on a Sumi when I started playing again. Probably the right choice. But still regret it.

    For mandolins, my biggest regret was selling a Rigel A Natural. My 1st good instrument. Still wondering what would have happened if I stuck with it back then.

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  20. #13
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    My experience is that it is safer for me to determine what I want in the absence of its availability. That way I can rationally figure things out and make plans.

    If after lusting after something for a long time I see it available, I have already done all my hemming and hawing, so I pounce. Had a few successes this way.


    My discretionary fund is a side project. Every time I peruse the classifieds or look at various instruments I cannot at the moment afford or justify, I toss a few dollars in the fund. This "doing something" in response to stimuli helps me immensely with impulse control. When the object of my true and enduring lust appears, I have most if not all the money stashed away.

    It really helps if your bank allows you to make sub-accounts online. You can do some really great "coffee can economics" if you take advantage of this feature.
    Indulge responsibly!

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  22. #14

    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    For me the one that got away I already owned. But life being unpredictable,I found I could not afford to keep the best mandolin I ever played. It was Nugget #223 F-style. I got to pick out the amber blonde satin finish and haircut A-style headstock.

    Didn't even advertise it to sell. Was offered more money for it than I could turn down at the time. It's in the Nugget archives. Such a beauty in every way.

  23. #15
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Which reminds me of a joke. Modified from Buddy Hackett. A fellow comes to me and asks to borrow $5000.00. He says his mother is sick and he needs the money for medical costs. I told him no, that he was a liar, and that he would only spend the money buying another mandolin. He told me "no, seriously, I need the money for Mom. I already have the money for the mandolin."
    Indulge responsibly!

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    Mandol'Aisne Daniel Nestlerode's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    For me it might one of those Fender Alternate Reality Tenor Teles that they have just stopped producing.


    D

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    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Too many! One that stands out was a 1923 Loar F-5 that was sold at an estate sale pretty much in my back yard close to Erie PA, I found out after the sale but around 2002ish it was found in a gun cabinet and auctioned for 800 bucks! It was pristine.

  27. #18
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    I have only bought new and usually never sell unless it was an inexpensive one. A friend of mine passed on a new Dudenbostel guitar that was priced at $1800. many years ago because even though the sound and workmanship was excellent he had never heard of him !
    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 !

  28. #19
    Registered User Rick Jones's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    In the late 70s I was owner of a Fender guitar called the Hand-Carved LTD Archtop. The LTD was an produced for just a few years, built by a couple guys at their shop, under the direction of Roger Rossmeisl. It was a gem - exquisite materials, craftsmanship. There were something like 36 of them built over their entire run. I bought it from an employee at a local Detroit music store for $550, which at the time was king's ransom to me. I sold it three years later because I needed the money. I met up with the Fender rep at a local store; he was thrilled - he had never seen one. He wanted to send it to New York, said he could easily get $2500+ for it, but I couldn't imagine handing this pristine thing off to a stranger to ship across the country. I sold it locally for $1500, the first time I ever profited from an instrument sale. I'd love to at least see it again, spend an hour or two with it. It's possible that today's ears wouldn't find it as wonderful as I found it back then, but I'd sure like the chance out find out. Last time I saw one listed for sale it was in California and listed at $22,500. Hindsight is ALWAYS 20:20.
    "I don't want to get technical or anything, but according to chemistry, alcohol actually IS a solution."

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  30. #20
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    I kinda regret selling my Flatiron 1N, but it was a nice step towards owning my Silverangel... I may own another some day.
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  31. #21

    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Not a mandolin but a late 30s Gibson L-00 Century of Progress... the music store I worked at bought it from a guy. I thought it was too far gone to be repaired. Then someone bought it and had it fixed. They then brought it in to show us and it crushed me. Still call it "the one that got away."
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Told this one before but in 1975 I heard Ome banjos in Boulder had begun making mandolins. Went out there and they had #1 which was an all black F and #2 was a sunburst A with a very plain maple back. The A was clearly the best sounding of the two, what we would call a crusher these days.
    The guy who had built them was Mike Kemnitzer. As the story goes he only made one more Ome before going out on his own. He was building Tim O'Briens black top A at about the same time.
    The first time I went out the A only had "Ome" inlayed on the peghead but when I went back with money in hand it had a vine and flower inlay. That type of inlay can be seen on Tim's and many other early Nugget's.
    So I bought it for $600 and played it till I made my first mandolin in 1980. Then I sold to a local guy for $700. It apparently had a shallow neck set that I didn't know enough to see but the new owner had Mike re-set it. Then sometime in the early 80's he offered it back to me for $1300. I passed. Wish I hadn't.
    I think it must be somewhere in the Boulder-Denver area but never heard of it again. By the way you can see #1, the black F at Carp Camp in Winfield every year. The owner plays there and lives in Nebraska.

  33. #23
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    . . . like I really want to relive such feelings. . .

    f-d
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  35. #24
    Registered User TheMandoKit's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    Quote Originally Posted by fatt-dad View Post
    . . . like I really want to relive such feelings. . .

    f-d
    I feel your pain. Mine was a beautiful early 1930s 000-28 at Gruhn in the mid-1980s. Wonderful condition, and an almost piano-like sound. The price was out of my range. Ended up with a nice 1938 000-21 instead. Couple months later, came into some extra cash & called George. Of course, it was gone.

    Coulda, woulda, shoulda.

  36. #25

    Default Re: What's The One That Got Away?

    No mandolins come to mind. Two guitars do. One was a 00 18 from the late 20s. Very repaired. I could have bought it but it needed frets and a reset, which I couldn’t afford. Then more recently a 1939 Gibson J 35, which without a doubt was the most busted up and repaired guitar I have ever seen for sale. Two neck cracks, dozens of bad side back and top cracks. Patched pices on top and sides. Later I was talking to the luthier who repaired it. It came in one day in a cardboard box. It took three years because they wanted to use a top piece from the same era. The guy said it was the best sounding guitar to ever come through the shop. I’ll always regret not buying it.
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