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Thread: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

  1. #1

    Default Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Can anyone tell me if there is anything wrong with either of these? Just wondering why the lack of interest:

    https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_fro...ORD%7C5079%3A0

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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    I have been wondering too, the one has had several price drops over several weeks.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

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    Hands of Pot Metal
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    I’m full up with a ‘A’ and an ‘F’. That ‘96 is a great bargain and other is still a very good price. Audey’s Mandolins are typically loud and punchy, great grassers.
    Play it like you mean it

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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill McCall View Post
    I’m full up with a ‘A’ and an ‘F’. That ‘96 is a great bargain and other is still a very good price. Audey’s Mandolins are typically loud and punchy, great grassers.
    Cool, thank you. There is a new A Country Boy I have my eye on, but for the money, not sure if buying one of these used ones is a better way to go. Thoughts?

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    Registered User Stephen Cagle's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    I've played Rat's the majority of my playing career. I've owned 12-15 mandolins since 82-83 and 3 of them were Ratliff's. I owned #17 I think. 03/04/84 and sold it, wished I hadn't. They are great mandolins and my current Rat w/ englemann top I must admit is not to shabby.

    note: The older one has been for sale for quite a while but I have no doubt it would be as Bill said a great grasser

  6. #6

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen Cagle View Post
    I've played Rat's the majority of my playing career. I've owned 12-15 mandolins since 82-83 and 3 of them were Ratliff's. I owned #17 I think. 03/04/84 and sold it, wished I hadn't. They are great mandolins and my current Rat w/ englemann top I must admit is not to shabby.

    note: The older one has been for sale for quite a while but I have no doubt it would be as Bill said a great grasser
    Thanks, is there anything to holding out for a used F-style vs buying a new A-style Ratliff?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Also, on this one, what happened to the binding on the top and bottom, closer to the body (looks like a wavy crack or something):

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/1996-Ratlif...4AAOSwR7pdY0ZJ

  8. #8

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    This would be the new A-Style I am comparing with:

    http://www.vintagemandolin.com/18rat...yboy_1188.html

  9. #9

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Herein lies the crux of the problem for the individual luthier, particularly the builders who have the most reasonable prices. The really serious players pony up really serious prices for a relative handful of top producers. What I call the middle ground is willing to pay significant sums where very good luthiers who are faced with competing with the small shop builders. Not nearly as knowledgeable and with little chance of hands on experience, many of these decide on a safe bet like Collings, and a safe bet it is indeed. Hard to go wrong. As prices decline, what should be a solid base of customers get picked off by the likes of Eastman and Kentucky. They can go into a store and try one. They are pretty good for prices they are willing to pay. Would most people like a Ratliff or Silverangel better? I’d like to think so, but a small minority are willing to chance it.

    I know with almost certainty l’d like any number of mandolins as well as a Collings, but what am I going to buy when I’ve played a dozen or more Collings and none of the others? I’m very glad I took the chance with my SA, but would I have bought an F style for $3k when I’ve played several nice F5S Northfields? Now maybe, then, not so much.

    The more casual the player, the more they gravitate to the known. Hence the e bay situation. Those that know think, great price, but I already have four.
    Silverangel A
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  11. #10

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Thanks for your reply. I am not really sure what to do, honestly. I have heard of the "Ratcliff's" like the SA you have, it looks very nice, but I am a new player and need something a little less fancy at the moment, not knowing how I will take to the instrument, but want to get something good to start off with, in order to stick with it . Any thoughts on brands, A or F style, etc. would be most welcome!

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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by LTTele View Post
    Thanks for your reply. I am not really sure what to do, honestly. I have heard of the "Ratcliff's" like the SA you have, it looks very nice, but I am a new player and need something a little less fancy at the moment, not knowing how I will take to the instrument, but want to get something good to start off with, in order to stick with it . Any thoughts on brands, A or F style, etc. would be most welcome!
    What part of the country are you from? There may be places near you that someone could recommend.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  13. #12

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by pops1 View Post
    What part of the country are you from? There may be places near you that someone could recommend.
    New York City

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    Hands of Pot Metal
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Like any builder, Ratliff’s pricing is a function of ‘bling’. That new ‘A’ looks pretty sweet, and would have been built just like a fancier one. It would come with a lifetime warranty. The 96 shows a little damage to the fretboard binding and the points are discolored. The impact of that can only be measured by a potential buyer. Would certainly take some money to be like new.

    Both of mine are CountryBoys, in the dark they sound Cremona varnished with triple binding.

    Btw, Charles Johnson is great to work with (vintage Mandolins or Mandolin World Headquarters).
    Play it like you mean it

    Not all the clams are at the beach

    Arrow G
    Clark 2 point
    Ratliff CountryBoy A
    00-21 (voiced by Eldon Stutzman)

  15. #14

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill McCall View Post
    Like any builder, Ratliff’s pricing is a function of ‘bling’. That new ‘A’ looks pretty sweet, and would have been built just like a fancier one. It would come with a lifetime warranty. The 96 shows a little damage to the fretboard binding and the points are discolored. The impact of that can only be measured by a potential buyer. Would certainly take some money to be like new.

    Both of mine are CountryBoys, in the dark they sound Cremona varnished with triple binding.

    Btw, Charles Johnson is great to work with (vintage Mandolins or Mandolin World Headquarters).
    Thanks, I spoke to him yesterday and am "thinking." I wish I would have seen this one when it was available, I wonder what it sold for, south of $950:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Ratliff-034...p2047675.l2557

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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    While looking around there I found another one:
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Factory-Sto....c100008.m2219

    The description says it's made in "Korean" but it's being shipped from the factory in China.
    David Hopkins

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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Although I own Eastman, I prefer luthier made.

  18. #17
    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    It could be the time of the year. Seems on other items, eBay can be slow during the holiday season. That said, am slightly surprised the '96 only sold for the opening bid. Really good deal for someone.

    And there were/are some other deals to be had on eBay as well as Reverb.com and the classifieds here.
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Well, here is my advise to you based on what you stated, and follows my previous post. If you are willing to spend $1500 or so on a used A style mandolin, you can get a well known mandolin from a maker like Weber or a lessor known maker like SilverAngel. If you wish to protect your resale possibilities, both would hold value. The more we’ll known brand would likely sell quicker. Many other mandolins like a Summit, or Ratliff would fit the bill, and there are many others.

    The second way to go is buy an Eastman or Loar, or Kentucky, for as little as $300 used. The downside is tone, but these can be set up to play very well, and they offer great value. The reality is that you need to put in some time before you can be your own judge. I have found having a very nice instrument to be conducive to playing more and accelerate your progress, so I’d go the well known $1500 route and if it doesn’t work out, you have something of value to sell. My heart would tell you to buy a Silverangel, but I do remember that jumping into the unknown feeling. They aren’t for everyone, and out of a batch of ten or twelve Econos, three or four seem to get resold within a year or two.

    If your willing to go $1800-2000 the trusty Collings MT would be a beginners sure thing dream mandolin.
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    I have been wondering for a long time who is buying all of these mandolins?

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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dukesdad View Post
    I have been wondering for a long time who is buying all of these mandolins?
    Over the years, I've certainly bought my share!
    David Hopkins

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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dukesdad View Post
    I have been wondering for a long time who is buying all of these mandolins?
    It is kind of like a library card, as long as you don't get carried away you can try one for a while and if you want to try something else down the road you shouldn't lose much money.

    That is my thinking toward guitar effects pedals -- if I buy used, it is like trying them for free and once in a while I find something that really makes my rig sound better!

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    Registered User archerscreek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dukesdad View Post
    I have been wondering for a long time who is buying all of these mandolins?
    Did you read the article/interview posted last fall with Dennis Vance from The Mandolin Store in which he said his winter order to Eastman was 300 mandolins or something like that?

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    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    A lot of us have been on the "catch and release" portion of the journey. Sometimes it never stops. It's been that way with me and guitars for 30 years.

    And it's also possible that if I find a mandolin that presses all my buttons, would turn around and get rid of almost all the other ones.
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    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Quote Originally Posted by archerscreek View Post
    Did you read the article/interview posted last fall with Dennis Vance from The Mandolin Store in which he said his winter order to Eastman was 300 mandolins or something like that?
    For lots of people an inexpensive Eastman would be plenty good enough, if you are mainly going to use it for simple chords in a sing-song situation or something like that.

    If you get good enough to take breaks in a bluegrass situation or play classical music or jazz, then it's a bit different. Playability up the neck, projection, tone, etc etc then become much more important, and (importantly) worth paying for. It's not an accident that the players you see every week on Mandolin Mondays - in varying styles - are playing quality instruments.
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  29. #25

    Default Re: Ebay Ratliff Mandolin Ads - Why is there little interest?

    Over the last 35 years in San Diego I have seen mandolins go from super popular with a ton of expensive mandolins on store walls to just a few on walls. Twice! Now , there are no high end stores in San Diego at all. I think we are just in another very slow time. The music stores we do have are low rent and have a few $100 mandolins or slightly higher.

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