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Thread: Solo builders

  1. #76

    Default Re: Solo builders

    If you aspire to being a geologist, there is no need to get a doctorate in English literature to write your papers.

    Yes, but there is a certain command and knowledge of the English language (or whatever language you are writing in) that goes with the territory.

    However, you used the word "education" to describe what you aspired to do in more than one thread you started and participated in here. So, folks related their own stories on how they have gone about "educating" themselves about mandolins. We've all played mandolins that we could or could not afford, at one time or another.
    But it was great to get the chance to learn about those instruments and garner some first hand experience. After all, it is a learning experience, just like any other, and there is no substitute for experience when it comes to learning about musical instruments.

    However, to re-use your analogy, if you aspire to be a geologist, then you certainly need to get out in the field and study the landscape (and read a lot of material on the subject matter).

    Either way, good luck on your quest, whatever it entails, or doesn't.
    There's nothing better than first-hand experience.

  2. #77
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solo builders

    hahhhaahhaa - geologists write papers!

    f-d
    °papŠ gordo ainít no madre flaca!

    '20 A3, '30 L-1, '97 914, 2012 Cohen A5, 2012 Muth A5, '14 OM28A

  3. #78
    not a donut Kevin Winn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solo builders

    I guess it's all about what you're after in the experience of playing an instrument that's out of your financial comfort zone. And we all determine that for ourselves.

    Personally, I plan on playing that $120K Loar when I go to Nashville later this year. Not to hold up as a yardstick and say "is this $115K better than my Kimble?" But to experience the instrument itself. As long as the shop is clear that I'm not a potential buyer and just wanting the experience of playing such a gem and they are ok with that. That's been discussed in other threads. I get Br1ck's desire to not be deceptive in allowing the shop to think he's actually considering a purchase. I'm the same way. But if they're cool with it, why not?

    I can still visit and enjoy Maui even though I can't afford to live there. YMMV
    "Keep your hat on, we may end up miles from here..." - Kurt Vonnegut

  4. #79

    Default Re: Solo builders

    Let's just remember, if you want the education, you need to get as broad as an exposure to different mandolins that you can, and that means getting to play them. I don't think there's a store around that doesn't expect people to come in and want to see the high end stuff. As long as you are careful, they will let you play anything they have. Today's $3k buyer is tomorrow's $6k buyer, who could be next year's $16k buyer.
    There's nothing better than first-hand experience.

  5. #80

    Default Re: Solo builders

    Quote Originally Posted by Br1ck View Post
    Here is a sobering thought. Forget buying a mandolin, take $50/week and find a really good teacher. Practice your butt off. Then take your mandolin and record something you recorded the year before. Think how much better it sounds. My mandolin sounded really good today. The fingers were working better than usual.
    This. Try to get out of the way of the tone, right? How you play makes a huge difference on these little beasts...

  6. #81

    Default Re: Solo builders

    Just want to weigh in and offer that my experience (twice now) with Max and Lauri Girouard has been fantastic. Max sent me an A5 about a year and a half ago and though I do check out other things and probably always will - this is most definitely a keeper and at an entirely reasonable price. Selecting the wood is always one of my favorite parts of the process and I always perk up when a builder says, "I think I have a nice piece out back somewhere" and you know it's more than nice. The top on mine for example, a torrified piece of wider grain spruce that Max just happened to have kicking around. The neck is so comfortable and the setup is spot on. I never experience any hand fatigue. Also, did not have to spend $6K. I almost went forward with a build last year with Andrew Mowry. I didn't because I had to confront the number of hours I really have in a day - even now. He was a pleasure to deal with though and I'm sure the result would've been great. Here's my A5:


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    Girouard A5
    Gibson A3 - 1917
    Eastwood Mandocaster
    Fender Tenor Telecaster (GDAE)
    Vintage Viaten Tenor (GDAE)
    Collings O1A
    Martin OOO17-SM
    Martin DJr
    G+L ASAT Classic

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  8. #82
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    Default Re: Solo builders

    Quote Originally Posted by shaundeane View Post
    Just want to weigh in and offer that my experience (twice now) with Max and Lauri Girouard has been fantastic. Max sent me an A5 about a year and a half ago and though I do check out other things and probably always will - this is most definitely a keeper and at an entirely reasonable price. Selecting the wood is always one of my favorite parts of the process and I always perk up when a builder says, "I think I have a nice piece out back somewhere" and you know it's more than nice. The top on mine for example, a torrified piece of wider grain spruce that Max just happened to have kicking around. The neck is so comfortable and the setup is spot on. I never experience any hand fatigue. Also, did not have to spend $6K. I almost went forward with a build last year with Andrew Mowry. I didn't because I had to confront the number of hours I really have in a day - even now. He was a pleasure to deal with though and I'm sure the result would've been great. Here's my A5:


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    I agree ! Girouards !
    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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  10. #83
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    Default Re: Solo builders

    I’ve an A5 on order from Mike Black. Full appointments, first-class everything with varnish finish, and the price is very modest. He was doing final sanding a few days ago. The cost is so reasonable that if I like the instrument could order one of his oval hole models too, and wouldn’t have spent much more than an MT2.

  11. #84
    Registered User cartershilts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solo builders

    I've been a big fan of Andrew Mowry for some time now. He makes some great stuff.

  12. #85
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solo builders

    Quote Originally Posted by lowtone2 View Post
    Iíve an A5 on order from Mike Black. Full appointments, first-class everything with varnish finish, and the price is very modest. He was doing final sanding a few days ago. The cost is so reasonable that if I like the instrument could order one of his oval hole models too, and wouldnít have spent much more than an MT2.
    What, no Black GBOM?

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    1924 Gibson A Snakehead
    2005 National RM-1
    2007 Hester A5
    2009 Passernig A5
    2015 Black A2-z
    2010 Black GBOM
    2017 Poe Scout
    2011 Passernig F5
    2018 Vessel TM5

  13. #86
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    Default Re: Solo builders

    Donít think I donít want one. Man, that thing is pretty.

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  15. #87

    Default Re: Solo builders

    You basically can't go wrong with all of the great builders listed in this thread,imho.

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