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Thread: Hora Octave Mandolas

  1. #1

    Default Hora Octave Mandolas

    Has anyone played an octave mandola/mandolin by Hora of Romania? I see them advertised for as low as $195. Are they as cheaply made as the price suggests? Their scale is 22", which I hear can be uncomfortable for fingering the chords.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Hora Octave Mandolas

    I have one with electronics. Fingering the chords is the same as my tenor guitar. I am no musician but, I love the way it sounds. Sustains forever. Neat instrument between the mandolin and six string guitar.

    BTW the tuners are very cheap and crappy. I would like to replace them but haven't found a suitable replacement yet.

    Over all I like mine and consider it to be a great deal.

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    Default Re: Hora Octave Mandolas

    I like mine. It's well made all things considered.

    Mine is hard to fret cleanly. Don't know why.
    It can be done but it's a lot of effort.

    Tuners work, but they are pretty bad.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Hora Octave Mandolas

    Forgive my ignorance, but what do you mean by fretting cleanly? Is that the same as chording? And what are the tuners? The keys that wind the strings?

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hora Octave Mandolas

    Scale length is pretty short as octave mandolins go. You have to take a different approach to chord fingerings, if you're used to a "regular" mandolin; more use of open strings and partial chords -- at least that's how I go at it.

    There are quite a few Romanian-built instruments sold in Europe. Consensus seems to be: all solid woods (a plus), no frills, not great "fit and finish," cheap-o hardware. At that price, about what you'd expect.

    Yes, "tuners" refers to the pegs, gears and keys that tighten or loosen the strings. Difficulties in getting a "clean" sound when fretting a string may arise from several sources, including placing the finger too far behind the fret (often an issue when dealing with longer scales and more widely separated frets), frets either too high or not high enough, or strings too high above the fingerboard (high action), which sounds like it might be the problem the previous post mentions. Few of the Romanian instruments come with adjustable-height bridges, and I don't think they have adjustable truss rods in the neck, so lowering the action may involve some repair work, lowering either the bridge or the nut.
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    Default Re: Hora Octave Mandolas

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Amena View Post
    Forgive my ignorance, but what do you mean by fretting cleanly? Is that the same as chording? And what are the tuners? The keys that wind the strings?
    I have to push down harder than I would like to get a clean (buzz free) note.
    Nothing wrong with the setup.

    I'm older now and don't want to fight with my instruments.

    A friend of mine plays it and thinks it's fine so maybe it's just me.

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    Default Re: Hora Octave Mandolas

    Quote Originally Posted by BoxCarJoe View Post
    I have to push down harder than I would like to get a clean (buzz free) note.
    Nothing wrong with the setup.

    I'm older now and don't want to fight with my instruments.

    A friend of mine plays it and thinks it's fine so maybe it's just me.
    Joe,

    I noticed this too but only on the G strings. It may be counter intuitive, but would a heavier gauge string help this?

    BTW if anyone finds good replacement tuners for this please post the source. Thanks.

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    Default Re: Hora Octave Mandolas

    Quote Originally Posted by neilca View Post
    Joe,

    I noticed this too but only on the G strings. It may be counter intuitive, but would a heavier gauge string help this?

    BTW if anyone finds good replacement tuners for this please post the source. Thanks.
    My instrument really groaned in pain when I tried heavier strings. Bad experience.

    Honest I just don't know. It's sounds pretty good otherwise, but I have an electric mandola that plays like butter so I play that.

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