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Thread: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

  1. #1

    Default Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    I may be looking at picking up an A Style w/Oval for Irish/Celtic, Folk, Swing, etc. I'm not sure on a budget yet but may not be very big, somewhere around $600 probably. I'm just dipping my toes in to see what type suggestions I get. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Registered User mandolinstew's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    A Washburn Celtic oval hole A style.

  3. #3
    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Big Muddy MW-0 has been favorably mentioned several times on the Cafe.
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    I own a Kentucky KM-272 and really like it. Bit of a hybrid A oval with a raised fingerboard and neck that attaches at fret 14. Not as amazing as my Collings MT2-O, but also 1/9 the price.
    $500 with setup and gig bag.
    KM-270 & KM-276 are the same just different colors
    https://www.elderly.com/products/ken...m-272-mandolin
    https://themandolinstore.com/product...hole-mandolin/
    https://www.elderly.com/products/ken...m-270-mandolin
    https://themandolinstore.com/product...hole-mandolin/

  5. #5
    Registered User northfolk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    There are a few Red Valley Flat-tops currently in the Cafe classifieds.
    Thanks for your support?

  6. #6
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Another one to consider would be the Eastman 304 - The Mandolin Store lists one for $510, and coming from them you would know that it would be well set up:

    https://themandolinstore.com/product...oval-mandolin/
    2018 Girouard Concert oval A
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  7. #7

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Thank you for all the replies! I'll check them all out and welcome more suggestions, thanks again!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    I liked the looks of the Red Valley mandolins as well. But they are flat tops?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    I used to have a Flatiron 1N that I liked. They can be found used in the $450-650 range from time to time. Great little instruments, IMHO. If you’re looking new the Eastman and Kentucky options mentioned would fit the bill.
    Chuck

  10. #10
    Registered User northfolk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by Northwest Steve View Post
    I liked the looks of the Red Valley mandolins as well. But they are flat tops?
    I think flat-top ovals project better than carved topped ovals; IMO
    Thanks for your support?

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  12. #11

    Smile Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Thanks again for all the feedback I've been steadily looking at all of these different mandolins and I really like all of them. I got to say though, it kind of irks me that holes are drilled to install pickguards on mandolins. It's kind of like seeing a Les Paul guitar with a pickguard... it just doesn't belong. But that's just my opinion and I'm sure that others with playing styles different than mine would greatly disagree with me.

    Has anyone had the same problem I have had with the advanced search feature on the classifieds? I can't get it to work at all. I enter in keywords and click search and it just takes me back to the full list of classifieds.

    Anyone know anything about the Gold Tone GM-50? I ran into it while debating on getting an octave mandolin instead.

  13. #12

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Leaning heavily toward the Kentucky KM272. I haven't ruled out the Big Muddy MW-0 if I found a good deal. I haven't seen the different options shown for the Big Muddy on their website but it's nice they offer them. My Morgan Monroe MMS-5W is a bit tight around the nut for my fingers and a slighted wider neck profile would be nice. I'll have to look at the stats between them.
    Last edited by ryevick; Apr-27-2020 at 12:12am.
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  14. #13

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by ryevick View Post
    Thanks again for all the feedback I've been steadily looking at all of these different mandolins and I really like all of them. I got to say though, it kind of irks me that holes are drilled to install pickguards on mandolins. It's kind of like seeing a Les Paul guitar with a pickguard... it just doesn't belong. But that's just my opinion and I'm sure that others with playing styles different than mine would greatly disagree with me.

    Has anyone had the same problem I have had with the advanced search feature on the classifieds? I can't get it to work at all. I enter in keywords and click search and it just takes me back to the full list of classifieds.

    Anyone know anything about the Gold Tone GM-50? I ran into it while debating on getting an octave mandolin instead.
    I'm not a fan of pick-guards/finger-rests on mandolins either. I just removed the one that came on the Kentucky. It does leave a screw hole, but it isn't an issue for me.

    Regarding the Gold Tone GM-50, they make decent instruments for the price.
    The GM-50 has a solid spruce top (likely pressed, not carved) and laminate back and sides. The Kentucky and Eastman mandolins will have solid carved top and back, solid sides (which is generally preferred)
    If you need to save $150 vs the Kentucky or Eastman, I'm sure it would work. Just make sure to buy it from a good dealer who will do the setup for you.

  15. #14
    Fingers of Concrete ccravens's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    I know you are leaning towards the Kentucky, but I will join 2 others in this thread to suggest the Red Valley.

    Here is one in your price range:


    https://www.mandolincafe.com/ads/153488#153488
    Chris Cravens

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  16. #15
    Registered User mandolinstew's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    J Bovier flat top at reverb

  17. #16

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by stevojack665 View Post
    I own a Kentucky KM-272 and really like it. Bit of a hybrid A oval with a raised fingerboard and neck that attaches at fret 14. Not as amazing as my Collings MT2-O, but also 1/9 the price.
    $500 with setup and gig bag.
    KM-270 & KM-276 are the same just different colors
    https://www.elderly.com/products/ken...m-272-mandolin
    https://themandolinstore.com/product...hole-mandolin/
    https://www.elderly.com/products/ken...m-270-mandolin
    https://themandolinstore.com/product...hole-mandolin/

    What is the nut width on your 272? I'm reading that some are 1 1/4" and some are 1 1/8". I still haven't done it, I've been really busy but I'm going to be comparing nut widths of the Kentucky, Big Muddy and Red Valley. Wide is good.
    Morris A4
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  18. #17

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by ccravens View Post
    I know you are leaning towards the Kentucky, but I will join 2 others in this thread to suggest the Red Valley.

    Here is one in your price range:


    https://www.mandolincafe.com/ads/153488#153488
    It's going to be a few weeks before I pull the trigger, I'm just doing my homework right now but Red Valley will for sure be on the short list.
    Morris A4
    Morgan Monroe MMS-5W

  19. #18

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by Jill McAuley View Post
    Another one to consider would be the Eastman 304 - The Mandolin Store lists one for $510, and coming from them you would know that it would be well set up:

    https://themandolinstore.com/product...oval-mandolin/
    That is a pretty mandolin.
    Morris A4
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  20. #19
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by ryevick View Post
    That is a pretty mandolin.
    Re: that Eastman 304 I linked to in my earlier post - I notice you mentioned preferring a wider nut width - if that's the case the Eastman mightn't be one to have in the running as they're not known for wide nut width.
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  21. #20

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by Jill McAuley View Post
    Re: that Eastman 304 I linked to in my earlier post - I notice you mentioned preferring a wider nut width - if that's the case the Eastman mightn't be one to have in the running as they're not known for wide nut width.
    Yeah I noticed that. It wasn't one I was considering, I just really like the appearance/design.
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  22. #21

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by ryevick View Post
    What is the nut width on your 272? I'm reading that some are 1 1/4" and some are 1 1/8". I still haven't done it, I've been really busy but I'm going to be comparing nut widths of the Kentucky, Big Muddy and Red Valley. Wide is good.
    1&1/8" nut width on Kentucky 200 series. Radiused fingerboard though. I find it to be quite comfortable.
    https://www.sagamusic.com/products/p...px?item=KM-272

  23. #22

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Kentucky is still in but I would like to hear thoughts on Red Valley vs Big Muddy?
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  24. #23
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    I bought a 1922 Gibson A for $600. in the 80's (So, a Time Machine would be handy)
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  25. #24

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    On a side note, I didn't realize The Mandolin Store was located where it is in Tennessee. I drive by there fairly often... that's nice.
    Morris A4
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  26. #25

    Default Re: Looking For A Decent A Style w/Oval

    Quote Originally Posted by ryevick View Post
    I drive by there fairly often... that's nice.
    Or dangerous...depending on your self-control

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