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Thread: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

  1. #1
    Registered User testore's Avatar
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    Default New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Here is my latest. Not an exact Griffith copy, as I have not seen the original. But more of a concept instrument of the possible existence of a second Loar signed A5.
    Pic guard by Darryl Wolfe, Paganoni case.

    Sorry about the sideways pics. Donít know how to fix it.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    vesselmandolins.blogspot.com

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  3. #2
    Kelley Mandolins Skip Kelley's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Gary, that is one fine looking mandolin!!

  4. #3
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Gary, you are my spirit animal.
    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

  5. #4
    Purveyor of Sunshine sgarrity's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Dude! That is beautiful!

  6. #5

    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Amazing.
    Palatable to a Goat: New Music from Gregg Daigle and Don Grieser, now on bandcamp
    http://HillbillyChamberMusic.bandcamp.com

  7. #6
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Tremendous work Gary!!!

  8. #7
    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    'Looks great Gary.

    I've played the Griffith; it is one of my favorites but...... as cool as it is, I think your mandolin would be even more so with your own name on it!

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  10. #8
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    very cool! I just love it!

    f-d
    °papŠ gordo ainít no madre flaca!

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

  11. #9
    Registered User testore's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Thanks everyone. There’s always so much to learn when you try to copy something. It’s an exercise that improves your ability to see something. Looking and seeing are two different things. The detailed study of older instruments improves ones ability in tool control, color matching, and it also improves your repair technique. Matching another style or color concept or finish texture comes in handy when you’re having to restore something of value.
    I do make Vessel mandolins with my name, of course, but these are just a different part of my business.
    vesselmandolins.blogspot.com

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    Registered User grassrootphilosopher's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    We would have the whole package with some soundbytes. The mandolin looks great (Iīm still thinking about your other tribute mandolins/mandola that you presented here). You obviously take your skills from making great tribute violins and apply them with great results in our little niche.
    Olaf

  14. #11
    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Did you have access to the original when you started the project?

  15. #12
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Quote Originally Posted by j. condino View Post
    Did you have access to the original when you started the project?
    Quote Originally Posted by testore View Post
    Not an exact Griffith copy, as I have not seen the original.
    Answered in the OP.
    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

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  17. #13
    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Thx.

    Gary, you can drive to see the original in a weekend from your house. This one would be the perfect calling card for an introduction: "Hi. I made this interesting copy of your Loar from the available online notes. It would be great if I could compare it with the original so my next one could come out even better..."

    I played it 20 years ago. It had a profound affect on why I tend to build many more A5 mandolins vs F5. 'Probably my favorite Loar, and worth any effort to get a chance to play it again with a now more experienced attention for detail!

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  19. #14
    Registered User testore's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    J.Condino
    Trust me, I’d love to make the drive. I’ve been told by several great players that it is their favorite Loar they’ve ever played.
    I don’t know the owner so it’s not so easy.
    vesselmandolins.blogspot.com

  20. #15
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Hey Gary, would you have brought it to Grass Valley had the festival occurred? I always enjoy seeing you there. Maybe next year.

  21. #16
    Registered User testore's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Bill, yes I was going to have a killer booth this year. The octave and this A5 and another F5. Maybe next year. Miss it a lot.
    vesselmandolins.blogspot.com

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  23. #17
    Purveyor of Sunshine sgarrity's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    The Griffith A5 is the mandolin I hope I get to see and play some day. Have always loved the aesthetic. This one blows me away.

  24. #18
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    That is everything a mandolin is supposed to be, wish it were mine.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  25. #19
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Quote Originally Posted by testore View Post
    Thereís always so much to learn when you try to copy something. Itís an exercise that improves your ability to see something. Looking and seeing are two different things. The detailed study of older instruments improves ones ability in tool control, color matching, and it also improves your repair technique.
    Gary, without having the instrument in hand, can you share what materials you did use to study Mrs. Griffith? I have the red spruce topped Hester A5 from this thread (when Gail had not yet handled the original either):

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...e-loar-a5-pair

    Max Girouard has been up to something similar as discussed here:

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...uard-Mandolins

    Heís also been documenting the process in this blog:

    https://girouardmandolins.wordpress....gXxm9sSMwM_cqg

    Iíd be curious what kind of information and pictures you had access to when you set about your tribute.

    Thanks,
    Pat
    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

  26. #20
    Registered User testore's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    I have a form from the first mandolin I ever made in 1992. It was from a 1918 A4. I also had measured an early snakehead years ago and had a template for that. I have a hand scribbled list of measurements taken by John Sullivan. Some of the info was hard to decipher but it mostly made sense. I also have a thickness map taken by John too. The f holes are from a photo as is the inlay. Not too difficult to find that info. I also have a great A2 in the shop so that helped with the archings. The tone bar placement is based on other Loar mandolins I’ve gotten information from. I did follow the graduations very closely from the data John collected. The thicknesses worked well for the woods I selected. The top is Adirondack and the maple is from the Midwest. It is a varnish finish, made from a very nice recipe from the 18th century. It is shellac based but also has some Venice turps. It’s a recipe I’ve used for years. The turps keep it soft and less brittle than some shellacs.
    I have seen the one Girouard is making. And I think I’ve seen pics of your Hester. Both are fine builders.
    Thanks for everyone’s input.
    I will make more of these. The model makes a great f holed mandolin. The tone on this one is a little throaty, which I love, and it plays very easily. Currently strung with GHS cryogenic strings. I’m not at all familiar with these strings so I don’t know how a set of J74’s or 75’s will work. But I’m sure it can handle the brightness that those strings bring.
    vesselmandolins.blogspot.com

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  28. #21
    Registered User mandrian's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Quote Originally Posted by pheffernan View Post
    Gary, without having the instrument in hand, can you share what materials you did use to study Mrs. Griffith? I have the red spruce topped Hester A5 from this thread (when Gail had not yet handled the original either):

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...e-loar-a5-pair

    Max Girouard has been up to something similar as discussed here:

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...uard-Mandolins

    He’s also been documenting the process in this blog:

    https://girouardmandolins.wordpress....gXxm9sSMwM_cqg

    I’d be curious what kind of information and pictures you had access to when you set about your tribute.

    Thanks,
    Pat
    Hi,

    Mike Black is another maker who is very influenced by the Gibson mandolins of that era. He based his A5 on the Griffiths. I’m always surprised his mandolins don’t attract more attention. I think they are wonderful instruments.

    Regards,

  29. #22
    Registered User testore's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Maybe you could start a Mike Black thread.
    I’m sure he’d appreciate the attention. It always feels good when people share what they own or enjoy playing.
    vesselmandolins.blogspot.com

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  31. #23
    Hands of Pot Metal
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Beautiful work as we always see from you, I'm sure with sound to match.

    But the days of putting another's name on the peghead surely have passed, whatever the reason.

    But it could be a Vessel 'B-5' model
    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)

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  33. #24
    Registered User testore's Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Well I still get tons of interest in my copies. I get orders for both and will continue making both types as long as there is interest.
    Much like making a Strad violin copy or a del Gesu copy, one learns so much about their craft when you are forced to dissect them in detail. The Louvre is always packed with art students making copies for the same reason. It does improve your skills.
    vesselmandolins.blogspot.com

  34. #25
    Registered User Eric F.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: New Vessel Loar A5 tribute

    Gary, that is a stunning looking instrument, just like every one I've seen you post here. I wish one of yours would make it to the swamps where I live so I could enjoy more than the looks.

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