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Thread: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

  1. #1
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    Default A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    So, I've been bit by the bug again, been too long without an A-style mandolin and Andy at Muleskinner Instruments will be building me a new A5. We met over the weekend at his shop and selected materials for the build.

    He went through stacks of woods, pulled out various planks he has been wanting to use but hasn't yet had the chance and flashed them before my eyes. Taz Blackwood, some beautiful Curly Maple sets, a wonderful Maple plank that could have made a gorgeous one piece back and some Walnut as well.

    We both agreed on this plank of Birdseye Maple for the back, sides and neck. I have always been drawn to Birdseye but never considered it for an instrument for myself. But this one seemed just right.

    This particular piece was found by Andy's co-worker, Mark. Mark was doing some work for a fella who's father was a logger and had since passed. When he could come across nicer wood he would mill them up and keep them for himself. They were clearing out his shop and this piece was tucked away in the walls of the shop with a stack of other birdseye and beautiful maple. Mark snatched it right up and here we are with Andy now making a mandolin from it.

    More to come as the build proceeds. Andy also plans to build another 4 or 5 in this batch, so keep an eye out on his pages as things progress if you are in the market for a US made instrument from one of the finest builders in the Northeast! (NFI)

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    Brian Carroll

    ------------------------

    Muleskinner Instruments - Guitar Bodied Octave Mandolin

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  3. #2
    Pittsburgh Bill
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    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    And, now the anticipation begins. Nice looking wood. Met Andy a few years ago at the (I think) GreenMountain Festival in Manchester Center. I was impressed by his mandolins but most impressed by his selection of beautiful woods resulting in stunningly pretty mandolin builds.
    Stiver A style custom
    Mid-Missouri EM8 solid body (Mike Dulak's final EM8 build)
    Kentucky KM-950
    Weber Gallatin A Mandola "D hole"
    Ibanez Bowl Back
    Rogue 100A (current campfire tool)

  4. #3
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    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    Quote Originally Posted by Pittsburgh Bill View Post
    And, now the anticipation begins. Nice looking wood. Met Andy a few years ago at the (I think) GreenMountain Festival in Manchester Center. I was impressed by his mandolins but most impressed by his selection of beautiful woods resulting in stunningly pretty mandolin builds.
    Yes, Andy really makes wonderful choices for tonewood (both from a visual and auditory standpoint).

    Some of my favorites are the back for my octave mandolin and this sycamore mando (I think he had the sycamore at Green Mountain Bluegrass & Roots 2019). Just jaw dropping beauty!

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    Brian Carroll

    ------------------------

    Muleskinner Instruments - Guitar Bodied Octave Mandolin

  5. #4
    Pittsburgh Bill
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    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    Quote Originally Posted by redlineroots View Post
    Yes, Andy really makes wonderful choices for tonewood (both from a visual and auditory standpoint).

    Some of my favorites are the back for my octave mandolin and this sycamore mando (I think he had the sycamore at Green Mountain Bluegrass & Roots 2019). Just jaw dropping beauty!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    He did and it was my favorite of the half dozen or so mandolins I played from his display!
    Stiver A style custom
    Mid-Missouri EM8 solid body (Mike Dulak's final EM8 build)
    Kentucky KM-950
    Weber Gallatin A Mandola "D hole"
    Ibanez Bowl Back
    Rogue 100A (current campfire tool)

  6. #5
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    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    Well, Mr. Muleskinner moves quick and just sent me an update. He milled down that board and was able to get a back, sides and neck for my instrument and another back and sides set for another instrument.

    Also pictured, the top he plans to use for my mandolin. An old German Spruce bookmatched top.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Brian Carroll

    ------------------------

    Muleskinner Instruments - Guitar Bodied Octave Mandolin

  7. #6
    Registered User Darwin Gaston's Avatar
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    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    Andy is a great builder and a nice guys to work with. I met Andy at The 2019 Artisan Guitar Show in Harrisburg, PA. Andy had some of his mandolins at the show and they were very nice looking mandolins.

    However, I ended up having Andy make me a beautiful H-12 model guitar with sinker mahogany back and sides. When he was finished with the guitar it was beautiful and the sound from the sinker mahogany wood that he used on the guitar was out of this world. Believe you will be very please with his workmanship! Enjoy the process working with Andy. When he is finished with your mandolin you will be one happy camper keep us posted.

    Here is a pic of the back of my sinker mahogany guitar.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    2021 Ellis F5 Special
    2021 Girouard Concert Master F4 oval hole
    2020 Heiden Artist Plus A5
    1987 Flatiron Artist A5
    Martin 000-18 | Martin 00-18V

  8. #7
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    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    Quote Originally Posted by Darwin Gaston View Post
    Andy is a great builder and a nice guys to work with. I met Andy at The 2019 Artisan Guitar Show in Harrisburg, PA. Andy had some of his mandolins at the show and they were very nice looking mandolins.

    However, I ended up having Andy make me a beautiful H-12 model guitar with sinker mahogany back and sides. When he was finished with the guitar it was beautiful and the sound from the sinker mahogany wood that he used on the guitar was out of this world. Believe you will be very please with his workmanship! Enjoy the process working with Andy. When he is finished with your mandolin you will be one happy camper keep us posted.

    Here is a pic of the back of my sinker mahogany guitar.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Ahhh, I remember seeing your H-12 in his shop. He has built me a beautiful "slightly smaller" dread style as well (photos below) and the walnut back in the thread above is the guitar bodied octave that he built me.

    Andy is a special guy and a special builder for sure.

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    Brian Carroll

    ------------------------

    Muleskinner Instruments - Guitar Bodied Octave Mandolin

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  10. #8
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    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    A small update from Andy at the Muleskinner shop.

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    One of the sets on the left side of Birdseye will be the side of my A-style mandolin. Andy is also building an A-style in this batch for a customer that will be kind of a smaller sibling to my GBOM with the English Walnut back in the thread above. Photo of that joined back piece below...its stunning!

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    You can see he is also building a tonewood twin to my mandolin in this batch. Along with two European Sycamore (maple) and a Tazmanian Blackwood. I believe the other 4 mandolins are currently unclaimed, but would be for sale down the line once completed.

    Who wants to be mandolin siblings?!? Ha-ha!
    Brian Carroll

    ------------------------

    Muleskinner Instruments - Guitar Bodied Octave Mandolin

  11. #9

    Default Re: A New Mulerskinner Instruments A5 build starts...

    Looks to be on your way to fine instrument. Congrats! Birdseye is my favorite wood. Reminds me of one I made many moons ago.
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