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Thread: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

  1. #1

    Default VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    That's the headline the seller has used. Interesting instrument with a great case which someone can definitively identify, I would hope..

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/25525182811...31cd95:g:~ugAA

  2. #2
    Pataphysician Joe Bartl's Avatar
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    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    Looks a lot like my Vega mandocello, except with a different neck and head stock. Is this originally Vega as a 4-string something or other, or was the original neck replaced?

  3. #3
    Jo Dusepo, luthier Dusepo's Avatar
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    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    Quote Originally Posted by NickR View Post
    That's the headline the seller has used.
    Looks like they're trying to hit all the keywords for searchers.

    Cool instrument though (as much as I take issue with the fashion in the early 20th century of calling flat-backed tenor guitars lutes)!
    I am a luthier specialising in historical and world stringed instruments. You can see more info at my website.

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    Planetary banjo pegs, same as my Gibson TL. Definitely (IMHO) attempts by both companies to reach out to tenor banjoists, in search of a guitar/mandolin/wood-bodied sound.

    Were there many tenor guitars that used the planetary pegs? The two I have owned, Gibson and Dobro, both used guitar-ish tuners.
    Allen Hopkins
    Gibsn: '54 F5 3pt F2 A-N Custm K1 m'cello
    Natl Triolian Dobro mando
    Victoria b-back Merrill alumnm b-back
    H-O mandolinetto
    Stradolin Vega banjolin
    Sobell'dola Washburn b-back'dola
    Eastmn: 615'dola 805 m'cello
    Flatiron 3K OM

  5. #5
    Teacher, luthier
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    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    Joe, this is indeed an original 4 string. They didn't make many of these, but I have seen at least one other.

    Gibson did use planetary tuners for a while, on at least some of their earlier tenor guitar models. They also used them on some 6 string guitars around 1929 - 1930. Maybelle Carter's L-5 originally had planetary tuners on it. She replaced them pretty quickly.

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    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    The Mound City Blue Blowers in 1931 playing "St Louis Blues" with two of them! I believe thats a young Eddie Condon on the left...

    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

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  9. #7
    Pataphysician Joe Bartl's Avatar
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    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    Buying an instrument unseen and unplayed from an unknown source is nervous-making. Nevertheless, this Vega is now on its UPS-way to me:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    First time bidding and buying on ebay. I'm doing my best not to fret, so to speak.

    When it arrives I'll make a little report in the Tenor Guitar forum ... or thereabouts.

    And from the when-it-rains-it-pours department: I saw this morning that Bernunzio's has just listed a Gibson version of same.
    Last edited by Mandolin Cafe; Dec-07-2021 at 4:59pm.

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  11. #8

    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    Well done! It does have its original case, which will protect it during its journey and also means you do not have to try to find a case. The seller appears to have what one would hope are all the credentials to be accurate about the instrument- and he has worked on it, so one hopes there will be no surprises, other than delight, I would trust. I have just bought a fantastic mandolin on eBay but for less than one tenth of what you have spent and I could not be happier with it on arrival, so it is not always a leap in the dark.

  12. #9
    Registered User Sue Rieter's Avatar
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    Default Re: VEGA tenor lute. banjo - tenor guitar - octave mandolin!

    Nice looking instrument and nice looking case. It's cool that you'll have a matched pair

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