Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 41

Thread: Girouard A4 build thread.

  1. #1

    Default Girouard A4 build thread.

    I'm trying to narrow down my instrument collection. If it doesn't get play, it's for sale. The upside of that is turning lots of instruments (over 30 years of playing and collecting) into a few that I really love.

    I've managed to convince myself that I need an F hole AND and oval hole mandolin and since I love my Girouard Concert A5, I decided to go with a Girouard custom A4. I had a wonderful Collings MT2O but my left thumb never really got comfortable with the wide nut/neck profile.

    I think Max and Lauri are some of the best at what they do so I've tried to let them guide the process rather than insisting on a specific kind of wood. We've chosen a Carpathian Spruce top and a quilted bigleaf maple back and sides. I'm looking for a little more bass and lots of harmonic content with enough punch to play acoustically in a trio.

    Whether you subscribe to the more mystical opening up or the more mundane just getting to know an instrument well, If I want to have a mandolin age with me....I better hurry. I'm hoping these two Girouards will be with me the rest of the journey.

    Will update as we go. Hoping it will be done by summer but absolutely no rush! I can wait.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Girouardback.jpg 
Views:	146 
Size:	375.5 KB 
ID:	199811
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	GirouardSoundboard.jpg 
Views:	91 
Size:	1.06 MB 
ID:	199812
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  2. The Following 10 Users Say Thank You to Chuck Leyda For This Useful Post:


  3. #2
    Gummy Bears and Scotch BrianWilliam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Summit County Colorado
    Posts
    1,251

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    That back quilt looks beautiful!

  4. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to BrianWilliam For This Useful Post:


  5. #3
    Registered User Jill McAuley's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Co. Mayo, Ireland
    Posts
    3,446

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Looking forward to following the progress of your A4, that back wood is gorgeous!
    2018 Girouard Concert oval A
    2015 JP "Whitechapel" tenor banjo
    2018 Frank Tate tenor guitar
    1969 Martin 00-18




    my Youtube channel

  6. The following members say thank you to Jill McAuley for this post:


  7. #4
    Registered User Darwin Gaston's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    148

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Chuck,

    I agree Max and Lauri are some of the best at what they do and great people to work with.

    I must say that’s a nice looking piece of Carpathian Spruce that you picked for the top. I have to agree with Jill that back piece of wood is gorgeous! You will have to post some more pics of your Girouard mandolin as Max completes the building process.

    Lauri does a fantastic job in staining the mandolin after Max works his magic in building it. Your going to have two beautiful Girouard mandolins when its finished!
    2022 Girouard Griffith Tribute A5
    2021 Ellis F5 Special
    2021 Girouard Concert Master F5 oval hole
    2020 Heiden Artist Plus A5
    1987 Flatiron Artist A5

  8. The following members say thank you to Darwin Gaston for this post:


  9. #5
    Registered User trevor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    brighton UK
    Posts
    1,794

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Incredible back, makes me wish I wasn't retiring!
    Trevor
    Formerly of The Acoustic Music Co (TAMCO) Brighton England now retired.

  10. The following members say thank you to trevor for this post:


  11. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    147

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Beautiful wood! I've had the Girouards on my short list for if and when I would be able to get a bench-made mando (looking less and less likely sadly). Looking forward to seeing finished pictures.

  12. The following members say thank you to Mainer73 for this post:


  13. #7
    Registered User Louise NM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    776

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Back looks like an asymmetrical two-point, top looks to be for an A. ¿Que pasa?

    In either case, it will be splendid.

  14. #8

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Many builders size wood by doing a shape tracing. The back wood was probably going to be a two point before the OP selected it for his A style.
    Sorry, I am no longer suffering fools

  15. #9

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    GirouardbackM.mp4

    Mary is correct the back was originally reserved for a two point. Here it is carved for the A4.

    EDIT: Looks like it came through as a download. I'm not sure how to embed short of making a video on youtube.
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  16. #10
    Administrator Mandolin Cafe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Lawrence, KS
    Posts
    3,280
    Blog Entries
    11

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Leyda View Post
    GirouardbackM.mp4

    Mary is correct the back was originally reserved for a two point. Here it is carved for the A4.

    EDIT: Looks like it came through as a download. I'm not sure how to embed short of making a video on youtube.
    Like this? It's just a sound file, MP3, so not real interesting unless you like the sound of wood being sawed .


  17. #11

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    I played the A4 two-point at TME (that was there for what seemed like five minutes). It was quite different than the oval hole two point model I had a few years back. A lot more volume and a lot livelier. Somewhere there are some pictures of it that TME shot before it left the store. I think they also have some pics of the f-hole sister to it. But I don't believe they made it to the web.
    Sorry, I am no longer suffering fools

  18. #12

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandolin Cafe View Post
    Like this? It's just a sound file, MP3, so not real interesting unless you like the sound of wood being sawed .

    I promise its a video clip on my computer.
    It came from Max through FB messenger. Somehow I lost the video part.

    I'll just see if I can put it on youtube.
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  19. #13

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	A4body.jpg 
Views:	55 
Size:	705.9 KB 
ID:	201344

    Getting closer! Going with Rubner RMP tuners. Still deciding on color. Should be here sometime this summer.
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  20. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Chuck Leyda For This Useful Post:


  21. #14

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Awesome looking build. Love Max and Lauri's work. Just got my A5 back from a Max setup. Wonderful work and great setup. Mine has a Carpathian top as well. I really enjoy playing it.

    Here is an example of one of Max and Lauri's Carpathian Spruce tops finished in varnish.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_3313.jpg 
Views:	49 
Size:	121.2 KB 
ID:	201405
    Last edited by slaminsam; Jun-07-2022 at 10:10am.

  22. The following members say thank you to slaminsam for this post:


  23. #15

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Looks great Sam!

    I wanted to make sure I deferred to Max about the tonewood while still looking for something different than my Adirondak/Eastern Maple A5. I think the Carpathian/Big Leaf Maple along with different bracing (Tone bars vs X) and Oval instead of F holes should provide enough contrast between the A5 and A4.

    Of course the main thing is that Max was suggesting the choices as he knows a lot more about how he works tonewood than I do!
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  24. The following members say thank you to Chuck Leyda for this post:


  25. #16
    Registered User Nick Gellie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Orgiva, Spain
    Posts
    1,421

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    I thought that x-bracing on oval holes is a better option than tonebar braces. That is what a lot of modern mandolinakers like Collings use on their oval holes.
    Nic Gellie

  26. #17

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Gellie View Post
    I thought that x-bracing on oval holes is a better option than tonebar braces. That is what a lot of modern mandolinakers like Collings use on their oval holes.
    The A4 will have X bracing. The Girouard A5 I have has tone bars. I was trying to highlight the differences that the two mandolins will have. Hopefully they will be different enough. The Girouard A5 seems to work brilliantly on any type of music so my only worry is that the A5 is going to be my choice on everything. Hopefully the two can be complimentary.
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  27. #18
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    Posts
    3,582

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Gellie View Post
    I thought that x-bracing on oval holes is a better option than tonebar braces. That is what a lot of modern mandolinakers like Collings use on their oval holes.
    Hey Nic!

    Define “better.” Better structural stability? Maybe. Better tone? Pretty subjective.

    Best,
    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
    2014 Smart F-Style Mandola
    2018 Vessel TM5
    2019 Hogan F5

  28. #19
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Saint Augustine Beach FL
    Posts
    5,928

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    That is going to be a stunning mandolin. I am the happy owner of a Girouard F-5 from 2014 that I got slightly used. Max and Lauri are wonderful people to deal with and a little while ago he sent me a "Girouard" engraved James tailpiece that has made string changes much easier and blinged it up a bit too.

    I look forward to seeing what color scheme you decide on.
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  29. The following members say thank you to Charles E. for this post:


  30. #20

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    I'm giving Lauri some ideas but I want to see her take on color scheme. She does amazing work and I'm no visual artist!

    I spend a fair amount of time hiking along the Crow River here in MN and I want the mando to remind me of that place. So organic, letting the wood stand out. It will have Rosewood tuning pegs and a triple bound with walnut on the top. Girouard lily inlay to match my Concert A5.

    I really like the violin aesthetic (Campenella/Toole/Im sure many others) and I would love to see Lauris take on that. But I'm also interested in a subtle green tint like this guitar. But green is pretty dangerous as I don't want a St Patrick's or Sea foam sort of color. My visual ideas get all jumbled up so mostly I want to give some ideas and get out of Lauris way!
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	A4mandocolor2.jpeg 
Views:	55 
Size:	364.9 KB 
ID:	201439
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  31. The following members say thank you to Chuck Leyda for this post:


  32. #21

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Both Campanella and Toole build in a certain style. It’s not an aesthetic, it’s a style of building, with years of experience in developing a French polish technique, voicing, the rolled bindings, etc. Toole worked for David Gage in Tribeca doing restoration and repairs. His finish work is probably one of the best violin finishes I’ve seen. His violins start at $12k. He is also building exclusively through TME.

    I love Lauri’s finish work. Especially the hand rubbed finish she does.
    Sorry, I am no longer suffering fools

  33. #22
    Fingers of Concrete ccravens's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Crockett, TX
    Posts
    1,016

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandolin Cafe View Post
    Like this? It's just a sound file, MP3, so not real interesting unless you like the sound of wood being sawed .

    Can I get a tab of that?
    Chris Cravens

    Girouard A5
    Montana Flatiron A-Jr.
    Passernig Mandola
    Leo Posch D-18

  34. #23

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  35. #24
    Registered User Nick Gellie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Orgiva, Spain
    Posts
    1,421

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by pheffernan View Post
    Hey Nic!

    Define “better.” Better structural stability? Maybe. Better tone? Pretty subjective.

    Best,
    Pat
    Hey Pat

    Oval holes traditionally have the transverse brace. My Collings MT2-O has x-bracing and it puts out a well-rounded tone.My Collings MT is more brash and cutting given the tone bar bracing on it.

    Ken Ratcliff uses x-bracing on his A-5 mandolins to good effect. Maybe I am a traditionalist. Others might think differently.
    Nic Gellie

  36. #25

    Default Re: Girouard A4 build thread.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	287284092_564687428655520_4067463896168948561_n.jpg 
Views:	35 
Size:	273.3 KB 
ID:	201540Click image for larger version. 

Name:	286946744_442506161213558_7796944059242811937_n.jpg 
Views:	27 
Size:	293.8 KB 
ID:	201541

    We're going to leave the headstock and fretboard undyed. The oil and varnish will darken it a bit but I want to see the variation in the wood. The body should be stained this weekend. Lauri is thinking of an Amber-brown color.
    Girouard Concert A5
    Girouard Custom A4
    Trillium Mandola
    Dunwell B-1 Bouzouki
    www.singletonstreet.com

  37. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Chuck Leyda For This Useful Post:


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •