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Thread: Scorpion Electric Mandolin

  1. #1


    Does anyone here have knowledge of or experience with a solid-body electric mandolin made by Scorpion? I'm usually pretty good at internet searches but I've been unable to turn up anything about them. The only exception being a post here from jimini_pickit:

    Quote Originally Posted by
    "My worst is this Scorpion electric mando I got off eBay; bad intonation and fret scale, non-adjustable bridge...I still have it ... #I guess I just keep it around in hopes to harvest the pick-ups, control knobs, etc. 'some day'. "
    I see these selling for $100.00 and under. I realize that with cheap mandolins you typically get what you pay for, they're often junk and #this post pretty much confirms that. However, it seems for everything out there that's considered junk by one person, it might be well thought of by others. (I'm not doubting you, Jimini. I'd just like a second opinion)

    I already have decent acoustic mandolins. I'm just interested in getting one of these things to play around with. Might it be worth picking it up and putting a different bridge on it or is it just total garbage and waste of money?

    If the latter, other than this one, the $77.00 GALVESTON you always see on Ebay or a Mandobird, #are there any solid body electrics that aren't big bucks people here [/I]would[/I] recommend?

    Thanks all

  2. #2
    Is there a "talent" knob? taboot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Portland, Oregon


    General consensus around here is that Galvestons are not even fit to be called mandolins, and Mandobirds are the cheapest, playable electrics out there. BlueStar instruments are a recommended mid-grade step up in price and quality for people who are going to want a new one in three months anyway.
    Christian McKee

    Member, The Big North Duo
    Musical Director, The Oregon Mandolin Orchestra

  3. #3
    Martin Stillion mrmando's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002


    My guess: the Scorpion is just another brand name for the same cheapo instrument also sold as a Galveston. It's also been sold under the brand names Parrot and Espanola.

    The new Kentucky electric is another option; same quality as the Mandobird. Or the "build-your-own" Saga kit if you're handy with tools. More than you wanted to know about electric mandolins.

    Notorious: My Celtic CD--listen & buy!

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  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Durham, NC


    Ah, yes...sad to say, my Scorpion mandolin is no more; I did as I had suspected, harvested the pickups and knobs, then pulled a 'Pete Townsend' on it-- smashed it to smithereens on my concrete driveway! I just couldn't STAND to listen/try to tune that thing anymore!

    To the next point, however, I'm in a paradox; I own a Galveston F-model mandolin that I'm really happy with. Yes, it's thin sounding and the workmanship is a bit shoddy here and there, but it is my go-to mandolin. Now, mind you, this is an older model Galveston F-model, before they had Model numbers (I think the newer ones are Model FM-25 or something). You'll have to look long and hard (on eBay, etc) to find this older model Galveston. Granted 99% of every other Galveston I find are cheapo's, but mine's a keeper (so much so that I actually bought another one after searching for ~6 months on eBay to find a duplicate model). You can see the one I have at my website under the Music Page. It's got actual MOP inlaid headstock and fret marker patterns, not just dots. I paid a couple hundred bucks for it on eBay, and am really pleased with it; it's what I learned on. Mine plays like butter! It doesn't have a great woody sound, but the chop is real nice and tuning/intonation are right on.

    I wouldn't pay any kind of money for the newer Galveston F-models, with that goofy looking scroll, and painted on headstock name. The A-models look OK, but I don't have one, so can't comment. I've got a Kentucky KM-140 A model (also on my website) that I'm REAL happy with; it's got a nice woody sound, etc. I got it for $78.00 off eBay (yeah, had to look awhile to get one at that cheap price), and had to take it to have it professionally setup (~$65), but it's a keeper now.

    I've lucked out, but it's hard to buy things 'sight-unseen/unheard' online and hope to get a good one. Still best off if you can get one locally and actually play the thing before you buy. Regardless of name brand, if you like the way it plays/sounds, and it fits your budget, go for it!


  5. #5


    I had already written off the Galveston as junk and now (unfortunately) my suspicians regarding the Scorpion are confirmed and its off the list, as well. (Too bad. It doesnt look too horrible and the price is right.) I understand the Mandobird's alright but I just don't like it's looks.

    Are these our only choices in the under $300 or so range?

    I have been (and still am) considering the Kentucky KM-300E electric but I liked the idea of an 8-string rather than 4. #(Am I wrong to think this way with electric?). Among the electrics that arent 8-string, I liked the idea of some of these #5-strings that extend the range down a bit.

  6. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    N. Calif.


    You could try a Givson (no that's not a typo, they are made in India):

    <a href="
    dZ1QQcmdZViewItem" target="_blank">Givson electric</a>
    Arches F4 / Newson F5
    Crump B1 / Old Wave GOM

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