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Thread: Bowlbacks of Note

  1. #7076
    Full Grown and Cussin' brunello97's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    I can't recall seeing these side holes before, though I should be doing a little more searching before posting this:
    I Fratelli Albertazzi.

    Can't say I much like the holes, but overall a pretty nice looking mandolin: maple bowl, curious headstock.

    The neck looks to be in fairly playable condition.

    Mick
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  2. #7077

    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    [QUOTE=Tavy;1683492]Interesting aluminium bowled mandolin on eBay at present, no makers name but the seller suspect German origins:

    The U.S. Department of Defense is soon coming up with a titanium version of this model. Sales for civilian use may be limited, though.

    Cheers,

    Victor
    It is not man that lives but his work. (Ioannis Kapodistrias)

  3. #7078
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    I can't recall seeing these side holes before, though I should be doing a little more searching before posting this:
    I Fratelli Albertazzi.

    Can't say I much like the holes, but overall a pretty nice looking mandolin: maple bowl, curious headstock.

    The neck looks to be in fairly playable condition.

    Mick
    I actually like the snaky soundport holes. At least these Albertazzi boys while learning in the Vinaccia shop decided to make something a little different. That zero fret looks a little odd. I wonder if something is missing there.

    Here is the only other Albertazzi mandolin I have in my files. More Vinacci-esque to my eye. The neck on the current one is much different esp with the zero fret.
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    Jim

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  5. #7079

    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Here is another Albertazzi:
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  7. #7080
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Hah, Mick! I did a search for Albertazzi mandolin and your earlier post on this thread came up indicating you were interested in 2008 probably in the one I posted above.
    Jim

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  8. #7081
    Full Grown and Cussin' brunello97's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Thanks, Jim! Ha, is right. Likely no more on that one than a desultory bid, for sure, as Martin J calls them.

    By the looks of all three, Fra'lbertazzi made some nice mandolins.

    It looks like the zero fret itself is missing on the current Al'tazzi. Shouldn't be much of a fuss to replace.

    I guess it's time for another desultory bid.

    Mick
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  9. #7082
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    What nothing for 2 whole months?

    Nearly new Pandini on eBay UK: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/183600758903?ul_noapp=true

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  11. #7083
    Full Grown and Cussin' brunello97's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Yum. Scalloped maple bowl. Mille grazie, John! Happy New Year to y'all!

    Mick
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    I had a happy find today. I just got this 1919 Calace a few hours ago. I don't know much of it's history but I'm happy to see that it's previous owner had strung it up with some unknown brand of light strings. I have since replaced it with a set of Dogal Calace RW92 Dolce. What a wonderful full sounding instrument and very playable up to the end of the fretboard extension (even if I have to fret it with my fingernail). Here are some (sideways) pictures:

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  14. #7085
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    Yum. Scalloped maple bowl. Mille grazie, John! Happy New Year to y'all!

    Mick
    Every Pandini I ever played was scallopped including mine, now long gone.
    Jim

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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    Every Pandini I ever played was scallopped including mine, now long gone.
    Was yours maple, too, Jim? Like that gorgeous (unscalloped) Calace that bstanish just posted? What a classic!

    Maple bowls...

    Iirc your Embergher is a rosewood bowl, vero? I love the rosewood LEs.

    Mick
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    Was yours maple, too, Jim? Like that gorgeous (unscalloped) Calace that bstanish just posted? What a classic!

    Maple bowls...

    Iirc your Embergher is a rosewood bowl, vero? I love the rosewood LEs.

    Mick
    Yes, here is my Pandini:
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    Yes, you are correct that my 1904 Embergher N.3 has a BRW fluted bowl. Here is a reprise of its front and back:
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    Yes, here is my Pandini:
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    Yes, you are correct that my 1904 Embergher N.3 has a BRW fluted bowl. Here is a reprise of its front and back:
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    Thanks, Jim! I know I'm an iconoclast when it comes to Embergher design love, but I think yours is sublimely wonderful.

    This model doesn't look like it has that distinctive LE subtle recurve at the bowl / neck confluence, but all the elements come together into a lovely whole. Gorgeous mandolin!

    Mick
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    Thanks, Jim! I know I'm an iconoclast when it comes to Embergher design love, but I think yours is sublimely wonderful.

    This model doesn't look like it has that distinctive LE subtle recurve at the bowl / neck confluence, but all the elements come together into a lovely whole. Gorgeous mandolin!

    Mick
    According to my friend and LE expert, it was very likely completely made by the master himself since at the relatively early time he may have been the main maker with maybe one acolyte. Also he worked on the upperend instruments. Also this is early, pre-1907 when they had the symmetrical scratchplates and this was an orchestral instrument. The soloist models have a slightly larger body and possibly a more pronounced recurve in the neck area. I know about you and the Larsons but didn't know about your iconoclasicism (right word) for LE's work. Is this a new thing? You must be getting older. When we met years ago I don't think you developed these tics.
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  19. #7090
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    Iirc your Embergher is a rosewood bowl, vero? I love the rosewood LEs.
    Lovely stuff, all three (Pandini, Calace, Emberger). Didn't realise you're no longer a Pandini man, Jim.

    A nice Emberger no. 2 (1930) just showed up on the Cafe ads today. Nearby and tempting. Is that model also fluted? But nut width is 15/16", so probably not for me.

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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Clausen View Post
    Lovely stuff, all three (Pandini, Calace, Emberger). Didn't realise you're no longer a Pandini man, Jim.

    A nice Emberger no. 2 (1930) just showed up on the Cafe ads today. Nearby and tempting. Is that model also fluted? But nut width is 15/16", so probably not for me.
    No flutes until N.3 and the soloists. there are N.4's but those are generally custom 3's. I believe most Emberghers have those narrow but radiused necks/fingerboards. It is the Roman style and was sort of imitative of the violin. They are not all as weird as they looks tho, do take some getting used to. OTOH they are not for everyone even among us bowlback aficionados.
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  22. #7092
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    I know about you and the Larsons but didn't know about your iconoclasicism (right word) for LE's work. Is this a new thing? You must be getting older. When we met years ago I don't think you developed these tics.
    I am getting older, Jim. But I've been fussy, twitchy (and over-opinionated) about LE's work around here for a long while. And people have been justifiably ignoring these opinions for an equal period of time.

    FWIW (little), I've long felt that LE's (later) work on the higher end model was a dog's breakfast of unrelated design elements. This is obviously no reflection on the sound or playability..... The 5 bis are more of a design hash than even the Gibson F-5s, which however jumbled, hold together better to my design eye.

    I know I'm swimming against the tide. So was the little kid who said the Emperor had no clothes....

    Your model, however orchestral, is a much finer, more integrated looking overall design.

    To my eye. But what do I know?

    Mick
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    The 5 bis are more of a design hash than even the Gibson F-5s
    Thanks for that thought, Mick. I'll certainly agree with you about the F-5. A monstrosity.

    And henceforth I'll be looking at the Embergers with new eyes.

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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    I am getting older, Jim. But I've been fussy, twitchy (and over-opinionated) about LE's work around here for a long while. And people have been justifiably ignoring these opinions for an equal period of time.

    FWIW (little), I've long felt that LE's (later) work on the higher end model was a dog's breakfast of unrelated design elements. This is obviously no reflection on the sound or playability..... The 5 bis are more of a design hash than even the Gibson F-5s, which however jumbled, hold together better to my design eye.

    I know I'm swimming against the tide. So was the little kid who said the Emperor had no clothes....

    Your model, however orchestral, is a much finer, more integrated looking overall design.

    To my eye. But what do I know?

    Mick
    It is especially interesting since the two finest 5bis Emberghers I have seen and played were both made in the 1940s by Domenico Cerrone after Luigi passed away. I guess I am used to seeing these and fine them quite pleasing to my eyes but then again what do I know?

    BTW the main thing i do dislike is that cartoon dragon they put on the N.6.

    BTW If you think that the 5bis is a design hash, what about the dreaded Cetramadami? I don't think i have actually seen an actual instrument but no doubt they existed and I think commissioned by a customer. I don't think we can completely blame LE for making one only agreeing to do it for the cash. Had to feed those bambinos.

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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Ah, here is an actual photo of the Embergher Cetramadami mandolin on this auction site.

    Yes, I know it is not a bowlback.

    I love this description of the design as cubist, though I am not sure why the description calls this cetramadami a 5bis (except for the neck). I will have to look in Ralf and Barry's book and see what they say.

    Luigi EMBERGHER fut toujours à la recherche d’esthétiques particulières et de sonorités spécifiques. Il propose dans son catalogue de 1925 cette extravagante mandoline cubiste (modèle 5bis). Il est possible que ce modèle n’ait pas trouvé grâce auprès du public, ou bien que la situation politique n’ait pas encouragé Luigi à persévérer et à en fabriquer de nombreux exemplaires. Toujours est-il que cet extraordinaire modèle, en parfait état de jeu, dans sa boîte d’origine, reste une pièce si rare que les auteurs du livre consacré à ce grand luthier n’ont pas réussi à trouver un seul exemplaire pour illustrer leur ouvrage.

    Translation:
    Luigi EMBERGHER was always looking for particular aesthetics and specific sounds. In his catalog of 1925 he proposes this extravagant cubist mandolin (model 5bis). It is possible that this model did not find favor with the public, or that the political situation did not encourage Luigi to persevere and to make many copies. Still, this extraordinary model, in perfect condition, in its original box, remains a rare piece that the authors of the book dedicated to this great luthier failed to find a single copy to illustrate their work.
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Here is the explanation in the Embergher catalogue from 1925 (from Ralf and Barry's book The Embergher Mandolin.

    Questo strumento è stato construito organicamente con i criteri tecnici del Cav. Luigi Embergher, su disegno prospettico del Prof. Aldebrando Madami. — Differisce dal mandolino soltanto nella forma, ed ha una maggiore dolcezza di suono che lo rende più gradito all'udito.

    Translation:
    This instrument has been organically constructed with the technical criteria of Cav. Luigi Embergher, based on a perspective design by Prof. Aldebrando Madami. - It differs from the mandolin only in the form, and has a greater sweetness of sound that makes it more pleasing to the hearing.
    From Luigi Embergher Wikipedia page:

    1925 Mandolin sold by the Vichy Enchères auction, described as Model 5A "Cubist".[1] This model never became a success and this is the only known example. During the 1930s, Italy's fascists introduced the concept of Degenerate art, a movement that condemned Futurism. The political upheavals were enough that Embergher had to shut down most of his business, including that which made this work of modern art. Photo by Jacques Henri Bayle
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Clausen View Post
    Thanks for that thought, Mick. I'll certainly agree with you about the F-5. A monstrosity.

    And henceforth I'll be looking at the Embergers with new eyes.
    Emberghers are certainly an acquired taste. I never would tell someone that they are the way to go. I know too many players who have given over to other styles.
    Last edited by Jim Garber; Dec-31-2018 at 4:16pm.
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    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

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  29. #7098
    Registered User bstanish's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by brunello97 View Post
    Was yours maple, too, Jim? Like that gorgeous (unscalloped) Calace that bstanish just posted? What a classic!

    Maple bowls...

    Iirc your Embergher is a rosewood bowl, vero? I love the rosewood LEs.

    Mick
    I wasn't really too fussy about what wood my bowls were, but I have to admit now I think I am a fan of the maple bowls. The Calace has a much nicer range from warm to bright compared to my W.A. Cole.

    I'd love to hear Jim Garber's 1904 Embergher N.3, if is sounds half as good as it looks...

    Perhaps a bit off topic for this thread, but when I was digging around the case for the new bowlback, I found this set of strings and I was wondering if anyone might be able to roughly date the packaging.


    Click image for larger version. 

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    Bradley

  30. #7099
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    It may not be the wood of the bowl but the difference in construction of your Calace vs. your Cole. Those are pretty recent strings. D’Addario still sells them tho probably packaged differently. If you really want to know how old they are contact D’Addario. They do change their packaging every year or so. Keep the Dogals you have. IMO those are the best strings for your Calace. I don’t like flat wounds on Italian bowlbacks.
    Jim

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    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

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  32. #7100
    Registered User bstanish's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bowlbacks of Note

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    It may not be the wood of the bowl but the difference in construction of your Calace vs. your Cole.
    True enough. Apparently the Cole is built with some unique patented method. Basically thin T shaped strips of wood between each rib to connect them.
    Keep the Dogals you have. IMO those are the best strings for your Calace. I don’t like flat wounds on Italian bowlbacks.
    Definately. I will probably venture out and try a couple others brands including some flatwounds just for the fun of it, but I’m pretty much sold on the Dogals

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