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Thread: Mandolins in progress

  1. #6201
    I may be old but I'm ugly billhay4's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Nice, Martin.
    Bill

  2. #6202
    Henry Lawton hank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    The look is very clean and precise, could we call it 21st Century Art Nouveau. Your original dragon and any similarly art inspired apertures could be as special to your look as scrolls are to our classic F5.
    Aside from visual appeal once players move into the intermediate stage of playing they are more sensitive to a more sonically active instrument often forsaking their beloved scroll to afford one. We all know the experience, you play a new to you instrument and it seems to come alive the way it vibrates and sings in comparison to your stiffer less sonically active instrument you've become accustomed to. If your instruments can do that in a new and interesting way you'll be a very busy builder.
    "A sudden clash of thunder, the mind doors burst open, and lo, there sits old man Buddha-nature in all his homeliness."
    CHAO-PIEN

  3. #6203

    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    So I got the "beta prototype" of the Nautilus design strung up in the almost-white today... just a light coat of sealer to keep the dirt out of the pores while I play with it for a while. It definitely has flaws, it's been through a lot, including two sets of sides, a few sets of tone bars, etc. And the heel cap isn't installed yet.

    This baby is light... weighs in at 1lb 11oz with all the hardware.

    It definitely has "oval hole" tone... more than I would have thought with the tone bars. Though apparently that doesn't make as much difference as we have all thought for a long time... Great sustain, dark balanced tone. Though I do want to play with trying to get the E string a little more "bell-like". Probably needs adjustments to the sound holes, I haven't played with them much yet.

    Sorry for the "spatula" tailpiece... just the quickest thing to knock together. The final tailpiece will have wood accents and an inlaid opal-fossilized ammonite (which look like a nautilus shell). They're pretty, and the mass will help to damp the tailpiece. What's cool is that no tools are needed to remove the tailpiece. The "strap button" is a 1/4-20 threaded knob. Comes off really easily, but stays put.

    Thanks for the comments. Now on to the other variants.

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  5. #6204
    I may be old but I'm ugly billhay4's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Okay, Martin. Now we need to hear it.
    It's very nice looking. How deep is it? Looks shallow in the pictures.
    Lots of very creative design elements.
    Good job.
    Bill

  6. #6205

    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Thanks! I'll try to record something tonight after tweaking the setup a bit.
    The sides are a little over 1.375" deep. But the arches are higher... the back is about .75" deep, the top is a little less.

    EDIT: Here are some sound samples. I am posting them before I listen to them and decide not to. Feedback on the tone appreciated. Unfortunately I don't have a real recording rig, so it's just computer microphone quality.

    http://martinjacobson.com/nautilus_recording_1.mp3

    http://martinjacobson.com/nautilus_recording_2.mp3
    Last edited by Marty Jacobson; Aug-16-2012 at 8:24pm.

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  8. #6206
    I may be old but I'm ugly billhay4's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Martin,
    Thanks for the sound clips and the explanation of depth. Must be the high arching that makes it look thin to me.
    Sounds pretty good for a brand new instrument; still a bit thin, but the sound is there, especially on the classical stuff.
    Why did you choose a high arch?
    Bill

  9. #6207
    Henry Lawton hank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    I agree, Martin you've done really well. You said it sounded like an oval to you but I would have guessed it was an F hole by the recordings. Kind of a F hole fundamental tone with a oval hole longer sustain.
    "A sudden clash of thunder, the mind doors burst open, and lo, there sits old man Buddha-nature in all his homeliness."
    CHAO-PIEN

  10. #6208
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Quote Originally Posted by ArtDecoMandos View Post
    So I got the "beta prototype" of the Nautilus design strung up in the almost-white today... just a light coat of sealer to keep the dirt out of the pores while I play with it for a while. It definitely has flaws, it's been through a lot, including two sets of sides, a few sets of tone bars, etc. And the heel cap isn't installed yet.

    This baby is light... weighs in at 1lb 11oz with all the hardware.

    It definitely has "oval hole" tone... more than I would have thought with the tone bars. Though apparently that doesn't make as much difference as we have all thought for a long time... Great sustain, dark balanced tone. Though I do want to play with trying to get the E string a little more "bell-like". Probably needs adjustments to the sound holes, I haven't played with them much yet.

    Sorry for the "spatula" tailpiece... just the quickest thing to knock together. The final tailpiece will have wood accents and an inlaid opal-fossilized ammonite (which look like a nautilus shell). They're pretty, and the mass will help to damp the tailpiece. What's cool is that no tools are needed to remove the tailpiece. The "strap button" is a 1/4-20 threaded knob. Comes off really easily, but stays put.

    Thanks for the comments. Now on to the other variants.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Martin, it looks great but that bridge sure looks cranked way up. Are you going to make a custome bridge for it?
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  11. #6209

    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Actually, I haven't decided. I changed the thickness of the fretboard to simplify part of the process, and that changed the bridge height by a tad. Then I brought the Stew-Mac bridge way down to see if making it full-contact made any difference in tone. So it's about 1/8" higher than I had originally intended, all told. It is definitely something I will have to address on future instruments.

  12. #6210
    Masamando Steve Hinde's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Next batch in progress. F Dola, 2 Maple F's , Rosewood F and a Koa F.
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  13. #6211
    Registered User Steve Sorensen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Three in a row.

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    Steve

  14. #6212

    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Martin, congratulations! That is one seriously cool mandolin and it sounds great. Very intriguing as are all the designs on your site.
    the billyhawks http://thebillyhawks.bandcamp.com

    Original Melodies for Mandolin, Mandola & Mandocello
    http://HillbillyChamberMusic.bandcamp.com

  15. #6213
    gary nava; luthier GarY Nava's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

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    Thought that you might like to see this one whilst it’s in “the white”!!
    This is my new Standard Plus. A design based on my popular Standard model but with an upgraded specification throughout. The neck is wenge with Indian rosewood back & sides and a red spruce top.
    Hopefully I’ll be offering it for sale at the end of September.
    Cheers Gary

    http://www.navaguitars.co.uk/forsale.html

  16. #6214
    Registered User Tavy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Interesting figure on that Wenge Gary: it'll be fascinating to see how it looks with some finish on.

  17. #6215

    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Gary, I think that is probably the best-looking neck heel I have ever seen. The transition is sculpted but very subtle. Awesome. What are you filling the wenge pores with? Pumice?

  18. #6216
    Registered User Max Girouard's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    I have to agree with Martin, that is one nice neck heel Gary! Great job!

  19. #6217
    Henry Lawton hank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    The way the grain turns to match the rim grain is what I'm amazed at.
    "A sudden clash of thunder, the mind doors burst open, and lo, there sits old man Buddha-nature in all his homeliness."
    CHAO-PIEN

  20. #6218
    gary nava; luthier GarY Nava's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Thanks for the great comments, much appreciated! As for filling the neck's grain- it's so deep,but the wood itself has a wonderful texture- I think I'm going for an oil finish on the neck and the body will be French polished.
    Cheers Gary

  21. #6219
    Registered User amowry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Beautiful work, Gary. The whole instrument is quite elegant.

  22. #6220

    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Two months away from halloween and already the bug eyes are out on the freshly buffed:
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  24. #6221
    Registered User Clicker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Quote Originally Posted by ArtDecoMandos View Post
    It definitely has flaws, it's been through a lot, including two sets of sides, a few sets of tone bars, etc. And the heel cap isn't installed yet.
    I thought the neck joinery was very intuitive. -Harry

  25. #6222
    Registered User Clicker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Glitch of the day: The printing department at the office supply store couldn't retrieve either of the .dwg/.dxf CAD files I had stored on the flash drive. Since it's 30 miles one way, I went ahead and established some key landmarks on the design and just printed the pattern sheet out on about 6 sheets. I lined up the sheets on a thin cutting board and positioned the sheets with straight pins, and glued it up. Once the glue is dry I'll try transferring the pattern sheets to the plexiglass.

    -h
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  26. #6223
    Registered User Max Girouard's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Just finished binding 2 F5 mandolins today, Lauri bound the cedar F5. Boy our thumbs are sore. Still rough and need lots of clean up.





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  27. #6224
    Registered User Steve Sorensen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Max and Laurie,
    Nice team work!
    Steve

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  29. #6225
    Registered User Steve Sorensen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mandolins in progress

    Dangerous curves ahead!

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    Steve

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