Photos of my new old Gibson mandolin

dreadnut

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Here she is, a little rough, but hey, she's old. Cleaned up right nice, LOUD!

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Muckman

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I have wanted an old Gibson A for years!! I just don't ever seem to come across a vintage Gibson mandolin, local, when I'm ready to buy a new toy...that's pretty Dread!! I have an Eastman F that does fine, the older Gibsons I've had the pleasure of playing had gloriously full tone in comparison....
 

dreadnut

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My friend has a 1917 A, we're going to get together and compare.

I really wanted one from Lloyd Loar's tenure at Gibson. 1919-1924, so I brought the hammer down when found this one.
 

Stuball48

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Looking good Dread. I can see you getting a major role in the next Robin Hood movie.
 

dreadnut

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Don't know about that, Stu, but I can damn sure pick a few licks!

I will bring this thing to the Station Inn in Nashville next time I go for the Sunday night jam,
 

Stuball48

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Don't know about that, Stu, but I can damn sure pick a few licks!

I will bring this thing to the Station Inn in Nashville next time I go for the Sunday night jam,
You will be a hit - Marty Stuart might be there
 

hearth_man

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Hey Dread,. I didn't know you were into mandolins! That's great. I recently found a beat up 1918 Gibson K1 mandocello that I got back into playing condition. I love this style of mando with the oval sound hole. The sound is rich, more full than an f-hole design. Like you mando she has seen better days finish wise but the sound is 100 years in the making.
 

bobouz

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Is that just some sort of paint on the top or tinted lacquer?
I’ve never seen any info on the specific composition of the A-3’s ivory finish, but I have read that it’s somewhat delicate in nature. Regardless, aesthetically it’s a super cool finish, imho, and I also love the curlicue peghead inlay, which is unique to the A-3 in the world of Gibson mandos.
 

Boneman

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thats awesome! Looks vintage, what year is it? Always loved when Allen Woody played his mandolin during Gov’t Mule shows, never played one myself, but someday.
 

JohnW63

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How is it that there are a surprising number of really old mandolins out there which I assume are all in playable condition?
 

davismanLV

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How is it that there are a surprising number of really old mandolins out there which I assume are all in playable condition?
I'm gonna guess that smaller is better? Less distance and pull over a shorter space equals less distortion?? I'm making things up as I go, but it sounds reasonable, right??

RIGHT??
 

bobouz

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How is it that there are a surprising number of really old mandolins out there which I assume are all in playable condition?
As Tom says, smaller is better - for a number of reasons:
- Being physically very small, mandolins are far less likely to get bumped & bruised or worse.
- Carved tops & backs with a small surface area are strong, and are more likely to withstand an impact without structural damage.
- On many old Gibsons, the neck meets the body at the 10th fret - so less likely to warp or shift.
- A smaller body is easier to transport & store safely. Many old Gibson mandos still have their original & functional cases (frequently the case will be thoroughly thrashed, but the mandolin’s fine!).
 
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