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Scroll down or jump directly to these instruments: Brentrup mandola | Bulldog | Chris Stapleton's Collings MT2 | Collings MF5 varnish | Duffs | Elkhorns | Ellis (3) | Butch Baldassari's Fairbanks mando-banjo | Flatiron F5 Artist
GIBSONS: A models | F-4 1918 | F-4 1922 | F-5 owned by Charlie Collins | Apr. 12, 1923 Loar | June 13, 1923 Loar | 1925 unsigned Loar | 1927 fern F-5 | 1927 fern "Mildred" | 1957 F-5 White/Duff | F-5 Sam Bush | Loar H-5 mandola
Gilchrists | Henderson | Hooper | J. Bovier mandola | Kimble A | Monteleone | Butch Baldassari's Nashville Guitar Co. nylon-string | Nuggets | Stanley | Weber Elite | Weymann mandolute | Wiens F5
Bulldog F-4 Hybrid, 2008. Made in Savannah, GA. Long neck, raised fingerboard, scooped fingerboard extension. Lightweight rectangular case. $1,850
Brentrup Model 32-S mandola, 2002. A powerful mandola with the three-point body shape of early Gibsons, made by Johannes Brentrup of Minneapolis. West Virginia red spruce top, curly maple back and sides, vase-and-wire headstock inlay, Handel tuners, violin spirit varnish over oil varnish finish. $20,700
Video of Tyler Andal playing the Brentrup.
Collings MF5 Deluxe V, 2005. The varnish finish sets off the beautifully figured two-piece maple back. In its original hardshell case. $10,000
Elkhorn F, new. Nice workmanship and nice sound from Robb Brophy of Durango, CO. Radiused fingerboard, one-piece back. $5,750
Adam Steffey A-B'd this Elkhorn with our koa/cedar model on "Forked Deer." Frank Solivan played this mandolin in an Elkhorn shootout with Steffey.
Elkhorn Koa F, new. Made by Robb Brophy of Durango, CO. Clean, clear sound of koa body and cedar top, unique in the mandolin world. Radiused fingerboard, one-piece back. $5,750
Videos... Adam Steffey A-B'd this mandolin with our maple Elkhorn on "Forked Deer" (he ended up getting his own koa/cedar model, and he also had an Elkhorn shootout with Frank Solivan of Dirty Kitchen on
Ellis A5, 2011. A beautiful A model from Tom Ellis, with elegant Deco headstock inlay and gold Waverlys. In a hardshell case. $4,750
Ellis F5, 2005. This mandolin with stunning quilted maple is from the first batch of four when Tom Ellis resumed mandolin building in 2005. It is the prototype for the builds that followed, and it signed by Tom, Pava and Nathan Arrison. In its original shaped hardshell case. $9,850
Fairbanks (by Vega) Style S mandolin-banjo, 1917. Four strings make a lot more sense on a mandolin-banjo than eight, as this little banjo proves. It features a 10.5" rim, 28 brackets and 13" scale. Formerly owned by Butch Baldasari. In its original hardshell case. $850
Flatiron F5 Artist, 1992. Label signed by Bruce Weber. Pickguard replaced by Flatiron. In a hardshell case. $4250
Gibson Alright Style D, 1917. This was the forerunner of the Army/Navy model, which later inspired the Flatiron line. The finish has been removed from the top. The back, rims and neck have been refinished. A headstock veneer from a Gibson A-4 has been added. In a hardshell case. $1,250
Gibson F-4, 1918,
arguably the most beautiful of all Gibson mandolin
models, with shaded red mahogany finish,
double-flowerpot peghead inlay and intricately
inlaid buttons on the Handel tuners. This instrument
has the ancient woody tone that once inspired
thousands of men and women to join mandolin
orchestras. The bridge has been replaced with a
height-adjustable unit. With its original hardshell
Gibson F-4, 1922, made during the tenure legendary instrument designer Lloyd Loar. Features two important early-1920s improvements: the height-adjustable bridge and the adjustable truss rod in the neck. The rod gives the Loar-period F-4s more sustain and a more modern tone that is distinctly different from the pre-rod models. With its original hardshell case. $8500 Video of Sterling Abernathy duetting on this F-4 with Tyler Andal and an earlier non-truss rod F-4.
Gibson F-5, signed by Lloyd Loar on April 12, 1923. This beautiful Loar (sn 72857) was originally owned by Wallace Zeibarth, shown in the upper left of the photo below of the Albert Bellson quartet. He's in the upper left of the photo. (Bellson, as a teenager, was Gibson's youngest teacher-agent, and his brother Julius went on to become Gibson's historian.) It has its original Virzi, which gives it a beautiful, well-balanced tone. The fingerboard is unusually double-bound, with a black celluloid line (which on other examples is typically a layer of dyed pear wood), a thin line of ivoroid, and then a full-depth strip of ivoroid. The finish is worn off the back of the headstock. There is finish touchup on the back of the headstock. And it appears to have been refretted. It comes in its original Geib case. $175,000
Video... Frank Solivan of the band Dirty Kitchen puts this mandolin up against Adam Steffey and our June 13, 1923 Loar.
Gibson F-5, signed by Lloyd Loar on June 12, 1923. This Loar (sn 73641) went through a tough spell, leaving it with a big crack in the back, a crack in the rim, and some missing pieces in the back. Patches were spliced in (and are pretty obvious from the non-matching wood grain). And then it was sent to Gibson for a complete refinish. What didn't kill it made it stronger -- at least in sound. $89,000
Video... Adam Steffey takes on Frank Solivan (playing our Apr. 12, 1923 Loar) in a battle of the Loars.
Gibson F-5, 1957. Originally natural finish and formerly owned by Clarence White. According to an appraisal from Mandolin Bros. and Stan Jay's personal recollection, it was originally sunburst, then stripped by Clarence. When it came into Stan's store in the 1980s it was refinished by John Monteleone, who also replaced the fingerboard and the headstock veneer. It was then bought by Paul Duff, who used it as his personal instrument before he started making his own. The black-and-white pic of the Kentucky Colonels shows Roland White playing it in its original sunburst form (with block inlays). The album cover shows it after the finish was stripped. In a hardshell case. $6,000
Gibson F-5, 1986. Formerly owned by Charlie Collins, longtime guitarist with Roy Acuff. One of the earliest mandolins made by Jim Triggs at Gibson; given to Collins when he played for Gibson company event. $15,000
Gibson F-5 fern, 1927. Mr. Loar left Gibson in 1924 but he didn't take the sound of his mandolins with him. This fern has all the power and punch of a Loar F-5 at half the price. Finish checking on back, refretted by Hugh Hansen, small crack in headstock veneer touched up (crack does not go through), original rectangular HC. $82,500
Videos... Tyler Andal solo and f Tyler Andal playing the fern alone, and Tyler Andal joined by Sterling Abernathy on the "Mildred" F-5.
Gibson F-5 "Mildred," 1927. Mildred Byram, shown below in the 1930 Gibson catalog, was the original owner of this beautiful 1927 fern F-5. No issues, just great sound. The family says it came in a form-fit case (rather than rectangular) and that original case is still with it. $87,500
Videos... featuring Adam Steffey, and Battle of the ferns with Sterling Abernathy on "Mildred" and Tyler Andal on our other 1927 F-5.
Gibson F-5 Sam Bush. Exceptionally fine condition. SOLD
Gibson H-5 mandola, 1924. This Loar mandola makes an F-5 sound a little small. Signed by Lloyd Loar on Mar. 31, 1924. Original hardshell case. $105,000
Video of Sterling Abernathy playing the Loar H-5.
Gilchrist 5, 1994. Nashville producer/musician Mark Howard owned this Gil for the past five or six years and played it good and hard on every session during that period, including Bluegrass Highway, most of the records he did for Cracker Barrel, plus Iris Dement, Jack Clement and 30-40 more artists. The pickguard is long gone, and the tuners have been replaced. It comes in its original Calton case, along with a letter from Howard. SOLD
Gilchrist 5C, 1997. Gilchrist's "classical" model features an elegant amber-blond finish, black fingerboard binding, no fingerboard inlays and a beautiful one-piece back. It is in its original mint green Calton case. $20,000
Henderson A, 2001. Serial number 75, label signed by Wayne Henderson Aug. 28, 2001. Snakehead headstock shape, scooped fingerboard, hard case. $10,500
Hooper F5, new. Made by Ken Hooper of Elkin, NC; James tailpiece, Waverly tuners; Hooper's personal mandolin. In a Travelite case. $4,500
J. Bovier H5 mandola, 2013. A sweet deal on an F-style mandola, made in Korea. Original Ameritage case. $2,000
Kimble A, 2009. Made by Will Kimble of Cincinnati. Beautiful look, beautiful tone. In a hardshell case. $4,250
Monteleone F5, 1978. Archtop guitar maker John Monteleone is renowned for his imaginative designs, but he started out making mandolins modeled on Gibson's F-5. This is #20, and it speaks with the tone and power of the classic Gibson model. In a Calton case. $17,000
Nashville Guitar Co. nylon string mandolin, 2001. Made by Marty Lanham for Butch Baldassari. Unique sound with nylon strings, Madagascar rosewood back and sides, and cedar top. Also features a Brazilian rosewood fingerboard and bridge, 16" scale, Schaller tuners, and mahogany neck with graphite reinforcement. In its original hardshell case. $2500
National resonator mandolin, 2006. Owned by Butch Baldassari. Loud. Banjo-killing loud. Walnut back and sides. In its original hardshell case. SOLD
Nugget F, 2004. An elegant creation by Mike Kemnitzer of Central Lake, MI. Delicate fern headstock inlay, tortoise binding and gold-plated hardware, all brought together by a warm natural satin finish. Black/green Calton case. $20,000
Strong sound, as you can hear in the video by Tyler Andal.
Nugget F. Mike Kemnitzer of Central Lake, MI. Intricate headstock inlay and beautiful one-piece back. Legendary Nugget power. In a Calton case. SOLD, but check out the video of Frank Solivan playing a cool version of "Ain't No Sunshine" on this Nugget.
Stanley V-5, new. Made by Chris Stanley in Rhinelander, WI. Beautiful one-piece back, varnish finish. In a hardshell case. $7,500
Weber Elite Blackface, 2012. A beautiful mandolin with Engelmann spruce top, one-piece back of highly figured Bastogne walnut (finished with unfilled pores), and beveled pickguard. In its original hardshell case. $5500
Weymann Mandolute, 1920s. A beautiful instrument with a demure sound; nice curly maple back and sides. In its original hardshell case. $1250
Wiens F5, 2010. Made by Jamie Wiens of Cranbrook, BC, Canada. Manly neck with 1.22" nut width. Great sound and appearance, with Virzi, Waverlys, engraved James tailpiece, hide glue, radiused fingerboard and varnish finish. In a hardshell case. $12,500