The Favilla Theory

  1. MikeEdgerton
    I'm on my own here. Since this was written a Homenick mandolin has surfaced. I'm still not sold on that as the source of these mandolins. The Favilla in this thread is just too close and they were an operation that had some size to them.

    Favilla Message
  2. MikeEdgerton
    Here is a link to a page that discusses the Favilla company. There are no instruments shown that resemble a Strad-O-Lin. Tom Favilla is still alive and I contacted him a few years ago and asked about the Favilla labeled mandolin that looks like a Strad-O-Lin. Tom said it was a mandolin that his father's company had been making since the 20's. He also went on to explain that they didn't make the Strad-O-Lin mandolins. I could accept that except Tom entered the family business after the last of the real Strad-O-Lin's rolled down the line and his mandolin has some exact features as my labeled Strad-O-Lin (as well as several others I've owned), down to the shape and placement of the wood blocks behind the pickguard and the tailpiece cover.

  3. Kmcc24
    Hi Mike,

    I saw an Orpheum that looks pretty much exactly like your Favilla and like a Favilla I saw on eBay last year ( The one I saw is much the worse for wear but otherwise looks pretty much exactly like the mahogony eBay Favilla. The headstock has metal rather than a painted label. It says "Orpheum" and "New York." If Orpheum was a Stradolin genre label does this link Favilla to Stradolin? I have pictures of the Orpheum but they are not on a URL and I can't figure out how to upload them. Let me know if you want them.

  4. MikeEdgerton
    I've owned several Strad-O-Lin genre mandolins, two were labeled Orpheum. None were metal plates, all were screened logos (painted). The Orpheum name has showed up on mandolins built by other identifiable builders as well so it really doesn't tie Favilla to the Strad-O-Lins. I'm always happy to get more pictures of Strads. I'll send you a PM with an e-mail address you can send them to.
  5. MikeEdgerton
    Whoa, after looking at the pictures in the auction Kate has posted I have no doubt in my mind who made the Strad-O-Lins or at least some of them if not most of them. . The pictures are now in the social group photos.
  6. Bruce Clausen
    Bruce Clausen
    That Favilla is a nice looking instrument. Probably refinished at some point? The e-bay ad dates it to the 1950s; could be, but I wonder what makes them think so. It has the pointy head that I think of as post-war on a Strad, but it also has the "comma" f-holes that we see on some of the 1930's Strads. In fact this is the first Strad-type mandolin I've seen that has that head with those f-holes. (But with the older rounded head we see both styles of f-hole.)
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