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Thread: New mandolin time...but which?

  1. #1
    Registered User withfoam's Avatar
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    Default New mandolin time...but which?

    I've been lurking the forums for quite a while now and recently sold my Eastman 315 in order to upgrade. I've gone through dozens of threads of one versus another and which for the price range, but all the threads seem a bit...dated. So here's the breakdown of what I'm looking for:

    - F-Style
    - Good woody tone

    I've got anywhere between $1,500 - $2,500 to spend.

    I've landed on the Kentucky KM-1500 for the moment, but am unsure if it's worth it to go up to a Northfield or wait for a used something else US made. Sadly, not many places in the SF Bay Area have Mandolins (there's one shop, but no Kentuckys to try), so I'm kind of going off what I hear online. I was also thinking of the KM-1500 since I would order that through FolkMusician and I read about their setups, which I'm eager for someone competent to take the initial pass instead of me.

    Any thoughts?

  2. #2

    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    I'd probably go with a Flatiron or Weber. Good luck with your search.

  3. #3
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Play as many as you can. In that range you have options. Especially if you include the secondary market.
    Having something to say is highly over rated.

    The entire staff
    funny....

  4. #4
    Registered User withfoam's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Thanks for the advice. I'm going to seek a bunch out, but just wondering if I'm offbase with the KM-1500?

  5. #5

    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    I would make the drive to FolkMusician not that far a drive to actually play several. I have a Kentucky 1050 and it is a great mandolin. I have seen some posts in the classifieds from someone in Santa Rosa (?). I have seen a builder post in Craigslist from Petaluma, but might be out of your price range? How about Tall Toad Music in Sebastapol, I think there is another in Santa Rosa and there is a shop in Walnut Creek that advertises on Craigslist.
    Others to consider -some mentioned above
    - Flatiron
    - Weber
    - Pava (A model)
    - Nortfield -used
    - Summit
    -Ratliff
    - Morris
    - Silverangel (nice used 2 point for sale in the classifieds)
    - Kentucky

    Lots of great choices..........

  6. #6
    Registered User withfoam's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Thanks for all the input, Steve. I didn't realize that FolkMusician was nearby, I may need to make the drive. Much appreciated!

  7. #7

    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    There's Gryphon in Palo Alto, of course...Frank Ford's store. What is the "one shop" you mention?

  8. #8
    Registered User withfoam's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    The shop I was talking about is Gryphon. They have a '93 Dave Dart at the moment that I'm thinking of checking out.

  9. #9

    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Sylvan Music in Santa Cruz has a nice selection.

    Sylvan Music  
    Address: 1521 Mission St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
    Phone: (831) 427-1917
    Hours:
    Monday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
    Tuesday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
    Wednesday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
    Thursday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
    Friday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
    Saturday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
    Sunday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm

  10. #10
    Registered User withfoam's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    I'll check them out, too. Thanks!

  11. #11
    Registered User mandrian's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Quote Originally Posted by Northwest Steve View Post
    I would make the drive to FolkMusician not that far a drive to actually play several. I have a Kentucky 1050 and it is a great mandolin. I have seen some posts in the classifieds from someone in Santa Rosa (?). I have seen a builder post in Craigslist from Petaluma, but might be out of your price range? How about Tall Toad Music in Sebastapol, I think there is another in Santa Rosa and there is a shop in Walnut Creek that advertises on Craigslist.
    Others to consider -some mentioned above
    - Flatiron
    - Weber
    - Pava (A model)
    - Nortfield -used
    - Summit
    -Ratliff
    - Morris
    - Silverangel (nice used 2 point for sale in the classifieds)
    - Kentucky

    Lots of great choices..........
    I think Tall Toad Music are in Petaluma. People's Music is the Sebastopol store.

    Regards,

  12. #12
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    First mistake you made was selling the Eastman YOU DON'T sell them just buy more LOL

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  14. #13
    Registered User withfoam's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandoplumb View Post
    First mistake you made was selling the Eastman YOU DON'T sell them just buy more LOL
    Hahaha...yeah, well...I'm having a hard enough time convincing the wife that I need to keep my Banjo, too.

  15. #14
    Gibson F5L Gibson A5L
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    A Kentucky is a fine mandolin for their price range, Northfield is also. For an American made instrument in that price range you will have to go with a small builder or a used instrument. For an excellent instrument just above your price range check out the Flatiron A-5-2 that just showed up in the classifieds. THere is also a Flatiron Festival F model in your price range. It is hard to go wrong with a Bozeman made instrument. R/
    I love hanging out with mandolin nerds . . . . . Thanks peeps ...

  16. #15
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Quote Originally Posted by withfoam View Post
    I've been lurking the forums for quite a while now and recently sold my Eastman 315 in order to upgrade. I've gone through dozens of threads of one versus another and which for the price range, but all the threads seem a bit...dated. So here's the breakdown of what I'm looking for:

    - F-Style
    - Good woody tone

    I've got anywhere between $1,500 - $2,500 to spend.

    I've landed on the Kentucky KM-1500 for the moment, but am unsure if it's worth it to go up to a Northfield or wait for a used something else US made. Sadly, not many places in the SF Bay Area have Mandolins (there's one shop, but no Kentuckys to try), so I'm kind of going off what I hear online. I was also thinking of the KM-1500 since I would order that through FolkMusician and I read about their setups, which I'm eager for someone competent to take the initial pass instead of me.

    Any thoughts?
    I just got word from Jeff at JBovier.net that he has some 2014 F5-SS with "very slight cosmetic finish blemishes" that he will do for $1200. That's a $600 savings, and if I had the money, that would be my pick. Put the remaining $1300 in your next mando fund and save up for that Collings MF.

  17. #16
    Registered User withfoam's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    Wow, not bad! More investigation continues...

  18. #17
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    5th string still have it's shop near the Ashby Bart station ?

    in the 80's, I got a couple things from them when they had a Geary St shop
    in the Richmond (SF)
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

  19. #18
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: New mandolin time...but which?

    In the classifieds there is this.......

    http://www.mandolincafe.com/ads/91198#91198

    Also this.........

    http://www.mandolincafe.com/ads/90883#90883

    Good luck with your search.

    NFI
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

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