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Thread: Sanding for bass

  1. #1

    Default Sanding for bass

    Hi. Iím from Southern California and in the 60ís and 70ís it was very common to have your Martin D28 sanded for bass. Which part of an F5 type of mandolin would be best to sand for bass? A little off the tone bars maybe. I remember years ago this was brought up on the cafe. There was a shop that was doing it as a tune up. Thanks, Nick

  2. #2
    Fingertips of leather Bill McCall's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    You had the same thread in 2009. Don't you remember?

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/t...nding-for-bass
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Thanks!! I have been away from the cafe for a long while. But my thread was 12 years ago to be fair.

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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    A dreadnaught guitar has an enormous soundboard compared to a mandolin. As long as it’s your instrument you’re free to do as you like but that kind of work does not successfully scale down to mandolins.
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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    I just read the old thread. I think that the answers that you will get now will be about the same as they were then.

    Although I am an experienced repair person, I would be very reluctant to even consider taking on such a job. I cannot envision being able to do such work through the f-holes or through the endpin hole. Mandolins and guitars are much more difficult to open up than violins, and violins are tough enough. Over the many years I have been working on instruments, I have only opened up a handful. Sometimes it went well, and sometimes it went badly. The risk of damage to the instrument is very high.

    I was going to say that if I was hungry enough, I might consider opening up and re-voicing an overbuilt instrument such as a 1970's Gibson F-5. But after considering the potential for significant damage and devaluation to the instrument, I have changed my mind.

    Such a job is only for the most able professionals. Most of us are not that good. It is certainly not a job for an amateur.

    The only fellow I know of who I would have recommended to do such work is Randy Wood, but Randy is up there in years, and I do not know whether he is still willing and able to do such difficult work.

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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    http://www.mcclanahanstringedinstrum...storation.html
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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    When you sanded for bass, how many didja catch?
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  11. #8
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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Quote Originally Posted by allenhopkins View Post
    When you sanded for bass, how many didja catch?
    Click image for larger version. 

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  13. #9

    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Also, which part of my banjo should I sand for bass?

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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Quote Originally Posted by OldSausage View Post
    Also, which part of my banjo should I sand for bass?
    If you sand a flat spot near the bottom it will be easier to stand it up against a wall thus creating a base.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  18. #12

    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    What actually does ' sanding for bass ' mean ?

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    Adrian Minarovic
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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Random hippie sanding!
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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    I think it would be much easier to find a mandolin that had the bass response you wanted and buy that one. Sell your current one if needed.

  22. #15

    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Quote Originally Posted by Nevin View Post
    I think it would be much easier to find a mandolin that had the bass response you wanted and buy that one. Sell your current one if needed.
    But then there would be no wonderful story about how terrible your mandolin sounded until you sanded that bit off of the end pin and viola! It's not always so easy for people to just go out and buy the right mandolin for them. In fact, if this site is anything to go by, it almost never happens -- or if it does, they change their mind 6 months later. At least, that's what always happens to me.

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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    You can always sand the top from the outside and then refinish the top when you're satisfied with the tone.

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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Quote Originally Posted by Hudmister View Post
    You can always sand the top from the outside and then refinish the top when you're satisfied with the tone.
    You could do it from the back as well. I would suggest doing it from the front because when you sand it too thin and it collapses you can make a really nice candy bowl out of what is left of the mandolin.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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  27. #18
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    Default Re: Sanding for bass

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Hanson View Post
    What actually does ' sanding for bass ' mean ?

    Dave H
    With a guitar you can take off the strings, reach inside through the sound hole with sand paper, and sand the underside of the sound board. You can also remove some of the wood from the sound board braces on one side. This "loosens up" the sound board. Do it on the treble side and your guitar will be brighter. Do it on the bass side and it will be warmer.

    Presumably you can do the same thing on a mandolin, but how to do it through an f hole I have no idea.
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