Now for something completely different...

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Now for something completely different...

Postby zhyla » Sun Dec 18, 2011 6:21 pm

I have been building an instrument since January. It's finally more or less done. It's not a guitar and not exactly a go-to instrument for blues, but I guess you could play blues on it :)

Here it is all finished. It is a mandocello, which is an instrument in the mandolin family.

The scale is 25.5". The top is western red cedar, the back/sides/neck are african mahogany. Both top and back are carved. The neck and tail stripes are wenge, as is the tailpiece. The fretboard is macassar ebony and the nut and bridge are some other ebony (gaboon? can't remember). The top is X-braced. The finish is quite amateurly french polished with garnet-colored shellac.

Here is an audio recording.

And here are a bunch of gigantic pictures:

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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby allanlummox » Sun Dec 18, 2011 6:51 pm

Very pretty!
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby leftyguitarman » Sun Dec 18, 2011 8:23 pm

You want to build me one? :mrgreen: I sold my bouzouki years ago and I miss it every day. There are none for sale out there that are flippable to left handed and any good, it seems.

That thing looks amazing. And it sounds incredible! Amazing work zhyla. I've always wanted to try and do blues on a zouk, octave mando or mandocello.
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby OldWailer » Sun Dec 18, 2011 11:25 pm

Great Job, Zyla--wonderful sound!!!
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby Buffalo_Bill » Mon Dec 19, 2011 1:08 am

Nice work!
Your tune reminds me of post punk, like the Cure, and Joy Division.
Nice!
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby bigdaddyguitar » Mon Dec 19, 2011 1:20 am

Very nice job. Beautiful woods !!!
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby tinsmith » Mon Dec 19, 2011 1:56 am

Nice lookin' instrument you have thar.
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby ricbleu » Mon Dec 19, 2011 3:29 am

Magnifique! That is just sooo amazing!!! Your choice of timbers and craftsmanship are superb. And the sound is very rich, like dark chocolate. Well done that man! :D Peace
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby Mars » Mon Dec 19, 2011 3:46 pm

I love it. Great job
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby s1120 » Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:19 pm

Thats awesome!!! Nice workmanship!!

Im not used to seeing tops that thick. Is that normal for them? [being I have never seen one before this ]
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby zhyla » Mon Dec 19, 2011 11:45 pm

s1120 wrote:Im not used to seeing tops that thick. Is that normal for them?


A spruce top would be marginally thinner; cedar is not quite as stiff. But it's thickest near the soundhole, which is I think what you're referring to. There's a lot of stress on the top there, it's where a split is most likely to happen.
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby Neal » Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:45 am

Beautiful! Very Gibsonesque.
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby Buffalo_Bill » Tue Dec 20, 2011 12:07 pm

So, please tell us how you shaped the top and bottom?
Did you carve the arch, or steam bend them?
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby zhyla » Tue Dec 20, 2011 7:40 pm

The top and back are carved. I used a router to do the rough carving and spokeshaves and scrapers to smooth. It's not too hard and goes fairly fast.
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Re: Now for something completely different...

Postby bottleneck » Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:20 pm

"it's not too hard" haha!! i think i would make a mess of it!!

anyway,i play blues on bouzouki and mandolin at times ,so i'm sure you could wail some on this.

congratulations on a beautiful instrument.

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