report. Will this video play on your equipment? Although it needs basic skill and experience but patience and careful works will be rewarded. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. I was very impressed with the speed I received my kit in only a matter of days ! Posted in Building an F5 Mandolin | Leave a Comment. Save on Over 900 Items, F5 Mandolin Kit plus "How to Build a Carved-Top Mandolin" DVD, Find the proper fret position with the official Stewart-MacDonald Fret Calculator, Stewart-MacDonald is PCI compliant and validated for secure e-commerce, Assembled curly maple rim with dovetailed neck block, Carved European spruce top and curly maple back. Does it kill the sound dead? I used to be a violin maker and when I was copying old violins I would make templates of the shape I wanted to end up with for various sections of the plates. The top provided with the kit needs to be carved to it’s final shape and dimensions, graduating smoothly from something like 5mm in the centre to less than 3mm thick around the edges. The fret slots have been cut into the fingerboard. The quality of woods in the kit was astonishing, and my customer is as happy with the result as I am. I have no idea. Flushed with the successful carving, I went ahead and cut out the slot for the scroll in the top. Assembly instructions, recommended tools and supplies. Building an F5 Mandolin: Carving the Top. As I got to know the wood better, I found it easier to know which way to carve. Did you spot the mistake there? It took me a year in total to complete this kit during 4 years with interval. The tail block and neck block are glued in place. Close. At the beginning of the carving, no light came through the wood at all, but when the top was finished, a warm orange glow spread out from the centre of the wood to a bright strip that ran all the way around the rim. I was pretty nervous starting to carve the inside, but in fact carving the top was one of the most enjoyable jobs on the mandolin so far. I spent the last three hours watching his videos. I’d rather have a mandolin that has a slightly too thick top, than a mandolin that folds in half when I string it up for the first time. Archived. 2 years ago. In the end I left the wood ‘on the thicker side’ anticipating further sanding as the mandolin progresses. There are also contour gauges that conform to shapes. Excellent Grade-10-20 grains per inch but less even-may be minor color or dark grained areas-appearance still very good. The article about Lou Stiver in the current Mandolin Magazine says that he now uses CNC to do the bulk of the top and back carving but that he does the final finish carving by hand and it is a real time and muscle saver. A detailed course from a master mandolin craftsman. The assembly steps are presented in our DVD How to Build a Carved-Top Mandolin, which we recommend to everyone considering building our mandolin kit. Quartersawn spruce mandolin tops in sizes ready to be worked into carved tops for Gibson, F-Style and bluegrass mandolins. Help Center . My mandolin ended up with some faults. Don't make a new nut just to fix a low slot—fill it! The arched top and back are ready for sanding and assembly, or you can tap-tune the fine European spruce top until it's just right. I have plans here for a couple. The tail block and neck block are glued in place. 6 comments. Everything's ready for hand-building, and very few tools are needed. The feet of the bridge need to fit the top of the mandolin precisely in order to give good tone. My Cart (0) toggle menu. Everything fit perfectly and while it took a GREAT deal of time it turned out well on my first trial. It took ages to get the knack of the thumb plane, which kept clogging with wood, and I had to keep stopping and unclogging it almost every stroke. Carving the top, back and neck; Neck joints; Binding; Fretwork; Hand rubbed sunburst finishes; Setup; I have completed my first (& 2nd) mandolin build. The neck joint is dovetailed for correct alignment, and the neck is shaped and ready for sanding. This planning has turned out to be very useful, and in some ways now I’m glad it happened: it isn’t a disaster, the untrained eye will never notice. Good luck and take lots of time. (A Dremel tool is the only power tool you'll need to construct your mandolin.) Just know to proceed very slowly and think through each step. $25-$30 Mandolin Top. Also bought the cd which is essential. Carving a mandolin top. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your account. Incredible, thank you for sharing. I bought the two most expensive tools so far: a micrometer, for measuring thicknesses to 1/100 mm, and a beautiful little Ibex finger plane for carving. I made a few mandolins using that as a guide and they turned out great. After an hour or so, something clicked, and I’ve not had to unclog it since. Posted by. Constructing a bluegrass mandolin by Hal Leonard. Acoustic Guitar Tops. Holding the spruce up to a strong light was also helpful in identifying thicker areas. There's no plywood in this kit: curly maple is used for the sides and back, with an arched European spruce top. Its been invaluable A little more info on voicing the instrument would have been really helpful but all in all I'll be coming back for more. Fender's most popular pick shape in different materials. I purchased Robbie's Mandolin Building course featuring/starring Geoff Burghardt. We use all top-quality woods and workmanship to make every kit a potential heirloom. New comments cannot be posted and votes cannot be cast, Press J to jump to the feed. I have no idea how much difference it makes to the sound of a mandolin if the wood is, say 0.5 mm too thick. I would mark where I wanted to place them each time, so I had consistency. Kit Builder/Hobbyist. Change ). I decided that the only thing I would do to the outside of the top would be to sand it, and do all the carving down to the right thickness from the inside. I'm satisfied with wood quality and accuracy. Neither did I. I merrily cut around the scroll on the top with a coping saw, and filed it out to a smooth curve of about the right thickness. I darkened the bottom of the entire foot with pencil marks. He's got a few good videos of doing f-style mandolin builds with hand carved tops. Looks great. Shop Tops Back to Tops. share. This one has the signature Gibson tone IDK how he did it. You need to pay attention to the direction of the grain when carving: if you try carving against the grain, the plane will chatter across the wood, which will tear a little. 4. I am also very happy I took the suggestion given out from you guys to add Dan MacRostie's dvd to the kit ! Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. I had built 2 guitars which were usable but not beautiful. ColorTone Aerosol Guitar Lacquer is an economical way for the beginner to apply a finish without elaborate setup or equipment. hide. The top and back thickness was too great because I didn't carve enough material. I bought the Don MacRostie ‘Building a Carved Top Mandolin’ DVD from Stew Mac with the kit: the DVD is 3 hours long whereas the instructions with the kit are four paragraphs long: take a wild guess which is more useful. Create a free website or blog at Like someone already said, the Hal Leonard book is really good to get you started. The binding job was ugly. Tuner holes are accurately drilled into the shaped peghead. I bought the 10mm plane, but if you’ve enough money buy the 18mm one as well. This mandolin kit is high quality materials. I built the mandolin in 14 months. $15 - $20. The truss rod slot is cut to fit the truss rod provided. I will enjoy playing and watching. Some discussion lead to the purchase of the F5 kit as a starting point. Try your best to be patient and if you mess it up don't get discouraged. Common Grade-open or uneven grain-more significant color or areas of darker grain-reasonable appearance for sunburst finish-tonally equal to higher grades. I made a shorter F4 neck to suit. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts. great kit. $25 - $30. ACOUSTIC. Home Help Center Contact us; Toll Free: 1-800-477-4437 or International: 707-687-2020; Sign in. Tops. Acoustic Guitar Tops. In my opinion, this kit is above the skills of the average beginner. Tops . I would carve the outside first, and then carve the inside shape based on the thicknesses I wanted to achieve using a thickness caliper. Easy finishing options Are there any tips for guiding what shape it's supposed to be on both the top and the bottom of the soundboard? How to Build a Carved-Top Mandolin (DVD) with Don MacRostie Price: $ 136.50 Quantity: Add To List . Before I started this project, I thought a millimetre was very small – it turns out a millimetre is loads. They are out there. I spent quite a bit of time trying to figure out how best to do this: the only experience I’ve got of carving anything is whittling some sticks with a pen knife. As the carving progressed, I began measuring the thickness of the wood more often and eventually started to mark areas that needed more – or no more – carving.