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Monday, March 28, 2005

It sings!

Today I fitted the tuning machines and the tailpiece, and made a cover for the truss rod hole. I then strung the mandolin up to pitch and...played it. The strings still need a bit of time to bed down, and I will have to do a second fit of the bridge in a week or so, but I'm very pleased with the tone. Picture to follow in a day or so

Wednesday, March 16, 2005


Bit of a crisis this evening. I went to put the next coat of oil on and found that the hook holding up the mandolin had broken and the mandolin was lying on the garage floor. There was a big chip missing from the back and worse still, when I tapped the back, there was a buzzing noise as if one of the tone bars had come loose. I felt very depressed all of a sudden as this would render the instrument into the equivalent of firewood... However, after a more detailed investigation I found that the buzzing came from the truss rod nuts which were not fully tight. Phew. I have now inlayed a small peice of sycamore into the back to replace the missing chunk. Its far from perfect, and looks quite ugly, but at least it will be playable. Next time... Anyway, to cheer myself up I am going to order a tailpiece from Hobgoblin.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Finishing with Oil

Here is my mandolin, drying after its third coat of finishing Oil. I thing that three or four more coats should do...

The slotted nut

The nut with slots. On the right hand side you can see the bit that kept breaking off.

The Bridge with bone saddle

I am quite pleased with the bridge. The only thing I'm a bit worried about is if I will need to trim too much off the bottom when the strings are fitted.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Filling some gaps

I'm ready to apply the finish now, but I noticed a couple of places where there was a small gap between the ebony bindings and the ribs (about 0.2 mm I think). I decided to fill these before proceeding with the finish, so I made a paste of 1 part ebony dust (made with a file) a 1 part quick setting araldite epoxy adhesive. I've applied this and will sand/scape it down in a few minutes.