Although many fans of electric-guitar god Jimmy Page only know the mandolin as the high-pitched, plucky sounding background instrument in Led Zeppelin’s “The Battle of Evermore,” the mandolin was largely responsible for the spread of the guitar in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and was itself a major musical phenomenon.
The craze began in the 1880s, when a group of Spanish musicians took Boston and New York by storm playing...
Instruments can take anywhere from 1-10 years to really break in, depending on how often you play.
Sometimes instruments that haven't been played in a while are "sleeping", it can take a month or so to "re-break" them.
The label will probably have yellowed somewhat with age, but a nice new-looking piece of whitish-grey speckled paper with crisp, clear writing does not neccessarily indicate a forgery.
Back to the Index/menu of this guide You will want to make sure that the instrument you are looking at is the model that it is advertized as, becuase those little model numbers do a lot to the price of the instrument.
You will build a strong knowledge of the variations through experience.
Remember, you are looking for an instrument that will have a very strong influence on your enjoyment of playing music!
Additionally, this page will stand on its own for the time being- all links but the "return to Misc. This means that you can download it and have it work at home without having to be connected to the net to have it work.This guide is inteneded as a starting point in a search for a Gibson A-model mandolin from the years 1907-1935.All of the information within is as accurate as I can personally verify (ie don't bet the farm).Just don't make a profit from it without giving me 87%!!The Gibson Company went through several stages of model design for their mandolins in the last 100 years.Most of this stuff will help you on the business side of the equation only- sort of a "Consumer Reports" for old mandolins.Hopefully, this will help you to determine to what extent the dealer is trying to sell the instrument at a level above what it may merit, and then you must use the market to help determine a price.Mine sat in the shop for 2 years after the first owner died, and it took about 2 weeks of solid playing to get it to have a "wide open" sound again..The best thing you can possibly do is try several different instruments.All of the above are signs of use and wear- they are not really bad in and of themselves, but they do indicate how much an instrument has been played.If your eyes tell you a story that is not compatible with the "mint condition" or "as new" description, be wary.