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  #1  
Old 12-27-2017, 09:28 AM
jdmulli jdmulli is offline
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Default Mandolin Upgrade

Hello friends.

I'm looking to upgrade my mandolin. Back in August, I bought a cheap Gretsch mandolin. It was great to learn on, and very playable, but I'm progressing on mandolin faster than I thought I would and I'm ready to upgrade.

My budget tops out at $1,000, but I would love to spend less.

I want an "F" Style. I know I can get more mandolin for less money if I go "A", but I don't want to.

Tone wise, I want it loud with a nice woody chop.

I don't want to buy new.

Thanks
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Old 12-27-2017, 10:27 AM
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Find a post 2014 (or perhaps post 2012, but no earlier) Kentucky Km 1500 or Km 1000. That will be at the very top of your budget, and you will have to haggle a bit, but that will be the best F5 you can get at $1k.

I am not going to tell you that it is going to sound like a Gibson F5, but it will be most of the way there, and undoubtedly an upgrade over the Gretsch.
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Old 12-27-2017, 08:25 PM
Mandobart Mandobart is offline
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Just in case you haven't heard, mandolincafe is the greatest forum on the web. Doubly great if you're into mandolins. Check out the classifieds there. You'll find something for sure.
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Old 12-27-2017, 09:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mandobart View Post
Just in case you haven't heard, mandolincafe is the greatest forum on the web. Doubly great if you're into mandolins. Check out the classifieds there. You'll find something for sure.
Mandolin Cafe is a fantastic resource, as is their classified section. In fact there is a Gibson A9 on there right now that for $1400 is very tempting.
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Old 12-28-2017, 06:22 AM
Jim_G Jim_G is offline
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I managed to get myself banned from this place after just 2 emails (deservedly so), but I've heard so many great things about them since then that you could start here:

https://themandolinstore.com/product...yle-mandolins/
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Old 12-28-2017, 06:33 AM
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Eastman MD515...end of list. Since you're looking to get an F-style, it's important for you to stay near the top of your budget to maximize quality. Enjoy!
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Old 12-28-2017, 06:56 AM
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Keep playing the Gretsch, save another $500, get a top quality used A model.
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Old 12-28-2017, 12:26 PM
jdmulli jdmulli is offline
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Thanks for the advice everyone.
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Old 12-28-2017, 05:04 PM
JSanta JSanta is offline
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I have a MD315 from Eastman and it's a brilliant Mandolin. I actually wouldn't suggest going to the 515 because all you're getting is a gloss versus satin finish. For me, it's not worth the price difference. I'd also echo the mandolin cafe as a resource as well as their classifieds. Great group of people over there.
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Old 12-31-2017, 04:19 PM
varmonter varmonter is offline
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too bad i just sold a rigel in your price range.
good quality mandolins are expensive. pound for pound
much more expensive than guitars. 1000 dollars
will keep you in the eastman kentucky range
f styles are more because you pay for the labor involved
in producing, binding and finishing two points and a scroll
which effectively add no decernable tone to the
mandolin. ( they're solid) if you would consider
an a5 style of mandolin ( a5 joins the body at the
same fret as an f5) you can get much more mandolin
for the buck. an a5 that costs 5 grand will be equivalent
to an f5 in tone and playability that costs 10 to 15k.
there is a "tradition"stigma around f5 mandolins.
"good enough for old bill". mentality. it's hard to break.
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