German Flat -back and Dome-back Mandolins

Here are instruments photos and videos from past restoration projects. It is a gallery only, for instruments available for sale please see page "Instruments for Sale"

Antique German Flat-back Mandolin

Another very unique mandolin designed by Ewald Gleasel, made in Germany around 1910's Although there's no maker's label inside it has identical features as those mandolins patented by Gleasel - brass post screw in to strut, headstock shape - fretboard - steel nut, tailpiece and even colour of dye is same as on the mandolins like Vinnese & Neapolitan College of Music and few other I had a chance to work on. Tuners however are not original as they were beyond repair and had to be replaced - tuners bottons and new bridge were stained green and an ornament on headstock added to complement unique design.

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Old German Mandolin

Unknown Maker

German Dome-backed Mandolin made around 1920's-40's, no maker is given so quite difficult to establish more accurate date of make.

Mandolin is made mostly of maple - neck, fretboard, sides and back with some back slats possibly mahogany and birch (some parts are only painted to imitate other woods), soundboard is made of spruce.

This instrument doesn't contain any rosewood and therefore may be sent internationally without need of obtaining certificates.

Mandolin has been lightly restored, one split to soundboard was repaired and one slpit at the bak. Original finish was only lightly sanded to avoid damaging the painted parts on sides and back, then covered with few thin layers of Tru oil to give fresh feel but keep a little worn appearance. Tuners were cleaned and lubed and work very well. Original frets were levelled and crowned, missing inlay/saddle in the bridge replaced with brass strip.

Playability is very good with action at 2.5mm and is suitable for beginners as well as advanced level of playing.

Mandolin is fitted with Aquila Nylgut Strings set which produces different sound and is a lot softer under fingers and much easier to play.


Approximate measurements are as follows:

- total length 63cm

- body width 27.7cm

- zero fret to 12th fret 165mm (total scale length 330mm)

- Neck width at zero fret is 27.7mm, at 10th fret 36mm

German Dome back Nylgut
German Dome back Nylgut
German Dome back Nylgut
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Old German Pocket Mandolin

Unknown maker

Circa early mid 20th century

Sweet little instrument often called “pocket mandolin” which have smaller but retains same scale length as standard mandolin and is tuned GDAE as opposite to Piccolo mandolin which has shorter scale and different tuning. Although there is no label the way it was built suggests Germany. The date would be estimated between 1920's-40's.

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Instrument dimensions:

- total length 57cm - body width 13cm

- from 0 fret to 12th fret 166mm (total scale length 332mm)

  • Neck width at 0 fret is 29.2mm, at 9th fret 37.6mm

Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin

Antique German

Flat Back Mandolin

Very unique mandolin with a four leaf clover sound hole, possibly made around 1910-20's in Germany, though no labels is present and the maker remains unknown.

Although the instrument ain't a product of a superior craftsmanship, it has it's unique, kind of “Irish Folk” character and that's why I decided to do so much work on it to bring it back to life.

The mandolin is now fully restored to playable condition and the following work has been done: it had badly twisted neck so the old fretboard had to be removed and neck itself had to be reshaped (head is still twisted), then new ebony fretboard installed, original mother of pearl and position dots have been taken out of old fretboard and reused on new one, fretboard was slightly extended to 19 frets and fretted wit narrow nickel steel fret wire.

Few splits around the body were repaired, old finish completely stripped as well as dye. I've mixed new dye to recreate the original colour but aimed to create old appearance, then finished with Tru oil. Tuners were cleaned and lubed. I've made new bridge using ebony with cattle bone compensated saddle, new nut also has been made.

Mandolin is fitted with new set of strings – Pyramid Silver Wound Light Tension Set

 

Mandolin sounds surprisingly well and loud, playability is comfortable with action at 2mm at 12 fret (e) and 2,5mm (g) and has good intonation.

 

 

 

Measurements are as follows:

- total length 60.5cm

- width 25cm

- from nut to 12th fret 164.7mm

- Neck width at nut 31mm, at 10th fret 37.5mm

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Antique German

Flat Back Mandolin

Marcelli

Sweet little mandolin with body size of only 20cm but normal scale length of 330mm. It has extended number of frets to 26 and free access up to 17th fret. The neck is narrower with 24mm at nut and 37mm at 16th fret. The instrument went through minor resoration which involved – Leveling and crowning frets, cleaning and lubricating tuners, old lacquer has been stripped and replaced with Tru oil finish.

 

Approximate measurements are as follows:

 

- total length 55cm

- width 20cm

- from nut to 12th fret 165mm

- Neck width at nut 24mm, at 16th fret 37mm

Marcelli
Marcelli
Marcelli
Marcelli

Old German Mandolin

German Dome-backed Mandolin made around 1920's-40's, no maker is given so quite difficult to establish more accurate date of make. It is made of Maple and Spruce and has been lightly restored,  I've made a new compensated bridge using ebony wood and cattle bone to replace the missing one.

Measurements are as follows:

- total length 63.4cm - width 26.3cm - zero fret to 12th fret 166mm

- Neck width at nut 27.8mm, at 10th fret 38mm

Dome backed Mandolin
Dome backed Mandolin
Dome backed Mandolin
Dome backed Mandolin

© 2014 - 2020 Lucas Sobieranski All Rights Reserved

Photo by Monika Karpiej, Manchester United Kingdom 2017

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