If you are interested in one of my instruments for sale please drop me a message through contact form. Payments can be made through Paypal                        or bank transfer.
Instruments ordered through web are at 10% cheaper then listed on eBay, Intarnational postage depends on destination so please leave me a message for a quote.
As a musician I understand that choosing an instrument just by looking at photos is quite difficult therefore I accept returns with no problems in case the instrument didn't appeal to you, although the return cost would have to be covered by the buyer.

Antique Italian Flat-back Mandolin

Antonio Monzino


circa late XIX – early Xxc


Seven generations of Monzino family have been making and distributing musical instruments since 1750, with business establish date as 1767. Monzino family was also very active in publishing, involved in string making and developing modern machinery for wood manufacturing. Although label does not carry actual date of make it is most likely that the mandolin was made at time of Antonio Giacomo Monzino IV (1847-1929) who also created a “Mandolinist Club” which would indicate was the one who cherished mandolins in particular.

Mandolin has a flat-back body made of highly flamed maple, it has a canted soundboard made of tight grain spruce, finished with ornate soundhole and MOP inlayed tortoiseshell pickguard. Tailpiece with sleeve guard itself was imported from Germany as it carries patent information DRGMSCH No 41988 (as the image on label suggests, this type of tailpiece was originally fitted on mandolin). Craftsmanship of Mandolin feels different from other flat-back mandolins, it feels more precise, it's very light, responsive and producing very loud tone for such small bodied instrument.


Unfortunately mandolin must have been stored in a barn or attic for many years where it was attacked by wood worm and fungus which left a bit of musty smell inside, although I have tried to neutralize it's still present. Luckily this hasn't affected structural condition of mandolin and after treatment and patching up holes left by wood worm it is has been returned to playable state again. There's only one small crack on side near tailpiece, soundboard and back are crack free. Fretboard and neck remained in perfect position and no movement has occurred. Slightly worn out frets were re-levelled and crowned allowing action to be set at 2mm (at 12th fret) with no buzzing. As the bridge was missing a new one was made in style that compliments all over decorative appearance, Bridge is made of ebony and bone saddle intonated ensuring mandolin plays in tune, gap between pickguard and strings is 6mm. Tuners are also in very good condition for it's age, only required good cleaning and work very smoothly. As this is very rare mandolin restoration was aimed at minimal interference with original state. Soundboard was gently cleaned and lightly finished with French Polish as to seal the surface rather than build up a layer.


Playability of mandolin is very good, light and comfortable, suitable for player preferring narrower neck. For sound sample see video below.

Mandolin is fitted with light set of strings - Pyramid Silver Wound .032-.009

Here is a list of materials of which the mandolin is made of

(please note that sometimes it is very hard to identify the material correctly due to age or simply other substitutes looking very similar)

Soundboard – Solid Spruce with tortoise shell scratch plate (possibly faux)

Back and sides – Maple

Neck – maple and rosewood veneer

Fretboard – rosewood with decorative mother of pearl inlay

Nut – new bone

Bridge – new ebony and bone

Frets – 23 possibly silver

Instruments measurements are as follows:

- total length 59cm

- body width 20.2cm

  • body length 31.3cm

  • body depth at cant 5.7cm

  • More detailed photos can be provided upon request

Antonio Monzino
Antonio Monzino
Antonio Monzino
Antonio Monzino
Antonio Monzino

Old Bowl-backed "Pocket" Mandolin



“Mandolino Tascabile” a rare mandolin called pocked size however not as small as name suggests. The bowl may be tiny but length of instrument and scale size is exactly the same as standard bowl-backed mandolin. Although there's no label present it's most likely to be of Sicilian origins and made no older than 1950's.

Mandolin was in very good state, free of any cracks and splits. Repairs were mainly focused on fretboard/frets and bridge to get the mandolin in good plying order.

Fretboard has been cleaned, frets re-levelled and crowned. Tuners were also cleaned and lubricated, work smoothly and hold tuning fine. Original bridge was a bit poor therefore new one was made of Ebony. Original finish was intact with some minor signs of wear so only required good cleaning.

Mandolin is fitted with Nylgut strings – Aquila M1 Red Series

Playability is very good with very comfortable action set up adequately to current type of string – 2.3mm at 12th fret (if steel strings are to be used action can be lowered as bridge is high enough leaving plenty of space for any adjustments where preferable).

Here is a list of materials of which the mandolin is made of

(please note that sometimes it is very hard to identify the material correctly due to age or simply other substitutes looking very similar)

Soundboard – Solid Spruce with scratch plate inlaid with celluloid

Back – 15 Rosewood ribs ,Neck – Maple stained light brown (or similar wood)

Fretboard – Rosewood with white celluloid dots, Nut – unknown material

Bridge – new ebony, Frets – 17 brass (plus zero fret)

Instrument measurements are as follows:

- total length 60cm - body width 12.5cm

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

- Neck width at nut is 29mm, at body merge 36mm

Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin
Pocket Mandolin

Old German Bowl-backed Mandola



An old bowl-backed Mandola fully restored to playable condition. The instrument doesn't have a label and the only indication of maker is an engraving on tailpiece – Marcelli (*which possibly is just brand of hardware rather than instrument builder). The age of Mandola is hard to estimate as it may have been made pre-2nd WW but may as well be post WW in 50-60's. It is made in a bit more modern style and has very large bowl compared to other mandolas I worked on. The bowl is made of maple stained brown with 22 ribs. The scale length is standard 210mm from 0-12th and 420mm from 0 fret to bridge.

In brief, Mandola is bigger sister of mandolin with tuning CGDA with body usually larger around 10-15cm (total length) than mandolin.


The instrument was in good condition with two hairline splits to soundboard and the following work was done – splits on soundboard repaired (supported from inside with wooden patches for re-enforcement), fretboard reconditioned, frets levelled and crowned, tuners lightly cleaned and lubricated – work very smoothly. Original finish has been lightly cleaned and covered with a thin layer of new finish to re-fresh the surface. It has new bridge made of rosewood and bone – made in style of the original one.


The mandola sounds very pleasant, have bright and mellow tone with very good sustain, it has intonated bridge so plays in tune and the action is set to 2.4mm treble side & 2.8mm at bass side at 12th fret, the gap between strings and soundboard is 5mm

Mandola is fitted with new set of strings – D'addario set EJ80 12-49


Playability is very good and is suitable for all levels of playing.


Here is a list of materials of which the mandola is made of

(please note that sometimes it is very hard to identify the material correctly due to age or simply other substitutes looking very similar)

Soundboard – Solid Spruce with celluloid scratch plate

Back – 22 Maple Ribs plus two side slats

Neck – One piece Maple

Fretboard – Rosewood with mother of pearl dots

Nut – original – unknown material

Bridge – rosewood and bone

Frets – 17

Approximate measurements are as follows:

- total length 75cm - body width 26cm - bowl depth 18cm

- from zero fret to 12th fret 210mm (total scale length 420mm)

- Neck width at nut is 34.4mm, at 10th fret 46.2mm


Vintage Flat-back Mandolin


(Suzuki Violin Co.Ltd.) Nagoya, Japan



A flat backed version of Suzuki mandolin is quite rare as most Japanese brand mandolins available on the market are bowl-backed. The model as per label is No.605 and dated 1972, there's also a stamp on neck heel 720807. Suzuki with flat back isn't the only unusual thing about it, it is also the only instrument I've seen that has rosette made of real wood (rosettes in this style are usually just a label not a wood inlay).

The instrument was mostly intact and only following work was done – a knock damage to soundboard repaired, soundboard finish removed and replaced with Tru oil, Fretboard reconditioned, Frets levelled and crowned, tuners lightly cleaned and lubed- work very well, new rosewood bridge.

Mandolin has been converted to suit Nylgut type of strings but standard strings can be fitted as normal if preferred. It is fitted with new set of strings – Aquila Red Series M1

(G string shows a little wear as the mandolin was being played)

Mandolin is very easy to play as the type of strings used are very soft and do not need effort to press against frets. The tone of the mandolin is loud, bright and quite sharp. The combination of tone characteristics and nylgut strings inspired me to compose a piece of music in Japanese style


Instruments measurements are as follows:

- total length 62cm

- body width 22.2cm

- from nut to 12th fret 167mm (total scale length 334mm)

  • Neck width at nut is 27mm, at 10th fret 36.5mm

Suzuki Mandolin
Suzuki Mandolin
Suzuki Mandolin
Suzuki Mandolin
Suzuki Mandolin

To see instruments that are currently in progress of restoration click on a button below

© 2014 - 2020 Lucas Sobieranski All Rights Reserved

Photo by Monika Karpiej, Manchester United Kingdom 2017

  • Wix Facebook page
  • Wix Google+ page
  • SoundCloud App Icon
This site was designed with the
website builder. Create your website today.
Start Now