4/04/2015

1960s Japanese-made Lindell Ac/Elec Mandolin




This mandolin came in for a little bit of work and I figured I'd include a soundclip of it plugged-in to give you an idea of the strange tone these things have. Acoustically they sound a bit dark and are strictly "medium" in volume. Plugged-in, the pickup is low-output and resembles the tone of a swampy acoustic guitar soundhole pickup from the same time. Fortunately, the phosphor-bronze wound strings put a decent signal out to it.

This mandolin probably dates to the mid-60s to early 70s and it's very typical of other Asian-import mandolins: pear-shaped, A-style in looks but fairly deep sides, and with other outside-of-normal specs. In this case it has a zero fret and a longer 14 1/8" scale. The top is laminate spruce while the back and sides are laminate mahogany. The rosewood on the board and bridge, thankfully, are solid!


My work included a fret level/dress, restring with 32w-9 strings to help the unreinforced neck and left-hand fingers, compensation of the original bridge (and a little mod of it to let action improve), and general setup. The knobs are replacements from my parts bin as the originals were toast.


These yellow-buttoned tuners are actually not bad at all. And... now that the zero fret is leveled to the same height as the other frets... it's actually beneficial to an easy on-the-fly setup with adjustment only needed at the bridge now and then.





The 'hog on the back is honey-blonde in color. The whole instrument, actually, is extra-clean for what I'm used to seeing on these guys.



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