8/21/2016

2000 Trillium Octave Mandolin





I did a minor setup and restring on this a couple months ago, as I recall, but since then the owner decided her hand didn't fit the neck (she likes narrow, thin necks), so this gorgeous creation is up for grabs. When it came back in I gave it a light fret level/dress, adjusted the bridge a little bit, cut a new 2nd saddle (this has a saddle for octave-stringing like a bouzouki, too), and set it up on-the-dot with 1/16" action overall and a hair higher on the low G course.

It's a beautifully-made instrument and features curly maple on the back, sides, and neck, a solid spruce top, and an ebony fretboard and bridge. I'm not sure if the top and back are carved or simply domed. I'm guessing the latter, as the thickness doesn't vary as much as a carved-top generally does. A Celtic-style inlay is set at the first fret and an inlaid trillium flower is at the headstock. The binding choices are excellent, too, with tortoise on the top edge and cream on the back and fretboard edges. Gold-plated sealed tuners and a gold-plated custom tailpiece add to the luxury effect.

Its tone is precise and clear and the fingering is easy and fast. It has a 1 7/16" nut width and 21 1/4" scale. The frets are medium stock and in good order and the neck has no truss-rod but is good and straight. The back of the neck has a hybrid C/V profile and is "medium" in thickness -- around the same as your average American-made acoustic guitar depth.


Trilliums are made by Bob Abrams in New Hampshire and they're a popular make as far as octaves and the Celtic scene go. He doesn't make them in the same numbers as he used to, so they continue to be in demand.


The headstock is bound -- and elegant. Overall this instrument is in fantastic condition and looks as-new.




It's nearly impossible to see, but there's a thin, clear pickguard to the treble side of the pearl-inlaid rosette.


The ebony bridge has a drop-in saddle slot. The one currently in it is my new, bone one. There's also a second bone one that's adjusted for octave stringing on the lower courses.

The gauges currently on this are 44w, 34w, 20w, 12 for GDAE stringing.




The maple is jaw-droppingly pretty.




The recessed brass gadget is actually a place to tie-off your strap.











A fitted, arched, quality hard case goes along with the instrument.

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