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4. French built bowlback mandolin  (710)  @ 150 euros
Larger photos are available on request.

Old French bowl-back

This is an old, French-built bowl-back mandolin from the early 20th century. It is in good condition after restoration. There is a label which says …


This instrument is now fully playable after restoration. The top is sound with one repair. It has a 19-piece rosewood bowl back with 1 seam repair. It has the original fingerboard in rosewood. The tuners and tail are originals, the bridge new. It retains the original finish throughout, touched up around small repairs, with a coat of Tru-oil for protection on the top. It has been restrung with ultra-light GHS bronze wound classical strings, and is now playing well with a bright rounded sound, and an easy playing action.

Other than cleaning, I have repaired as follows… 1) repaired 1 open seam in the bowl; 2) repaired slight damage to the top; 3) replaced missing edging; 4) levelled the original frets; 5) finished the top with a coat or two of tru-oil for protection; 6) made and fitted a new bridge; and 7) strung and set up.


Mandolin Specifications (In Millimetres)

Overall Length of Mandolin


Width of mandolin at widest point


Approx. Depth of mandolin

145mm at bridge.


Original finish throughout, touched up around repairs and tru-oil to protect the top.

Belly wood

Fair quality, book-matched, spruce top. One almost invisible repair. Some scratches still visible. Slight warping around sound hole, does not affect playability.

Scratch plate

Original in good condition with MOP

Sound hole

Oval hole, approx. 70 x 40mm. Lots of MOP

Back and sides

19-piece, rosewood bowl-back & clasp. Tulipwood sides. 1 seam repairs.

Neck and Head

1-piece, stained neck and head, may be mahogany.


Original rosewood fingerboard with 17 levelled bar frets. Original bone nut. Position markers at 5, 7, 10 and 12

Machine heads

Original steel and brass tuners with original buttons. All working.


Original chromed brass with 4 string posts.


New rosewood and bone compensated bridge fitted.

Scale Length Bridge to nut

Scale of 332mm

G string height at bridge


E string height at bridge


12th fret to bottom of G string (Action)


12th fret to bottom of E string (Action)


Width of fretboard at nut


Width of fretboard at widest point


Sleeve guard

Sleeve guards are available if required