34. Rubino (student of Vinaccia) bowlback mandolin (657)  340 euros
Larger photos are available on request.

Old named Italian bowl-back

This is an old, Italian bowl-back mandolin from the late 19th century, built by a student of the Vinaccia brothers. It is in good condition after restoration. There is a label which says…

Gennaro Rubino

Allievo dei Fratelli Vinaccia

Fabbricante di Strumenti Armonici

Strada S. Chiara 32-33


This instrument is now fully playable after restoration. The top is sound with 1 repairs. It has a 17-piece rosewood bowl back with small seam repairs to the lower bowl. It has a new extended fingerboard. The tuners and tail are originals, the bridge new. It has original finish throughout but with Tru-oil on the top. It has been restrung with ultra-light GHS bronze wound classical strings, and is now playing well with a bright, rounded mellow sound with good sustain and volume. It has an easy playing action.

Other than cleaning, I have repaired as follows… 1) made and fitted a new extended ebony fingerboard; 2) repaired small seam separations in the bowl; 3) repaired a short split in the top; 4) refinished the top with tru-oil; 5) made and fitted a new bridge; and 6) set up.


Mandolin Specifications (In Millimetres)

Overall Length of Mandolin


Width of mandolin at widest point


Approx. Depth of mandolin

140mm at bridge.


Original finish throughout, but top protected with tru-oil.

Belly wood

Book-matched, spruce top with 1 repair. Slight warping around sound hole.

Scratch plate

Original in ebony in good condition.

Sound hole

Approx. 65 x 40mm.

Back and sides

17-piece, rosewood bowl-back & tulipwood sides.

Neck and Head

2-piece, veneered neck and head, in fine condition.


New extended ebony f/b. New bone nut.

Machine heads

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


Original in brass with 4 string posts.


New ebony and brass shelf bridge.

Scale Length Bridge to nut

Scale of 330mm

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


I have some re-conditioned bowl-back cases available for purchase, as well as gigbags.