Shop Work and Holiday Shop

Hello!  In the shop I am getting closer to finishing the A-style mandolin I have been working on. I have fitted the neck to the body, which tends to not always be the easiest of tasks, but it went well.  You have to have the right angle the right distance for the bridge placement, as well as the right height off the soundboard at the 15th fret. I fit the neck individually to each mandolin because each top may have a slightly different height which will make the sides a slightly different thickness so that it will have the right air volume in the chamber.  I try to make each instrument according to the character of the wood.  This way I can ensure each instrument to have a great sound.  After all, that's what it is all about...sound and playability.
glueing the neck in

glueing the neck in

The neck and fingerboard are essential to the playability of the mandolin.  I make my mandolins so that they can be easily adjusted according to the players needs. After gluing on the fingerboard with the truss rod and making the dots, I then press the frets in. I think making musical instruments can be a difficult art form, because it has to have function as well as beauty.  This being said, I must say that I do enjoy what the Lord has given me to put my hands to and provide for my family. During the month of December, my family is involved with a "Holiday Shop" that is put on in the village in which we live. (Schuylerville, New York)  It is like a small artisan market in the gallery of the Canal Street Art Center.  Here are some pictures of what my family has done for the shop this season.... My son Ian made some wooden spoons... My wife has some of her mosaics and rughookings for sale.  My son Josiah made some wooden carvings to sell as well.  I was able to make the frames for the mosaics (not the washboard mosaics of course) and the wooden inlaid coasters. Our family enjoys working together for this event each holiday season. Though my youngest son Ezra didn't make anything for the shop, he had a good time making a hat for his bunny "Fluffy". Well, that is it for now, Enjoy the season! Martin    

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