Celtic Mandolin #1: Layout & Mockup


This is part 1 in a 13 part series: Celtic Mandolin

I’m starting a new instrument project. This one is SN19, Model “Cobh”; A Celtic Style Mandolin. The Celtic style includes a carved soundboard with a “flat” back. The back is not really flat, but slightly bent flat stock. I’ll be using the same teardrop body shape as SN17, which I shared in a previous post

I haven’t yet attempted a carved soundboard, so rather than cut my teeth on AAA grade Sitka Spruce, I’ll make a mockup out of some old quarter-sawn Hemlock that I have laying around the shop. Its similar in density and grain structure

As a guideline for the shaping, I’m referencing Graham McDonald’s book “The Mandolin Project”.
First thing to do is layout the contour lines for the outer surface, then etch the lines onto the blank. 

I’ll use this quill-stop gauge to set the depth for a bunch of holes on the top surface. The holes are the guides for carving depth, just like carving a chair seat. 

Next step is to drill the holes and start shaping.
Stay tuned.
This is going to be interesting to follow.

Main Street to the Mountains

Nicely done Hoots. I’ll be following along with Eric. Will the top be slightly arched?

Is that the neck in the last photo? I hope you don’t give this one away. 

James McIntyre