Irish Bouzoukis (Octave Mandolins) and Mandolins Current Stock
"The instrument arrived in excellent condition. Seldom in life does reality exceed expectations. It is beautifully crafted with a quiet elegance and has an exceptional tone. I am highly pleased."
O.H. Bowden

"I'm extremely pleased with the overall appearance and tonal quality of the instrument. The sound from the moment I played it was great and the intonation is very good. The bouzouki is a very attractive instrument, even the design of the bridge is very imaginative with its delicate curves."
C. Donahue

Celtic Pride - Finding true love on the internet - an article on finding his bouzouki by Eric Futran in the magazine The Fretboard Journal



click on photos to enlarge

If you'd like to hear what my bouzoukis sound like recorded, check out Stanley Widener's version of Rakish Paddy on the group Naomi's Fancy's CD The Old Bush. Stanley plays an instrument with Mahogany back and sides and a Sitka Spruce soundboard.

Thank you for your interest in my Irish Bouzoukis or Octave Mandolins. Many accomplished players as well as intrigued newcomers to the Bouzouki are now enjoying my instruments. I offer a 4 course Bouzouki usually tuned an octave below a Mandolin GDAE. 5 course Bouzouki's can also be ordered. Contact me for specifics. You may utilize mandolin chords and scales but since the scale length is greater the stretches can be difficult. My standard scale length for a 4 course is 22" although you may specify other lengths.

Soundboards can be of Cedar (bassiest), Spruce ( a little better on the treble end with good projection) and Redwood (somewhere in between). Soundboard construction and bracing is very similar to a guitar. I give the board some arch through the braces. For the base price, the back and sides can be of Mahogany, Cherry, or Walnut. For an additional $100 you can have Indian Rosewood*or Curly Maple. There are other choices. Contact me if you have some other wood in mind. Necks are generally of Honduras Mahogany with Ebony fingerboards and bridge. There are pearl position markers on the top and on the side of the fingerboard. Custom inlay adds to the base price. Call. Adjustable truss rods are standard. Neck width and profile can be specified.

Binding, peghead facing, soundhole rosette and even the truss rod cover are all of natural woods. I use woods that contrast or compliment the woods you choose for the soundboard, back and sides. Choices include Cardinal wood, Ebony, Sycamore,Curly or Birdseye Maple, Koa, Indian or Honduras Rosewood, Bocote, and others as they are available. See my wood selection page.



Bridges are of ebony and have a bone saddle insert which makes action adjustment a little easier.

Instruments have Schaller A-Style mandolin tuners and Allen solid cast nickel plated tailpieces of your choice (see below)

AR2-Nickel
MR2 - Nickel 10 String -Nickel

Body depth is 4 1/4", width 14 1/8", body length 16 1/4", overall length 35 3/4" with the width at the nut of 1 1/4". You may specify a deeper body ( a little better bass response) or a shallower body (better trebles and bit better projection). You also may specify the width at the nut and neck width and profile.

I also make Mandolins which closely resemble my Bouzouki. These full-bodied Mandolins offer tenor sound to compliment the deeper toned Bouzouki and are available with basically the same options described above. My Bouzouki and Mandolin may be ordered together to create a matching pair. Scale length is 13 7/8".

As always my instruments are guaranteed for 5 years to the original owner against defects of workmanship or materials.

I recommend that unless you pick the instrument up personally you should order a case at the same time as I prefer to ship with the instrument protected by a case. I offer high quality Cedar Creek cases that are made especially for my instruments.

If you'd like to see a collection of photos on how I make my Bouzoukis, click here.


Prices:

4-Course Irish Bouzouki $2600
with your choice of AR2 or MR2 Allen tailpiece (see above)

5-Course Irish Bouzouki $2850
with Allen 10 string tailpiece (see above)

Mandolin $1950

Indian Rosewood or Curly Maple adds $100

Cedar Creek Case $350
Internal Piezo pickups. $135 installed

Current Stock
Pickguard (clear or tortoise) add $50


I require a $100 non-refundable deposit to begin work. A postcard, phone call or email will be used to confirm your order and specifying expected date of completion (3-4 months). The balance due must be received before the instrument is shipped.

If you have additional questions or would like to talk feel free to call; weekends and early evenings are OK. Look forward to hearing from you



 Instructional Book now available


A Guide to Octave Mandolin & Bouzouki
by John McGann 

Twenty tunes in styles from Irish to American, in a variety of tunings, melody and accompaniment, presented in standard notation and tablature, with a stereo CD (left channel melody, right channel accompaniment). Left and right hand techniques and chord voicings are thoroughly discussed. For the first time, the Celtic style "woven texture" accompaniment unique to the instrument is fully notated. Unique to the book are melodic Irish ornamentation, blues, jazz, American fiddle tunes with variations and improvisations (all fully notated), and a chapter "Breaking Away From Block Chords" extending knowledge of the fingerboard $25


* If you choose an exotic wood such as Mahogany, Koa, or Indian Rosewood for the Back and Sides a donation to the South American Program of the Nature Conservancy or a similar organization is suggested.