The Belle is my modern take on the old tear drop shape. It features a long neck with a 15-fret body join like an F-style mandolin. Tone bar bracing and F holes also give it similar sonic features to an F-style mandolin. The standard recipe includes a red spruce top with sugar maple back, sides, and neck.
Below is yours truly making a sorry sound clip of a Belle in the white
The sound clip below is of John Bowyer playing his Belle with the Chris Dollar Band. John also plays with The Hammer & The Hatchet
Below are the talented Andy Disney and Will Kimble playing at the Metamora Old Time Music Festival.
The Orpheus is an asymmetrical 2-point mandolin with unique carvings and a rich versatile voice. This is an original design with a special character and class. It comes with x-bracing and a Sitka spruce top for a more complex voice. Big leaf maple is my standard selection for back,sides, and neck on the Orpheus. An Engelmann spruce top for additional warmth is a great option on this model. Please take moment to check out the Jazz Mando website and enjoy a review of the very first Orpheus here.
Below is Ed Goist playing the Orpheus he dubbed the Raven.
Below is an Orpheus doing some down home rocking in the hands of Erik Norman of The Giving Tree Band
The Ophelia is an original body shape that tips its hat to the designs of John Monteleone. She shares a headstock shape with her little brother Orpheus. This a very versatile mandolin with a breadth of response that lends itself to many styles of playing. My preferred woods are Adirondack spruce for the top and big leaf maple for the body and neck. Utilizing sugar maple for back sides and neck is an option that increases bark and bite.
Below is Andy Disney playing his Ophelia. Nice pj's, Dizz.
The sound clip above is also Andy Disney on his Ophelia playing one of his original compositions.
Below are sound clips from Johnnie Valentino playing his Ophelia in Johnny Young's tuning.
Both videos below are Kris Potts of the imaginative and energetic Flatland Harmony Experiment playing his Ophelia mandolin.
The Copperhead is my take on the traditional Loar style mandolins. While obviously not the slavish copy many pursue, it retains the overall style and similar graduations. I choose to build them sidebound like the July 9th Loars. I opt for Adirondack spruce top with sugar maple back, sides, and neck just like the originals. A classic sunburst protected by oil varnish with a French polish top coat are the finishing touches.