Mandolin Makers

Brian Dean Mandolins are superbly made instruments of the very top notch. This dedicated luthier has embodied all of the finest techniques of great musical instrument construction and technology for a tonal value that can rarely, if ever, be surpassed.

He has built instruments for all sorts of players including Appalachian, Bluegrass, Celtic, Quebecois, folk, and jazz musicians. Brian's instruments are a joy to handle and own with a tone to die for

Labraid Stringed Instruments
Brian Dean
po box 283
Magnetawan, Ontario

phone (705)-387-3065

Evergreen Mountain Instruments, owned and operated by luthier and repairman, Jerry Nolte, has been producing hand crafted stringed instruments since 1971.
Jerry specializes in customizing his hand-built instruments to fit individual musical preferences and playing styles at affordable prices. Guitar selections include six string, twelve string, tenor and bass. Mandolins are all 'A' style. Traditional in many design considerations, EMI guitars and mandolins have the look and feel of individually crafted instruments.

Clients participate in standard option selections such as wood, body size, string spacing, action, and decorative appointments used. Wood choices include many that are native to the Pacific Northwest. They are resawn from selected stock, air dried and graded at EMI in Cove, Oregon. Jerry's preferred finish is a hand rubbed violin varnish.

Each instrument comes with a guarantee for customer satisfaction, sound and workmanship. Custom hardshell cases are available for all instruments.

Jerry Nolte
Evergreen Mtn Instr
1608 Jasper
Cove, Oregon 97824

Phone: (541)568-4687

EARNEST INSTRUMENTS are created for musicians who require functional, distinctive, high quality tools for making music. These are not your garden variety music store axes, but uncommon musical instruments designed to meet the needs of innovative players looking for something a little different. Rather than build reproductions of standard manufactured items, EARNEST combines time-tested styles and designs to create unique, original instruments with a classic appearance.

Every effort is made to build the finest sounding and playing instruments. Their expense results from the quality of the materials and workmanship rather than unnecessary detail or excessive ornamentation. Materials are chosen for utility, tone, and appearance. Domestic and lesser known exotic tonewoods are favored over rare, overpriced, and often endangered species. Natural and manufactured materials are combined with appropriate adhesives and fasteners, at optimum humidity, to insure the stability and durability of the instruments. Earnest Instruments are built for a lifetime of music making!

Joel Eckhaus, Luthier
12 Fairlawn Ave.
S. Portland, ME 04106
Phone: 207 799-9788


Here is a luthier of the finest quality. Here's what his website says:

"All instruments are carefully crafted with the finest materials available. The building process begins with the selection and harvest of Engelmann spruce in the forests surrounding McCall, Idaho, and continues with uncompromised craftsmanship and attention to detail. These custom instruments sound and feel as good as they look, and great care is given in every step, from design, to matching of woods, to finish and set-up".

Smart Musical Instruments
A. Lawrence Smart, Luthier
P.O. Box 604
McCall, Idaho 83638

phone:(208) 634-2469

The P. W. Crump Co. shop is located in Humboldt County, in the heart of California's Redwood Empire. A large number of artists and craftspeople have settled here, drawn by the area's incomparable natural beauty and reasonably paced, small town atmosphere. Several established instrument builders are located in and around Arcata including Wildwood Banjos, Moonstone Guitars, Ken Lawrence Basses, and Marimba One.

These really are gutsy mandolins full of tone and sweetness. Real players instruments tailored for specific needs. Great stuff.

Phil Crump

phone: (707) 826-1164

Jason Chinchen at High Desert Mandolins makes truly remarkable mandolins. Their tone is fast becoming legendary. Here's what the website says:

At High Desert Mandolins I use premium bigleaf maple and Oregon myrtlewood to construct my mandolins. Every top is completely hand carved by me from well-aged sitka spruce or other tonewood including Redwood, Adirondack spruce, Englemann spruce, or Port Orford cedar.

The tops, backs, and necks are carved with exacting care using well established, tried and true dimensions as a starting point. Small homemade planes and chisels aid me in the process of bringing each piece of wood to within its optimum thickness . Each set of tonewood has its own properties and should be treated as unique when crafting a sensitive musical tool. Therefore, I take great care in balancing the strength and tonal characteristics of each individual set of wood. Tone bars are counter-scalloped and voiced.


Pomeroy Instruments is a small company dedicated to building individually handcrafted F-style and A-style mandolins. These mandolins are truly amongst the greatest that money can buy - and he is a nice guy too.

Heres a snippet from his website: "Sixty mandolins later I'm still carving away, feeling very fortunate to have this opportunity in my life. Now I am doing it full time. I have completely dedicated myself to mastering the carved-top mandolin and am a firm believer that if a person puts his mind and heart to a task it can be accomplished" - need I say more?

Pomeroy Instruments
917 Colorado Avenue
Glenwood Springs,
(CO) 81601

Phone/Fax: (970) 945-0350

James Jones makes a whole range of wonderful and competitively priced instruments from Bowed Psalteries, Slit Drums, 2 Octave Zithers, Folk Harps, Appalachian
Dulcimers, Guitars, Hammer Dulcimers, Tsimbls, Thumb Pianos and Irish Bouzoukis
and Mandolins. Here's a little more from his website:

"I have been building fine custom musical instruments since 1978 in rural Bedford, Virginia. Working alone in a wood shop I designed and built, I have developed designs for ten different acoustic instruments. I am constantly working on research and development, sometimes alone, sometimes in collaboration with customers and professional musicians. I am always striving to build better quality instruments and am never content with the status quo. No assembly lines, just a lot of individual attention from start to finish. I can work with you to individualize your instrument or provide you with one I have created. I try to keep my prices affordable so music can be a part of the lives of more people."

James Jones Instruments
1384 Coltons Mill Rd.,
Bedford, VA
24523 - 5259
Phone: 540 586-6319

As his website states "Kennaquhair String Instruments specializes in affordable, high quality, fretted stringed instrument for the folk, traditional, old timey, and celtic musician" Here's a little more from the website about these gorgeous hand-made instruments:

"I use the highest quality tone woods and hardware, and build each instrument one at a time, for a unique blend of playability and beauty. The beauty of each instrument comes from the selection of woods and the sounds it produces.

Each instrument is hand made, by my self, to the customers specification. Custom scale length and tunings are available at no extra charge"

Kennaquhair Stringed Instruments
PO Box 252
IN 46915

Phone: 765 566 3474

These are some truly stunning instruments from the stable of Trillium. Here is what the website says about these gorgeous and remarkable instruments:

"Trillium offers over 20 years of experience in building instruments of the cittern-bouzouki family. The current design of octave mandolin, arrived at after considerable experimentation, seems well suited to a variety of styles and tuning. They have a strong, ringing sustain and intonation that is accurate and clear up and down the neck."

Robert L. Abrams, Luthier
44 Gile Road
Nottingham, NH 03290

Phone: (603) 679-3469

Here are some little beauties straight out of the workshop of Mowry Stringed Instruments in Oregon.

These really are classy instruments, hand-made by Andrew Mowry. Here's a little snippet from his website:

"I grew up in Vermont, where I gained my love of music, woodworking, and the outdoors. I started building musical instruments at around age ten. I built my first mandolin (an A-style archtop) while in high school, and built my first F-style mandolin after my sophomore year in college. I have been a student of traditional woodworking since I was very young, and I still do much of my work with hand tools in the tradition of violinmakers. In addition to mandolin-family instruments, I have built dulcimers, banjos, bodhrans, and electric violins. The instruments that I play most are mandolin, fiddle, and Irish flute and tinwhistle."

Mowry Stringed Instruments
444 NE Clay Ave.
Bend, OR 97701

Phone: 541.617.1203

Paul Doyle makes a fabulous range of hand built instruments. It is a tradition and skill that has been handed down through the family. Here's what his website says:

"Carrying on a family tradition since 1890
Violin making in the Doyle family started in 1890 when Frank Doyle senior was Station Master in Westport Railway Station,Co Mayo, Ireland Since there were so few trains at that time, it enabled him to pursue his favourite pastime of making fine quality violins.

Paul Doyle is the third generation of instrument makers from this family, but being the black sheep he has made all kinds of instruments in the past 32 years, these days he concentrates on the mandolin and guitar family and runs a school of instrument making."

38a Dominick Street

Telephone/Fax: +353 (0)91-566948


The first instrument Mark Mawby made was a fiddle, and that was over 20 years ago. Since then he has made many kinds of stringed instruments - all of which he personally plays.

Mark now mainly concentrates on making mandolins and fiddles, but also makes bouzoukis, Mandolas and Citterns

Telephone: 01890 817013