Although not signed by the great acoustic visionary, this is a fine example of a Loar-period, truss-rodded 1922 F-4. The adjustable rod allowed for a somewhat slimmer neck, but it’s still “V-shape.” The F-4 model was fancy, ornate and made of the finest materials, and the ones that were made between 1922 and 1924 are, by anybody's measure, considered to be the most exceptional sounding and the most beautiful, as this is.
The F-4 of this period, because is has the black, bell shaped truss rod cover on the headstock, has the abbreviated flower pot head plate inlay in abalone and pearl under the inlaid “The Gibson” script logo. It has a crème bound headstock, neck, top and back, two points on the bass side plus a large third point on the headstock, the large body scroll on the upper bass bout and two smaller headstock scrolls. Its soundhole is bound in crème ivoroid with a rosette around it comprised of a ring of “rope” (alternating light and dark marquetry), then a ring of ivoroid and then another ring of “rope.” Said “rope” is bordered on top and bottom side with a black purfling line. The bridge is two-piece adjustable and bears the “Jan. 18, ‘21” patent stamp on its base. The elevated pickguard was original, tortoise shell celluloid, but somebody once had a pickup on this mandolin (no longer there) and they cut away a 1 3/8” x ¼” rectangular piece of the pickguard which also included most of the patent stamp. All that’s left is “0, ’09.” The pickguard clamp on the treble side has its patent stamp of “Pat. July 4, 1911” since in those days July 4th was not yet a national holiday. The tailpiece is the original slide-on nickel-plated, etched “The Gibson” with floral pattern above the logo. The case handle is a replacement; the lid on the inside pocket of the green velour-lined hard shell case is separated at its hinged side.
The top if this august instrument is parallel-grained and hand-carved spruce and the back and sides are curly maple. F-4 mandolins are finished in varnish. Top, sides and back are finished in a deep cherry sunburst and there is likewise sunburst finish on the back of the neck, which is mahogany with a center stripe of what may be pearwood. The back of the headstock is painted black and shows wear (scuffs and scrapes) around its edge; there is hand wear on the back of the neck where some areas of the finish are dulled. Otherwise, this gorgeous instrument shows normal light signs of use and wear in the form of dings and marks, including scrapes and scuffs. There is the usual tiny incipient crack at the bottom scroll and another hairline under the pickguard from the upper body point downward – neither of these are either unusual nor do they require repair of any kind. Its amber buttoned tuners are original with cross-hatch filigree on the twin nickel-plated back plates. This mandolin was in the past buffed up to shiny (but not refinished or oversprayed) and there are some small areas on the face where small dings were filled in with matching color.
Please don’t let these small aberrations make you think that this is any less than excellent – it is wholly and truly and conspicuously well-preserved, wonderfully cared for, easy to play in every fret position, with a neck that’s straight and strong, and a sound that delights all of the senses simultaneously. If you have a Fancy it will tickle it, and if you don’t it may provide you one. Until the advent of the Lloyd Loarian F-5 model the oval soundhole F-4 was the Gibson company's highest level and most elegant professional mandolin, yet today it sells for less than 5% of what the model with the advanced numerical standing, the two violin style f-holes, and that signature label brings. This mandolin may call out to you nightly and we trust that you will not ignore its irresistible beckoning. It is, as you can well imagine, “a love F-4 to remember.”
THIS WAS $9795 BUT IS NOW ON SALE FOR (hold onto your hat): Our INCREDIBLE SALE Discount Price is $7,212.00 and Our EVEN MORE INCREDIBLE SALE Cash Discount Price is$6,995.00.