Girouard 4-string. $1,000.
The reputation of Rhode Island builder Max Girouard has grown steadily over the past few years, and his acoustic mandolins now command prices of up to $7,999. His talent, naturally, was evident even in his earlier work, of which this instrument is an example. Like all of Max's instruments, this 4-string electric is characterized by creativity, clean lines, and high-quality materials.
     It's based on the Gibson 3-point F-style design of yesteryear, and features a mahogany body with a stunning top of quilted maple in a golden finish. The neck and headstock are also of quilted maple of a natural hue. Ebony fretboard; gold hardware; the pickup is a DiMarzio humbucker.
     Built in 2009, this mandolin has been lightly used and well cared for, and has a recent professional setup. One doesn't see many secondhand Girouards, even from his salad days; people tend to hang on to them. Furthermore, Max appears to be fully occupied with building acoustic instruments, and no longer makes electrics. So this is a rare bird. Gig bag included. See more photos, hear a clip, or for more information. $1,000 plus shipping.