Blue Star Mandoblaster 5-string by Bruce Herron. $700–800.
For years and years, Michigan luthier Bruce Herron made fun, eye-catching electric Blue Star Mandoblasters, but he is semi-retired and makes them no longer. Hence they have become difficult to find. You may have seen Blue Stars in the hands of pro players like Otis Taylor, Bucky Baxter (with Bob Dylan), or Don Herron of BR5-49.
     These 5-string Mandoblasters feature a "psycho-burst" phenolic finish, a single-coil lipstick-tube pickup, 2-piece black/pearloid pickguard, volume and tone controls, tuneable bridge with fully adjustable saddles, 14" scale length, 1-3/8" nut width, rosewood fretboard with standard mandolin fretwire, and 1-piece maple neck. I have five in stock:
  1. Mandoblaster
    728
    No. 728 features a purple honeycomb finish. There is some minor player wear and fretwear, and the back of the headstock is a bit dirty. Everything works as it should and overall it's in good condition. Currently set up with flatwounds for a jazzy tone. Gig bag included, or upgrade to a custom gig bag or hardshell case. See more photos, call 425/772-0231, or for more information. $800 plus shipping.

  2. Blue Star
    160
    No. 160 has a silver finish. There is moderate player wear and fretwear, and a dent along the side. There are a few "bubbles" in the layer of phenolic material on the front, which can occur over time with Blue Stars. Gotoh tuners. Gig bag included, or upgrade to a custom gig bag or hardshell case. See more photos, call 425/772-0231, or for more information. $800 plus shipping.

  3. Blue Star
    1128
    No. 1128 has a silver finish. Good condition with minor player wear; has a scrape near the endpin and another one near the strap button on the upper bass bout, which suggests that someone used a strap with exposed metal near the ends. (I don't know why anyone makes such straps; even less do I know why anyone uses them.) There are also a couple of spots of green residue on the back and side that seem to have transferred from a velvet case lining. Ping tuners. Gig bag included, or upgrade to a custom gig bag or hardshell case. See more photos, call 425/772-0231, or for more information. $800 plus shipping.

  4. Blue Star
    231
    No. 231 has a gold finish. Scratches and chips on the back. Tuners have been upgraded to black Grovers, and Straplok strap buttons have been added (naturally a strap with the matching attachments will be included). Gig bag included, or upgrade to a custom gig bag or hardshell case. See more photos, call 425/772-0231, or for more information. $700 plus shipping.

  5. Blue Star
    130
    No. 130 has a silver finish. Gig bag included, or upgrade to a custom gig bag or hardshell case. See more photos, call 425/772-0231, or for more information. $800 plus shipping.