Siminoff Banjo & Mandolin Parts...

What You'll Need

The Ultimate Bluegrass Mandolin Construction Manual includes a chapter on the tools and materials you'll need to build an instrument from scratch.

However, if you choose to build a mandolin from one of our kits, here's a basic list of the tools and materials you'll need (basically, all parts are ready for sanding). 


Mandolin parts:

[  ] Tuning machines, nickel- or gold-plated*
[  ] Tailpiece, nickel-or gold-plated*
[  ] Fretwire (several size selections available)
[  ] Mother-of-pearl pieces (for inlay)
[  ] Case (shaped, or oblong)
[  ] Strap

Personal aides:

[  ] Dust mask(s)
[  ] Eye protection (glasses)
[  ] Thin rubber or vinyl gloves (for staining)


[  ] Sandpaper 200 to 300 grit
[  ] Wet-or-dry sandpaper 320- and 400-grit
[  ] Steel wool, "000" grade
[  ] Rags, old towels (to cover table)
[  ] Single-edge razor blades
[  ] Access to band saw (unless you'd like us to prepare neck joint*)
[  ] Access to drill press (unless you'd like us to drill peghead holes*)
[  ] Access to spray equipment (with adequate ventilation)
[  ] 3" C-clamps
[  ] Leather "cauls" (pieces of leather for under clamps)
[  ] Dremel or similar tool with router base (for inlays)
[  ] Small hammer (for inlaying frets)
[  ] Pot of boiling water, or heat gun (hair dryer will do)
[  ] Jeweler's saw blades (available at most hobby shops)
[  ] Wood carver's chisels (to do detail carving around scrolls)


[  ] Body fixture to hold the rim during construction*
[  ] Neck fixture to hold neck when preparing dovetail**

Misc. materials:

[  ] Masking tape
[  ] Titebond® Cement
[  ] Duco® Cement
[  ] Feibings® leather dies (brown, dark brown, yellow, chocolate, black - or other colors of your choice)
[  ] Lacquer thinner
[  ] Sherwin Williams T75C16 clear hi-gloss lacquer (or similar)

* Should you choose to purchase these items or services from us, they are listed in our Online Store.

** We can cut dovetail or "V" joint as option. See "Neck Services."


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For additional information about what you might need, please don't hesitate to direct your questions to us at:, or call us at 805.365.7111.