Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Mandolin Setup: Free eBook

Since taking up the mandolin I have been occasionally lurking around the forum at Mandolin Cafe. Yes, another forum. It’s not cheating if I am only looking, right? Anyway, there is a thread by a gentleman named Rob who offers a free ebook on mandolin setup. All you have to do is request it by email. The thread link and a snippet of his post are included below.

I just received the ebook yesterday so I haven’t had time to review it. Even if I did, I likely don’t have the technical expertise to say much about it. However, his post has five pages of thank-you’s and positive feedback. I thought the book might be a helpful resource for this community as well.

" I have been giving away the free setup ebook for nearly four years now… if you want my free ebook on how to set up a mandolin, just email me at and put Mandolin Setup in the subject line."

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I can attest to the usefulness of Rob’s book. A couple of years ago I bought a real cheap used mando to see if I was interested in taking it up. (Shipping the banjo for vacation was getting pricey.) The mando I got had been monkeyed around with by someone who really didn’t know what he (or she) was doing. I put it aside deciding it wasn’t for me. Later I found out about the mando setup book and asked Rob for a copy. He was very generous and sent it for free. It had all the information I needed to diagnose, repair, and setup my mando. I needed to install a new nut and repair the bridge. By working through the process I took an unplayable instrument to one that plays pretty well. It doesn’t change the fact that it is still a cheap instrument, but it allowed me to give it a fair try. I’m sure the setup could be improved by a pro, but for a home repair the book gave me all the info I needed to take an instrument I was going to give to Goodwill and turn it into something usable. Highly recommended.