Brian Potts brought his octave mandolin back to me after it had suffered from extreme damp. When I asked him how, he was evasive, eventually saying the OM had been involved in a canoeing incident while on holiday with his son.
Despite my pressing him, he declined to say more. From the state of the instrument I concluded he had either overturned the canoe or used the OM as a paddle.
Right, let’s have a look.
Wow, just look at the damage!
You did this? It’s vandalism!
The middle back brace has come away on both sides, the tail block is now separated from the back, and the sides, complete with binding, have pulled away from the back where it tapers towards the neck. The binding has come away from the back at the tail.
The fact that the label ink has run indicates there was plenty of water sloshing around inside.
Fortunately, the soundboard appears to be undamaged.
Brian has been a customer and friend for many years. Suitably penitent, he took us for a meal later, calming troubled waters with glasses of red wine.