Flea Mandolin Care and Setup
Bridge Setup – Your Flea Mandolin was shipped detuned but with the bridge standing up. If the bridge has fallen or is out of place, it can be easily repositioned. Its proper place is standing up with the feet centered between the small pin holes on the top; numbered or dot side facing the tailpiece. Recheck periodically when tuning for proper intonation. Be careful when repositioning since the spruce top is very soft and scratches easily. All strings should be placed in the appropriate grooves on the top of the bridge.
Tuning pegs – The Peghed tuners have an internal 4:1 reduction for fine tuning and work much like a traditional violin peg. The metal strings have very little stretch requiring very small adjustments. Tightness of the Peghed geared tuners can be adjusted by pressing in while the peg is rotated to tighten, or pulling out to loosen. Gotoh 4:1 tuners have a small Philips screw on the end of the peg for adjusting tension.
Mandolin tuning is GDAE – It’s very important not to exceed these pitches by over tightening the tuners. Steel strings stretch very little and will break if over stressed. Using a tuner for reference, take the tension up gradually working your way across the strings, checking to make sure the bridge maintains its position.
Restringing – The mandolin comes with a D’Addario phosphor bronze, loop end, wound string set designed specifically for this instrument and available from www.magicfluke.com in the following sizes: G – LE030PB; D – LE020PB; A – LE012; E – LE008
Shoulder Strap – Any of the straps designed to fit the Flea ukulele will fit. Options include the hook and loop attachment to the body or a traditional end pin strap button can be added to the base of the instrument. Magic Fluke grip strips work as well.
Care and cleaning – The solid Adirondack Red Spruce top was chosen for its bright and lively tonal characteristics and must be treated with care as the wood and finish is soft. Avoid extreme temperature and humidity changes and clean periodically with a damp cloth. Clear Mylar pick guards are available specifically for this instrument.