Japanese Blue Bell Mandolin
A Japanese reader, Makoto, has written in with pictures of his Blue Bell mandolin, model F-8 with serial number B788035. The Blue Bell brand was used by Ibanez for products released in the Japanese domestic market. Makoto’s mandolin is nearly identical to an Ibanez 523 model – the label is signed by Kosakabe, the Ibanez master builder, and features a serial number identical to the Ibanez format. Blue Bell mandolins are quite rare and said to be of very high quality.
UPDATE – Makoto has supplied a photo of the serial number showing it is stamped into the headstock the same way that Ibanez does.
For more info on this mandolin, click here.
To hear some of Makoto’s music, click here.