Clark Fine Hand Crafted Instruments, Logo

Fine Craftsmanship Creates Exquisite Sound

This is all about "having your cake and eating it too".   At Clark Fine Handcrafted Instruments, I believe that you should have both visual beauty as well as wonderful sound. My instruments are made using the finest quality woods combined with a high level of craftsmanship and attention to detail that produces both elegant looks and exquisite tone. Based in Boise, Idaho, I build professional level instruments to suit the requirements of players at all levels of skill and musicianship. 

Traditional Materials and Methods

   Unlike most factory-built instruments, my mandolins are all built primarily with hot hide glue as an adhesive and the necks are attached with a traditional compound dovetail to ensure strength over time and the best sound transmission. The tops and backs are hand-tuned to work together as a unit and all wood is carefully chosen for both beauty and quality of sound. My wood storage and shop are climate and humidity-controlled to maximize stability of the wood throughout the seasoning and construction process.


    I prefer to use an oil varnish finish with a French polished shellac top coat.   As well as duplicating the finish of classic vintage mandolins, this offers a minimalist approach and beautiful glow that lacquer just can't quite duplicate.  Additionally, I feel that this finish method imparts a superior sound quality that doesn't compare to other finishes.

   There are times, however, when lacquer is the appropriate finish for an instrument. Whether the finish is lacquer or varnish, the application is as thin as possible.

Austin Clark Making Guitar

Mandolin Family

Whatever style of music you play, I can produce an instrument to suit you. The instrument designs I build include:

F5 Mandolin2 Point MandolinA Model MandolinA Model MandolaH5 Model Mandola | Guitar-Bodied Octave Mandolin

Not Just Mandolins

In addition to mandolins, I also make guitars featuring the same level of high-quality sound and materials. I make four types of guitars, including a 16-Inch L-5 style Archtop, 14-Inch Archtop Tenor, OM, and Dreadnaught Guitars.