Tom Ellis of Ellis Mandolins, builds one of a kind, hand made mandolins in Austin, Texas. Ellis has been making mandolins since 1977, when he opened a workshop in Austin. Business was boosted in 1981 when Dave Grisman listed Ellis in the top 5 mandolin makers in an interview for Frets Magazine. Ricky Scaggs was also an early endoser of Ellis mandolins. In the 1990s Tom Ellis branched out into making pearl inlays for the guitar industry using CNC when he founded Precision Pearl Inc. Tom has also used this CNC technology to help in the rough cutting of mandolin parts since 2004 (these pieces are then hand finished and assembled by hand).