No, they didn't make a mahogany sub-Mastertone. Of course, when you're having a conversion neck made you can go with whatever wood you want and have it stained to match the pot. I'm going to Frank Neat's tomorrow to pick up a neck for my TB-1 and I had him do it in mahogany just because I'm a big believer in mahogany necks, sound-wise.
quote:I was just wondering why they avoided Mahogany.
Like rexhunt said. Consider that these banjos were built in the Great Depression. The world economy was in turmoil. Mahogany is a tropical hardwood. There are some mahogany species that grow in the US(Florida) but they aren't as nice as Honduras mahogany. Getting large logs of mahogany imported must have been expensive. Maple and walnut were readily available(still are)in Michigan and I imagine, labor and transportation played a big part in the manufacturing process. A banjo that might have cost $75 was a big chunk of money from the budget. Maple and walnut were cheap and allowed Gibson to build decent instruments at an affordable cost. Mahogany was reserved for fine furniture and upper-line banjos, is my best guess. I still marvel at the fact that most American hardwoods go into pallet-making for the transportation industry.
How Much things cost in 1935 Average Cost of new house $3,450.00 Average wages per year $1,600.00 Cost of a gallon of Gas 10 cents Average Cost for house rent $22.00 per month A loaf of Bread 8 cents A LB of Hamburger Meat 11 cents Average New Car Price $625.00 Canada Dry Ginger Ale 20 Cents