Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

333
Banjo Lovers Online


Discussion Forum

Want to hide these Google ads? Join the Players Union!

 All Forums
 Other Banjo-Related Topics
 Banjo Building, Setup, and Repair
 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Nylon strings and unslotted no knot tailpiece


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/350199

Nickcd - Posted - 01/16/2019:  02:29:58


I am considering trying nylon strings on my muck around banjo to see what they are like - thinking of trying medium gauge say 024,028,032,028w,024.
I think the tailpiece on the banjo now has too sharp edges for nylon but have a standard unslotted no knot one I could use.
However, I looked at a spare set of tenor banjolele nylon strings I have with similar/near gauges but cannot see how they will fit between the gaps between the pegs on the no knot or lie side by side with all 5.
Do you just have to force them
Or is this sort of tailpiece not suitable,
Thanks

Nick A - Posted - 01/16/2019:  03:50:51


Hi Nick,

I've had the same issue, having recently converted my three to nylgut. You don't need the slot, but the flimsy tailpieces that don't have the slot are simply not spaced for anything other then steel strings.



I also found it very difficult to remove the burrs from a plated tailpiece without ruining the finish, but I'm sure it could be done.



I see that you too are in Britain. Andy Banjo doesn't seem to do the slotted no-knot tailpieces any more. I bought a 'golden gate' no-knot tailpiece in 'antique brass' from Brown Dog Banjos and spent time and patience removing the burrs with abrasive paper (The brass being easier to de-burr). You may find that you have to adjust the slot sizes in your bridge to accommodate the extra string diameters. Once you're happy you can also adjust the slots at the nut to restore your string height at the nut.





I've not looked back, myself - I simply love the sound.



Nick.


Edited by - Nick A on 01/16/2019 03:52:17

rudy - Posted - 01/16/2019:  05:31:43


Bob Smakula still has a few cammed No Knots available:



smakula.com/nbp.html


Edited by - rudy on 01/16/2019 05:32:06

The Old Timer - Posted - 01/16/2019:  05:40:40


I have a Ramsey Chanterelle banjo with a repro No Knot tailpiece and Nylguts. I simply tied very small bowline knots in the end of each string (the loop being 1/2" to 3/4" long) and looped them over the studs. They fit fine.



For the record, this No Knot has the "split" studs, with tiny little grooves around the base of each stud. I didn't use the splits at all, so it's just as if they are not there.



The loops of the 3rd string and the 4th (wound) string touch each other between the studs, but do not overlap.


Edited by - The Old Timer on 01/16/2019 05:42:57



 

Bob Smakula - Posted - 01/16/2019:  06:00:04


I use a figure eight knot when attaching nylon strings to No-Knot tailpieces. I have never had a problem with burrs cutting my strings using a figure eight knot.



On my personal gut strung banjo, I use the cammed No-Knot.



Bob Smakula

smakula.com

Nickcd - Posted - 01/16/2019:  06:50:22


Thanks for the replies.
Dick the one in your picture seems to have much wider slots than the one I have.
Clifford essex sells the same one as Browndog but also has a couple of ebony tailpieces - one a tie on.
Will post a link.
Think I may also email Andybanjo as they sell nylon strings + options to install them on some of their banjos - but the no knot tailpiece they sell looks like the one I have.

steveh_2o - Posted - 01/16/2019:  07:05:15


Kludge alert.

My 1st an 5th Nylguts kept breaking on the edge of a hole on my tailpiece. I rolled a little tube of paper around them where they go through. So far so good.

rudy - Posted - 01/16/2019:  07:11:40


I love the cammed No Knot.  An ultra-cool and well-made piece of hardware, but a bit on the pricey side to put on all my jos.  I normally use one of my own design that uses either loop end steel or tie-on synthetics and is adjustable for downforce.



Nickcd - Posted - 01/16/2019:  08:00:14


These are the clifford essex ones
cliffordessex.net/index.php?_a...ctId=1222
&
cliffordessex.net/index.php?_a...ctId=1145

What are peoples oppinions/experience with tie on tails?

rudy - Posted - 01/16/2019:  09:19:58


quote:

Originally posted by Nickcd

These are the clifford essex ones

cliffordessex.net/index.php?_a...ctId=1222

&

cliffordessex.net/index.php?_a...ctId=1145



What are peoples oppinions/experience with tie on tails?






The Aquila reds in the photo above are "tie-ons".



Here's fluorocarbon fishing leader with ends "tied".  If you want to get really fancy you can string 1st to 5th, holding each end down with the next string.  I much prefer either of these methods over actual knots because it's all too easy to end up with errant ends sticking up from the knot.  I won't relate the expletives used if you drag a bare forearm over the protruding end.





I prefer tie-ons, but the type which uses a knot against a hole or slot can work, too.  If you opt to use the knot there's a special version that creates a lovely three-lobed end that spreads out the force more uniformly.



Ashley's Stopper Knot:



 


Edited by - rudy on 01/16/2019 09:32:50


Joel Hooks - Posted - 01/16/2019:  10:09:06


You might find that some of the currently offered polyester and nylon strings will not fit in the slots of original no knot tailpieces. This is especially true of the unwound 4th that is now being included in sets.

These strings are much thicker than what was used when the no knots were designed.

I think it is great that people are designing new tailpiece patterns that will adapt to the thicker modern strings.

The tailpieces without the slits should just be called "Knot" tailpieces as they have removed the only feature that makes them "No Knot."

Nickcd - Posted - 01/16/2019:  11:11:18


Oops sorry I did not mean tie on nylon strings - ok with these as use on ukes and my banjolele.

I meant a "tie on" tailpiece as per the first example from clifford essex (above).

I think this is the way I will go - - especially as for some reason this particular banjo would need a "standard" tailpiece bracket to replace the current one - too close to rim for the no knot I have ... but the tie on tailpiece should have a decent anchor point.


Edited by - Nickcd on 01/16/2019 11:13:14

rudy - Posted - 01/16/2019:  12:17:02


quote:

Originally posted by Nickcd

Oops sorry I did not mean tie on nylon strings - ok with these as use on ukes and my banjolele.

I meant a "tie on" tailpiece as per the first example from clifford essex (above).

I think this is the way I will go - - especially as for some reason this particular banjo would need a "standard" tailpiece bracket to replace the current one - too close to rim for the no knot I have ... but the tie on tailpiece should have a decent anchor point.






It might work fine for you.  Do remember that there are a couple of issues with the "tie-on" tailpiece.



They tend to be fairly thick, so if the string ends up angling to the bridge from the mid-point in thickness then you'll loose down force on the bridge.



Any additional length from the rear of the rim to the bridge that's shortened by the tailpiece length will also effect the sound.  (That is indeed one of the selling points for the no-knot, that it leaves the string after length as long as possible).  Anyone who doubts this need only lengthen the tail wire to move the tailpiece closer to the bridge and listen to the resultant effect on tone and volume.



Each banjo and each player have to make the decision about how much any tailpiece alters their tone and if they consider it is for the worse or for the better.

csacwp - Posted - 01/16/2019:  15:36:31


Wow, .024" first and fifth is considered medium gauge these days? That's very heavy!

Nickcd - Posted - 01/28/2019:  11:49:34


Just a quick update - bought both the ebony tailpieces from Clifford Essex and have used the one with the tail bolt (not the tie on one yet) & seems to work fine.
At moment only have the nylon strings tuned to Briggs high bass (D A D G# A).
I have another banjo restoration that I will probably use other tailpiece on.

mikehalloran - Posted - 01/29/2019:  06:24:20


This is one of many ways the differences between nylon and Nylguts shows up.

You don’t have to deburr a ‘piece for nylon. Nylgut, on the other hand, will tear if the surface is nicked — same as cutting glass by scoring and bending.

I have no problem using a taught line hitch on a NoKnot and snugging it to the post. Easy on and off and it stays put while I thread the tuner.

AndrewD - Posted - 01/29/2019:  10:20:52


I've got a tie-on wooden tailpiece on my Tilley that I got from Clifford Essex. Works fine. Less futzing around than with the no-knot it replaced. Doesn't look like the one in the link above though. Metal bracket to offset the threaded rod, fancier shape and the wood looks like rosewood not ebony. Looks like they've changed the design or supplier in the last couple of years.

Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.1289063