Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

Banjo Lovers Online

Discussion Forum

Hide these ads: join the Players Union!

 All Forums
 Other Banjo-Related Topics
 Collector's Corner
 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Mystery Gibson from Switzerland

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:

alfienoalkes - Posted - 04/27/2022:  07:26:06

I am not the seller but have just seen this Banjo for sale on ebay, Was wondering if you guys had any idea what it is ?


KCJones - Posted - 04/27/2022:  07:44:22

It's not a Gibson.

From the seller description: This is a Gibson Mastertone like banjo. It took me 15 years to figure out it wasn't a mastertone because the quality is so good. I bought the banjo in about 1990, it is in great condition and looks like a parts banjo as I was not able to find a serial number. It is an excellent banjo, with a heavy mahogany resonator, and plays very well. The sound is very good.

alfienoalkes - Posted - 04/27/2022:  07:58:41

Yes i read that as well, but he says he isn't sure what it is.
I thought maybe the guys on here could maybe say more on what it is.

lightgauge - Posted - 04/27/2022:  08:00:08

Looks to be as described. An older copy of a Gibson Mastertone. As with other parts banjos, value just depends on condition and sound. My conversion chart shows @ $1100.00 in US which is less than it would cost to build.

mike gregory - Posted - 04/27/2022:  08:16:16

From my perspective, if you're buying it to PLAY, and not to resell for a profit, make arrangements to play it and return it if not satisfactory.

I greatly regret selling off a parts banjo which I was lucky enough to cobble together, waaaayyyy back when i had very little idea what the hell I was doing.
Sounded really mellow, and, since I'm a four chord folkie hacker, not a Bluegrass specialist, I didn't need or want something that rings like Earl's.

mikehalloran - Posted - 04/27/2022:  13:55:55

The bones certainly look good and, if as good as they look, certainly worth what the seller is asking. That's a pretty big IF, however. I'd want return privileges if it doesn't live up to expectations but even that wouldn't be a deal killer for me.

So, are you in the market for something like this and can you afford to take the chance? As much as we'd like to cheer you on from the sidelines, none of us can answer that for you.



KCJones - Posted - 04/27/2022:  14:25:49

Do I see a crack in the rim? Photo 8, showing the inside of the pot and bottom edge of the rim, at about 9-o-clock opposite of the Gibson sticker. Looks like there may be something funky on the inside ply, might just be a surface scratch though.

alfienoalkes - Posted - 04/27/2022:  15:10:20

Thanks for reply's, No sadly i cant afford to take the risk,
but that neck shouts pre war Granada to my untrained eye and was wondering what the experts think.
Well spotted with the possible crack probably hard to tell unless its sat on your lap ??

mike gregory - Posted - 04/27/2022:  17:09:16

I'll never forget the musical version, where Detective Callahan grabs his banjo and  sings


I feel lucky! Oh so LUCKY!

I feel lucky, and plucky, and BRIGHT!


The Old Timer - Posted - 04/27/2022:  18:42:34

You can be confident that neck is not "pre-war Granada". Granada necks were not made of mahogany.

Somebody did a fair job making themselves a faux Gibson. As usual the MASTERTONE decal inside is incorrect.

Edited by - The Old Timer on 04/27/2022 18:44:02

Hide these ads: join the Players Union!

Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories