%>
Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

104
Banjo Lovers Online


 All Forums
 Other Banjo-Related Topics
 Collector's Corner
 ARCHIVED TOPIC: here's an odd one


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/383094

Dan Gellert - Posted - 05/08/2022:  18:09:02


ebay.com/itm/384864547654?



Looks old, but then it is supposed to...   there sure are a lot of things wrong with it.

HASfrets - Posted - 05/08/2022:  18:13:54


Yeah, I've been watching that one casually. A really interesting piece as far as the style and construction are concerned. I'm prepared to believe it is indeed pretty old, though I suppose you never know.

kyleb - Posted - 05/09/2022:  06:52:32


looks like the fithstring bump has been sawed off the neck, theres a picture on the back where you can see the neck was shaped for the bump.

eubankss - Posted - 05/09/2022:  07:19:10


Looks pretty good to me.

Dan Gellert - Posted - 05/09/2022:  15:21:28


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

looks like the fithstring bump has been sawed off the neck, theres a picture on the back where you can see the neck was shaped for the bump.






oh yeah... I was looking on the wrong side!   and the peghead design makes a lot more sense to my eye, too, if it was supposed to be a lefty.


Edited by - Dan Gellert on 05/09/2022 15:23:32

m06 - Posted - 05/10/2022:  02:37:46


The double row of tacks suggest it had a skin front and back.



At that price I can’t see it being worth anyone’s time and effort to fake.



It looks interesting.


Edited by - m06 on 05/10/2022 02:38:41

HASfrets - Posted - 05/10/2022:  16:38:26


Just saw how much it sold for.



I had a feeling things had been a bit too quiet in that auction...



 

IMBanjoJim - Posted - 05/10/2022:  16:48:10


quote:

Originally posted by AldenS

Just saw how much it sold for.



I had a feeling things had been a bit too quiet in that auction...



 






Ya...I got outbid in the last 5 seconds. Dang!

jun3machina - Posted - 05/10/2022:  19:00:01


Same. I put some early bids in expecting it to go high. Not quite that high. Could this have been a boucher prototype? Very interesting! Congrats on whomever won it! There's been some very cool, early banjos lately

tbchappe - Posted - 05/10/2022:  19:41:55


I definitely wouldn’t have paid half that for it. I agree it’s an interesting banjo, though it looks like an unfinished project.

Blaine

IMBanjoJim - Posted - 05/10/2022:  21:24:09


quote:

Originally posted by tbchappe

I definitely wouldn’t have paid half that for it. I agree it’s an interesting banjo, though it looks like an unfinished project.



Blaine






Blaine, I'm GLAD you didn't bid against me! Obviously, good people don't bid against me, and bad people do! You've helped me articulate my world view!

tbchappe - Posted - 05/11/2022:  01:55:41


quote:

Originally posted by IMBanjoJim

quote:

Originally posted by tbchappe

I definitely wouldn’t have paid half that for it. I agree it’s an interesting banjo, though it looks like an unfinished project.



Blaine






Blaine, I'm GLAD you didn't bid against me! Obviously, good people don't bid against me, and bad people do! You've helped me articulate my world view!






I definitely don't want to get in your way, Jim. And, if I sounded crass, I'm sorry. I didn't mean it that way. I'll say that that banjo just wasn't for me.



 I'm down to just wanting one, maybe two more big hitters in my own small collection. 



 Blaine

m06 - Posted - 05/11/2022:  01:58:53


Including shipping the currency convertor makes that £3,020 GBP.



Well, that would be a reason for a fraudster to knock one up in his shed.



But it still looks interesting (the evidence of a double skin very interesting)...in my opinion just not anywhere near three grand-worth of interesting!.


Edited by - m06 on 05/11/2022 02:05:55

Alvin Conder - Posted - 05/11/2022:  04:55:16


Had my eye on that one, very casually, as I did not really know what to think of it.

Obviously old, but without actual provenance, no way of telling if it’s 1850’s or 1910’s.

Somebody was very confident on the age to pay that level.

m06 - Posted - 05/11/2022:  06:02:21


I wonder if there's significance to be taken from the different number of tacks top and bottom? Would that maybe indicate that the lower skin was intended to be at less tension?

Is it cherry wood?

Mainebanjo - Posted - 05/11/2022:  08:32:24


IMHO it does not seem like an outlandish price for a rare and early piece of banjo history, which it appears to be. if you happen to have the do- re -me.

kyleb - Posted - 05/11/2022:  08:40:25


i think its extremely odd that it sold for so much since the neck has been mutliated by removing the 5th string bump. you can see from the back where it used to be and its been sawed off, i bet its obvious from the side view. I dont understand this sale price, at all. I hope no one here dropped that on it and missed this. 


Edited by - kyleb on 05/11/2022 08:45:19



 

Andy FitzGibbon - Posted - 05/11/2022:  09:03:28


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

i think its extremely odd that it sold for so much since the neck has been mutliated by removing the 5th string bump. you can see from the back where it used to be and its been sawed off, i bet its obvious from the side view. I dont understand this sale price, at all. I hope no one here dropped that on it and missed this. 






It's not necessarily mutilated. A fair number of instruments from the minstrel era have the 5th string bump done as an outrigger that was added on with glue or metal fasteners. Could be the piece is just missing.

kyleb - Posted - 05/11/2022:  09:41:23


true, but eitherway i would think that would signifigantly decrease the value. 

IMBanjoJim - Posted - 05/11/2022:  10:37:25


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

true, but eitherway i would think that would signifigantly decrease the value. 






If this banjo is, in fact, a pre-Civil War double tackhead, it is worth every penny, in my opinion. How many are still around?

jun3machina - Posted - 05/11/2022:  10:39:09


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

i think its extremely odd that it sold for so much since the neck has been mutliated by removing the 5th string bump. you can see from the back where it used to be and its been sawed off, i bet its obvious from the side view. I dont understand this sale price, at all. I hope no one here dropped that on it and missed this. 






I actually wondered more if it had a 5th tuner extension, and it had come apart. I have seen some of those some separately from the neck, no? For me, the way the dowel was engineered was the most interesting part. that and the boucher style headstock. but the dowel seemed to have more engineering than the rest of the banjo combined

kyleb - Posted - 05/11/2022:  10:45:48


quote:

Originally posted by IMBanjoJim

quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

true, but eitherway i would think that would signifigantly decrease the value. 






If this banjo is, in fact, a pre-Civil War double tackhead, it is worth every penny, in my opinion. How many are still around?






how would you know if this was pre civil war or not? 

IMBanjoJim - Posted - 05/11/2022:  10:55:08


Double tackheads seem to have been rare later.
To me, everything about that banjo says Antebellum.

Mainebanjo - Posted - 05/11/2022:  12:02:58


It would be hard to resist restoring this banjo to playability, but that would probably lower it's value considerably- as they say it's only original once....

kyleb - Posted - 05/11/2022:  15:24:41


I'm fascinated by this, don't know much about this end of the collectible market. I makes sense historically but to have one in non playable condition command this much is kinda crazy to me. Especially since the comment was made that making it playable could hurt the value. How much more would this be in original playable with conclusive provenance ? Does that matter that much for this end of the collectible market?


Edited by - kyleb on 05/11/2022 15:26:24

IMBanjoJim - Posted - 05/11/2022:  16:02:47


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

I'm fascinated by this, don't know much about this end of the collectible market. I makes sense historically but to have one in non playable condition command this much is kinda crazy to me. Especially since the comment was made that making it playable could hurt the value. How much more would this be in original playable with conclusive provenance ? Does that matter that much for this end of the collectible market?






Kyle, you keep looking for the logic--there is no logic! We're talking banjo collecting here!

Mainebanjo - Posted - 05/11/2022:  16:11:31


I don't actually know much about collectable banjo values either, but I do know that every other antique object from vintage cars to fine arts to furniture are more desirable in untouched condition. an antebellum banjo of this kind (assuming that is what it is) is a rare document that can add to the knowledge of banjo history. It makes sense that a serious collector of this material would pay more for the untouched object, even if they were planning to have it professionally conserved/restored than if it had already been restored. Of course it should be more valuable it had survived in pristine condition. My two cents worth as the owner of just two banjos!

Dan Gellert - Posted - 05/11/2022:  16:15:08


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

I'm fascinated by this, don't know much about this end of the collectible market. I makes sense historically but to have one in non playable condition command this much is kinda crazy to me. Especially since the comment was made that making it playable could hurt the value. How much more would this be in original playable with conclusive provenance ? Does that matter that much for this end of the collectible market?






It's (potentially, at least) an artifact of historic significance, so it's going to be very desirable to somebody.  Playability isn't much of an issue in this particular case, but provenance sure is!  It does seem like a big pile to pay for something like that, unless it were way better-documented than that one appears to be. 

m06 - Posted - 05/11/2022:  16:34:18


quote:

Originally posted by Mainebanjo

It would be hard to resist restoring this banjo to playability, but that would probably lower it's value considerably- as they say it's only original once....






Finds like this at the rare end of the scale do add to the picture we have of early banjos. 



A double header even more so.



I would love to see a luthier put their time, skill and care to take precise measurements from the original and make an exact playable copy. Same wood, same neck profile, same rim construction, same perch pole 'wings', same everything.



I'm not a betting man, but if I were I'd place a large bet on it sounding amazing. These early banjos brought back to life often reveal a deeply beautiful tone.



 


Edited by - m06 on 05/11/2022 16:39:48

jun3machina - Posted - 05/11/2022:  16:36:02


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

I'm fascinated by this, don't know much about this end of the collectible market. I makes sense historically but to have one in non playable condition command this much is kinda crazy to me. Especially since the comment was made that making it playable could hurt the value. How much more would this be in original playable with conclusive provenance ? Does that matter that much for this end of the collectible market?






I think the value lies in the way this could fill in some gaps in very early banjo design, especially if one is interested in the history of the instrument in any way. Some members on BHO are making huge strides in documenting and writing books specifically about the history of the instrument and part of it is in documenting pieces such as this, as well as lucky collectors being open to share their finds in places such as BhO. It's fascinating to watch, not only from a banjo enthusiast perspective, but to see the great leaps so many have made in doing this research and helping to tell these stories of the instruments most early beginnings through historically documented lens

kyleb - Posted - 05/12/2022:  06:34:27


i get that, and i get that things are worth what someones willing to pay. Also get that all the experts here and elsewhere see this as antebellum. I'm guessing you all are right, but I also know without provenance theres not a way to tell if this was made in 1838 or 1938 other than just going with your gut? Im not trying to stir the pot just trying to learn about these.

tbchappe - Posted - 05/12/2022:  07:04:37


quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

i get that, and i get that things are worth what someones willing to pay. Also get that all the experts here and elsewhere see this as antebellum. I'm guessing you all are right, but I also know without provenance theres not a way to tell if this was made in 1838 or 1938 other than just going with your gut? Im not trying to stir the pot just trying to learn about these.






You have a strange way of learning. "I don't know much about these antebellum banjos." Followed by, "I don't think this should be that valuable."



i will do a comparison between this and some recent ones that sold. Let's assume that the two people that bid this high knew what they were looking at, so it's probably pre-Civil War. Now, go look at what the last two pre-Civil War banjos sold for:



a not so perfect, but decent Levi Brown: $20,000



a beat up and cracked rim Boucher at a music shop in Kentucky: $12,000



i was a bidder in both of those, andi came very close on the Boucher, as were several people here. $3,600 is looking like quite a bargain, relatively speaking.



Blaine

kyleb - Posted - 05/12/2022:  07:15:51


quote:

Originally posted by tbchappe

quote:

Originally posted by kyleb

i get that, and i get that things are worth what someones willing to pay. Also get that all the experts here and elsewhere see this as antebellum. I'm guessing you all are right, but I also know without provenance theres not a way to tell if this was made in 1838 or 1938 other than just going with your gut? Im not trying to stir the pot just trying to learn about these.






You have a strange way of learning. "I don't know much about these antebellum banjos." Followed by, "I don't think this should be that valuable."



i will do a comparison between this and some recent ones that sold. Let's assume that the two people that bid this high knew what they were looking at, so it's probably pre-Civil War. Now, go look at what the last two pre-Civil War banjos sold for:



a not so perfect, but decent Levi Brown: $20,000



a beat up and cracked rim Boucher at a music shop in Kentucky: $12,000



i was a bidder in both of those, andi came very close on the Boucher, as were several people here. $3,600 is looking like quite a bargain, relatively speaking.



Blaine






I started with i dont think it should be that valuable, based on the damage to the neck, but I've learned from this forum why people dont care about neck damage, this is destined to be a collectable wall hanger and not a player. And this is EXACTLY the kind of info I was looking for. So thank you, with provenance and a known maker I see these have a lot greater value than I knew. So it makes total sense to me that a damaged banjo would be worth 4k if in good shape  and provenance it would bring 20k. I had no idea these commanded that kind of money. Thank you!

IMBanjoJim - Posted - 05/12/2022:  07:24:15


I think the reason this banjo caused so much confusion is that it is not the sort of thing one typically finds on ebay.
It is so rare and one of a kind that some people, even here in a forum dedicated to collecting banjos, didn’t have anything to compare it to. So we’ve all learned…I’ve learned I should have bid higher!

Hide these ads: join the Players Union!

Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

7.788086E-02