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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Telltale Signs A Banjo Seller Doesn't Know What They're Talking About


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/392034

KCJones - Posted - 08/03/2023:  10:56:51


This could be a fun thread: What are the telltale signs that a banjo seller doesn't know anything about banjos?

My favorite is when they call the rim a "shell".

What are some other items that let you know that a seller is out of their element?

Banner Blue - Posted - 08/03/2023:  10:58:54


The most common one seems to be stating that the banjo is a Remo brand due to the Remo logo on the banjo head.

deestexas - Posted - 08/03/2023:  11:01:35


Identify it as a REMO/Weatherking, or Grover or Waverly

NotABanjoYoda - Posted - 08/03/2023:  11:04:08


When they ask for a deposit on Venmo and keep changing their location and flood your phone with pics of random banjos before you ask for any,

Texasbanjo - Posted - 08/03/2023:  11:10:46


Overpricing of an entry level banjo. Not knowing what a tone ring is and whether their banjo has one or not. Not knowing the difference between a flat top and an arch top. Not knowing what different parts of the banjo are called; i.e. headstock, fretboard, etc.

Putting "returns not accepted" on their ad. Could mean they don't know what they're talking about or they're a spammer.

Running a classified with no pictures.

Bill Rogers - Posted - 08/03/2023:  11:17:52


“Antique” banjo that’s obviously from the later 20th c.

1931TB2 - Posted - 08/03/2023:  12:10:28


When they reply back that "they don't know how to take off the resonator" and have no interest in doing so.

Alvin Conder - Posted - 08/03/2023:  12:30:27


“Certified Civil War Banjo”

lucass - Posted - 08/03/2023:  12:50:07


They have all their teeth.

Culloden - Posted - 08/03/2023:  16:37:45


When they don't know the difference between a truss rod and a rim rod.
When they call it an Elton banjo because it has an Elton tailpiece.
When they call tuning pegs "thingys."
When they say that the inlays are made of ivory.
When they call brackets torsion rods. Whatever the h*** that means.
Shall I go on?

Banjowarehouse_com - Posted - 08/03/2023:  16:39:14


A rim and a shell are the same thing. Some people call them rims, most nowadays, but shell is another term used

Same thing

ObsidianSpike - Posted - 08/03/2023:  18:18:03


When they will not give me the banjo for free, even though I really want it angry


Edited by - ObsidianSpike on 08/03/2023 18:18:25

AndrewD - Posted - 08/04/2023:  02:22:11


"May need new strings" or "Missing 2 strings"

"Estate find"



And in the UK

"Close backed" to mean eiter a zither banjo or a resonator banjo.



"G banjo" to describe a 5 string.





But those people who know nothing are where we get our bargains. So don't knock it.


Edited by - AndrewD on 08/04/2023 02:23:18

GrahamHawker - Posted - 08/04/2023:  02:29:54


quote:

Originally posted by KCJones



My favorite is when they call the rim a "shell".

 






One UK big box seller describes their cheap own brand banjo as having a mahogany resonator, a mahogany body and an aluminium shell.

GrahamHawker - Posted - 08/04/2023:  02:40:27


quote:

Originally posted by AndrewD



But those people who know nothing are where we get our bargains. So don't knock it.






However it's often these people who massively over value the banjo they are trying to sell. Especially if it has a name like Fender on the headstock or is very old or even if it should be a cheap bottlecap but the starting bid is £300.

JSB88 - Posted - 08/04/2023:  05:53:20


Described as a tenor when it's clearly a 5 string.

JSB88 - Posted - 08/04/2023:  05:54:37


Also 'rare' and 'Vintage' when it's simply a bit battered

Culloden - Posted - 08/04/2023:  06:47:59


When they put up an old piece of junk and call it "vintage." Some people think just because a banjo is old it is automatically good. They made clunkers in the old days, too.

Bronx banjo - Posted - 08/04/2023:  08:58:43


I’m selling it for a friend.

KatB - Posted - 08/05/2023:  02:36:41


Banjo is pictured resting on a hard floor, with the headstock propped against a wall

JSB88 - Posted - 08/05/2023:  08:52:33


This is currently live on ebay in the UK

5 String Banjo REMO Weatherking Head And Tanglewood Neck

All 2 of the pictures are of the banjo snugly in its case

mikehalloran - Posted - 08/07/2023:  21:54:33


quote:

Originally posted by Banjowarehouse_com

A rim and a shell are the same thing. Some people call them rims, most nowadays, but shell is another term used



Same thing






Except when they mean resonator.

mikehalloran - Posted - 08/07/2023:  22:06:48


Any of us know the difference between lying and ignorance. Lying is often followed by "I know nothing about banjos".



Ignorance is often good; bad advice better. 16 brackets may indicate Kay or Harmony but when there are 3 resonator thumb screws on brackets, it generally means Gibson made. I found an unbranded Kalamazoo/Oriole/Cromwel… plectrum with resonator and the 3 brackets advertised as a Kay on eBay once. $50. I emailed the seller suggesting the real maker—she fired back that a Music Store Guy told her that 16 brackets meant Kay. Okay... I was the only bidder and she paid the shipping. I would have sent Music Store Guy a $25 Starbucks card had I known who he was. The friend I sold it to after converting it to lefty still thanks me for finding him such a nice banjo.

mike gregory - Posted - 08/07/2023:  22:16:51


quote:

Originally posted by JSB88

Also 'rare' and 'Vintage' when it's simply a bit battered






If RARE really, really means "VALUABLE", then the proven fact that original SQUARED EEL" model2 banjos, with the P.E.T.E. soft drink bottle heads are FAR rarer than prewar Gibson 5-strings, should have sent the prices HIGHER than the Gibsons.



But, alas, they are still only  $75 plus shipping.



(Do NOT buy the Disney-themed FAKES!)


mike gregory - Posted - 08/07/2023:  22:33:12


quote:

Originally posted by Culloden

When they don't know the difference between a truss rod and a rim rod.

When they call it an Elton banjo because it has an Elton tailpiece.

When they call tuning pegs "thingys."

When they say that the inlays are made of ivory.

When they call brackets torsion rods. Whatever the h*** that means.

Shall I go on?






In my never-ending quest to be considered a HELPFUL Old Man, I submit this Official Drawing from online to explain what the h*** that means:





And before anybody asks what a "JOURNAL BEARING" is, that's the way a  paperboy from Milwaukee, Wisconsin walks.



  



 

Pomeroy - Posted - 08/08/2023:  00:55:37


'Rare'



It's not a crime to know nothing about banjos. What I don't understand are the individuals who receive gentle, well-intentioned advice (from multiple non-interested people who do know about banjos) that their eBay listed 'rare' banjo doesn't have anywhere near the value they have as the bid price. They are helpfully advised of the actual market value range and yet leave it there at the original silly price regardless.



There's one I know of on eBay currently that has sat there for at least 2 years because the seller won't heed the advice they were given. Do they imagine a gormless wannabe banjo player with a wad of cash is suddenly going to materialise and want to pay 5X the true value for their mediocre, damaged and presently unplayable 6-string? When does the penny drop?



The particular banjo in question has 21 watchers though I doubt any remember that 2 years down the line. We have to assume these were a mixture of sensible potential buyers who may have bid if the price dropped from La-La Land, and people wanting to watch and be amused by the seller's ongoing absurd optimism. My guess is that the latter group far outnumber the former. And some if not all of the former are now in the latter group.


Edited by - Pomeroy on 08/08/2023 01:10:54

mikehalloran - Posted - 08/08/2023:  10:21:54


In another thread, someone linked a preposterous Galaxy Vega bottlecap with a $1500 opening and a $8500 Buy It Now. Ok, lots of fun.



When I clicked on the link, I also saw a V-76 Bicentennial for a lower BIN. I jumped on that one.

jenorma1 - Posted - 08/09/2023:  08:44:09


I came across a music-store in Minnesota several years ago that was selling a used OPEN-BACK banjo from a small builder, which was probably worth a couple grand, for $300 because "it was missing its back and they weren't sure where it was."

Needless to say, I payed the $300 - never did find that back though : )

It seems like google should prevent this stuff from happening, but google was definitely up and running at this point (this happened in maybe 2012?)

Old Hickory - Posted - 08/09/2023:  09:35:08


This.

Old Hickory - Posted - 08/09/2023:  09:48:48


quote:

Originally posted by Pomeroy

It's not a crime to know nothing about banjos. What I don't understand are the individuals who receive gentle, well-intentioned advice (from multiple non-interested people who do know about banjos) that their eBay listed 'rare' banjo doesn't have anywhere near the value they have as the bid price. They are helpfully advised of the actual market value range and yet leave it there at the original silly price regardless.






I wrote to the Craigslist seller behind the ad I linked in the previous message. I thought my tone was friendly and helpful in identifying what he actually had and what it was probably worth. He sent a fairly dismissive reply. And that's where it ends. He's still asking $1300 for a $300 banjo.



 

Tom Meisenheimer - Posted - 08/11/2023:  11:33:37


The widow of a well known Luthier had two instruments for sale. One a beautiful banjo the other a Martin pre-war D-28.

Both were $50.

Since $50 was a lot of money for me back in 1962 I bought the banjo and sorrowed over not being able to buy the Martin as well.

I just bought a mystery banjo (possibly Kay made, no label) for $40. With new strings it plays really well.
I was intrigued by the 32 brackets holding the old WEATHERKING head. I'll remove the rust as soon as I have the time.

Value? I like the sound. The neck is true. Probably 1950s early 60s. it is worth....$40!

dreadnought28 - Posted - 08/11/2023:  16:24:14


Fabulous unique stunning Remo antique banjo ready to play just needs a couple of strings and a bit of cleaning. Free shipping

ban-joe - Posted - 08/11/2023:  18:30:44


My favorite example that some of the longtime BHOers might remember is that gen-u-wine intact pre-war Gibson 5-string that some young man put on the Bay not knowing what it was.
I think it had belonged to his grandfather (?) and been in his family forever.
Someone from here gave him a heads up on what he had before it got away from him.
Did he sell that through Frank Neat?
I can’t remember anything these days, but it was interesting as it unfolded.
Maybe someone here remembers better than I do.

writerrad - Posted - 08/11/2023:  19:36:16


quote:Thank you.   I have seen ads for a "Remo" banjo.  This can be an incompetent banjo thief

Originally posted by deestexas

Identify it as a REMO/Weatherking, or Grover or Waverly






 

writerrad - Posted - 08/11/2023:  19:38:00


quote:oh worse  like one I saw locally for a "Vintage Gold Tone."

Originally posted by Bill Rogers

“Antique” banjo that’s obviously from the later 20th c.






 

Dave1climber - Posted - 08/12/2023:  07:55:08


quote:

Originally posted by Old Hickory

quote:

Originally posted by Pomeroy

It's not a crime to know nothing about banjos. What I don't understand are the individuals who receive gentle, well-intentioned advice (from multiple non-interested people who do know about banjos) that their eBay listed 'rare' banjo doesn't have anywhere near the value they have as the bid price. They are helpfully advised of the actual market value range and yet leave it there at the original silly price regardless.






I wrote to the Craigslist seller behind the ad I linked in the previous message. I thought my tone was friendly and helpful in identifying what he actually had and what it was probably worth. He sent a fairly dismissive reply. And that's where it ends. He's still asking $1300 for a $300 banjo.



 






I looked at the Banjo in question, the seller dropped the price all the way down to $1100.

Strumbody - Posted - 08/26/2023:  05:02:13


How do you know if a person selling a banjo is ignorant? You're standing in Guitar Center.

Dale Diehl - Posted - 08/27/2023:  11:15:25


It was in grandpa's attic. I know it must be real valuable. Like one of them stratavarioses.

Joe Connor - Posted - 08/27/2023:  12:28:27


A few years ago, a guy advertised a banjo that he said had extra value because it was made in Korea, "the banjo capital of the world."



Yeah, maybe it was once played by the Inchon Mountain Boys. 

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