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Posted by jbalch on Thursday, January 9, 2014

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2014 JDBalch Pre-mounted HIDE HEAD menu and PRICE LIST

These prices apply to all available sizes including: 10 15/16" (Vega) , 11" and 12"

Grade:                                                   Price us$

Stern Tanning Premium Calf Skin         $85.00 (12" size temp. out of stock - inquire)

Stern Tanning Premium Goat Skin        $75.00 (temporarily out of stock - inquire)

JDBalch SPECIAL SELECT Nat. Goat   $60.00

JDBalch 4-star Natural Goat                   $55.00

JDBalch 3-star Goat or Calf                    $45.00

Staining add:                                            $ 3.00

Sheepskin banjo stuffer                           $ 5.00

USA Postage                                             $ 4.00

International Postage                     contact for quote

prices effective January 1, 2014 - subject to change

Contact me for quotes on custom mounting heads for odd-sized rims or other special requests. 

Be sure to check the classifieds for any heads that are immediately available:

Photos of various types here:

Photos of mounting process:


JDBalch 3-star goat or calfskin heads are my standard quality.  These are reliable heads that sound very good.  3-star heads may have natural cosmetic blemishes, slight variations in thickness, or small flaws that should not affect integrity or performance. 

 JDBalch 4-star goat heads are my preferred and most popular grade.  These are what I choose for most of my personal banjos.  4-star heads are selected to have more consistent thickness, and better appearance. 4-star heads will have fewer blemishes or flaws.  Natural imperfections are generally small and inconsequential. 

Stern Tanning Co.  produces highest-grade, machine-sanded, calf and goat hides for drum and banjo heads. Stern hides feature precise, even, thickness (for maximum response).  These are comparable to the best heads of the bygone era. Since1939, the Stern family has operated a tannery in Sheboygan Falls, WI. In 2001, Jeff Stern bought Chicago-based United Rawhide Co. which historically produced calfskin drum and banjo heads for Slingerland, Ludwig and others. Stern Tanning Co. uses equipment and methods acquired from United Tanning to produce the highest quality traditional hides for drum and banjo heads.

4 comments on “2014 ~ JDBalch ~ PRE-MOUNTED HIDE HEAD menu and PRICE LIST”

dbrooks Says:
Thursday, January 9, 2014 @12:51:07 PM

Great information here, John. You have made it very easy for a customer to shop, select and purchase the appropriate banjo head.

mrphysics55 Says:
Friday, January 10, 2014 @4:37:18 PM


I'm having an 11.5 inch banjo being built by J.Sproull.
Is and 11.5 Inch Pre-Mounted Available?


jbalch Says:
Friday, January 10, 2014 @4:55:56 PM

I don't have a rim that size ... can't pre-mount 11 1/2" ... sorry. Lee S. does AMAZING work. I bet that will be a great banjo.

mrphysics55 Says:
Friday, January 10, 2014 @7:10:20 PM

Well sir,

We will just have to "Make Due" with one of your unmounted hides.

; >)

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