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First Banjo Finished

Posted by Paula_DHJ on Tuesday, January 1, 2008

The banjo I just built is an openback clawhammer style banjo.  The rim was bought from Stew-Mac, and the neck is one of their neck-blanks with the heel-cut already done by them.  Now that I've seen the heel cut and learned some about the dimensions etc., I am going to try to make my next neck from scratch. 

For me, building this banjo the way I did was a great way to start out, because I had no luthier background whatsoever.  The old-time maple neck that Stew-Mac sells is a rough cut peice of tiger maple with the heel-cut done and the peg head is angled and has the ears attached to it. And where the fifth string ends the neck is profiled for you.   You shape the heel and neck yourself and cut the peghead however you want to.  Then of course you apply the stain and finish of your choice. 

The first banjo I bought was a very cheap entry level, with no tone ring or anything.  This one has a 3/4 inch thick 3-ply maple rim with a white laydie tone ring and the Elite Amber head.  Wow, what a difference in the sound.  The heavy rim and tone ring give it such a warm rich sound.  Its unbeleiveable.




2 comments on “First Banjo Finished”

Mainechowder Says:
Tuesday, January 1, 2008 @8:28:51 AM


Great job on your banjo. That neck is stunning!!!! It is obvious that you took a lot a pride in constructing the banjo. Hope it sounds as good as it looks.


KevinP Says:
Tuesday, January 1, 2008 @11:17:48 AM

Beautiful banjo, keep up the good work!

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