Posted by Mr. Disco on Wednesday, February 20, 2008
I have a 0.5-inch bridge on my Iida. I was searching for a way to mute the banjo that would allow me to still enjoy good ringing musical sound while it's muted.
I believe the Gold Tone mute would work perfectly on a 5/8-inch or taller bridge but on my short bridge the brass and velcro was always in contact with at least some of the strings and really made the muted banjo sound plunky or dead.
By contrast the Fielding-Cutler mute sounds good and I want to continue to play. It also is more quiet than the Gold Tone on my banjo and that is important to my current situation.
Note that my Fielding-Cutler mute does not have the name on it but Bud Bennett (I bought it used through BHO classifieds from Mr. Bennett) believes it to be a Fielding-Cutler. It certainly looks like one. Also, I modified it with shorter screws so that the screws were not pressing into the head thanks to the short bridge.
A mute is critical to me so I wish I had a straight-line tail piece so that the mute could sit more securely without stressing one or more strings so close to the bridge when I'm trying to not mute it but keep it on. Also, for the price of the mute, Fielding-Cutler should save you a trip to the local hardware store to buy shorter screws if you're using a 0.5-inch bridge. They should include shorter screws.
If it were up to me to improve this mute I'd sell it with shorter and longer screws so that the proper length could be selected with respect to bridge heights. Also, I'm now on a quest to mute the banjo just a bit more but still have it sound as good. Seems like it would be possible to add another piece of metal on top of the mute piece or make the mute weight twice as wide.
All that said, I should end with saying this is by far the best mute I've seen or heard and I cannot imagine there a better mute out there for quiet and good quality sound.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008 @8:00:32 PM
Thanks for the heads up. I just ordered the mute, now my daughter will be happy, and possibly the rest of the neighborhood.
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