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A group formed to collect images of decorated banjo heads and technical insight for anyone interested.

152 Members, Created 4/27/2012 -

Administrators: OldTimeGal (owner)

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Getting ready to doodle

From Lil Stinkpot on 9/22/2015 9:48:00 AM

Hi all. 

I'm working on reassembling a banjo, and I plan on putting a magpie on the head. Is archival ink OK on skin? Do I need a sealer?


Last night I wanted to see what it would look like, and traced a maggie in pencil on the old Mylar head. Looks good. 


 photo 9F6524F0-938A-4B3E-8148-4FF0D2A0F656_zpshjmzr9op.jpg




Lil Stinkpot says:
9/22/2015 8:52:16 AM

Oh, poo. I botched that.

Paul R says:
9/30/2015 5:22:56 PM

I don't know about skin heads, but I've used archival ink on coated mylar. I used it on a couple of heads, one being my 100+ year-old Orpheum (photos on my home page/photo page). There have been no issues with archival ink; it seems to work fine.

Paul R says:
9/30/2015 5:27:12 PM

I should add: Looks really good!


Gordy Ohliger says:
10/12/2015 11:40:38 AM

Hey looks nice.
I have a background of restoration of paintings and you are in fine territory. As long as your ink is not acidic, it will not "be active." I shall suppose that is what you mean by archival ink. (ie. Windsor Newton is pure.)
No sealer is needed. Possibly if you were making your own with lamp-black and floating it in a water medium, you might want to seal it.....though my 2-cents as a banjo-nut is to leave it be in the olde-style.

Lil Stinkpot says:
10/12/2015 1:06:03 PM

Thanks. :D

I have some India ink markers and pens, I'll use those. I'll be sure to post photos.

SWCooper says:
12/13/2015 11:10:59 PM

Proper india ink is just carbon plus shellac. You can't really get any more archival than that! I've got two inked heads on banjos I use quite a lot. Apart from the area right under where my fingers brace, there's no wear or smear. No sealer. (I think shiny would look pretty awful, don't you?). Good luck.

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