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Jeff Graf

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Banjo Head Tension guidance

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Can folks assist me in understanding how to know, in the absence of a banjo head tension gage, whether the head is correctly tensioned?  Can a head be too tight and what are the signs of that?  Actually, I’d even ask one thing farther: how does the system work?  I have two open back banjos which both sound and play great, a Rickard 12” Maple Ridge with steel strings and a GoldTone 12” Carlin with nylgut strings, each a couple of years old. I’ve tightened, slightly the hooks on both, like a quarter turn each (presuming that over time they needed a little tightening).  But it was all guess work.   Looking at where the hooks grab the rim (which holds the head), it seems to me that there is a limit to how much one could possibly tighten the head.  I just don’t get the physics/mechanics of it.  Any advice or referrals you can provide would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks.

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Playing Since: 2020
Experience Level: Intermediate

Occupation: Retired

Gender: Male
My Instruments:
Banjo and guitar

Favorite Bands/Musicians:
As far a banjo goes, old time is my thing

Classified Rating: not rated
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Profile Info:
Visible to: Public
Created 4/24/2020
Last Visit 5/10/2024

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