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Thomas Banjos

Friday, November 12, 2010 @12:08:13 PM

Steve Thomas here. My dad, Don Thomas started building banjos in the early 70's. I worked with him from 1974 'til about 1982. Most have tone rings and flanges cast by Don from his own alloy formula. There are a few "Model S" banjos that were built primarily by myself that have a lightweight  tonering and flange. All lathe machining on the tone rings, flanges,and rims is done by him as well. All the necks are 100% hand shaped, no two are alike. The actual count of banjos built is unknown due to the fact that they weren't all stamped with a serial number. As a general rule, the ones that are stamped are easy to decifer.  As an example, 67641 would be June of 1976, number 41. He still lives in Shawnee Oklahoma and builds the occasional custom order. Maybe this will help some of you who have come across these rare totally handbuilt banjos.

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