The banjo reviews database is here to help educate people before they purchase an instrument. Of course, this is not meant to be a substitute for playing the instrument yourself!
6918 reviews in the archive.
Where Purchased: Maker
Year Purchased: 2014
Price Paid: 1400 ($US)
Very nice sound. 12" spun-over rim on an A Scale provides a rich and mellow sound. Not tinny or overly bright in A or DD tuning.
Sound Rating: 10
Action was a bit high, installed a special 9/16' bridge with a raised 5th string to drop the action a bit but keep room above the head for thumb space.
Setup Rating: 7
Simple, as I wanted but great workmanship and materials. The SS spun over rim with contrasting raw hardware is a knock-out. Great fretboard material and color on the Walnut neck. Wood finish is very fine.
Appearance Rating: 10
I assume it will last for life or longer. I don't know what the raw brass will look like in the future, but it is very well made USA hardware.
Reliability Rating: 8
Great communication and very helpful.
Customer Service: 10
Tuners stay put and do not require fussing.
I like the fretboard material. The brass components are very well made. The spun over rim is very well done.
Components Rating: 10
Several months ago I received this custom 12” Pisgah Rambler Walnut A Scale banjo with a Dobson tone ring I ordered from Patrick. This may be the only 12” rambler A scale they have made (at least it was when I bought it). I have waited for a while to post my review of the banjo to be sure I was certain about it. I bought the banjo (to be played in open A or D) to complement my Ome Celtic 12” full scale open back.
The Rambler is, by design, a simple but very attractive instrument. It is exactly the contrast I wanted as a second banjo. The extraordinary thing about the Rambler is that even though it is an A scale banjo, it is still rich and mellow in A or D because of the 12” rim. I did remove the Dobson ring and switched the head to a Fiberskyn because I wanted a slightly softer sound. To be clear the banjo sounded great as received, just personal taste. Now I alternate playing both banjos and enjoying their unique character.
I have never played a Pisgah without the Rambler Spun-over rim, but I can say I am very pleased that I purchased this banjo because it looks, sounds and feels great.
Overall Rating: 10
'955 Sound Sample 2' 49 min
'New Money (TOTW)' 1 hr
'Nerve damage' 1 hr
'Shopping by computer' 2 hrs