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!
6919 reviews in the archive.
Where Purchased: Elderly
Year Purchased: 2004
Price Paid: 1400 ($US)
Chanterelle Galaxy has a Whyte Laydie tone ring in 12" pot which makes it deep and clear but rich and bassy as well. It is a fretless banjo, so I spent the first 4 hours just sliding those low notes up and down over and over again. By tinkering with the head tightness I am able to make it louder and crispier but I kinda like it quite loose. I have set it up once for nylon strings and down to open E tuning and that was also very pleasing. I wish I had a pair of these banjos but Mike Ramsey told me that 'only two exists, you have one and I have the other one.
Sound Rating: 9
The setup was quite good but since it is a fretless model I had to file the nut a little lower to make the 1st finger notes a little easier to achieve. The bridge was fine and it was fairly well set up.
Setup Rating: 9
The output is excellent, Black ebony fretboard has abalone strips inlaid at each fret location, plus star-shaped position inlays in various 4- 5- and 8-point shapes. Ebony peghead has overlay with crescent moon and starry expanse in pearl and abalone . The neck is reddish stained curly maple with strong figures. 5-Star planetary pegs came with black buttons, like the geared 5th peg. Pot is stained black, 28 brackets, No-Knot tailpiece. Beautiful.
Appearance Rating: 10
The hardware is first class like the staining. It is very stable, the neck is made for my wide fingers, plenty of room to move etc. I have recorded it solo and it comes out fine.
Reliability Rating: 10
Mike Ramsey has answered my personal emails very soon. He even told me how this special instrument came for him 'in a dream' I guess he was fooling around with the words Galax (fiddle gathering) and galaxy and it all came out in the shape of a beautiful oldtime banjo.
Customer Service: 10
The wood is fine and the hardware as well.
Components Rating: 10
For the price it is very good. I don't know what to do if somebody stole it, maybe I had to call Mike and ask if he's got any curly maple and pearly stars left.
Overall Rating: 10
'[FF] String Chickens' 2 hrs