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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!

6978 reviews in the archive.

Gibson: RB3 Don Reno

Submitted by tklassen on 11/18/2009

Where Purchased: Private

Year Purchased: 2002
Price Paid: 2500 (Canada) (bought USED) historic exchange rates / currency converter

Sound

Even volume across the strings, full sound. Play it acoustic or plugged in with a fisher rare earth pickup, pre-amp, and a Marshall acoustic amp. Classic banjo tone. This is not a loud banjo.

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

I use a 5 star unfrosted head, moon bridge, and Price tail piece. The head is medium tight, just tight enough that there is no sag under the bridge. I use a drum wrench to make sure it is even tension at all hooks. The action is set to low about 3/16 above the 12th fret. The tail piece is level with the head about 1/8 off the head surface. Installed rr spikes at 7, 9, and 10 frets. I use light strings. Everything stays in place and does not require further adjusting.

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

Flying eagle inlay, RB3 head stock inlay, classic Gibson banjo.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

The banjo stays in tune, does not require constant re-tuning, when using a capo. Looks as good as when I first purchased.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Not applicable

Customer Service: not rated

Components

This banjo has waverly tuners and only replaced the presto tailpiece.

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

It is a keeper, and have no desire for another banjo.

Overall Rating: 10

Deering: Goodtime

Submitted by tklassen on 11/18/2009

Where Purchased: Elderly Instruments

Year Purchased: 2003
Price Paid: Don't Remember historic exchange rates / currency converter

Sound

It is not a bluegrass banjo, a muted sound, keeps peace in the household by not over powering all other sounds. Stays in tune, and is accurate up the neck.

Sound Rating: 5

Setup

String height set to 3/16 above the 12th fret, head is tight enough that there is no sag under the bridge, the tailpiece is not adjustable. Installed RR spikes at 7, 9, 10, and 12 fret. It is a very playable banjo with little adjustment.

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

Simple, it is not eye candy, you get what you pay for. I love it.

Appearance Rating: 5

Reliability

Nothing much to go wrong, little hardware, guitar tuners, have carried and taken this banjo all over North America, very light it came with a fabric gig bag. Stays in tune, easy to play and will not cause the neighbours to complain.

Reliability Rating: not rated

Customer Service

Not applicable, nothing has gone wrong that would require service in 6 years

Customer Service: not rated

Components

Nothing it is cool in itself.

Components Rating: not rated

Overall Comments

Light, simple, playable, always have it at the ready. It is my main banjo inside the home and for personal travel. For the money invested it is a great value. I have never used it at a gig, but think about it once and awhile.

Overall Rating: 10

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