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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!

7179 reviews in the archive.

Sullivan: Thunderbolt

Submitted by dlottbanjo on 1/12/2011

Where Purchased: first quality

Year Purchased: 2010
Price Paid: Don't Remember historic exchange rates / currency converter


Eric had Tony take the thunderbolt ring out and put a nickle plated vintage 35 in this maple banjo,i just recieved today and the setup was fine.this banjo is going to be the banjo i fly with to gigs instead of my prewar flathead,so iwas looking for something that sounds as close as possible so the band won;t fire me.nine bridges later and a used remo that was on another prewar of mine and i have fooled the band with the blind fold test.if this banjo gets a liitle better and the market comes back the prewars are gone and this will be my main axe.its got a 4th string the size of your thumb and it conyinues to ring when you put it in the case, (PRICE)

Sound Rating: 10


Setup Rating: 10


Appearance Rating: 10


Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Customer Service: 10


Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

Overall Rating: 10

Tone Rings: Mitchel's Tone Ring Mate

Submitted by dlottbanjo on 1/29/2009

Where Purchased: Directly from Mitch Meaders

Overall Comments

I have tried all of the name brand conversion rings on my 1935 Gibson one piece flange banjo.
I reinstalled the original 40 hole archtop ring and set the Tone ring mate on top.Used a remo head and tapped tune to A flat.
the banjo was noticebly different than any other sound i had experienced with other rings.
The thing i was impressed the most was the range of tones i could get in different locations playing from the bridge to the neck contact at the tension hoop.
I personally like a fat 4th string and i can honestly say it is bassier than anything i have ever tried.
I ended up retorqing the head to A and it absolutely come alive with volume and great sustain up the neck.
Prewar sound is not easily defined but one thing for sure this ring will give you plenty of different tones to experiment with.

Overall Rating: 10

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