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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!

6975 reviews in the archive.

Armrests: Stew Mac Old time wire arm rest

Submitted by banjobran on 2/21/2011

Where Purchased: Stew Mac

Overall Comments

This is a really neat little arm rest. Very comfortable, very adjustable and easy to install. Made for 11" pot but easily bent to fit my 12" pot. really a great deal! Has the old time look as well. I highly recommend this for old time open back players.

Overall Rating: 10

Moonshiner: Special 12"

Submitted by banjobran on 2/13/2011

Where Purchased:

Year Purchased: 2011
Price Paid: 1045.00 ($US)


My first open back so it is hard to judge. Nice Renaissance head and brass tone ring. Kind of plunky up the fret board Pretty decent sound overall though. it is growing on me

Sound Rating: 9


The set up seems pretty good so far. Came with a cheap compensated bridge, I put a moon bridge on it.. Like that a lot better

Setup Rating: 9


Hard Maple neck, nice shape, nice and substantial for claw hammer style play, Bent Maple pot, nice reddish brown stain on both. Beautiful Ebony fret board, peg head overlay and heel cap. No finish flaws are apparent at this time. Neat little moonshine jug inlay on the simple peg head and dot markers. Nice, simple and basic, looks like an old time instrument..

Appearance Rating: 9


I am disappointed in the hardware. I was hoping they would have used the nice Stew Mac stuff at this price range. I replaced the tuners with 5 Star tuners, replaced the hooks and nuts with Stew Mac stuff and installed a neat little wire arm rest from Stew MAc, really mad for a nice instrument now.

Reliability Rating: 7

Customer Service

The folks @ were very pleasant to deal with, I also sent and promptly received reply's form the makers themselves.Again. very pleasant to deal with. Instrument was shipped securely and quickly.

Customer Service: 9


I like the Renaissance head a lot, rolled brass tone ring, no knot tail piece, all very nice .I replaced the hardware and it is a much better instrument now.

Components Rating: 8

Overall Comments

Really disappointed in the hardware, has a nice sound and woods. I will have to spend some money to get it more in line with what I expected at this price range.

Overall Rating: 9

Cases (Soft, Gig Bags): Reunion Blues Cordura open back model

Submitted by banjobran on 2/12/2011

Where Purchased: Elderly Instruments.

Overall Comments

Wow! What a nice gig bag. I will not buy a hard case, do not need it. Really well made. My banjo has a 12" pot and it fits perfectly. A bit pricey but I guess I got what I paid for this time.

Overall Rating: 10

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