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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!

6986 reviews in the archive.

Armrests: Zach Hoyt armrest

Submitted by Parker135 on 7/7/2020

Where Purchased: Ordered directly from Zachary Hoyt

Overall Comments

I just installed a custom walnut armrest made by Zachary Hoyt on my Vega tenor.  From my initial email to Zach, to receiving the armrest just a few days later, I couldn't be happier.  He credits the design to Jason Romero, which speaks to his integrity.  It's really easy to mount, being made specifically for the diameter and hook spacing of the banjo and looks great.  This is my first wooden armrest and won't be my last.  I'm sure I'll be going back to Zach if/when I need another.  He prices these very reasonably, and he's great to work with.  

Overall Rating: 10

Banjo Bridges: Bart Veerman Banjo Bridges

Submitted by Parker135 on 2/19/2020

Where Purchased: Ordered Directly Through

Overall Comments

Once again, Bart came through with a winner.  This time, it was for a tenor banjo set up for Irish (GDAE) tuning.  I learned about a "Celtic" model that he makes for just this purpose and had to give it a try.  It's a very elegant two-footed bridge, very light to enhance the snappiness of the sound.  He custom slotted it for my preferred string sizes.  It really is a work of art.  These things are always subjective, but I have to say it adds a little spark to the sound of my old Vega.  As always, it was a pleasure communicating with him about my preferences, what he recommends based on experience, and so on.  I'm quite pleased and will be back for another when the time comes.

Overall Rating: 10

John Boulding

Submitted by Parker135 on 12/6/2019

Overall Comments

John recently refinished a Gibson RB-170 neck for me, and it's beautiful!  I can barely believe it's the same neck.  This included the correct black peghead color and placement of a new Gibson decal followed by clear.  I have no idea how many coats, but it's gorgeous. 

All along the way, John was very helpful and really wanted to do the job according to my wishes in terms of shading, etc.  He almost always answered my emails the same day I sent them or at least by the next day.  In terms of meeting his promised delivery date and his estimated cost (which I found very reasonable), he was spot-on.

This was the first time for me to work with John, and I would certainly do so again should the need arise.  Looking back at my thoughts of doing the job myself (and I love working on banjos and have built a mandolin, mountain dulcimer, banjo, banjolele, etc.), it's obvious I made the right decision to let a pro do this one.


Overall Rating: 10

Mutes: Mike's Banjo Mute

Submitted by Parker135 on 2/25/2012

Where Purchased: Ordered from

Overall Comments

I'm totally new to banjo, so I don't have much to compare Mike's mute to. However, it works like a charm. I'm obviously not making the most melodious sounds at this point, and the mute allows me to give my wife a break. The mute itself is beautifully made and attaches easily. Mike's service is great. He's very responsive to emails and ships quickly. Highly recommended!

Overall Rating: 10

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