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Feb 14, 2018 - 10:38:27 AM
3 posts since 2/12/2018

Ive got an opportunity to buy a washburn b16 with hard case strap and book for 300. Is that a gool deal? Im pretty new to banjo and this forum so i apologize if this an old topic.

Feb 14, 2018 - 10:57:35 AM

1085 posts since 2/16/2017
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I don’t think I can personally speak for the quality since I’ve never played one…or maybe I have under a different headstock brand (a lot of these imports come from the same factories with different labels on them).  But 300 bucks sounds like a decent price.

 

Luckily, there are a ton of threads in the archives on this model.  Probably reviews for it in the review section.

 

Prior to buying, and for a month or so after buying a new banjo, I like to nerd out hardcore on any archived thread that mentions that model. 

 

But I am not well.

 

https://www.banjohangout.org/pages/search.asp?a=b&cx=003343045014085398078:ckok8j6qu0e&cof=FORID:9&sa=Search&ie=UTF-8&q2=washburn%20b16&refine=forum&q=washburn%20b16%20more:forum

 

Feb 14, 2018 - 11:02:04 AM

Joven

USA

248 posts since 2/6/2009

that is a great banjo in my opinion.
I have had a tenor b16 and currently have a 5-string b-16. Both are well built and good sounding ones.

Feb 14, 2018 - 11:40:43 AM

gtani7 Players Union Member

USA

512 posts since 3/22/2017
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Sounds like a good deal.

With factory instruments, you want to check a few things: neck not twisted/unevenly bowed, trussrod works (some relief in neck and tension on trussrod), trussrod allen bolt not rounded/stripped, neck angle/joint: action is not continuously increasing from nut to fret 22 and end of fingerboard isn't way above the head. The last 2 aren't deal killers unless they're extreme, you can shim neck and ovalize lagbolt holes

(and we try to be friendly, ask all the question you want, just don't ask the same question  4 times;-}

Edited by - gtani7 on 02/14/2018 11:42:37

Feb 14, 2018 - 11:44:07 AM

beegee

USA

20648 posts since 7/6/2005

Oddly enough, I went to a concert the other night at a local venue. The banjo player was playing a B-16 and it was noticeably lacking in tone and volume. It may have needed setting-up, but I was unimpressed by it. It would not be my first choice, but at $300, it's a decent price, but you may need to do some serious set-up work on it.

Feb 14, 2018 - 1:03:52 PM

66 posts since 10/26/2014

I would avoid it like a plague. I made the mistake of purchasing a Washburn, and sent it back. Fortunately, I got my money returned, except the shipping.

Feb 15, 2018 - 6:34:37 AM

gtani7 Players Union Member

USA

512 posts since 3/22/2017
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So you have ... a range of opinions, let's call it. Are you anywhere near banjo shops? those would be where somebody has set them up properly, not one of those national chains where the head tension is about 60% of what is should be and the bridge is backwards and exactly in the middle of the head becuase it looks good that way

Even if you don't know how to play, you can use an electronic tuner and play barre chords, some open chords and major scale on one string to test action and tone. And then you'll know what a decently setup banjo looks/feels like. There's no substitute. If you have to mail order something, make sure you can get a refund if necessary



There's actually a lot of things that can go wrong, but replacing the strings, nut, head, tailpiece or bridge are relatively cheap, other fixes are not. Worst case, you could post pictures of the instrument (neck joint without resonator but with strings, bottom of rim, etc) and we could look for glaring problems

Edited by - gtani7 on 02/15/2018 06:39:55

Feb 15, 2018 - 7:03:27 AM
likes this

smilway

Canada

32 posts since 8/19/2007

quote:
Originally posted by Oren

Ive got an opportunity to buy a washburn b16 with hard case strap and book for 300. Is that a gool deal? Im pretty new to banjo and this forum so i apologize if this an old topic.


I have a B17 which is pretty much the same banjo dressed in gold.  I paid way more than 300 and still consider it a bargain. 

Feb 20, 2018 - 12:09:19 PM

3 posts since 2/12/2018

Thanks all!

Feb 20, 2018 - 12:18:44 PM

1085 posts since 2/16/2017
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by Oren

Thanks all!


So...did you buy it?

Feb 26, 2018 - 7:47:24 PM
like this

3 posts since 2/12/2018

Yep. I got it. She sounds pretty good too. Itll definitely tide me over for a while.

Feb 28, 2018 - 9:25:39 AM

8944 posts since 6/2/2008

Good for you.

While there are better Chinese-made bluegrass banjos available, there are few, if any, available at $300.

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