Howdy. Primarily a fiddle and mandolin player, but my tenor banjo does get use from time to time. A neighbor gave me this old banjo that belonged to her dad. She doesn’t know much about it. It is pretty cool. Looks very old (fretboard has huge grooves from playing). It does have a 37 or 31 stamped on the inside. Any suggestions on relative age (30s?). Any distinguishing features that would hint to the maker? Thanks for your help!
For my part, I'd say 1890's. Probably made by Buckbee, though it would be hard to say for certain. I have one which is very similar.
Edited by - AldenS on 05/26/2019 20:06:05
The peghead looks very typical of a Buckbee.. my guess would be late 1800s.
1890s?? Holy moly! Honestly, I’ve got a Gibson mandolin from the 1920’s and the wood on the Gibson looks light years younger than this one. So I could Easily agree with your estimate. I’ll have to do some research on Buckbee. Thanks for your help.
Either J. H. Buckbee or Rettberg & Lange (who bought Buckbee's business in 1897). It would be roughly 1895-1910.
The imprint of hex shoes indicate Oscar Schmidt, but the rim appears thicker than most Schmidt banjos.
Originally posted by Bob Smakula
The imprint of hex shoes indicate Oscar Schmidt, but the rim appears thicker than most Schmidt banjos
Rettberg & Lange used hex shoes as well.
'Gibson years' 38 min