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Jul 20, 2019 - 10:00:14 PM
104 posts since 3/7/2019

Is this a banjo violin?

Edited by - Lynne on 07/21/2019 08:53:31

Jul 20, 2019 - 11:17:59 PM
likes this

206 posts since 10/11/2008

Hard to judge the scale from the pics, but my guess would be a banjo-cello. The string gauges are way too big to get a violin sound, and the "legs" indicate it should be played standing upright like a cello, not held like a violin or viola.

Also, the curved-top bridge set so far up the head. Looks like it's that way so as to be bowed about where neck meets pot. It would be hard to bow all the strings if you had to do it over the head/pot.

My guess, anyway. Never seen anything quite like it, to be sure.

Jul 21, 2019 - 6:56:32 AM

2631 posts since 5/29/2011

W I T H ?
Maybe Ken LeVan will chip in on this one. He tried making something similar to this a few years ago.

Jul 21, 2019 - 7:18:06 AM

10631 posts since 4/23/2004

Somewhere, I've seen one of these before. The listing sez this is 53" tall with the legs extended.

Yah, that probably qualifies it as a Bass banjo.

Jul 21, 2019 - 8:38:21 AM

5958 posts since 8/28/2013

I think Joe Finnell is probably closest.

I'd guess it doesn't work well as either a cellor or a banjo. Might be worth the price to find out; that is, if it stays around $50.

Jul 21, 2019 - 11:20:15 AM



1987 posts since 12/16/2007

Once made a fiddle-banjo from a uke-banjo when we wanted an all banjo band for Clifftop. I did make a fingerboard with slots, so that I didn't have to disturb the frets, which I attached with rubber cement so it could be easily returned to its former life.

Edited by - carlb on 07/21/2019 11:21:35

Jul 21, 2019 - 12:43:21 PM

Paul R


11442 posts since 1/28/2010

It seems cello-length, so looks to be a banjo body played like a cello. Looks like a home-made fretless neck (to get a better angle with that bridge size and placement) attached to an old pot (like a Gretsch). Clearly a home-made tailpiece. The pot would be too small to be a proper bass banjo - actually kind of small to qualify as a cello, too, but it's a player-made improvisation. It's an interesting project and would be neat to hear how it sounds.

Jul 21, 2019 - 1:45:32 PM
Players Union Member

raharris (Moderator)


3587 posts since 1/11/2009

I've never seen that bridge placement before. Might make sense if it were a bass because the heft of the strings would call for a higher positioning. 

Edited by - raharris on 07/21/2019 13:47:09

Jul 21, 2019 - 2:06:39 PM

104 posts since 3/7/2019

I didn't notice it was 59" tall. Cool w/e it is seems some kinda standup bowed instrument. I've seen alot of ancient Japanese and Chinese instruments similar to this.not in look but, just as in stand-up with strings over a membrane and bowed Could be homemade inspired by something like that.

Jul 21, 2019 - 2:11:50 PM

104 posts since 3/7/2019

It looks like a Kokyu made from a banjo.

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