I've been wanting to start a banjo project around a prewar rim for a while now. Hokus pokus and fairy dust aside, it's just something I'm interested in and a lot of people think those old rims produce some good sound.
What pop up more often than no-hole flange rims, are the oriole / kalamazoo, and earlier tb-1s and tb-2s which have holes drilled into them around the rim (for the bracket-shoe design?).
My question is, for anyone with experience, are these rims of lesser quality / caliber than the rims with no holes? I'm sure many have converted these rims. Is it worth it to wait for a solid rim with no holes, rather than picking up a cheaper oriole or kalamzoo rim?
Thanks in advance
If you try to sell one with a rim that was drilled for shoes, you will find the market does not value them as highly as "Mastertone" rims or other solid rims like later Style 1, 2, 10 and 11.
Not to say you might make a fine project with one. You might find it great. Many will disagree.
Here's a beautiful banjo in the Classifieds, built around an Oriole rim and resonator.......
I have used many prewar shoe bracket rims in banjos over the years and it's my opinion that they make as good sounding rims as the 1 pc flange prewar rims and they are probably a couple hundred dollars cheaper.
The 1 pc flange rims don't come up for sale as much as the shoe bracket rims.
Except for the holes I personally believe they are the same rim made from the same wood.
Don Bryant NC banjo luthier
'1992 Gibson RB-1 in B' 22 min
'Earl 25%' 1 hr
'D down lick at 25%' 1 hr