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$1000-$1450 new banjo suggestions

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Sep 19, 2019 - 1:53:55 PM
3 posts since 9/19/2019

I am an experienced player, 10 years +, but I haven’t had the money to have a real banjo. I have a goodtime and was recently given a mountain maple, also have a prust and maybe soon will get an akonting.

Here’s what I am looking at for my final and real banjo, which I’ll most likely pay for in payments, under $1500 is the cap, $1200 is best

Kevin Enoch tradesman
Cedar mountain jubilo
Eastman whyte laydie
Pisgah possum
Pisgah Appalachian

The only other idea is to get an old weymann or something and fix that up

I’d gladly trade my maple and goodtime for any of these, I’m poor! Hah $120 payments I can do though

Sep 19, 2019 - 3:24:11 PM

KatB

USA

70 posts since 9/3/2018

Your title says "new," do you mean new for you, or brand new? Because there's a Pisgah possum in the classifieds for 975. 
https://www.banjohangout.org/classified/77457 Good luck! 

Edited by - KatB on 09/19/2019 15:30:15

Sep 19, 2019 - 9:04:35 PM

12186 posts since 10/30/2008

I'm confident you can find very fine Bart Reiters and Mike Ramsey Chanterelles, used, in perfect condition, within your budget. Also vintage (1960s) Vega Wonder model just under $1000.

If you have a chance stop up in Massachusetts at Music Emporium in Lexington, or Fretted Workshop (I think that's the name) in Amherst and check out their stock of new and used.

There are also some old time banjos in Beacon NY at Main St. Music.

Broaden your shopping list and take your time. Good luck.

Sep 19, 2019 - 11:43:44 PM

Bill Rogers (Moderator)

USA

22320 posts since 6/25/2005

First, though, decide if you want a banjo with a tone ring such as a Tubaphone or Whyte Laydie—or no tone ring, like the Enoch Tradesman. Either style is in your price range....I don’t know what a “Maple Mountain” is..do you mean a Gold Tone Mountain Maole?

Edited by - Bill Rogers on 09/19/2019 23:49:30

Sep 20, 2019 - 12:38:08 AM
Players Union Member

Helix1

USA

447 posts since 4/17/2019

Send me your Maple Mountain and get a choice of maple, Cherry Walnut or Mahogany in a Helix type rim, same tone ring different result for $275. That leaves you playing the equivalent of your own private race car while you examine other specs not yet published.

My pro models start at $1k, 1200 for premium wood, I innovate. The Gold Tone has a great Maple neck, can be refinished and played for a long time. The Maple Mountain has a rolled brass tone ring.

You've got a great list already.

Sep 20, 2019 - 7:39:56 AM
like this
Players Union Member

blazo

USA

138 posts since 5/16/2017

You should add Levan New Vintage to your list. levanbanjos.levandesign.com/le...tage.html

I have one and love it. Bought it about two years ago and it just keeps getting better. I also have a Whyte Laydie pot married to an Eastman neck. I like that banjo a lot as well but if I had to choose, I'd keep the Levan. My Levan has been tweaked a bit with a skin head & a woodie tone ring. I have 10 banjos, most are late 1800/early 1900 but have a couple that are more recent. The Levan produces the best tone of all my banjos.

Ken LeVan is a member here. You owe it to yourself to at least have a look at this banjos.

Sep 20, 2019 - 10:03:46 AM
likes this

12157 posts since 6/29/2005

quote:
Originally posted by blazo

You should add Levan New Vintage to your list. levanbanjos.levandesign.com/le...tage.html

I have one and love it. Bought it about two years ago and it just keeps getting better. I also have a Whyte Laydie pot married to an Eastman neck. I like that banjo a lot as well but if I had to choose, I'd keep the Levan. My Levan has been tweaked a bit with a skin head & a woodie tone ring. I have 10 banjos, most are late 1800/early 1900 but have a couple that are more recent. The Levan produces the best tone of all my banjos.

Ken LeVan is a member here. You owe it to yourself to at least have a look at this banjos.


Thanks, Blaise,

I really appreciate that. I knew you had a number of banjos, but not 10— I'm honored!  Is the fact that you got me to inlay "No 7" into the scoop because it was your 7th banjo? 

I'm also very happy that you like the SuperWoodie tone ring.

Ken

Sep 20, 2019 - 10:08:13 AM
Players Union Member

blazo

USA

138 posts since 5/16/2017

quote:
Originally posted by Ken LeVan
Is the fact that you got me to inlay "No 7" into the scoop because it was your 7th banjo? 

No. 7 is because it's the 7th banjo from the New Vintage series.

Sep 20, 2019 - 10:13:49 AM

12157 posts since 6/29/2005

quote:
Originally posted by blazo
quote:
Originally posted by Ken LeVan
Is the fact that you got me to inlay "No 7" into the scoop because it was your 7th banjo? 

No. 7 is because it's the 7th banjo from the New Vintage series.


You're right— how quickly I forgot.  The serial number is 17-907.

Sep 20, 2019 - 1:57:56 PM

3 posts since 9/19/2019

Thanks for the responses everybody.

Still inspired by the Eastman, not much else is ringing quite as much, such tone at each pitch but a full splashy quality.. I started playing goodtime I so I play a lot of hint notes and drone (it’s not a clean or clear sound like a starter gold tone is), and I like to think of my music as meditation revival apoplectic work.. So thanks for the advice to decide on a tone ring or not. I am not in New England right now, living in nevada city California, but I have an old friend who is anluthier in Vermont (my younger year banjos were an 1890s sears catalog and a 1920s buckbee, both of those have moved on), he runs antebellum instruments and he keeps me apprised and will fix anything for me. Great guy, named jake.

Not sure on the helix, I’d have to hear a better quality sound clip. But yes, either I’ll to get the Eastman and pay monthly payments or find a trade with the gold tone and/or the prust. The 60s vega is an interesting idea, though I’d prefer to find something earlier that is beat up and fixable and work with that. Funny how I like the white ladys, what prices they get!

Clear sharp sound with a lot of wood, heavy pluck, full voice, loud volume, choral feeling in the air, that’s what I am going for

Peace, yall

Sep 20, 2019 - 2:06:25 PM

3 posts since 9/19/2019

And the levan sounds great

A little bit soft (for me), very full, and piercing quality .. heart melting warmth haha

youtu.be/Ba1bbVRGjfQ

Sep 20, 2019 - 3:50:15 PM

1884 posts since 4/7/2010

I have a lightly used Enoch Tradesman fretted banjo, walnut with a 12" rim for sale for $1,000.

See the banjo page of my website for pics.

 

Bob Smakula

Sep 20, 2019 - 6:58:56 PM
Players Union Member

Helix1

USA

447 posts since 4/17/2019

Um, I let my customers play their own sound clips,

Buy Bob Smakula's Enoch

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