Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

565
Banjo Lovers Online


Want to hide these Google ads? Join the Players Union!
Jan 14, 2020 - 8:52:51 AM

tony wall

Ireland

76 posts since 9/1/2009

Hi guys need some advice looking at an ode style archtop 5 string in mint condition style 2 any info on value and playability and tone. buyer is lookin 1100 dollars baldwin ode 1960 ish regards tony

Jan 14, 2020 - 9:38:34 AM

12454 posts since 10/30/2008

Are you wanting 5 string, tenor or plectrum?

Jan 14, 2020 - 9:49:45 AM

5549 posts since 3/6/2006

I have a style 2 from the 60's and I love it. I have a few video examples on my page (not the Deering). Over here the price might seem a little steep but there is also some rarity value so it's hard to say. As always, you have to play it to see if it is singing to you or not but if you like it - buy that thing! They are well made, well designed instruments (except for that darn tailpiece).

Jan 14, 2020 - 10:25:13 AM

10570 posts since 2/12/2011

Check with Ome in Boulder

Jan 14, 2020 - 11:56:31 AM
likes this

14494 posts since 12/2/2005

These are nice banjos. I have one; it was my first banjo. Mine was built later in the run during Baldwin's ownership. It's a simple beast, but the neck is lovely and playable and, for an aluminum-rimmed banjo, the sound is quite good.

It's not a "collectible" instrument - to a modest extent, the upper model Odes of that era could be considered as such - so $1100 seems very high to me. Normally in the States these sell for around $700 (and sometimes less). Your local market conditions in Ireland may be different.

Jan 14, 2020 - 4:33:38 PM

10373 posts since 6/2/2008

The Guitar Center store in Allentown has a 1972 Style 2 for the very same price.

As Skip says, they have sold for as low as $700 (plus shipping) on the Hangout and elsewhere.

So it's a matter of current availability and location.  Are the ones for $1100 in Ireland or Guitar Center over-priced? Was the $650 one at Banjo Buyer under-priced?  Who knows?

See if you can negotiate to a price below $1000.  Worst that happens is the seller says no and you pay $1100 for a banjo to enjoy the rest of your life.

Jan 17, 2020 - 9:56:05 AM

10553 posts since 10/27/2006

Since the OP is from Ireland, we still don't know what type but the 2 is a great banjo. My 0 has the same rim but a plainer mahogany neck w/ rosewood fretboard. A 2 should be multi-ply laminate with an ebony fretboard. Peter Tork's long neck, archtop 2 is probably the best known example and he played that for his entire career.

The neck has an adjustable truss rod and there's a way to adjust the dowel stick inside the pot.

If this has the resonator with the built-in flange assembly, those can be "near-Stelling" loud. My 0 long neck is louder than any of my Tubaphones but the Vegas are a little brighter.

Edited by - mikehalloran on 01/17/2020 09:56:44

Jan 17, 2020 - 1:21:01 PM

14494 posts since 12/2/2005

quote:
Originally posted by mikehalloran

Since the OP is from Ireland, we still don't know what type but the 2 is a great banjo. My 0 has the same rim but a plainer mahogany neck w/ rosewood fretboard. A 2 should be multi-ply laminate with an ebony fretboard.


Mike, my 2SR does have the laminated neck, but the fretboard isn't ebony. I'm at the office and the banjo is at the house, but if memory serves it's rosewood, though not sure whether it's Brazilian.

Jan 17, 2020 - 3:41:15 PM

10553 posts since 10/27/2006

quote:
Originally posted by eagleisland
quote:
Originally posted by mikehalloran

Since the OP is from Ireland, we still don't know what type but the 2 is a great banjo. My 0 has the same rim but a plainer mahogany neck w/ rosewood fretboard. A 2 should be multi-ply laminate with an ebony fretboard.


Mike, my 2SR does have the laminated neck, but the fretboard isn't ebony. I'm at the office and the banjo is at the house, but if memory serves it's rosewood, though not sure whether it's Brazilian.


I'm not doubting this but will be interesting — I've never heard of a rosewood 'board on a 2. Let's see some pictures, please?

Jan 17, 2020 - 5:15:56 PM

14494 posts since 12/2/2005

quote:
Originally posted by mikehalloran
 

I'm not doubting this but will be interesting — I've never heard of a rosewood 'board on a 2. Let's see some pictures, please?


When someone I respect as much as I do you sends a query like this, I am only too happy to provide.

Click into my photos on my home page and look for the folder called "Ode Neck."

My judgment of wood doesn't extend much beyond experience regarding which woods provide the most heat, when weighed against a) how much effort it takes to cut to length, 2) how easy it is to split, and 3) how heavy it is when it comes to stacking and, subsequently, carrying it into the house (hint: you can't go wrong with ash).

So I'm the first to admit it might not be rosewood.

But it sure as hell ain't ebony. Nor are most of the 2SRs I've seen.

Edited by - eagleisland on 01/17/2020 17:17:08

Jan 18, 2020 - 1:39:46 PM

10553 posts since 10/27/2006

No doubt it's a rosewood fretboard. I was expecting to see an early ODE before the models were standardized but the flange tells a different story.

I'm guessing by the headstock and resonator flange that this a Baldwin era or Baldwin/Gretsch ODE — right? I don't know those all that well but wouldn't be surprised to find rosewood on a late ODE. BRW or EIR would depend on when it was made and what was in the wood stash.

If a pre-Baldwin ODE, then it's the only Grade 2 I've seen from that era with a rosewood 'board and it should be Brazilian like mine.

Jan 18, 2020 - 6:17:48 PM

14494 posts since 12/2/2005

quote:
Originally posted by mikehalloran

No doubt it's a rosewood fretboard. I was expecting to see an early ODE before the models were standardized but the flange tells a different story.

 


Mike it's late era - not sure if Gretsch was involved but when I dated by serial number I found that it was Baldwin era, after they'd decided that the Baldwin logo on the headstock didn't help sell banjos, and went back to a simple Ode. This all confused me for a while, in that it took a while to learn that the mold via which the rims were cast still had the "Boulder, Colorado" stamp built in.

All of which said: it's a pretty damned good little banjo, and it was fabulous in getting me to my next steps. The neck is amazingly slim and comfortable. The tone, as might be expected of an aluminum-rimmed archtop, is a little harsh - but that can be controlled with technique. There's a tune in the media section of my homepage called "In Theory, In Practice" that was home-recorded with that banjo. I don't think the banjo sounds half bad.

Jan 18, 2020 - 6:53:08 PM
likes this

10553 posts since 10/27/2006

Mine is a flathead and you're right — they sound great. I prefer it with a Fibreskyn head which mellows it out ever so slightly. Louder than my Tubaphones when I A/B them but the tone is more similar than one might expect.

Last time I was at NAMM, Chuck, Tanya, Greg Deering and I were having a chuckle that my bottom of the line Grade 0 long neck — one-piece mahogany with a Brazilian rosewood fretboard — would be an expensive upgrade over an ODE style laminated neck with an ebony board nowadays. Mine is still straight and true 55 years later—gotta love that.

Jan 19, 2020 - 6:13:28 AM

14494 posts since 12/2/2005

quote:
Originally posted by mikehalloran

Mine is a flathead and you're right — they sound great. I prefer it with a Fibreskyn head which mellows it out ever so slightly.


That's a really interesting idea. I wonder if a Renaissance head might mellow it out even more...? What do you think?

Jan 19, 2020 - 2:52:09 PM
likes this

10553 posts since 10/27/2006

Only one way to find out, I suppose.

Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.1875