So I've been having this problem since getting into the banjo (2 years now) where when I try to string my drone string and tune it up, it loosens and never stays in tune...It's gotten so I've given up on the resonant string all together and am basically playing a tenor banjo with a naked space where once was a string...I feel like a goof and am in need of help!
Is it a friction tuner? You may just need to replace the tuner.
Can you post photos of the banjo? Is it an old one for newer type?
Try tightening the screw.
They can become loose and not hold in-place properly.
Do you double loop the string? Another wards, wrap it around the whole twice through making a knot and then tighten it. Maybe that will help
The tuner may be loose in the hole on the neck.
How long untill you gave up?
It could have been the string slipping while stretching & some solutions to that have been given for that.
If a friction peg - you could replace ....... but they can work fine, indeed as well as a geared one (I have a modern one on one banjo & one I made from a wooden violin tuner peg on another) -you could mark a point on it and see if that is moving/slipping/not holding when/after you have tightened the string.
If so you could either replace it with a geared planetary tuner or just try and reseat the friction one (bit of cigarette paper wrapped round it or glue). If already a planatory geared tuner then again may need reseating to stop it slipping.
Edited by - Nickcd on 02/18/2020 14:01:58
Maybe destiny is driving you toward becoming... a tenor banjo player!