I’ve long been a fan of the lowly K-RB. I’ve owned between 12-15 examples. I’ve usually found that these tend to live in the $800-$1000 range (I took a lot of flack for asking 1K for one that had the original hide head, double bound resonator, and thick rim.)
I’ve recently seen people ask between $1,800-$2,300+ for these. I do think a good all original example with double bound resonator, thick rim, and hide head should be worth north of 1K FOR SURE. I mean it is an original five after all.
What are your thoughts on pricing for these?
Well, the $2300+ one, I think, was purchased from another dealer for $1200+ a few weeks ago. I was looking at the $1200+ one, then it disappeared and showed up on the other site. Not naming names, they're in that business and I'm not, but it's more than a little disheartening. The Kalamazoo KG-14 guitar doesn't even go for $2300+, and there's a much stronger market for those. But, who am I?
What I have been noticing is that pricing for the all original Pre-WWII low end non-Mastertone banjos , such as the Kalamazoo models, RB-OO’s, RB-1’s and such have been creeping up, and the price for Mastertone conversions and such has been moving down.
Might have something to do with older folks not wanting to haul around a 12lb ball and chain to a jam, when these non-tone ring instruments sound and perform just as well and weigh 1/2 as much.
For a Kalamazoo, 900 to 1200 $ seems reasonable, but pricing is dependent on what someone will pay. If some one pays 2300$ for the instrument, then that’s the price. Not a price I would ever pay, but if it sells, then the dealer made a profit and someone got a banjo. How the business works.
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