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Apr 8, 2020 - 8:55:29 PM
78 posts since 7/29/2010

I'm just excited to say, after 8 years of ownership, my 4 string is finally a player again! No restoration so far, just made it playable. Now that it is, the next step is aesthetics.


 

Edited by - vwfye on 04/08/2020 20:56:15

Apr 9, 2020 - 4:24:22 AM
likes this

29 posts since 12/19/2017

It is always good to see a banjo brought back to life. I hope it brings you loads of happiness. I love to make old instruments playable again.

Apr 9, 2020 - 7:20:33 AM

602 posts since 5/4/2014

A Grover Tailpiece (reproduction) would semi put it back into proper order. I'm wondering why the fretboard is missing all of it inlays? Is it a replacement board?

Apr 9, 2020 - 7:35:54 AM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

The fretmarkers are actually there. They're just completely worn off other than tiny little white dots. I got the banjo from the original owner when he passed. Is other banjo was a Paramount art craft. They were played daily for over 80 years

Edited by - vwfye on 04/09/2020 07:37:52

Apr 9, 2020 - 8:35:13 AM

602 posts since 5/4/2014

Oddly, Epiphone A's normally don't have dot markers, but rather double diamond shapes

Apr 9, 2020 - 8:50:29 AM
likes this

78 posts since 7/29/2010

This had all the markers in the correct style, just as singles. This probably indicates a new fret board inits history, but even this one was played to the point of wearing down the markers to nubs.
As a cool historical note, I found out this week that this at the phone was played every Saturday for 2 years on radio station KNX in LA between 1929 and 1931.

Apr 9, 2020 - 10:22:16 AM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

The tail piece was replaced after these pics were originally posted.








 

Apr 9, 2020 - 11:47:37 AM

602 posts since 5/4/2014

Very nice. This is the best tonering type from Epiphone. It however became too costly, in later models was cut down to be more like the Paramount design of Posts & Ring.

Apr 9, 2020 - 11:49:10 AM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Even finger picking it is pretty loud when trying to play quietly, that is for sure!

Apr 9, 2020 - 5:58:14 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

What would have been the corre t head from Epiphone in '25?

Apr 9, 2020 - 6:19:13 PM

602 posts since 5/4/2014

A calf skin head, but a good modern head is a good stand in.

Apr 9, 2020 - 6:22:44 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Not being a banjofile, banjoite, ummm yet immersed in banjo lore, what sounds closest to calf skin? Im' sure that is a hornet's nest, but I am an uneducated hack.

Apr 9, 2020 - 6:35:39 PM

602 posts since 5/4/2014

I personally like Renaissance heads, but there are also Fiberskyn heads by Remo. Depending on the type of music played, it can be a significant variable.

Apr 9, 2020 - 6:41:25 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Thank you. The current head is a Remo of who knows how many years old

Apr 14, 2020 - 8:24:54 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Yes, my playing sucks, yes it went a bit out of tune while teying to get a sound sample, but the link is to ask if this about how an Epiphone should sound or does it need different gauge strings for GDAE and/or a different head to get correct tone. Thank you
youtu.be/1Xd-MyVQ1Y0

Apr 15, 2020 - 5:23:46 AM

3834 posts since 5/1/2003

I think it sounds fine like it is.
Maybe played with a flat pick would give a better indication.
If that head has weathering divided into two words-weather king- these are highly prized amongst the bluegrass crowd.Whether they should be is debatable,but after all,they don't make em any more ;)

Apr 15, 2020 - 5:34:15 AM

602 posts since 5/4/2014

Sounds about right. Typical gauges for GDAE are some combination of
E: (11-13PL)
A: (16PL/18-20w)
D: (26-30w)
G: (36-40w)

Some go higher, but this should get you in the ballpark

Apr 15, 2020 - 6:26:49 AM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Thank you. As i have nothing to compare to, I really wasnt sure. I wasnt using a pick because the volume comes on very strong and my kids were working on schoolwork in the next room over.

Again, thank you!

Apr 15, 2020 - 12:43:01 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Also, just to be sure, this would have had steel strings in the mid 20s, correct?

Apr 15, 2020 - 12:43:46 PM

602 posts since 5/4/2014

yes

Apr 15, 2020 - 12:44:26 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Thank you!

Apr 21, 2020 - 10:34:26 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

My little video must have been awful, youtube says the uploader (me) removed it. I did not.

Sorry to have offended ears!

Apr 22, 2020 - 4:29:23 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

Another couple questions:

How is the checkerboard applied back in the 20s and will cleaners damage that?

 

Also, I tuned it to DGDG and I swear the volume doubled!


 

Edited by - vwfye on 04/22/2020 16:34:09

Apr 30, 2020 - 4:46:37 PM

78 posts since 7/29/2010

We are going to see if we can get the Epiphone a space in some music tonight in rehearsal before we record. I hope the others like it enough.

Apr 30, 2020 - 6:13:29 PM

12829 posts since 10/30/2008

That checkerboard was hand manufactured by a sub contractor from little individual pieces of black and tan wood, like a mosaic -- glued to a thin wood backing strip. The long strip was then glued into a routed channel on the edge of the resonator for final assembly. Typical wood polishes won't hurt it at all.

A very similar marquetry pattern was used on the Gibson 800 series in the 1960s and 70s!  Check out this TB 800 Gibson from 1968.

https://reverb.com/item/18234436-gibson-tb-800-mastertone-deluxe-tenor-banjo-c-1968-original-black-hard-shell-case?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIx9mF4b6R6QIVCJyzCh2K8w2iEAQYAyABEgKI5_D_BwE&merchant_id=102882819&pla=1&utm_campaign=6445914853&utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=google

Woodworking catalogs used to offer all kinds of various marquetry, usually intended for decorating edges of fine furniture.

Edited by - The Old Timer on 04/30/2020 18:18:11

Apr 30, 2020 - 7:06:38 PM

7075 posts since 8/28/2013
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by banjotrader

Sounds about right. Typical gauges for GDAE are some combination of
E: (11-13PL)
A: (16PL/18-20w)
D: (26-30w)
G: (36-40w)

Some go higher, but this should get you in the ballpark


I am not so sure these would be the optimum string gauges for that particular tuning due to the fact that those are generally used for a tenor banjo. This Epiphone happens to be a plectrum banjo with a scale about 3-4 inches longer than most tenors.

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