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Aug 4, 2020 - 10:20:48 AM
5317 posts since 9/16/2004

Looks like the early 90's RB-3 on Ebay is going for over $3k.

Is it fetching that much because it's inlay pattern?

Aug 4, 2020 - 10:24:14 AM

ChunoTheDog

Canada

323 posts since 8/9/2019

Even modern era used RB250s are going for 2500-3k these days.

Aug 4, 2020 - 10:37:04 AM
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Bill Rogers (Moderator)

USA

23886 posts since 6/25/2005

The prices driven, I presume, by actual or perceived scarcity—and demand based on legend.

Aug 4, 2020 - 10:45:32 AM

11071 posts since 6/2/2008

quote:
Originally posted by Frisco Fred

Looks like the early 90's RB-3 on Ebay is going for over $3k. Is it fetching that much because it's inlay pattern?


Seems to me the RB-3 reissues have been going for around $3,000 for quite some time now. I understand the appeal of a few extra pieces of inlay, double-cut peghead, and resonator purfling rings, but I never understood the premium they commanded.

Wasn't aware that Rich Era to 2009 RB-250s are now pushing $3,000. 

I also wasn't aware that a 28-year-old banjo is now "vintage."

Aug 4, 2020 - 10:49:12 AM
likes this

1061 posts since 5/19/2018

Demand based on legend

I absolutely love that one.

Kind of distilled the entire vintage instrument market down to four words.

Aug 4, 2020 - 10:50:54 AM

2321 posts since 12/31/2005

I've asked this before and not received and answer, so I'll try again. Is there anything functionally different between a modern 250 and a modern 3? I know design-wise there are a couple of differences (peghead cut, and maybe concentric rings on the 3 resonator, and some 3's have a different inlay pattern than standard). But in terms of anything that matters, wasn't everything else the same?

Edited by - Brian Murphy on 08/04/2020 10:55:05

Aug 4, 2020 - 10:52:17 AM

1578 posts since 10/12/2011


 

I also wasn't aware that a 28-year-old banjo is now "vintage."


I believe anything 20-100 years of age is considered vintage, after 100 its a antique. 

Though I'm with you somethign from the 90's dosn't seem vintage to me.

Aug 4, 2020 - 11:02:13 AM
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11071 posts since 6/2/2008

quote:
Originally posted by Brian Murphy

I've asked this before and not received and answer, so I'll try again. Is there anything functionally different between a modern 250 and a 3? . . . in terms of anything that matters, wasn't everything else the same?


That's always been my understanding. Both mahogany, so necks start out the same. Rims, tone rings, flanges and hardware the same. Resonators the same, except for rings. Differences are purely cosmetic. 

Aug 4, 2020 - 11:06:52 AM

lazyarcher

Canada

7098 posts since 4/19/2004

An early 90s RB3 Wreath can go up and over $4K but I think the markets a bit soft. That era averages around 43800, but the wreath is rarer

Aug 4, 2020 - 11:14:20 AM

2321 posts since 12/31/2005

It's really not out of line with what they cost new if you adjust for inflation. So if in good condition and just more seasoned, these are a good buy if it's what you want.

I played a new one in 1991 or 1992 at a store and was heartbroken that I could not afford it. I think it was $1800 or so. I was a student. But it was a killer banjo.

Aug 4, 2020 - 11:49:48 AM

KCJones

USA

878 posts since 8/30/2012

I walked away from a 2000 RB-250 listed at $2000 in a local shop, had a Fults Tailpiece on it.

That was a mistake.

Oh well. My Huber sounds better, and SPY shares will appreciate faster!cheeky

Aug 4, 2020 - 11:59:01 AM

1988 posts since 1/10/2004

Think I gave $2700 for mid-90s non-wreath couple years ago, I thought that was decent.

Aug 4, 2020 - 1:21:28 PM
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2569 posts since 4/16/2003

Brian asked:
"Is there anything functionally different between a modern 250 and a modern 3?"

RB3 has a rosewood fingerboard.
RB250 has an ebony fingerboard.

Aug 7, 2020 - 3:16:29 PM

11071 posts since 6/2/2008

Are different fingerboard woods a "functional" difference?

In two banjos with otherwise structurally identical mahogany necks, can you hear the difference between rosewood and ebony fingerboards?

In a blindfold test, could you identify which is which?

Aug 7, 2020 - 3:55:28 PM

2321 posts since 12/31/2005

quote:
Originally posted by Old Hickory

Are different fingerboard woods a "functional" difference?

In two banjos with otherwise structurally identical mahogany necks, can you hear the difference between rosewood and ebony fingerboards?

In a blindfold test, could you identify which is which?


I can't.  Some will claim they can, and maybe some can.  But we have had the "blind tests" here several times (always fun).  It's surprising how many times we get it wrong, and how many people don't weigh in smiley    

Aug 7, 2020 - 4:02:33 PM

56 posts since 12/5/2015

I have gotten quotes from certain makers....bottom line there was the Wreath pattern was not stock, they had to program their machine to cut it, and it cost more.

I ordered a neck from Janet Davis in 2002. It was the only neck I could find. It had the Wreath inlay. I got used to the inlays, and partial to pattern as well.

I ordered my Huber in 2006 with a Wreath pattern. It is a beautiful instrument!

I am currently saving for a PreWar and realize I might have to stray from the wreath pattern. I hope I am lucky.

Aug 8, 2020 - 3:46:02 AM

2687 posts since 12/4/2009

Hello,

What’s the difference between any Gibson model, pre-war and post-war other than cosmetic?

Every description says the same components as any other resonator. The bling is the difference. Straight grain vs Curly, Curly vs Birdseye, and the maple, walnut, or mahogany appointments are presentation points. Not every tree produce curls or speckles. Not every tree is jet black or ruby red.

Some claim curly, ebony, rosewood (Brazilian), and birch have different sonic capabilities. No two banjos sound alike.

What is interesting is durability was never a criteria to consider. A perception based on many pictures, shows curly maple necks break at the curl. Every banjo breaks where the wood is weakest. But many curly maple necks are broken than not.

What is true is: my banjo sound good to me and is for sale for $XXX,XXX if you want it. Every reason identified in my post is used to justify $XXX,XXX.

It took an entire forest of trees to find the bling necessary to justify $XXX,XXX. That is what Taylor Guitars discovered and shared with guitar community. Bling sells.

Edited by - Aradobanjo on 08/08/2020 03:47:35

Aug 8, 2020 - 6:49:20 AM

BobbyE

USA

2755 posts since 11/29/2007

I recently saw a couple of mid-90s RB-3s listed from the Banjo Whse that were pushing $4K.
A '95 and '96 if I remember correctly. (I didn't say they were selling).

Bobby

Aug 8, 2020 - 9:24:12 AM

eljimb0

USA

1996 posts since 7/24/2007

I also wasn't aware that a 28-year-old banjo is now "vintage."

I bought my TB-75 (with a conversion neck) in 1968 .. it was not 30 years old yet.

Aug 8, 2020 - 4:52:58 PM

lanemb

USA

130 posts since 3/11/2018

This RB3 has been resisted at least once. That is the asking price and it hasn’t sold yet. Definitely a nice banjo in looks. Personally at that price I think there are a lot of really hood new banjos out there.

Aug 10, 2020 - 9:49:02 AM

banjoez

USA

2366 posts since 7/18/2007

There are a couple of sellers on here that are pushing Gibson re-issue prices (and other brands) way above what they historically have been. I guess if you haven't been in the market for a while you wouldn't know any better but these are premium prices.

Aug 14, 2020 - 7:20:46 AM

1714 posts since 4/10/2005

Banjowarehouse has been pricing reissues at top dollar and seems to be moving them at those prices. On the other hand, they are a reputable dealer and seem to be very conscientious and detailed about condition description.   I do agree that reissue prices have surged to a degree that seems overblown.

But I'm not sure it is down only to certain sellers--the demand out there in the market seems to be one of willingness to pay those prices provided the reissue is genuinely in top condition. Personally, the idea of a used reissue Gibson RB-4 costing equal or more than Elderly's price on a brand-new fancy-walnut Stelling Master Flower seems absolutely ridiculous, and same for some of the current prices on used maple ES Gibson reissues versus a brand-new, say, Stelling Sunflower or Red Fox.    Just ridiculous IMHO.

But . . . . The Gibson mystique is powerful and emotional for many in Banjo World, and there doesn't seem to be much prospect of seeing new Gibsons in the classic prewar style leave the factory in the foreseeable future.

Edited by - ceemonster on 08/14/2020 07:34:25

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