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Sep 24, 2020 - 8:19:56 AM
7 posts since 9/24/2020


Found this banjo at an estate sale. I can’t seem to find out anything about it other than the name on the front which isn’t coming up on any searches.

Any help would be appreciated.

Edited by - Mcarlo00 on 09/24/2020 08:22:39

Sep 24, 2020 - 9:22:58 AM
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223 posts since 2/11/2009
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We're going to need more pics, especially of the front, but the decal on the resonator says '20s to early '30s.

Sep 24, 2020 - 9:26:27 AM
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3349 posts since 5/29/2011

Decals like this one were common on Stromberg-Voisinet and early Kay banjos in the time frame Noah mentioned.

Sep 24, 2020 - 10:45:19 AM
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21905 posts since 7/6/2005

Sep 24, 2020 - 11:05:08 AM
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288 posts since 8/17/2010

Bob, have you ever considered a career in comedy?

Sep 24, 2020 - 11:25:01 AM

7749 posts since 8/28/2013

If the owner of a banjo doesn't have the answer in his mind, reading his mind isn't going to help.wink Photos will.

He's a new member, so I think we should cut him some slack and offer some positive suggestions, such as posting more pictures.

Stromberg Voisinet and Kay are valid possibilities, but they are still only possibilities, until we see the entire banjo and a few more details of its construction.

It would help to know the name, which he says he can't find in online searches. There are many names that don't show up on the internet, but are known in detail by BHO members.

Sep 24, 2020 - 11:31:45 AM

55756 posts since 12/14/2005

OK, this NEXT scene, McCarlo00 grabs the camera away from the Bad Guy, takes pic of the front, back, tuning pegs, inside body, neck-to-body joint, tailpiece, everything.

Posts them on the Banjo HangOut!

Then he grabs the girl and swings them both across the ravine on his bullwhip, and  we fade out as they kiss.


Sep 24, 2020 - 12:06:20 PM

7 posts since 9/24/2020

I am so sorry i am having trouble uploading more pics I have tried like 10x and I am pretty tech savvy. It says RCHESTRELLA. It has a pearl finish, 4 strings. I will keep trying!!!

Sep 24, 2020 - 12:07:36 PM

7 posts since 9/24/2020

Maybe RCHESTRELLA was the musician’s name??

Sep 24, 2020 - 12:22:20 PM

1315 posts since 2/4/2013

Estrella is a known unknown banjo brand of cheap Asian origin I believe. Here's one of those:

Sep 24, 2020 - 12:31:26 PM

7 posts since 9/24/2020

Ouch thought it might be a better one but thank you!!

Sep 24, 2020 - 12:36:53 PM

1440 posts since 4/25/2007

Originally posted by Mcarlo00

I am so sorry i am having trouble uploading more pics I have tried like 10x and I am pretty tech savvy. It says RCHESTRELLA. It has a pearl finish, 4 strings. I will keep trying!!!

Maybe your missing an O !

Sep 24, 2020 - 12:39:40 PM

7 posts since 9/24/2020

Yes I guess that is an O...strange shape But yes.

Sep 24, 2020 - 12:50:21 PM
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3174 posts since 2/20/2016

"Orchestrella" was a model name for Gretsch banjos made in the 1920's. The name may also have been used on other banjos made later in the 20th century.

Sep 24, 2020 - 1:18:26 PM

223 posts since 2/11/2009
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Does the rest of it look like this pic from the 1936 Gretsch catalog?

Edited by - OldFrets on 09/24/2020 13:19:30

Sep 24, 2020 - 4:54:54 PM
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4730 posts since 3/22/2008

Attached is my early 1930's Gretsch Orchestrella tenor banjo for comparison to your banjo. The rim (or drum) should be all metal not wood.  On some examples the "O's" in "Orchestrella look like "O's" others (like mine) look like eyes.

Edited by - beezaboy on 09/24/2020 16:57:43

Sep 24, 2020 - 5:17:46 PM

7749 posts since 8/28/2013

The name, as I suggested, appears to have helped. Orchestrella is definitely a banjo name used by Gretsch, and the catalog drawings and photos of an actual Orchestrella John Hoft has posted seem very close to the one picture shown of the back of Mcarlo00's banjo.

I hope your question has been answered, although it would still be nice for all banjo lovers to see some photos of your banjo.

Sep 24, 2020 - 7:32:25 PM

7 posts since 9/24/2020

Still trying to post pics I think it has shut me down but the pictures posted by John are dead on. All good to know. Thank you all. PS the name is Mary so she not a he.

Sep 24, 2020 - 9:20:43 PM
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7749 posts since 8/28/2013

Your profile doesn't show your true name or gender, so that would explain why you have been addressed as "he." No offense was intended.

Sep 25, 2020 - 9:53:54 AM

7 posts since 9/24/2020

None taken lol.

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