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Dec 3, 2020 - 6:10:52 PM

erch

USA

8 posts since 11/27/2020

Bought a banjo for 75 dollars - the kid needed money (college). Anyway. It is super heavy and when i opened it up it was signed by a fellow and the date said 1970. I am guessing it was a kit banjo of some sort but has some nice inlays on the fretboard. Wondering what kind of kit it might have been and such. It’s not for me, its a birthday present and i wanted to clean it up and get some strings on it. It’s got a remo head on it which seems to be in good shape. I used a little vinegar to try to clean up the metal and then put some lemon oil on the fretboard - they were really dry. Thanks.

Dec 3, 2020 - 6:24:57 PM
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2442 posts since 4/7/2010

Photos are necessary for a good ID. And please post them directly to this forum page. The pictures will display better and you will get more informed opinions.

Bob Smakula

Dec 3, 2020 - 6:45:10 PM
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56460 posts since 12/14/2005

Welcome to the HangOut.

No matter what the question here are over one hundred and twenty THOUSAND "spare brains" to help think of the proper answer.

Until such time as you post YOUR picture, Sherlock and I will gaze at the finer details of THIS picture,

as we sip our mugs of whis--- TEA! Our mugs of TEA!

-J. Watson, MD, FRCS-

Dec 3, 2020 - 8:22:19 PM
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8032 posts since 8/28/2013

Absolutely post pictures, and in the future, DO NOT use vinegar to clean banjo parts. Vinegar is acidic and can do damage, especially to plating.

Dec 4, 2020 - 4:38:15 AM

erch

USA

8 posts since 11/27/2020

I just used a slight mix of vinegar with water that we use as a cleaner. It was highly diluted. Used a paint brush to just clean of the crud very lightly as well. It seemed to clean up pretty well. It had some slight oxidation so i thought that might help and it seemed to work ok. I was not going to use anything too harsh. I did post pictures but it then locked me out of my account saying it was to reduce spam. Anyway, any help would be appreciated.

Dec 4, 2020 - 5:23:02 AM

1681 posts since 6/2/2010

I can't help with the ID but you sure got a nice looking banjo for $75.

Most of the kit banjos from back then were made by stewmac or saga. Your banjo doesn't look like either one to me. It might be a custom made banjo by a small builder.

Dec 4, 2020 - 7:09:51 AM
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3532 posts since 5/29/2011

Vinegar will clean chrome but it will tarnish nickel. In either case it is not a good idea to use it on banjos.

Dec 4, 2020 - 8:06:44 AM

erch

USA

8 posts since 11/27/2020

Thanks. NO MORE vinegar for this guy! I want to post another picture of the inside of the banjo. It might help with ID. This thing must weigh close to 15 pounds. The rim is very heavy metal, seems almost too heav to be aluminum.

Dec 4, 2020 - 9:00:19 AM

632 posts since 2/15/2015

Clean with lighter fluid, or naphtha available in the painting section of Home Improvement centers. It does not harm finishes it will remove dirt and that's what Luthiers have been using for years and talking about but nobody ever seems to take their advice.

Well, years ago I took their advice and I gotta tell you - lighter fluid is the superb cleaner for musical instruments no matter what the finish.

Dec 4, 2020 - 6:21 PM

erch

USA

8 posts since 11/27/2020

Also, the banjo did not come with a bridge and only had 3 strings so I will end to replace them. Just want some ideas on basic string and a bridge I can order off amazon as I dont want to venture out to buy them. My son will just replace them anyway at some point after he gets the banjo so I dont want to go crazy. Thanks.

Dec 4, 2020 - 9:09:53 PM
Players Union Member

RioStat

USA

5374 posts since 10/12/2009

How's about stepping back and taking a picture of the entire banjo, not just close-ups of various parts? Front and back. Please?

The neck looks like it could be an RK35 neck that someone "customized".

And post the pictures in this thread, not just on your homepage, that always helps.

Dec 5, 2020 - 8:27:38 AM

erch

USA

8 posts since 11/27/2020

Here are some full pictures

Dec 5, 2020 - 2:20:53 PM

56460 posts since 12/14/2005

What you COULD do, is look at the bottom of the screen, where it says "ATTACHMENTS", click on PHOTO, which will take you to YOUR BHO gallery.
Then click on those pictures, and they'll all be on THIS page, when you hit POST REPLY

Dec 5, 2020 - 3:16:35 PM

erch

USA

8 posts since 11/27/2020

Last try to post pictures. I am really sorry.






 

Dec 5, 2020 - 5:12:58 PM

2388 posts since 10/17/2013

Most interesting peghead.

Whatever this banjo is, it is not a Stewart MacDonald kit banjo. 

That peghead design is probably unique to that banjo. 

 

 I think the neck probably predates any Recording King RK-R35 neck. The friction tuners are a good clue as to when to place the age of this instrument. 

Edited by - okbluegrassbanjopicker on 12/05/2020 17:21:42

Dec 5, 2020 - 7:13:46 PM
Players Union Member

RioStat

USA

5374 posts since 10/12/2009

quote:
Originally posted by okbluegrassbanjopicker

Most interesting peghead.

Whatever this banjo is, it is not a Stewart MacDonald kit banjo. 

That peghead design is probably unique to that banjo. 

 

 I think the neck probably predates any Recording King RK-R35 neck. The friction tuners are a good clue as to when to place the age of this instrument. 


You might be right, Luke, but the basic shape of the the peghead is RK'ish.....just looks like someone took a 1/2" drillbit to it.

Inlays look like abalone, which wouldn't be RK.

The whole banjo is just "weird"...the flange plate looks massive, flat nuts on the hooks, some sort of tone ring...the rim itself looks kinda Slingerland to me, but who knows....

Dec 5, 2020 - 7:49:39 PM
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56460 posts since 12/14/2005

quote:
Originally posted by RioStat
quote:
Originally posted by okbluegrassbanjopicker

Most interesting peghead.

Whatever this banjo is, it is not a Stewart MacDonald kit banjo. 

That peghead design is probably unique to that banjo. 

 

 I think the neck probably predates any Recording King RK-R35 neck. The friction tuners are a good clue as to when to place the age of this instrument. 


You might be right, Luke, but the basic shape of the the peghead is RK'ish.....just looks like someone took a 1/2" drillbit to it.

Inlays look like abalone, which wouldn't be RK.

The whole banjo is just "weird"...the flange plate looks massive, flat nuts on the hooks, some sort of tone ring...the rim itself looks kinda Slingerland to me, but who knows....


      cheeky

Dec 5, 2020 - 8:02:16 PM
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56460 posts since 12/14/2005

Dec 5, 2020 - 8:20:49 PM

erch

USA

8 posts since 11/27/2020

Need to take it up on the scales but seriously seems to weigh 15+ pounds.

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