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Oct 16, 2021 - 7:02:46 AM
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423 posts since 9/23/2009

I was in the Syracuse (NY) Guitar Center yesterday and they had a Saga 5-string resonator banjo, looked to be a wood rim (not aluminum); they thought it was probably a kit although it seemed very well made if so. Not sure how old but >20 years I'd say. I didn't examine it closely (not being in the market myself) but it seemed pretty nice. They had marked it at $199 b/c they weren't sure how to price it & preferred to err on the low side. Doesn't seem to be on their website yet but if you're interested give 'em a call. Usual disclaimer: no personal interest in any side of it, just letting everyone know.

Oct 18, 2021 - 3:31:41 PM

11816 posts since 10/27/2006

I don't recall what model this but a lot older than 20 years—probably between 30–40 (I've been a dealer for 40). Not a kit—those never had headstock logos.

Likewise, I don't recall the construction. It would have to be firewood not to be worth two bills + shipping to any other GC store ($17.99 to California). One thing about GC is that, if you don't like it, the shipping and tax are refunded. 

 I'll post the link but don't expect it to stay up long. Since John decided to pass, I decided I want to see it in person. 

Saga banjo at GC

Oct 19, 2021 - 4:51:04 AM

423 posts since 9/23/2009

Hope it's a keeper, Mike. Maybe I can score some points from this next time I'm up there, ha! laugh

Oct 19, 2021 - 5:00:05 AM
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banjoy

USA

9878 posts since 7/1/2006

Saga kits were very decent instruments. For $199 someone should grab that banjo as fast as they can. That's a give-away price. Especially if it includes a hardshell case.

=====

EDIT TO ADD: I was going to buy that banjo after I made my post. Nope, too late. It sold already.

Edited by - banjoy on 10/19/2021 05:03:09

Oct 19, 2021 - 5:08:34 AM
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58481 posts since 12/14/2005

Not surprised that it's gone.

Oct 19, 2021 - 10:58:57 AM
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11816 posts since 10/27/2006

quote:
Originally posted by banjoy

Saga kits were very decent instruments. For $199 someone should grab that banjo as fast as they can. That's a give-away price. Especially if it includes a hardshell case.

=====

EDIT TO ADD: I was going to buy that banjo after I made my post. Nope, too late. It sold already.


As I mentioned, I wanted to see this in person so I bought it.

Nov 8, 2021 - 10:28:49 PM
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11816 posts since 10/27/2006

quote:
Originally posted by mikehalloran

I don't recall what model this but a lot older than 20 years—probably between 30–40 (I've been a dealer for 40). Not a kit—those never had headstock logos.

Likewise, I don't recall the construction. It would have to be firewood not to be worth two bills + shipping to any other GC store ($17.99 to California). One thing about GC is that, if you don't like it, the shipping and tax are refunded. 

 I'll post the link but don't expect it to stay up long. Since John decided to pass, I decided I want to see it in person. 

Saga banjo at GC


Update

As I expected, this is a '70s Made in Japan banjo that appears to predate the Gold Stars. Pretty nice with a shallow profile, straight mahagony neck, full flathead ring. Resonator and 2-piece flange are the same as used in their kit banjos (no longer sold separately). The satin finish is overall excellent+ with a couple minor scrapes but no dings. This banjo is over 40 years. Thick multiply rim.

Replacement parts include a Deering top-frosted head, Huber bridge, Genuine Keith tuners for the 2nd/3rd strings (!!!) and a nice clamshell tailpiece. Thin, mandolin style frets.

GC messed up the shipping but have refunded that to my account.

Minuses — though the banjo is in great shape, workmanship on the resonator is not top-notch. The co-rods are horribly adjusted—I have everything loose while the pot relaxes and I'll adjust properly in a week or so. The first 4 frets could stand replacing but I've not seen wire that thin in many years. There's still a bit of life in them so, if it plays ok, I'll leave them alone.

Here's a grab shot of the interior and heel with the resonator off.


 

Nov 10, 2021 - 4:38:01 PM
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12424 posts since 6/2/2008
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quote:
Originally posted by mikehalloran
Replacement parts include. . . Genuine Keith tuners for the 2nd/3rd strings (!!!) 

Which are worth up to 7/8 what you paid for the banjo!

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