I have a used Prust and I want to try light gauge steel strings on it. Is this a total no-go that will ruin the dowel/neck or can it be done? I want to explore a different sound palette on it.
i don't know much about the guy who makes/made Prust Banjos. I got mine secondhand.
His site says he has retired from making banjos. This is probably a question he could answer best.
I also saw some old pics where he was making the same kind of banjos with tension hoops. I wonder if a minimally skilled DIYer could take a tack-head and convert it?. Could be a fun project. I'm gonna use this banjo to tinker around with. I've already replaced the friction tuners with geared tuners because they were giving me a headache. I couldn't stay in tune. With geared tuners they stay in tune and I can make micro adjustments. I'm left with the 5th string friction tuner which I will chuck once Amazon delivers my new geared tuner.
You could do that, but why? You probably wouldn't ruin it with the string tension, but as you said, you'll want to change the pegs, (and the the tailpiece and bridge....). I like the simple looks of a Prust tackhead, and those mods would spoil that IMO. AND, more importantly, wire strings are going to sound LOUSY on that banjo.
If you want a primitive-looking fretless with steel strings, how about looking at a "mountain-style" banjo? There are lots of plans and kits available for those.
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