Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

961
Banjo Lovers Online


May 14, 2022 - 9:08:11 AM

kd8tzc

USA

113 posts since 4/11/2022

Okay, I know it is only a Goodtime, and many may feel it is not really worth doing anything with, but I am looking at this as a project banjo. I really like the sound of the 12" Goodtime Americana, but I'm not 100% on the looks. Don't get me wrong, I don't find it ugly, but I never have been much with the silver items on an old timey style banjo.

I would love to swap out most of the silver components on it for raw brass (unfinished if they can be found that way). The tension hoop, the tailpiece, the tension hooks and caps, the feet for the tension hooks, and the tuners (and go planetary style while I'm at it just to make it easier to tune and make it look nicer). I believe the arm rest would need to be replaced too.

Does anyone know where I might find these parts? I know Rickard has a nice listing, but wanted to see some options if they are available, and find out if anyone else has done this.

At some point, I would also love to cover the coordinator rod with wood... I thought I saw someone did that here on a Goodtime, but I'm having a hard time locating it again.

Thanks

May 14, 2022 - 9:18:18 AM
likes this

4329 posts since 5/29/2011

Balsam Banjo Works also has parts in raw brass if you really want to go that route. Whether you go with Rickard or Balsam you are probably going to spend about as much as the banjo is worth to do the upgrade.

http://sales@balsambanjoworks.com

May 14, 2022 - 9:25:08 AM

kd8tzc

USA

113 posts since 4/11/2022

Thanks Mark... yes, I'm sure you are right about what I would spend, and I'm sure I would not get a good return on my money for it. I was looking at an Enoch Tradesmen all in brass, but I know I would spend close to $1700 for what I would want on that, and that's a little rich at this point. It would more than likely be a better investment though. I'm fine with the Goodtime Americana though... I love the sound it has, and sure, it's not a high end banjo or a custom banjo, but it does what it needs to for me... it just looks funny with the silver.

I had forgotten about Balsam and will look there too.

May 14, 2022 - 9:35:42 AM

4357 posts since 10/13/2005

A while back I did the same brass for a Saga Pony banjo, cost about $200, all works good. Should be fine for you, just take good measurements. banjered

May 14, 2022 - 11:39:32 AM

kd8tzc

USA

113 posts since 4/11/2022

banjered , do you have any pictures? Were you able to do anything to cover the coordinator rod? I thought I recall seeing someone do something on here, but the only old posts I can find, have the pictures not found so I can't see them. I could have sworn I saw one within the last month though.

May 14, 2022 - 11:50:18 AM
Players Union Member

Helix

USA

15426 posts since 8/30/2006

May 14, 2022 - 11:53:31 AM

kd8tzc

USA

113 posts since 4/11/2022

That is beautiful!!

May 14, 2022 - 12:12:51 PM

13116 posts since 6/2/2008
Online Now

You'll want Balsam's grooved tension hoop that can accommodate any hook spacing. Your Goodtime has only 16 hooks and I don't think anyone makes a notched hoop that aligns with that number.

The great thing about the Balsam grooved hoop is that it works with both round and flat hooks. So you could change to round hooks if you were so inclined.

If you really want to spend some money doing this hardware upgrade, you could consider plugging the center 6 shoe holes on each half of the rim and redrilling for 18, 20, or 22 hooks.  Probably don't need 24. But I think 2, 4 or 6 more might work better on a 12-inch rim. Especially if you're bumping up to a heavier tension hoop.

It's easy for me to spend your money!

May 14, 2022 - 12:31:08 PM

4357 posts since 10/13/2005

No, didn't bother with covering up the metallic dowel rod. There is a picture on my BHO site. Chuck Lee says 14 hooks are sufficient for any banjo so with your 16 hooks you are OK. Personally, I like fewer hooks, lighter, easier to change heads (is my laziness showing?). Round hooks are slightly sturdier. Nothing complex here in switching out, about the same as changing a flat tire but with less grunt. Yo! banjered

May 14, 2022 - 12:34:14 PM
likes this
Players Union Member

Dlye

Canada

38 posts since 3/5/2018

Have you considered “aging “ the nickel hardware with Jax Black, available from Balsam Banjo Works? balsambanjoworks.com/product/jax-black/
Not aged brass but IMHO the aged nickel looks great and quite unique and it is a ~$10 investment rather than a $500+ investment. Just a thought.

Hide these ads: join the Players Union!
May 14, 2022 - 12:36:50 PM

4357 posts since 10/13/2005

Oops, looks like my Saga picture got bumped into BHO cyber-space although I can see it at the bottom of this page as I type – ? banjered

May 14, 2022 - 12:55:35 PM

13116 posts since 6/2/2008
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by banjered

Oops, looks like my Saga picture got bumped into BHO cyber-space although I can see it at the bottom of this page as I type – ? banjered


Then click on it to add it as an attachment to a post.

May 14, 2022 - 1:04:07 PM

kd8tzc

USA

113 posts since 4/11/2022

quote:
Originally posted by Dlye

Have you considered “aging “ the nickel hardware with Jax Black, available from Balsam Banjo Works? balsambanjoworks.com/product/jax-black/
Not aged brass but IMHO the aged nickel looks great and quite unique and it is a ~$10 investment rather than a $500+ investment. Just a thought.


That's actually a really good idea that I hadn't thought of. Maybe I will try that first. I still want a new tailpiece, but that and the Jax would be a bunch less. And if I don't like it, well I can always then go the brass route. 

May 14, 2022 - 2:52:31 PM

4357 posts since 10/13/2005

May 14, 2022 - 4:26:49 PM

kd8tzc

USA

113 posts since 4/11/2022

Very cool looking. Why only 8 tension hooks though? What kind of tail piece is on it?

May 14, 2022 - 5:01:38 PM

13116 posts since 6/2/2008
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by kd8tzc

At some point, I would also love to cover the coordinator rod with wood... I thought I saw someone did that here on a Goodtime, but I'm having a hard time locating it again.


Several folks around here call that a "Rudy Rod." A Hangout member/banjo builder named Rudy, who seems not to participate any more, developed a metal coordinator rod inside wood as a way to have old-time aethestics with modern performance.

Here's one detailed discussion with pictures on creating a Rudy Rod. If all you want is the appearance, it's probably possible to do something even simpler, though it still might require custom turning a rod on a lathe.

You can search the term and see what else you find. Also search for "Bluestem" which was the name of Rudy's banjo business.

May 14, 2022 - 5:39:37 PM

4357 posts since 10/13/2005

I've since put all the hooks on it, no difference in tone or functionality, just looks. banjered

May 15, 2022 - 3:58:28 AM

kd8tzc

USA

113 posts since 4/11/2022

quote:
Originally posted by Dlye

Have you considered “aging “ the nickel hardware with Jax Black, available from Balsam Banjo Works? balsambanjoworks.com/product/jax-black/
Not aged brass but IMHO the aged nickel looks great and quite unique and it is a ~$10 investment rather than a $500+ investment. Just a thought.

I spent some time looking at the Jax directions and such and I'm not sure how well it would work. The items need to be free of any kind of finish and I'm not sure if the tension hoop or the feet have a lacquer finish on them. Still worth a shot but I would hate for only some of it to work. 
 

it also looks like the product on Balsam won't do it as it is not designed for nickel but the kind that will work with nickel can be easily found.  

Hide these ads: join the Players Union!

Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.265625