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Sep 24, 2022 - 5:35:29 PM
4071 posts since 5/1/2003

I got this old Kay or Stromberg Voisnet yesterday and for the first time ever I can’t figure out how to remove the resonator.there are no bolts or screws visible,and though the flange and resonator edge shows no gap whatsoever. I shot wd40 along that edge but it’s still tighter than the hubs of……Aw heck. ;).
What could be the problem

Sep 24, 2022 - 5:50:37 PM
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626 posts since 5/29/2015

I have worked on many of these. The resonators all have been held on by three or four bolts attached to the side of the resonator with the screw sticking up through one of the holes and a flat or decorative nut then screwed onto the bolt to hold the resonator on. Those nuts would be visible, and appear to be absent. Yours is one of the early ones with a pot metal flange that both swells and crumbles. I see a bit of crumbling in the photos. I am guessing that the pot metal flange has swollen up and has expanding into the edges of the resonator. I have no solution only this explanation. Do nothing that would cause the wood of the resonator to swell. The metal flange is probably of no value and will have to be replaced, the rest of the parts may be serviceable.

Sep 24, 2022 - 7:55:08 PM

4071 posts since 5/1/2003

Rob,that’s the only explanation that makes sense,thanks.

Sep 25, 2022 - 3:02 AM
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Bill H


2014 posts since 11/7/2010

If the issue is that the parts are swollen due to moisture, let it sit in a warm heated room for a week or two. When I need to get a bracket band off my Tubaphone I always do it in the winter. The heated air in winter tends to be dryer than summer, so wood tends to shrink. You could also try leaving in a car parked in the sun--just don't let the sun shine directly in the banjo.

Sep 25, 2022 - 6:38:31 AM
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1490 posts since 4/12/2004

It could be that there is some type of fastening system wherein the resonator "snaps" into position by pushing it axially relative to the flange. If it does have such a fastening system, the fastening components could be attached to the flange, the rim or a neck dowel rod. When hide heads were in common use and required frequent adjustment, such a system would make sense, because it would facilitate quick removal of the resonator without the use of tools.

Sep 25, 2022 - 8:45:51 PM
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4071 posts since 5/1/2003

I say the banjo on the dash of my truck this afternoon out in the sun and a couple taps with the heel of my hand bear the neck cutout popped it loose.
There are a couple holes. One on each side of the resonator where mounting hardware once was and that’s how I’ll mount it again. The flange looks good on the inside,just needs a good cleanup.
I’ll try to fit a 5 string neck to it so I can play it.
Thanks all!

Sep 26, 2022 - 6:20:50 AM
Players Union Member



16074 posts since 8/30/2006

Nice Birdseye.

Sep 26, 2022 - 1:55:15 PM

3011 posts since 3/30/2008

This is a seldom seen sticker inside the pot, & reflects a time of the last of Stromberg Voisinet, & the beginning of Kay Musical Instruments.  (Please give a pic of the peghead & back of peghead & tuners)

Edited by - tdennis on 09/26/2022 13:57:04

Sep 26, 2022 - 2:14:40 PM

59681 posts since 12/14/2005


And, thanks for suggesting another tool to add to my banjo repair kit:


Oct 2, 2022 - 7:21:45 PM
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4071 posts since 5/1/2003

Here’s an update on this Stromberg Voisnet pot. The tenor neck was trash so I mounted this old plectrum neck on it.
This neck was attatched to a 1924 Vega white lady but it’s not a Vega neck,I don’t have any idea what it is. It’s been highly modified,dolled up by an old Jazz player from around St Louis names Shorty Smythe.
I had a junk tailpiece so I glued an oak block to it and mounted a 5th string tuner. I looped the string around the 2nd string post an just had to drill one tiny hole where the 5 string pip could mount on the side.
It works surprisingly well to give me regular 5string tuning.
All parts I had on hand.
Total investment $30 plus strings.


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