This makes a whole lot of sense to me -- so I must be missing something?
Yes, it makes a whole lotta sense to me as well, and no, you're not missing a thing. I'd been looking at this video with great interest for several years now. If my hands weren't so fouled up with arthritis I'd throw some money down and have one built for me.
If the 5th string is tuned to a G-note that's an octave higher than the third string G-note, I would think that the tension in the 5th string would be great enough that there would be a high probability of string breakage.
I would expect that the 5th string is lighter than the first, maybe 9 or even 8 - D'Addario sells a loop end 8.
I've but one of these for a friend. It works fine with regular strings. You can tune your g at the nut or spike it at the fifth. Then unspiked you have lower notes you can spike to play around with.
Maybe I couldn’t see it but where was the 5th tuner? I only see 4 on peghead
My neck was made by me, several years ago.
Regular 5th string seldom breaks, and when I have to capo, one capo does all the strings at a single move.
IF any of my opinions were humble, it would be my humble opinion that the short 5th is a needless leftover from when it was a LOT easier to get a short piece of horsehair tuned high, than to crank a LONG piece that high, and HOPE that it wouldn't snap.
Its difficult to see in the video but the 3rd string tuner is in the center of the peghead.
Edited by - restreet on 01/29/2023 06:06:51
If the 5th string is full-length and tuned to the high G, then you can't do any of the common licks that have you use the fretted 5th string any more. I think tuning the 5th string to a D note and putting a spike at the 5th fret to spike it to G makes more sense.
I have 2 Yates set up this way..
One with a brass tone ring
The other..has only a brass hoop..
The hoop one is a great deal lighter..
I bought it n had Warren Yates..make a new neck for it..
The banjo is a Yates too..i still have the 5th string tuner neck for it also..
I got it after me heart transplant..
As it was easyer.to hold after surgery..
What the heck..'eh..
Both sound fantastic to me..
But nice to play..
I use a guitar slide in me playing..
N..thos banjos are the Cat's Azz...for that..
Use a #8 string fer the fith..as they stretch..better..
If you are near ct..
You may come try them..if you want..
Interesting. Nechville had a model years ago with a full-length fifth string, but he had it tuned to D, with the option to capo it up to the normal G. This Yates tuning opens up some interesting possibilities.
Hmmm... Well I have a tunneled 5th string. Five tuners in the peghead. The fifth string goes from the tuner into the peghead, transitions through the peghead and neck and comes out where the 5th fret is. So there's no odd geometry on the neck. It just transitions down gradually.
This was kind of important for me because I have damage in the basal joint of my left hand, making it hard for me to navigate the side peg when moving my hand up and down the neck. The tunneled 5th string solves that problem.
Here's one of Nechville's models with a full-length fifth string.
'Possible Buckbee banjo?' 18 min
'Mike Ramsey 12' 18 min
'Robin Smith style 1 neck' 36 min
'Almost a banjo' 1 hr
'Huber' 4 hrs