Ive read about salad bowl banjos, hubcap banjos and the timeless gourd banjos.
I was then reading the steam banjos thread to make laminated rims and didnt want to hijack it.
I looked up ... and realized how many insanely ornate ceiling fans get tossed every year.
The diameters of the ones in my home are 11 and 12 in.
Had 3 thoughts
1) All metal banjo built like a salad bowl.
2) Use metal as ornate metal to make tonering that completely surrounds rim and provides top and back flange
3) Use metal as a form or clamp to make laminate rims
Heck, u could make a tailpiece from a blade holder.
Edited by - NotABanjoYoda on 02/08/2023 09:59:01
Go for it! All decent ideas, except perhaps use as a form. The metal is ornate, but possibly not sturdy enough to hold and shape a laminated rim.
I agree, George, a well kept secret is the blades are 1/4" and Oak .
I have researched the brass fittings used in lamp fixtures.
Go forth, or at least fifth.
The housings on most of those I've installed are strictly decorative and very lightweight, some no sturdier than a disposable foil baking pan. Maybe some older ones were made of heavier gauge metal....?
The housings on mine are 40 years old and very sturdy, but I have installed flimsy ones so it m7st be the right year, make and model i suppose. Good ones are probably in landfills. and mine are staying on the ceiling...but going to keep my eye out!
The two crummy ones in my home have garbage blades--not even real wood, let alone oak.
Older ones are probably better, and I've seen many at thrift stores and yard sales. Unfortunately, none of them have been "prewar" and I doubt any were made in Kalamazoo.
I used to check for junk that could be used for banjos, things like hinges, pot lids, odd cooking utensils, etc. I'm too old and feeble these days, but still can appreciate resourcefulness. There are loads of decrepit pianos with many bits from ebony keys to pedal hardware to dowelling that can be adapted to other things.
I had never considered ceiling fans (I have looked at lamp parts) and say thanks for the idea.
I like brass sheeting for this, find your thickness spec and a metal shop can roll you one, once joined like soldered it would hold up a brick,
Here's a banjo I recently made that is green in more than one way.
Rim: repurposed scrap PVC pipe that would have ended up in a landfill.
Head: Reused PET plastic take-n-bake pizza tray lid that would have been in a recycle bin before ending up in a landfill.
Neck and Neck Extension - Poplar taken from a pallet.
Tuners: salvaged from a junk classical guitar.
Strings: Well, I confess I bought these new. LaBella Classic Banjo nylon.
Edited by - Jonnycake White on 02/10/2023 13:49:31
Im begging for a pvc pipe banjo sound file!
Oh yeah, I made one.
I dont think ive seen pvc of that diameter ever. That banjo works. Good stuff!
Note his tailpiece.
'French Revolution' 2 hrs
'Hatfield Celebrity' 3 hrs
'Good Friday Morning' 8 hrs