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Feb 23, 2024 - 6:02:16 AM

Jbo1

USA

1323 posts since 5/19/2007

Gibson had the "fiddle" headstock (which originally appeared on Paramount banjos, correct?), the "snakehead" on early banjos and some mandolins, and the "flyswatter" or "open book" headstock. What would the headstock for the Granada style banjos be called? I thought it was the "flying eagle" for the longest time, but that more refers to the inlay style.

Thanks in advanced.

Feb 23, 2024 - 6:20:18 AM
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RioStat

USA

6263 posts since 10/12/2009

It's referred to as the "double-cut" headstock. 

Don't ask me why...I didn't name it ! smiley

Feb 23, 2024 - 6:32:28 AM
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2774 posts since 1/4/2009

Also the 00 style headstock that i call the WTF: 

Feb 23, 2024 - 6:33:44 AM

2774 posts since 1/4/2009

and whatever you would call the gibson top tension style headstocks: 

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:04:25 AM
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678 posts since 2/21/2005

“Double cut” makes sense because there are two cutouts on each side. Gibson originally called it a “scroll” shape which makes no sense to me. BTW, the Granada had a fiddle-shaped peg head in the 20s along with other Mastertone models. The double cut peg head came along in 1929 and was used on most Mastertone models during the 1930s.

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:12:23 AM
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645 posts since 4/14/2014

Don't forget the "Coke Bottle".

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:15:08 AM
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RB3

USA

1984 posts since 4/12/2004

I suspect that one of the reasons for the creation of the double-cut headstock was to reduce manufacturing cost.

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:19:19 AM

heavy5

USA

2998 posts since 11/3/2016

I've wanted to do a thread on neck & headstock inlays for awhile , not any particular maker , but there are so many cool ones that could be of interest
So what do u think , just continue to add here or start a new post ? ---- there could be a bunch !

1974 Pickin magazine had a center fold of many BG related headstocks , banjo , mandolin , guitar that was IMO really interesting & it's available on line but to copy it puts too much finite geometry together (at least w/ my tools) & the pic result is blurry .   

Edited by - heavy5 on 02/23/2024 07:30:00

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:21:09 AM

645 posts since 4/14/2014

quote:
Originally posted by kyleb

Also the 00 style headstock that i call the WTF: 


I personally love the 00 look. I DO think of it as a variation of the "coke bottle" headstock. 

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:43:33 AM
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8206 posts since 9/21/2007

quote:
Originally posted by Bronx banjo

“Double cut” makes sense because there are two cutouts on each side. Gibson originally called it a “scroll” shape which makes no sense to me. BTW, the Granada had a fiddle-shaped peg head in the 20s along with other Mastertone models. The double cut peg head came along in 1929 and was used on most Mastertone models during the 1930s.


S. S. Stewart did too.  You have to use your imagination to see what it is.  I'll try to illustrate:

Draw a sort of imaginary line around the outside of the violin scroll and make it symmetrical. 

Here is what S. S. Stewart called a "scroll" peghead.  SSS was a big violin fan and started out repairing violins.


One can't help but see the inspriation. 

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:44:09 AM

8206 posts since 9/21/2007

I don't know why the photos came out so large, I resized them. Sorry about that.

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:48:53 AM
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Ivor

England

107 posts since 11/18/2020

I think the photographs are just great!

Feb 23, 2024 - 7:52:53 AM

2774 posts since 1/4/2009

quote:
Originally posted by RB3

I suspect that one of the reasons for the creation of the double-cut headstock was to reduce manufacturing cost.


can you expand on that? I cant see how since they both have similar amounts of cuts, i assume in the 30s they werent hand cutting these anyway. But im not a luthier, just wondering how it would reduce work / cost?

Feb 23, 2024 - 8:47:16 AM
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RB3

USA

1984 posts since 4/12/2004

kyleb,

With an appropriate router template, it should be possible to machine the entire profile of a double-cut head stock in a single router pass. It should be the same if a CNC router is used. In the top tension head stock photo that you posted, there are concave vertex features in the profile that can't be made with a router bit; they would most likely be created manually with a hand file. Elimination of the secondary manual operations reduces production time.

Edited by - RB3 on 02/23/2024 08:58:53

Feb 23, 2024 - 9:22:49 AM

Jbo1

USA

1323 posts since 5/19/2007

Thanks everyone. I had forgotten the Double-cut name. Does anyone know if there was any pushback from Paramount over the fiddle headstock?

Feb 23, 2024 - 10:55:14 AM
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5649 posts since 5/29/2011

quote:
Originally posted by kyleb
quote:
Originally posted by RB3

I suspect that one of the reasons for the creation of the double-cut headstock was to reduce manufacturing cost.


can you expand on that? I cant see how since they both have similar amounts of cuts, i assume in the 30s they werent hand cutting these anyway. But im not a luthier, just wondering how it would reduce work / cost?


The double cut peghead could be shaped entirely on a spindle sander, unlike the fiddle shape which had little indentions which had to be hand cut and sanded. That reduced the time it took to shape and finish, thus reducing cost.

As far as the push back from Paramount, the Gibson fiddle shape is not exactly the same so it's not likely that there was any legal basis for it.

Edited by - Culloden on 02/23/2024 11:02:07

Feb 23, 2024 - 1:06:40 PM
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GStump

USA

562 posts since 9/12/2006

Regarding the "top tension" style headstock / peghead; I usually just call it a "top tension" style peghead! It is more or less the same on both prewar and later top tension Gibson banjos. I don't really recall that any other Gibson banjo used it, or any other manufacturer besides Gibson. Of course - I could be mistaken!

Feb 23, 2024 - 1:40:21 PM

15646 posts since 10/30/2008

Paramount did make an effort to get Gibson to cut it out using Paramount designs in a number of places: Headstock shape, use of a circular flange design, dished resonator, diamond inlay patterns in the style 3, an arch top/raised head tone ring contraption, etc. I think it was mostly an exchange of letters, perhaps from lawyers.

Gibson basically ignored them.

Feb 23, 2024 - 1:51:36 PM
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15646 posts since 10/30/2008

As far as peghead shapes done by Gibson don't forget the Style 11/10/Recording King/Studio King shape, and also the "moccasin" shape on the pre-Mastertone Style 5.

Feb 23, 2024 - 2:32:17 PM
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Players Union Member

Emiel

Austria

10421 posts since 1/22/2003

quote:
Originally posted by Joel Hooks

I don't know why the photos came out so large, I resized them. Sorry about that.


Resizing in the answer dialogue doesn't seem to work anymore, I also experienced that. But it's alright, the big pictures are also nice…  

Feb 24, 2024 - 6:57:02 AM
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1430 posts since 11/29/2004

Some of the old timers around here used to call the double cut a turtle foot peghead. I hadn't thought of that in years. Clarence Hall and his father Arthur used to refer to the double cut that way.

Feb 27, 2024 - 5:38:49 AM
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hbick2

USA

740 posts since 6/26/2004

I may be wrong, but I have always associated the Fiddle Headstock with the Tube and Plate flange and the Double-Cut Headstock with the one-piece flange. Why they did that, I don't know, but it is pretty consistent.

Mar 2, 2024 - 8:42:43 AM

Noodlin

USA

252 posts since 6/3/2019

quote:
Originally posted by Jbo1

Gibson had the "fiddle" headstock (which originally appeared on Paramount banjos, correct?), the "snakehead" on early banjos and some mandolins, and the "flyswatter" or "open book" headstock. What would the headstock for the Granada style banjos be called? I thought it was the "flying eagle" for the longest time, but that more refers to the inlay style.

Thanks in advanced.


Is this the paramount headstock being referenced?  I'm trying this shape out on a build right now, though I'm working it out by hand. 
 

I can see why "fiddle" or "fiddleback" seems appropriate.  It basically looks like the body of a fiddle. 
 

Double cut seems to describe almost every headstock shape out there, but maybe that's just me, and I'm pretty new at all this. 


Mar 7, 2024 - 5:32:58 PM

3734 posts since 4/5/2006

One of the older banjo instruction books, described the fiddle peg head shape as being cut perpendicular to the angled surface of the peg head, whereas the double cut shape was said to be cut perpendicular to the fret board. This can be seen on the large pictures viewed perpendicular to the Paramount & Earl Scruggs peg heads.

 The term fiddle back (maple) refers to the (book matched) So-called "cross-grain" pattern found on violin backs, also referred to as curly maple on banjo & mandolin necks, and Tiger stripe maple on muzzle-loading rifle stocks. Although an anomaly, rather than actually cross-grain, it is simply a characteristic found in some woods. In the case of those old rifle stocks, it was often burned onto the stock, either as decoration, or perhaps, camouflage. 

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