Archive for June, 2011

The elusive gourd banjo

June 28, 2011

Everybody wants one, nobody has one. I don’t make too many of these, but when I have them they sell fast! You really can’t beat the look or sound of a banjo that basically grew out of the ground. This is a true banjo. Check it out on banjohangout.

I’ll be posting a youtube video of it in action soon.


Buy This Travel Banjo!

June 9, 2011

This is a neat little banjo. I have it tuned to the key of C. It has a walnut neck and a pine pot. It barks. That is the best way I can describe the sound in one word. I packaged it up several months ago and it has been living in a wooden box ever since. It needs a home. I am asking for $200 shipped, but make me a reasonable offer and I will not refuse!

New Month, New Models

June 9, 2011

I built banjos like crazy last month. I spent a lot of money on supplies. I knew it would be kind of slow just trying to sell all of them. The sales have finally started to pick up, so this month I want to build at a rate the market can keep up with. My goal is to build two to three per week and sell at least two per week.

The new models: I have some plans to build a tackhead with two extra thumb strings at the 7th and 10th fret position. I did this before with a gourd banjo, and it worked out nicely. There may still be a video floating around out there of it in action. I also want to get a few gourd banjos done this month. I have one usable gourd at the moment. I live in Indiana and I can’t find any gourds!? I might have to start buying them off ebay.

Keep an eye out for these new banjos! I’m also still working on a few walnut mountain models.

This Banjo Haunts Me.

June 2, 2011

A friend cut down a crab-apple tree in fall of 2008. He gave me a few chunks of the wood. I put it away in my garage to dry. I had been wanting to do some crazy banjo with all kinds of inlay and carvings for awhile. I thought about what I wanted for almost a year as I waited for the branches to dry out.

Spring 2009 I had a rough idea of what I wanted and the wood was dry. I knew it was going to be a nice hard wood, and it was. It dried out nicely. It had a pleasant smell when I cut into it with my bandsaw. To describe the wood…well, it is like an apple made solid. Same whitish color, same texture in appearance. It’s very dense, with a super tight grain.

I’ve been working on this banjo for nearly two years. The project always gets pushed into the background as other banjo orders come in. This banjo was numbered at 43, I’ve finished over 20 other banjos since.  Every time I work on it I think of something else I would like to add or change or fix.

We are in the home stretch now. I’ve spent a lot of time carving the heel and preparing the body for sanding. I want to get this thing finished. I’d like to sell it. Anyone interested?

I want to inset a brass band around the outside of the pot. It will have all brass hardware and real gut strings. I can’t wait to play it.