Thursday, September 18, 2008

New Possibilities

I just finished a new banjo today which veers in a new direction. It started with a beautiful piece of maple that I looked at and said, "o.k., let's see what we can do."

Bubinga (African Rosewood) fingerboard. Decorative scoop.

Maple pot and neck.

Bone nut. Ebony truss rod cover. Carved walnut peghead.

Walnut cap.

This departs from the traditional banjo style but I'm really happy with the way it turned out. I think I'll keep going in this direction for a little longer and see where it takes me.

I'll try to post some better photos of this banjo soon.


Anonymous said...

This turned out beautiful, Randy.

Randy said...

Thanks, Rick.

I really enjoyed your visit to the shop, and I'm glad that you got to see this one while I was in the process of working on it.

Now if I could only coerce you into sanding....

Anonymous said...

Beautiful handmade banjo Randy. Very nice work. keep it up.
Terry Lewis

Anonymous said...

Hey Randy - this is Ian. Wow, this design is one of your best - it brings a foreign, more complicated element to an otherwisw simple instrument - I would like to see something similar in a fretted model. (I like the ebony truss rod cover, maybe next time you can out do Teisco del Rey and do the whole thing in ebony {"Feels like concrete - because it damn near is!"} ;-).

buck said...

Randy, that is really nice! It is good that the wood talks to you and tells you what to make with it. My gourds speak to me that way.

How did you attach the walnut peghead to the maple neck?

Brian Kimerer

Randy said...


Thanks for the comment, and thank you for the very kind e-mail.


Randy said...


I started on a fretted one yesterday. The headstock design is a little different, but it has the same feel.

I have checked, and Ebony has good bending properties. I wonder how many fortune 500's play banjo?

Thanks for the comment, and thanks for all of the encouragement you guys have given me. You two are truly good friends.

Randy said...

Thanks for the comment Brian.

I've read in your blog how the gourd speaks to you. I think that happens when you are doing something that you love.

I wasn't clear in my blog about the peghead. The neck is one piece maple with a walnut cap glued to the face (with titebond). The walnut cap I glued to the peghead was thicker than normal so I could carve the relief into it. I'll have to reword the blog.

I really appreciate the advise that you gave me on this banjo. I'll send you photos of that scraper this week.

Thanks again,