View Full Version : Weymann Model 140 tenor banjo

Apr-14-2005, 7:59am
I recently picked up a 1925 Weymann Model 140 tenor banjo locally with the intention of stringing it like an octave mandolin and playing celtic tunes. I am not adjusting well to the scale length, so I'm considering selling it or trading it. It is in very good condition, but the resonator appears to be non-original because it is stamped Lyon and Healy and has a center attachment screw. Ebony fretboard, pearl inlays in headstock, 18 frets, OHSC. Any ideas on the value of this instrument?
Brent Graves
Negaunee, MI

Apr-16-2005, 9:09am
Mandolin Bros. has a Weymann Keystone State at about a Grand. This is a higher end version than your 140. I think I would try for something about half that number, give or take 100.

Apr-16-2005, 9:55am
Have any pics. Post them. More people will be interested if they know instantly what it looks like.

Apr-16-2005, 5:35pm
Here is a picture. This TB plays and sound really good, but it is a player rather than a collector because the resonator has been replaced with a Lyon and Healy with center screw attachment. To accommodate the center screw, the original neck adjustor was removed, and a clamp with ebony wedges has been added for neck adjustment. Seems to work just fine, but it is not original. Any help will be appreciated.

Apr-17-2005, 5:24pm

What was the problem with playing the instrument? Are you still using your mandolin fingering? that is the biggest transition a mandolin player has to make when switching. Most of the big name ITM banjoplayers are using a guitar style fingering (i.e. a finger for each fret.)

Mike Keyes

Apr-17-2005, 5:28pm
Yeah, I'd estimate aroud $400 on the low end up to $700 on the top. Hard to say how it falls in there. I have a Weymann myself (style 2 orchestra) which also has the brackets inside the rim, killer feature. pop off the resonator, play it wihout getting "banjo leg". Weymanns are on the dark side as well, so tuned Irish style GDAE they sound fantastic in Dmin and played on the low end. I like the sound of a vega tenor for the real butt-kicking stuff (Amajor usually!) as they are so bubbly. My least favorite is a Gibson tenor, which is quite bright & shrill. They make great 5-strings though, for the same reason!

Apr-17-2005, 8:19pm
Thanks for the info Dan. That is very helpful. I like the sound a lot, but it is the only TB I have played. I've been using a guitar-ish fingering on the tenor; i.e., one finger per fret. I seem to end up with fingers on frets 2-5, which is where most notes end up. I slide up to get fret 1 with my index and slide down to get 6 and 7 with my pinky. It works pretty well, but Irish TB is definitely a whole different animal compared to regular mandolin.

Apr-19-2005, 3:14pm
Hi Brent,

I bought a Keystone State identical to yours (but with no resonator) in excellent condition for about $400 from a vintage store. Like yourself, I moved to the tenor banjo after playing mandolin and, yes, it is a bit of a stretch on the fingers. But you get used to it after a couple of months of playing. If you play or want to play in sessions I'd recommend you stick it out a bit longer! I haven't looked back.

Apr-20-2005, 8:28pm
I have a Vega Ranger, from the 1960's. I like it, but I think your Weymann is probably better. Mine has no tone ring, it was a low end model.

A 17 fret version is probably better suited to Irish tuning.