Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Finding Parts for Banjolin

  1. #1

    Default Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Been searching the web for someplace I can buy a new head, bridge, nut, and strings for a 8 string Banjolin (see attached). Anyone recommend a web site? Also, saw some stuff about using harder material (not plastic) for the head and getting an oversized bridge. Thoughts and suggestions appreciated.

    Any info about this Banjolin would also be appreciated.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	unnamed-2.jpg 
Views:	18 
Size:	745.6 KB 
ID:	187027

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	unnamed.jpg 
Views:	23 
Size:	891.5 KB 
ID:	187026

  2. #2
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Saint Augustine Beach FL
    Posts
    4,774

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Whats the diameter of the rim?
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  3. #3

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Shoot forgot to put ruler in picture - 7 1/8 inches

  4. #4
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Saint Augustine Beach FL
    Posts
    4,774

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    You will most likely have to buy a natural skin head, in an 8" or 10" diameter and learn how to mount it yourself. The banjo hangout site would be the best place to ask for advise... https://www.banjohangout.org/

    Other then that, you could look for a shop that specializes in banjos to see if they could help you.

    Also look on youtube for videos on how to mount a natural skin head on a banjo.

    Good luck, it looks like a cool little banjo mandolin.
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  5. The following members say thank you to Charles E. for this post:


  6. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    S.W. Wisconsin
    Posts
    5,568

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    It's a little fidgity to mount a skin head, but not al that hard. Just don't try to tighten it up until it is dry. And if you live in a humid place in summer don't keep tightening it up, it will tear after a while. I used to put them over a light bulb to dry them out, but it didn't last long. I went to fyberskin, but in this size I don't think that is an option. A nice thing to do when you soak it is to soak it in tea, it gives a nice effect to the skin and doesn't look new.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  7. The following members say thank you to pops1 for this post:


  8. #6
    '`'`'`'`'`'`'`'`'`'`' Jacob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    999

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin


  9. The following members say thank you to Jacob for this post:


  10. #7
    Teacher, luthier
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Southeast Tennessee
    Posts
    1,743

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Banjo parts: Smakula Fretted Instruments, Elkins W. Va.
    Bob Smakula is the best person to talk to about odd size banjos heads. He is very knowledgeable and very helpful.
    www.smakula.com

  11. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to rcc56 For This Useful Post:


  12. #8
    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Saint Augustine Beach FL
    Posts
    4,774

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    +1 Bob is the Man.
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

  13. The following members say thank you to Charles E. for this post:


  14. #9
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    27,230

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    I have one of those Weymann style 25 mandolin banjo which i bought decades ago. The original head was skin and I had to replace it with another skin head. Other than skin I don't know of any non-plastic head. Check with Bob Smakula. You might have to order custom size and I don't know how expensive it will be or how long it will take to get one.

    OTOH the skin head on my Weymann mellows out the tone and I don't know if I could stand the percussiveness if it had a plastic head. I prefer the skin. Even more melllow might be a goatskin vs. calfskin.

    This was the original bridge that came with my Weymann. It actually broke and I reglued it but took photos and measurements to make or have a repro made.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	weymann_bridge.jpg 
Views:	19 
Size:	125.1 KB 
ID:	187032

    A standard bone nut for a mandolin would be right for this instrument. Does yours have that metal brace on the dowel-stick? (see below).

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	wm25-nut.jpg 
Views:	12 
Size:	59.1 KB 
ID:	187033 Click image for larger version. 

Name:	wm25_brace_sm.jpg 
Views:	15 
Size:	76.8 KB 
ID:	187034
    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  15. The following members say thank you to Jim Garber for this post:


  16. #10
    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Blue Zone, California
    Posts
    1,397
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    About 10 years ago there was some activity on Banjo Hangout about "Yellowstone" banjo heads, a synthetic head that looks like, feels like, and sounds as good (or better according to some) as skin heads. This is a DuPont Nomex sheet material that can be mounted on a banjo rim using a flesh hoop very similarly to the way skin heads are mounted. It's mounted dry and there is some technique to the process, but it is simpler to do than mounting a skin head. I became involved with using this head material and becoming sold on the concept and subsequently actually purchased a number of bulk rolls of the material directly from a DuPont distributer.

    My personal opinion is that their tone and volume of these heads are like a combination of skin and Mylar heads, they have the wonderful dry tone of a good skin head, with the remarkable cutting volume of Mylar -- much more volume than skin, much drier than Mylar.

    I re-headed all of my banjos and played them all with "Yellowstone" heads for a few years. I can highly recommend this material with a couple of limitations:

    1) if there is consistent hand, fingernail, pick or other contact with the head while playing, it can wear through forming holes. The material is .007" thick and while holes can form, even with holes in it, the material does not tend to tear on a banjo. These holes can be patched with Nomex patches and auto weatherstrip adhesive, but they will show and that may be a problem for some people. On my main playing banjo -- at that time a 1925 Ballbearing Masterone -- I installed patches before the actual holes formed on the heads in the area where I typically wore the holes through, and simply replaced the patches when they formed holes.

    2) The Nomex material seems to either move or stretch under tension in rain or extremely high humidity. I've read reports that this does not happen as much if a rectangular profile flesh hoop is used, or if a heavily roughened flesh hoop is used, or if the head is glued into place on the flesh hoop using the auto weatherstrip adhesive. After I became aware of this limitation I made sure to only play my banjos with these heads in excellent weather or indoors.

    At that time for my main-playing banjos, I moved back to Remo Weatherking and Renaissance heads for 100% reliability. My other banjos remain with "Yellowstone" heads and function very well for their use.

    With all this said, I still would recommend these heads for those who are ok with the limitations. I have two or three complete rolls of the Nomex sheet material, and I'm happy to provide properly sized-cut material samples and installation guidance free to those who may want to try them out. I'll even pay for packaging and shipping, so there will be no money or material exchanged.

    To be clear this is not a sale or a promotion, I've just got more of this DuPont Nomex material than I'll ever use and would be happy to provide it in reasonable sample amounts for those who are interested in trying it. If you are interested, simply PM me here in the Cafe messaging system.
    -- Don

    "Music: A minor auditory irritation occasionally characterized as pleasant."
    "It is a lot more fun to make music than it is to argue about it."


    2002 Gibson F-9
    2016 MK LFSTB
    1975 Suzuki taterbug (plus many other noisemakers)
    [About how I tune my mandolins]
    [7/29/2019 -- New Arrival!!!]

  17. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to dhergert For This Useful Post:


  18. #11
    I really look like that soliver's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Marietta, GA
    Posts
    1,394

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Dan Erlewine does a video on Stew Mac on replacing the head on an Banjo Uke... might be worth checking out

    https://youtu.be/cdGyxVYxtiY

    aka: Spencer
    Silverangel Econo A #429
    Jacobson Nautilus Oval Hole Prototype

    Hand Crafted Mandolin Armrests
    Check them out here

    "You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage
    to lose sight of the shore, ...and also a boat with no holes in it.
    -anonymous

  19. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to soliver For This Useful Post:


  20. #12
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    27,230

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Quote Originally Posted by dhergert View Post
    2) The Nomex material seems to either move or stretch under tension in rain or extremely high humidity. I've read reports that this does not happen as much if a rectangular profile flesh hoop is used, or if a heavily roughened flesh hoop is used, or if the head is glued into place on the flesh hoop using the auto weatherstrip adhesive. After I became aware of this limitation I made sure to only play my banjos with these heads in excellent weather or indoors.
    Very interesting. I believe that this is the same material, Nomex, that is used in a honeycomb formation to create light but strong classical guitars tops.

    As for the use om banjo heads, it is ironic that plastic heads came in common uzse to avoid humid conditions but this material has that similar property to skin. In anyc case it sounds really interesting. I am, however an old time player and my banjos sound pretty good with renaissance or fiberskyn plastic heads.
    Jim

    My Stream on Soundcloud
    Facebook
    19th Century Tunes
    Playing lately:
    2018 Campanella A-5 -- 2007 Brentrup A4C -- 1915 Frank Merwin Ashley violin -- Huss & Dalton DS -- 1923 Gibson A2 black snakehead -- '83 Flatiron A5-2 -- 1939 Gibson L-00 -- 1936 Epiphone Deluxe -- 1928 Gibson L-5 -- ca. 1890s Fairbanks Senator Banjo -- ca. 1923 Vega Style M tenor banjo -- ca. 1920 Weymann Style 25 Mandolin-Banjo -- National RM-1

  21. #13
    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Blue Zone, California
    Posts
    1,397
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    For most of my main playing banjos, it was hard for me to move back to Weatherking heads, because the "Yellostone"/Nomex heads were so much more vivid and colorful in tone. But the chance of playing outside in high humidity or in rain was real with these banjos so I really didn't have any choice. My cello banjo was the exception, it came originally to me with a beautiful 14" Renaissance head which I didn't have much problem going back to -- tone was different than "Yellowstone"/Nomex, but the Renaissance tone on that banjo is really excellent.

    Jim, if you have any interest in testing some of this out on a banjo or two, just let me know.

    I actually also carry enough of the "Yellowstone"/Nomex head material around in a roll, along with some flesh-hoop material, to festivals and campouts, so that I can do re-heads on just about any banjo that has had a head problem. Haven't needed it yet (in 10 years!), but it's nice have along in an emergency.
    -- Don

    "Music: A minor auditory irritation occasionally characterized as pleasant."
    "It is a lot more fun to make music than it is to argue about it."


    2002 Gibson F-9
    2016 MK LFSTB
    1975 Suzuki taterbug (plus many other noisemakers)
    [About how I tune my mandolins]
    [7/29/2019 -- New Arrival!!!]

  22. The following members say thank you to dhergert for this post:


  23. #14
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    California
    Posts
    368

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    I've bought mandolin banjo bridges from Elderly. They are not repros, but they did a great job. And I'm another vote for Smakula.

    https://www.elderly.com/collections/...tall-slant-top

  24. The following members say thank you to Bill Foss for this post:


  25. #15

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Thank all ya'lll for the advice. I apologize for the delayed responses, but was on vacation for a bit.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Yes my Banjolin has the metal brace

  26. #16

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    I'd love to try it. I will PM you.

  27. #17

    Default Re: Finding Parts for Banjolin

    Thanks for the picture - will use when contacting Bob.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •