1990s Bart Reiter 5-String Banjo

This is a 1990s (I think? -- I didn't see a serial number) Reiter Vega-a-like 5-string banjo that a customer brought in for service. I think these are incredibly well-made banjos, by the way. They're quality through-and-through and even usually feature a truss-rod hidden at the heel.

Work included adding a frailing scoop from the 17th fret and on, a minor fret level/dress, and setup. The owner's worn the FiberSkyn head right down to the first mylar layer and I had to trim the ruffed-up edges so they wouldn't vibrate against the strings.

Tone is full and poppy but mellowed quite a bit by the FiberSkyn head. It feels like an old '20s Vega right down to the way the finish crackles with age -- which is a pretty major achievement, me thinks.

It's nice to see an old-time player using a sliding capo. Why not!? I'm a fan of them, myself. I'd rather have one than railroad spikes as they're more consistently-easy to use -- but what do I know?

Here's the new scoop.