1900s Weymann 5-String Openback Banjo

I had this same-model banjo in the shop for sale until just recently. While that one was consigned, this one was brought in by a local musician for work. She decided to have this one strung with steel rather than the usual Nylgut I would suggest, so between this one and the other one I linked to, you can get a bit of an idea of how the sound changes. The skin head on this one definitely mellows it out, though.

When this came in, it needed its headstock repaired after a shipping accident. It'd been split in several ways and a couple directions, too, so clamping was a little tricky but it went back together just fine. The rest of the work was setup-style stuff -- I leveled and dressed the frets, installed a new set of 5-Star 4:1 pegs with ebony buttons, added a railroad spike for the 5th string to get into A, cut a couple of bridges to fit, and strung it up with 9s.

It's now playing on-the-dot with two bridge height options -- one for "clawhammer play" with 3/32" action height and one for "fingerstyle play" with 1/16" action height at the 12th fret. The neck is straight and it's good to go.

I love the odd little mutilated star that Weymann stuck in the first-fret position.

The new bridges re both compensated and -- amazingly -- the original "Daisy" tailpiece works just-fine for loop or ball-end stringing. Its integral downpressure bar helps give the banjo a bit more kick.

Aside from the bridges and tuners, the instrument is entirely original.


Warren said…
Wow, your playing and that mic kick butt!!!