Customized peghead shape

19 fret tenor


 Partial  Restoration
(No replate)

Initial Pics

very nice original banjo, a pleasure to gaze upon

Non original tailpiece, we will rectify this
Armrest is hoop mounted as are many, but drilled for the 2 post mount..as are many
So have them and some do not, both are originals

The custom shaped peghead is a show stopper for me
It is just so non typical  with a lot of pizzazz.

White Holly neck, Creamy colored celluloid, it oozes beauty.

Grover Deluxe tuners, with graving
MOP Buttons

Heel in good condition, neck has thin finish, we will fix that

All of the fingerboard paintings are VG+. that's one thing we will not have to deal with.

Skin head is still holding OK, and AMRAWCO is a good quality head

There is alot of rim there folks.
Epi out shined them all in "Maple prowess"!!
Everything is as it should be inside



The laminates are in good shape, some delamination all around the bottom periphery, we see this all of the time on these models

I will get it sealed up as best I can without too much intrusion

The neck is perfectly flat, you will not find better, new or old.
That was the benefit of a solid truss rod, and why I push them even today vs adjustable

We have located a proper tailpiece and the plating is correct period, with some wear.
I think it should be left as is so match up with the instrument, on this occasion



This is one of a few, that have not one but 2 spacer bands between hoop skirt and flange plate

One is inset as normal, and one sets upon it, sliding over the rim seamlessly
Your guess is as good as mine
 Maybe a batch of shorter rim skirts needed an added spacer to get to normal height.
Or just a draftsman keeping his job...:)

All apart and ready for cleaning


All the same technique will be applied that I'm using on the DANSANT

All sealed in and trimming

Leveled and crowned, polished

Removing shellac to refinish

Sweat stain must be removed if possible

Im almost there, maybe a slight shadow will remain, I wont go too deep.


Carvings stripped and brushed clean

Ready for tape off and clear next to the Dansant neck

Cleaning hardware with micro polish, then waxing
No replating

Rim stripped and 4 coats new finish

Shown here is the difference between this C and the Dansant neck which is a much shallower heel.
When I get them both together I want to see what other depth differences might occur.

It all looks like an "Afterthought" to me, the extra ring, the buggered up holes.
As if an attempt to get a deeper banjo
Maybe a prototype?
Always good to season with conjecture :)

That's what the clearance would be with the D neck on C rim
Impossible to exchange the 2

Normal  appearance but with a much more radical heel angle.
No rhyme and reason in some instances of vintage banjos.

All these hooks have bad thread and have been replaced using original nuts


The delamination on the bottom edge can be dealt with one way only without ruining patina and possibly the edges of the brittle celluloid.
Some of the wood underside is warped and some marquetry missing
I will "Seal as I  go" ...lightly clamping around as I proceed.
This means filling the gap with medium cyano

Working my way around the periphery, 2" at a time, clamp, go some more
 There is no way to make it perfectly flat, but I can stop it from getting worse

The old varnish is checking off in places and crazing to the celluloid is present
If that was removed and new finish applied, it would make the crazing worse.
 The vintage celluloid cannot  take the Nitrocellulose finish

And if you remove it, then the overlays on the neck look too dark so its best to leave the Patina on this banjo and not risk ruin.

Also, on all of the wood marquetry, I took a fine line brush and sealed all of the wood with 2 fresh coats, not the celluloid.
The pics did not come out to show it well but it helped the condition and sealed from moisture


With the holes on the rim and skirt drilled in poor fashion, I will make up the slack with tubing.
I will find things that are close and tighten the slack

Now for the bottom

The hammer is there to scare it into submission

Another instance of rods not perpendicular due to the "on the fly" changes in the construction of this banjo.

After buffing and waxing
A fresh coat of black to hide the scratches inside, now for some new felt in the neck notch
Now to add the hardware and attach it

Strung and to pitch and noting well up and down, always a good sign after fretwork

After a day, its playing fine, settling in, head readjusted
Im finding no faults

Some of the shine of the finish over the marquetry shows here.
This is a fine players instrument and like all Epiphones including the "Superb"........Superb!
Thanks for watching