9/12/2013

c.1930 Regal-made "Army Green" Banjo Ukulele



Essentially identical to this other banjo uke, these were marketed under several brands (most notable the decal-applied LeDomino brand sold by JR Stewart) but I'm sure they were made by Regal. This one has a 14" scale and 7" head which places it in the realm of "between soprano and concert" for the time it was built.

Work included a fret level/dress, cleaning, new Grover bridge, and setup. It plays like a charm and has a surprisingly warm and mellow sound (usually 14" scale banjo ukes tend to be a bit more raucous). It's super-suitable to use as a strummer, clawhammer instrument, or a picker.


Cute decal, original wood nut (that's been double-slotted but I used the original slots and adjusted them), and you gotta love the routing on the headstock edges.


The position dots are actually faded silver decals. The frets are brass and tall/thin like most Regal uke products have. Action is set to a hair above 1/16" at the 12th fret (spot on).


The original skin head is in great shape but does have a tiny pinhole under the tailpiece. I have no doubt that it'll be perfectly stable for the forseeable future.



Heck, I love that color!

I'm pretty sure Regal made the bulk of the late-20s/early-30s Slingerland/MayBell/Concertone branded ukes as well. If you check that heel shape, black-painted "foot" to the rim, and the hardware, you'll see that aside from the paint job and heastock shape, this is very, very, very similar to many of those ukes.



The original bakelite pegs are still going strong.


This style of neck brace (set-screw adjusted) is good and sturdy.






Oh, right, and an original chip case (needs some duct tape) and matching old felt pick, too!

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