6/02/2016

1960s Framus Banjo-Mandolin Part Two





The customer who bought the Framus banjo-mando decided he wanted it re-strung with nylon as an 8-string uke-banjo pile of craziness! Unfortunately, a string snapped while I was setting it up that way and the string-splosion ripped the original head in half with a resounding boom! If you've been around enough banjos this turns out to be a sort-of common thing if the string hits it just right.

After much friendly word-jousting, we decided on a calfskin head and I originally tried an 11" from my bin of old heads but found I needed a deeper collar, so installed this new (old-looking) head the other day. After drying-out, it was time for stringing-up, a new (old, maple, in actuality) bridge, and another setup. It's strung with octaves on the G&C courses and so plays a lot like an 8-string tenor uke or similar and has a distinctly "Latin" vibe, tonally, to my ears. I like it!


The look of natural skin gives this a much older look, now.



The new maple bridge is one I've repurposed from an old 1920s balalaika bridge.

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