February was a busy month in the shop, and I was able to get quite a lot of time in the shop to get it all done. My first completed project was banjo #193, an ash 12″ with a kind of archtop tone ring system consisting of an 11″ brass ring mounted in a rabbet on the inside wall of the rim and the head touching the rim itself at the outer edge. I shipped the banjo set up but with the wood unfinished.
The person who ordered this banjo ebonized the ash and did some inlay work. He kindly sent me some pictures of how it looked afterward, and a link to a video he made about it.
My next project was a new neck for a vintage pot. This was the most inlay I have ever installed, and while I was fairly happy with how the fretboard came out the peghead was less successful and required a lot of filler. I had never tried before to inlay a large piece like this, flexible at the joints but composed of stiff pieces. This project enabled me to add a new template to my assortment, traced from a picture of an old Orpheum No. 1 banjo. This neck was also shipped unfinished so that the buyer could stain the curly maple to match the pot. I am not able to stain (except black) because I’m colorblind and can’t tell what I’m doing.
My last custom job for February was banjo #194, a walnut 11″ with a removable center mounted resonator like the one I made last year. This is the first time I’ve used these very small dots (that I often used as side dots) on the fretboard face.
Banjos #195-#200 are all shown on the Banjos page. My plan for March is to make two custom banjos and two necks, and three stock banjos: a cherry 11″, a walnut 11″ and an ash 12″. If time permits I am also hoping to make a mahogany squareneck resonator guitar to replace the cherry one that was sold last month.