Awesome I am glad it showed! I know one day some how we will be able to meet ....It will great to show up at one of those PA cbg festivals one day!..and I know what it must be like for you right now my dad was in the Marine corp for 22 years and he use to get deployed for 6 and 9 months at a time when I was young, I know what was like....the best part was when he would come back and bring trinkets...once he brought me and my brother a spent tank shell...watching him walk thru the front door with that thing was a real eye opener... I had never seen such a thing before! and the c rations ....we use to take them to school!....anyways glad you liked the cd , ....the covers really are so much better than buying anything or using those white sheeves I use to use...they are really easy to make, and fun too!
Yeah Matt, I used a hairdryer on high setting before I got a heat gun. It worked fine. I got a heat gun mainly because Harbor Freight had them on sale for less than $10 and I use it also for softening up glue when I'm taking something apart. One video showed a guy using a plumbing torch! I don't care for open flames in the shop so I didn't try that. The only problem I had with the cigar box is that I shrunk the plastic too tight and the sides began pulling inward.
I used to get the econo calfskins from Elderly for about $10 but now I spring for the next grade up. They're around $20 but don't seem to be quite as affected by temp and humidity changes. Still, for a first try, the econo ones are pretty good so long as they stay indoors! But hey, soda bottles are free and way more in line with these kinds of builds.
Wow, this guy has some great ideas! I'm surprised I've not come across him till now. It looks like the first banjo is pretty much flat. I'm sure that would work but I think some depth, maybe 2 to 3 inches would give a better tone. I've made banjos in rectangular, octagonal, round, and other shapes that I don't know names for and I don't think the shape is real important to the tone. Some shapes are harder to hold in your lap but the size and depth do affect the tone. If you haven't tried streching a calfskin yet it's way easier than you might think. The plastic heads are cheap and fun but finding a suitable size piece of plastic is tough. 3 liter bottles are the largest I've been able to find. Good luck and thanks again for your work on my stuff. The fiddles tunes sound great