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I've just finished this..what a challenge it's been..and long overdue in the completion. It's an Appalachian mountain-style banjo for Hollowbelly. This is designed to be a stage instrument so I opted to use a Fiberskyn head instead of a natural vellum as it would be less prone to variations in humidity and temperature, and it's also got a pickup in it. The tailpiece is designed to accept loop-ended banjo strings or ball-end guitar strings.
There's no exotic timbers in this, all European and North American woods...mainly cherry, with a beech lamination in the neck, black walnut fretboard and headstock veneer. Figuring out how these things fit together was a right old game, but I've managed to do it. It's got a few neat bits...double action trussrod, and a method of adjusting the tension on the head...but the internal pot is a simple 6" cake tin, and the skin is a drum head, as they don't make banjo heads that small. The pickup is mounted internally under the head, so the output is on the weak side, but maintains the old-timey appearance and importantly manages to put out a real banjo-ey tone when amplified.
Here's the back ring with the tee nuts for the tension adjusters. A 6mm birch ply ring fits into the circular recess and transfers the pressure onto the bottom edge of the internal pot.
Here's the headstock..the name "The Preacher" is a reflection of the theme of some of Hollowbelly's songs. The 5th string has a"railroad spike" rather than a bone "pip" to locate it..it's easier to install and I think it looks neater.