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Two new banjo builds

Discussion in 'Instrument Makers' started by stephen45710, Apr 14, 2019.

  1. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    I’m in the process of building a couple of small banjos. One will be a banjo uke and one will be a mini 5-string banjo. The uke is for a friend and the 5-string will be a travel banjo for myself. I plan on posting the build process, which will be slow. I haven’t posted an ongoing project before, so this will be something new for me. The banjo uke will be a soprano which means a very short scale length (about 13 inches) the 5-string will be longer (I haven’t decided but somewhere between 17.5 and 20 inches).
     
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  2. ripjack13

    ripjack13 ɹǝʇɹɐqpooʍ Staff Member Global Moderator Forum Moderator Full Member

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  3. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    I started with some wood I have had for several years that I bought at woodcraft. I think it is called Curupay, not a typical banjo wood but it is hard and dense and should fit the part. It will be the entire rim for the uke and the tone ring (the layer that the hide vibrates against) for the 5-string. I cut it into 1.25 strips.

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  4. ripjack13

    ripjack13 ɹǝʇɹɐqpooʍ Staff Member Global Moderator Forum Moderator Full Member

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  5. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    I cut the wood at 22.5 degrees making 4 octagons of the curupay and 2 more octagons of cherry wood. The 5-string will be cherry with the curupay tone ring. I glue four pieces together and let them dry.
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  6. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    I take the two halves and sand them on a flat board to ensure the two half’s mate perfectly. I forgot to take a picture of this, so the picture is from prior build. Then I trace my interior rim diameter and go to the bandsaw. Then, with the majority of the interior cut away I glue the half’s together.

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  7. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    So at this point I have this.

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  8. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    I screw one layer onto a template I made with a circle cutting jig to the desires inside diameter. And routed the inside diameter.

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  9. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    Once the inside is finished I put it in another jig I built to shape the outside. I trace the outside line, remove it from the jig and go back to the bandsaw.

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  10. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    After trimming on the band saw it goes back on the jig and back to the router table to shape the outside diameter of the rim.

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  11. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    I started with an octagon and now have a layer that i can use with a flush cut router bit to shape the additional layers.

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  12. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    I drill indexing holes to aid in assembly, trim the other layers on the band saw, and then use a pattern cutting bit to trim everything.
     
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  13. Rocking RP

    Rocking RP Member Full Member

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    Very Interesting. I will be following your progress.
     
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  14. stephen45710

    stephen45710 Member Full Member Thread Starter

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    Progress

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  15. CWS

    CWS Member Full Member

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    :popcorn::popcorn::popcorn::popcorn::popcorn:
     
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  16. ironman123

    ironman123 Member Full Member

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    Very, very interesting. :drinks3::drinks3::coffee1::coffee1::popcorn::popcorn:
     
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  17. barry richardson

    barry richardson Moderator Staff Member Global Moderator Full Member

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    Real cool Stephen, never saw a banjo build
    before...
     
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  18. Eric Rorabaugh

    Eric Rorabaugh Diagnosed with addiction by my wife..wood hoarding Full Member

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    Oh this is really cool. The banjo is the one instrument I always wanted to learn. Keeping an eye on this one.
     
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  19. Arn213

    Arn213 craM de la craM # RipJack City! Full Member

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    It is just amazing how builders have more than one way to get to their destination. There is no correct way or wrong way, it is how it makes the most logical, logistical sense to an individual building it, arriving at stages of how you feel comfortable going about your business!

    Great post Stephen:ok: and keep us leaning forward in our seats- this is like being in a master class and looking at your method the old fashion way without the aid of a CNC.

    @ripjack13 :thanx2:.............we really need a “rock fist/rock on/hand horn emoji ala “James’s Dio”!
     
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    Last edited: Apr 15, 2019
  20. ripjack13

    ripjack13 ɹǝʇɹɐqpooʍ Staff Member Global Moderator Forum Moderator Full Member

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    :yourock:
    : yourock : no space inbetween the parentheses and word...
     
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