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Vespa Bob
08-12-2016, 06:16 AM
Since all I basically had to build was the neck, I can't really call it number 17, can I? For this project I wanted to build something for myself and decided to make a banjo ukulele to replace one that I sold some while ago. I had difficulty in finding a tunable 8" hand drum, so ended up buying a Remo Renaissance pre tuned version, the same one as used on the Firefly. It consists of a drum made up of some rolled up material (cardboard?) with a plastic wrapping with an imitation wood finish. The skin is a translucent parchment type of plastic. (I have since found and ordered a tunable drum from the UK.)
The neck is mahogany with an ebony fretboard and headplate. Grover friction tuners. Since I didn't have to build the body, I spent more time on the neck by practicing my limited inlay skills. All I had laying around was a small piece of MOP which I used for the flowers. A piece of faux abalone from a necklace pendant was used for the hummingbird, which ended up looking more like a duck! After rummaging around looking for something green for the leaves, I cut them from a green plastic lid. After several worthless attempt at sawing the thin stems, I gave up and filled the void with epoxy colored with green pastel dust. The design on the drum is painted with acrylic paints with an outline using dark brown dye applied with an old fashioned pen with a nib.
The neck is finished with lacquer and since this was for my personal use only, I cut myself some slack and let a couple of cosmetic slip ups remain. All in all it took longer than I had anticipated, sounds OK, so far, but I think I'll switch to the tunable drum when it arrives, mainly because it looks more "banjo like".
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Bob

greenscoe
08-12-2016, 07:28 AM
Looks good Bob with its bound fretboard and traditional banjo head: I really like your artwork!

I've just bought a Stagg 10" tuneable drum with the intention of making a tenor banjolele. It will be a plain Jane in comparison to this.

cml
08-12-2016, 10:06 AM
Since all I basically had to build was the neck, I can't really call it number 17, can I? For this project I wanted to build something for myself and decided to make a banjo ukulele to replace one that I sold some while ago. I had difficulty in finding a tunable 8" hand drum, so ended up buying a Remo Renaissance pre tuned version, the same one as used on the Firefly. It consists of a drum made up of some rolled up material (cardboard?) with a plastic wrapping with an imitation wood finish. The skin is a translucent parchment type of plastic. (I have since found and ordered a tunable drum from the UK.)
The neck is mahogany with an ebony fretboard and headplate. Grover friction tuners. Since I didn't have to build the body, I spent more time on the neck by practicing my limited inlay skills. All I had laying around was a small piece of MOP which I used for the flowers. A piece of faux abalone from a necklace pendant was used for the hummingbird, which ended up looking more like a duck! After rummaging around looking for something green for the leaves, I cut them from a green plastic lid. After several worthless attempt at sawing the thin stems, I gave up and filled the void with epoxy colored with green pastel dust. The design on the drum is painted with acrylic paints with an outline using dark brown dye applied with an old fashioned pen with a nib.
The neck is finished with lacquer and since this was for my personal use only, I cut myself some slack and let a couple of cosmetic slip ups remain. All in all it took longer than I had anticipated, sounds OK, so far, but I think I'll switch to the tunable drum when it arrives, mainly because it looks more "banjo like".
9334593346933479334893349
Bob
I think it looks really really good, the hummingduck too :)! May I ask what you use to glue the inlay in, and to "fill" any eventual edges that didnt match perfectly (not that I can see any)? I'm experimenting with black color pigment and titebond atm on a scrap piece, but I'm worried it'll stain the wood...

RPA_Ukuleles
08-12-2016, 10:10 AM
Looks great! What did you use for the tail piece and how did you attach the neck?

Vespa Bob
08-12-2016, 03:43 PM
Thanks for the encouraging comments! Those Stagg drums are really nice, greenscoe, it's a pity they don't make an 8'" version. Hummingduck, I like that cml and to answer your question, I use thin ca to glue the inlay in position after checking to be sure that it fits right down to the bottom before doing the actual gluing. Epoxy can also be used, but unless your inlay piece is made of wood, titebond would not be the best choice. To fill any gaps (what gaps!) I mix ebony dust with epoxy and squeegee it in, scraping the excess off after it has dried. This works with ebony of course, other wood types would require a different approach. RPA, I used a Golden Gate No-Knot style tailpiece that I purchased through Amazon some time ago. The neck is held on by a 5/16" threaded rod which is screwed into the neck by means of a threaded insert. The rod goes through the drum and is tightened down with an acorn nut. I encased it in a mahogany sheath to give it a less "industrial"look. And no, I didn't drill a hole through the wood, but used 2 pieces that I had routed half circle in each then glued them together! Hope that helps.

Bob

sequoia
08-12-2016, 07:20 PM
Nice inlay. Perfect for a banjo uke.

PhilUSAFRet
08-12-2016, 07:52 PM
Nice! I have a no knot on my Rally, nice tailpiece. I like the artwork very much.

greenscoe
08-12-2016, 10:16 PM
"Those Stagg drums are really nice, greenscoe, it's a pity they don't make an 8'" version."

They do make an 8" wooden version, no TAWH-080T (about 30 here in UK). I bought TAWH-100T the 10" version. They are only 1.75" deep, perhaps less than a normal banjo would be. I think the wooden ones are being replaced with plastic versions (cheaper) but it is still possible to find them here in the UK and across Europe.

http://www.rattleanddrum.com/stagg-8-tuneable-wooden-hand-drum.html