Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

I was wondering if anybody could shed some light on the method or technique used to apply the fake wood grain finish on Boucher banjos. I would like to try to imitate it on a future build.

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I'm doing one today and later in the week, maybe I'll film them.

The fingerboard is a chevron design, the peghead is a blotchy design, the back of the neck and the dowel is long stripes with the grain, the rim is diagonal stripes inside and out. Check the Banjo Database for colors.

Thank you for the info.
A video would be neat, but I don't mean to obligate you.

Some of the false grain work is pretty cool.  In general it is just like Terry said, but, sometimes the painter really went wild!  Here are a few photos of one I did last night.  I use Indian red for the background and a dark burnt sienna for the grain.  This is then varnished over with a sanderac, copal, shellac varnsh per the original.  This brings out the grain and protects the paint from wear.  

I use a  fan shaped brush for the grain and use very little paint.  

There is one original in Boston that shows this higher end paint as well as one of the Smithsonian Boucher's that shares the same type of paint style.  


Wow, that looks great. Thanks for the tips and pictures.
I'm gonna have to practice.

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