Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

Hello,
I am curious, was oak ever used on a Boucher style banjo? I have plans to build one but the only hardwood I can source locally is red oak.

Thank you
Erik,

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From what I've read, Boucher sometimes used oak and I believe modern reproductions sometimes use oak.  Others who know more about this than I do can confirm or refute.

If you've never made a 12-13 inch rim before, I'd suggest just slicing up a drum shell instead. I steam, bend, and bake rims and every step is calculated, complicated and always risky. If you do bend your own, yes, red oak is good. And don't use a board with grain run-out, it'll snap. Good luck.

Thank you :) I have bent wood before, so I should have no problems with that, does it change the sound quality any?

Oak and Ash are main rim woods. Although they are VERY hard, they have a peculiar and straight grain that will bend. The skin thickness, bridge height and thickness and scale length have more effect on the sound than differences in wood.

Would you be willing to sell a rim and what hardware come with you? I do not have the time presently to fabric them myself. If not that is fine also, I am sure someone out there produces them.

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