Updated 04/10/22

Gibson Mastertone RB-4 Conversion 293-8


The banjo pictured here was originally a 1932 four screw TB-1. All the hardware except the 9554-50 flange and tone ring are original TB-4 parts from 9554-32 and the flange is prewar and has been chrome plated. A walnut RB-4 reproduction neck was installed, and the banjo reassembled. The tailpiece is an original Grover four hump. Tone ring is a chromed Price full depth 20 hole flat head.

The neck is made as closely as possible to faithfully reproduce the prewar construction methods and materials. The center section of the peg head is narrower than the heel where it joins the tension hoop, as was done on the original prewar five string necks. Many modern makers simply use a two inch thick board to which are added strips of wood to gain the 3 inch width, which results in four small stubs when viewed from the rear. Original five string necks had pegheads which appear identical to those on tenor or plectrum banjos (see photos of 9528- examples on Greg Earnest's web site). The fingerboard is made from Brazilian rosewood bought from the C. F. Martin company in the late 1960's.

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© Gary H. Price
P O Box 1115
Jones OK 73049
405 659-1959