Fretless, open back, five string banjo made by Paul Reilly, Queensland. Overall length twenty nine inches. Nickel Silver fretboard.

American white oak veneered, hardwood block rim construction with white oak and African blackwood neck with stainless steel tube non-adjustable “truss rod” epoxied within. White oak and blackwood dowel stick and blackwood heel cap, rim cap and peg head overlay. Blackwood fingerboard overlaid with 0.6mm nickel silver sheet extending to “lazy S” carved frailing scoop. 11" Elite fyberskin drum head. No Knot tailpiece. Brass tone ring for acoustic old timey/clawhammer playing style.

Paul ensures his instruments have structural integrity by minimizing the number of glue joints: Peghead, neck and heel all made from just two pieces of wood ie no scarf joint attaching peghead to neck, no “ears” to widen peghead and the heel is not built up from layers to achieve desired thickness.

The short scale is suitable for all common tunings gCGCD, gDGBD and the light strings also allow corresponding tuning one tone higher eg to aDADE or aEAC#E.

So how does it sound? These 2 sound bytes were recorded in Wendy's music room using a Shure SM58 with the mic pointing to the open back. Both recordings are in CC tuning.

Mole In The Ground MP3

Shuffle And Slide MP3

As you'll hear, under these conditions this remarkable little instrument sound more like a full-size or even 12" fretless. It has even volume across the strings, and plenty of bass even with the light strings. Top quality workmanship, wonderful tone and the nickel silver fretboard will never be repeated.

At present, no hard case. On Consignment from the maker, $1220 AUD - Sold.

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