Gourd Banjo


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In my last episode, when I used the word "final", in the context of "final setup", perhaps I was a bit premature. You see, later that evening when we were sitting down to dinner we heard something go "boom". It wasn't a large "boom", just a quiet sort of boom like something landing on the roof. We all contemplated what might have made the noise, but then came to no resolution and let it slip.

The next morning, I decided to peek in on my new banjo to see it before I went to work. It was then that I discovered what had gone "Boom". It was the the banjo that went boom. My new banjo had exploded.

What happened is that the tailpiece cord had let go, and since the whole rigging is held together by string tension, the whole rigging flew apart and sent banjo parts flying. Here is what I found.


You cannot see much of the tangled mess in that photo, so here is a closeup.


Here is the culprit. Oh, man! Look at that rat's nest of strings!


The cord that I thought was strong enough to hold the banjo together evidently was not. It has broken. Fortunately, that is the only thing that broke. It did take me a half hour to find the bridge (it was up on a shelf across the room from where the banjo was sitting), but once I got the pieces all together I saw that no major damage had been done. I now need to find something stronger to put it all back together with. But that is for another day.

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Last updated December 2, 2007