Ring a Renan Banjo in the New Year!
January 5, 2018
A few new features have been added to the website:
- Check out ‘The Shop’ Page for a behind the scenes look at banjo building.
- Now there are Banjo Build Order Forms for Fardowner Spec Series and Custom Build Banjos. Find those on the Ordering Policy Page.
- In the coming weeks, I’ll be introducing a Spec Series banjo line – The Fardowner Series – with an entry price of $1150.
- Prices for add-on items to customize your Renan Banjo Build are now available on the Ordering Policy page.
I’ve recently completed two new banjos – RB #15 ‘Ghost’ Fardowner Spec (below left) and RB #16 ‘Linthead’ (below right)- in the Fall of 2017. Both are great projections for the 2018 Renan Banjo lineup. Each offer a unique sonic, visual and physical experience. While I may have only completed 6 banjos in 2017, my main focus was on fit, finish and play-ability. Focusing on quality rather than quantity, I was able to put more time into sculpting the neck, perfecting the tone and the action of each instrument and experimenting with inlay design and composition. The main goal of the Fardowner Spec Series is to offer an affordable, entry-level banjo that plays well, sounds great and has a modern appearance with high-quality hardware and features.
I plan to offer more audio & video samples in the coming weeks from these latest banjos.
February 27th, 2017.
A New Year has come and with it new responsibilities and determination. I’m currently working on a new batch of banjos. 4 to be precise. More recently I’ve been working on the website, trying to add more content: audio, video and information about what I vision for the future of Renan Banjos. I’ve updated the Renan Philosophy page and so far it’s a good primer to where I’m headed, I hope to further define and edit that as I go. I’ve also added the Banjo Blueprint page under the Ordering Policy tab, which is also under construction and will ever evolve. My aim is to create this page into an interactive order form for ordering and customizing your next Renan Banjo.
With a nod to Jeff Menzies of Menzies Instruments, I’ve finally upgraded how I take photographs. No more location shots. Flora and fauna are a nice background but not when I want to achieve a clean aesthetic that best presents the product at hand. I’m selling banjos not nature itself!
All 2017 banjo models will feature adjustable 2-way truss rods that will be easily accessible at the peghead!
My focus is on quality and not quantity this year. I’m slowing down production only because I’m changing the way that I make the banjos, mainly making and redesigning my jigs, new banjo designs = new templates, measurements
I’ve started incorporating and experimenting with inlay and marquetry in my designs.
The Next Batch of banjos feature:
Buzzard– 25.5″ scale, Curly Walnut neck with figured Ebony fretboard & Gold evo fretwire, brass hardware, 11″ pot with Whyte Laydie Tone ring, Balch Calfskin head, turkey buzzard head inlay on peghead and talon on heel cap
Fardowner #03– 25.5″ scale, Curly Walnut neck with Osage triangular inlay pattern on Ebony fretboard & Gold Evo fretwire, 12″ 10-ply maple pot with Osage rim cap & Renaissance head, custom brass cut shoes, black patina’d hardware
#3 “TBD”– 26.25″ scale, half fretless with Slotted Peghead, 12″ pot w/ rolled brass tone ring and custom brass hardware
#4 ” TBD”- 28″ scale, fretless with fowl inlay, 13″ pot and custom brass hardware
Stay tuned and happy pickin’ y’all!
December 1, 2016
Renan Banjos in the news! Check out this incredible article and video interview by Evanne Armour: Featured on Channel 8 News, Richmond, VA
Great behind the scenes shots of the shop and details into the origins of my beginning into banjo making. Great times!