Custom Open-back Banjo #9 71

Completed June, 2009

(click any of the thumbnails for a higher-resolution photo)


This "Alice in Wonderland" banjo is another great Gerry Snelson design. The inlay is made from a plethora of materials, and the banjo features a through-stick neck design and an ebony "tongue" on the back of the neck. To hear a Skipper open-back banjo being played, visit our Audio Video page.

Construction Photos


The sketches provided must first be sized to fit the banjo head and neck, and then colors are determined and inlay materials are chosen. The inlay is painstakingly assembled and recessed into the ebony backgrounds.


A vine is conceptualized that ties the separate parts together. The "stick" is mortised into the neck and rim. The truss rod is installed, and the back plate and tongue are built into the neck blank.


The instrument is carefully sanded, and a nitrocellulose lacquer finish is applied.

Thanks for watching this project

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