FOR SALE - BANJO UKES


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ABBOTT ‘MONARCH’ Banjo Uke (1975). Another stunning example of a Jack Abbott (Jnr) banjo uke. Straight neck with almost no wear to the frets or the fingerboard. Original tuning pegs. ‘Abbott’ logo across top of peghead. Sixteen-fret rosewood fingerboard inlaid with multiple position dots. Lovely neck, mainly sycamore but with a rosewood top to the peghead and a decorative heel. Fourteen top-tension bolts with scalloped bezel and easily adjustable tailpiece. Crown-shaped holes in the flange. Side of resonator bound top and bottom in cream ivoroid. Back of resonator concave in shape with circular decoration in the middle. Comes complete with its original black hard shaped case with padded red interior lining (made by Shellard) and, very unusually, with the envelope containing the Bill of Sale from Jack Abbott to Dr. Langston, who ordered the instrument to be made to his specific requirements as a ‘Standard MONARCH Ukulele Banjo with special banded and inlaid resonator’. Fantastic example in brilliant condition, and it produces a stonking sound! £3,000.


ABBOTT ‘MONARCH’ Banjo Uke (c.1981). Yet another wonderful example of a Jack Abbott (Jnr) banjo uke - restored by the great Eddie Uttley. Straight neck with no wear to the frets or to the rosewood fingerboard. Replacement tuning pegs. ‘Abbott’ logo across top of peghead. Fifteen-fret rosewood fingerboard inlaid with multiple position dots. Lovely mahogany spliced neck with ebonised top to the peghead. Fourteen top-tension bolts with scalloped bezel and adjustable tailpiece. Crown-shaped holes in the flange. Convex resonator (with some slight crazing on the back), bound in cream ivoroid around the bottom of the side and around the back inside edge. Back of resonator gently convex in shape. Eddie Uttley ebony-tipped maple bridge. Comes complete with a black hard shaped case with red interior lining and an internal pocket. This is truly a superb Abbott banjo uke in brilliant condition, and the sound it produces is tremendous! £2,500.


BACON No.1 Banjo Uke (1929). Serial number 27544 on perch pole and on the inside of the pot. Fantastic sounding! Mahogany neck with rosewood veneered top to peghead. Peghead also veneered on the bottom. Straight neck with no fret wear. Original Grover tuning pegs. Bacon logo at the top of the peghead. Sixteen fret ebony fingerboard inlaid with multiple small position dots. What may be two very small areas of professional filling in the fingerboard (seen on photographs). Ebony heel cap. Pot and resonator made of flame maple. Resonator inlaid on the back with multiple wooden rings. Eighteen original tension-hooks, shoes and nuts. Grover tailpiece with securing nut and bolt. Extended flame maple resonator with nickel-plated and patterned flange. Original ‘Bacon’ stamp inside. All Bacon banjo ukes were originally made with the fingerboard extending over the pot which gave a playing action perfect for using a plectrum as originally intended. This example has had the neck professionally lowered to make a perfect playing action for playing in ‘finger style’ or ‘George Formby’ style and it makes this banjo uke far more desirable in today’s market. As I have said on many occasions, these banjo ukes were beautifully made, gorgeous looking and really fantastic sounding, and in my opinion Bacon were one of the very best vintage banjo uke makers. This instrument comes complete with a vintage lockable hard shaped case, with padded brown velvet interior lining and an internal pocket. £1,250.


BACON No.2A Banjo Uke (1926). Tremendous banjo uke! Serial number 19855 stamped onto the perch-pole and onto the inside of the pot, this is a wonderful example of a Bacon No.2A banjo uke from its first year of manufacture in 1926. It was the top Bacon banjo uke model of its year before the advent of their ‘Silver Bell’ models in 1927. Pot, neck and resonator made of flame maple with its original dark finish (‘sunburst’ on the neck and resonator). Inlaid with wooden banding on neck and resonator. Straight neck and no wear to the frets or to the bound fifteen-fret ebony fingerboard. Ebony heel-cap. Original ‘Grover’ tuning pegs. Maker’s name inlaid into the top of the peghead in mother-of-pearl. Multiple original decorative mother-of-pearl inlays in the fingerboard. Pot fitted with half-round spun nickel-plated caps around the top and the bottom (very rare). Eighteen original tension-hooks, shoes and nuts with original recesses in the bezel. ‘No-Knot’ tailpiece & securing nut and bolt. Extended flame maple resonator with nickel-plated flange and original ‘Bacon’ labels inside. All Bacon banjo ukes were originally made with the fingerboard extending over the pot which gave a playing action perfect for using a plectrum as originally intended. This example has had the neck professionally lowered to make a perfect playing action for playing in ‘finger style’ or ‘George Formby’ style and it makes this banjo uke far more desirable in today’s market. Great example of a beautifully made, gorgeous looking and really fantastic sounding vintage banjo uke from one of the very best vintage makers. This instrument has fittings which allow the attachment of a shoulder strap and it comes complete with a modern lockable hard shaped case with grey velvet padding and an internal pocket. £1,450.


DALLAS ‘D’ MODEL Banjo Uke (c.1941). Really lovely example of these popular and well-made vintage banjo ukes and this one is in wonderful original condition. Serial Number D/1362. Body, neck and resonator made of attractive bird’s-eye maple, with an ebony fingerboard inlaid with multiple mother-of-pearl dots. Original tuning pegs. The top of the  peghead  has its original ‘George Formby Registered’ metal badge. Straight neck with no fret wear, but some wear to the first two fret spaces caused by long nails which in no way affects the playability of this instrument and looks worse on my photos than it does in reality. Except for the vellum, the strings and the bridge, this instrument is in great original condition inside and out, and the all the metal plating is in stunning condition for its age. Perfect playing action and lovely sound. Comes complete with its original black hard-shaped case with a dark blue lined interior and an internal storage pocket and lid. £795.


DALLAS ‘E’ MODEL Banjo Uke (1939). Original gold-plated Dallas ‘E’ Model banjo ukes are very rare, but this one is truly exceptional and is the finest example that I have ever seen. £1,650. SOLD


DALLAS ‘E’ MODEL Banjo Uke (c.1955). Really nice example of a Dallas ‘E’ Model. Straight neck with genuinely minimal wear to the frets and the fingerboard. Tuning pegs ideally need replacing. Currently one replacement tuning peg (on the ‘D’ string) and two of the other three original tuners have cracks in the plastic thumbgrips. ‘George Formby’ metal logo on peghead. No serial number. Sixteen-fret fingerboard inlaid with multiple mother-of-pearl position marks. Scalloped bezel and arrow-shaped holes in the flange. Twelve bottom-tension hooks, shoes and nuts. Hooks partially recess into top of bezel. Adjustable tailpiece. Side of resonator bound top and bottom in cream ivoroid. Plating in great condition throughout. Small blemish (photographed) near edge of resonator. Inside of banjo uke in excellent condition. Comes complete with a rather worn but fairly strong ‘Gig Bag’ with a strong handle but a broken zip (at one end). This instrument is a nice one and it plays very well, but it is in need of a little TLC to bring it back to absolutely top condition, hence the inviting price. £550.


GIBSON UB-2 (c.1927). Straight neck and absolutely minimal wear (barely visible) to the frets and to the fingerboard. This fine vintage banjo uke contains all its original components (except for the vellum, the bridge and the strings). It is in really good original condition throughout and it produces that terrific Gibson sound. Comes complete with a Cartwright hard shaped case with dark blue velvet lining and internal pocket. £1,500.


GIBSON UB-3 Banjo Uke (c.1927). Lovely sounding example of this really popular vintage banjo uke. Straight neck and no wear to the frets or the fingerboard. Original Grover tuning pegs. ‘The Gibson’ in the peghead. Snowflake & diamond inlays in the peghead and in the fingerboard and tobacco sunburst finish to the back of the neck and to the back of the resonator. Fourteen original flatted hooks, shoes and nuts. Original ‘Nashville’ tailpiece. Pot beautifully renovated by Dave Barnes. This instrument makes a really gorgeous sound. It comes complete with a modern lockable black hard shaped case with plush grey internal lining and an internal pocket. £1,750.


JEDSON Banjo Uke (c.1928). £475. SOLD


JOHN GREY & SONS ‘ROY SMECK SUPER MODEL’ Banjo Uke (c.1930). Roy Smeck was an American musical ‘superstar’  of the 1920’s and 1930’s. He became known as the ‘Wizard of the Strings’ and was an amazing virtuoso performer on a number of different instruments. This instrument is a rare top-of-the-range version of the four types of ‘Roy Smeck’ banjo ukes that were produced by John Grey & Sons in London and George Formby played one. They were advertised as having been ‘Designed and perfected by Roy Smeck, and built by the pick of John Grey’s craftsmen for his personal use.’ This example is in outstanding condition, including the original bridge, the original gut strings, the original facsimile ‘Roy Smeck’ signed vellum, and the original case, and even the original ‘John Grey’ tension key. Metal badge on peghead showing maker and model. Straight neck with no wear to the frets or to the fingerboard. Highly polished figured Australian maple veneered body and extended resonator with ivorine inlaid edges. Newly designed one-piece all metal flange. Aluminium under-hoop with extra heavy straining bezel and eight recessed tension hooks. Original ‘Jos Rogers’ finest quality calfskin vellum. Pressure bar tailpiece with hinged string cover. Five layer sycamore and ebony spliced walnut neck with two layer ebony faced fingerboard bound with ivorine and inlaid with elaborate mother-of-pearl designs. Ebonite buttoned grip pegs. All parts heavily chromium plated. Complete in fully shaped hard black case with brown velvet lining and internal pocket. This instrument is very rare and it makes a wonderful sound. £995.


KEECH ‘ALTO’ Banjulele Banjo (c.1926). This rare instrument is in fantastic condition. It was specially designed by Alvin D. Keech to supply the need for a deeper and fuller toned instrument and is ideally played in the key of ‘C’.  With an eight and a half inch diameter internal pot and an eight and a half inch scale length, it was sometimes referred to as the ‘Orchestral Model’. Two similar examples were supplied to H.R.H The Prince Of Wales. Straight neck with virtually no wear to the frets and no wear whatsoever to the fingerboard. Original parts throughout (except for the bridge, the strings and the vellum - and perhaps the tailpiece). Original tuning pegs, and ‘Keech’ shield on the peghead with ‘Banjulele Banjo’ and the instruments patent number clearly stamped below. Walnut neck with thick ebony fingerboard with seventeen frets, beautifully inlaid with multiple mother-of-pearl decorations. Fingerboard underlain with sycamore. Maple veneered body inlaid with two patterned parquetry strips. Heavily nickel-plated interior and exterior metal fittings. Ten bottom-tension hooks that recess into holes in the scalloped bezel. Easily removable domed and polished external resonator decorated with a matching parquetry patterned strip to the two on the body. The internal and external resonators both contain an etched autograph of Alvin D. Keech. This instrument comes complete with a modern black hard shaped case with plush grey lining and an internal pocket. Inside the case is an original advert for ‘Keech’ Banjulele Banjos, including this model. £750.


LUDWIG ‘WENDELL HALL PROFESSIONAL’ Banjo Uke (c.1927). Fantastic sounding and with a lovely playing action, this is another fine example of these magnificent old banjo ukes (ninety years old and still going strong!). Straight neck with just a tiny trace of wear to the first two frets and only a genuinely tiny amount of minor wear to the fingerboard (between strings two and three at the first position). With vintage hard shaped case and Ludwig badge. Peghead repaired and re-ebonised, with replacement ‘Wendell Hall’ transfer and fitted with good quality replacement tuning pegs. Sixteen-fret fingerboard with inlaid mother-of-pearl position dots at the 5th, 7th, 10th & 12th positions. Lovely figured walnut back on the resonator and the original decorative transfer around the side of the resonator is in excellent condition. Original cream binding around the outside edge of the resonator. Original maker’s label still inside the resonator. Sixteen top-tension bolts. Fine original plating on the body and integral flange, the original tailpiece and the original detachable armrest. This instrument produces a beautifully deep, resonant and powerful sound and it is a joy to play. Although the vellum has been stretched over the years there is plenty of life in it yet and producing such a superb sound as it does there is no need to replace it. Fitted with GHS strings, this banjo uke also has a spare set of ‘Aquila Nylgut’ strings. I have decided to change the bridge so the one shown in the photographs has been kept in the case pocket and an old ‘Grover’ ebony-tipped maple bridge has been fitted. This instrument comes complete with a fine vintage made-to-measure hard shaped case with plush velvet lining and a large internal pocket. A ‘Ludwig’ badge is attached to the inside of the case lid. £1650.


LUDWIG ‘WENDELL HALL PROFESSIONAL’ Banjo Uke (c.1927) (Enhanced 2018). Beautifully restored and enhanced by the great Eddie Uttley in 2018 to give it some of the features of Ludwig’s more expensive banjo ukes. Wonderful sound as well. £2,500. SOLD


REGAL ‘LE DOMINO’ Banjo Uke (c.1931). These great little banjo ukes were originally made by ‘J. R. Stewart & Co.’, but the company was bought by ‘Regal’ in 1930 after which production continued for only a very short time. Unusually, not only has this example got all of its little ‘domino’ transfers intact but most of them remain unblemished. Original tuning pegs and headstock decal, and original w/b/w nut. Straight neck with no wear to the frets and only some minor flaking on the ebonised fingerboard. Binding along sides of neck and around the back edge and bottom side edge of the base of the resonator. ‘Dominoes’ on fingerboard, around the side of the body and in a ring towards the middle of the resonator where they have a gold-coloured background. Twelve ‘Gibson style’ hooks, nuts and shoes. Original ‘Gibson UB-1’ style tailpiece. This instrument is in fantastic condition for its age; it is light to hold, easy to play and it produces a lovely strong sound. It comes complete with a hard brown ‘Roger A. Bamford’ case with internal green padded lining. £595.


SLINGERLAND ‘MAYBELL’ Banjo Uke (c.1930). Slingerland made many different styles of banjo uke but this was one of their highest models (the ‘Premier’ was their top model). I think that this instrument has been re-furbished by Eddie Uttley. Replacement tuning pegs. Etched pyralin veneered peghead. Ebony fingerboard inlaid with multiple small mother-of-pearl diamond shapes. Excellent plating throughout. Bezel with grooved top. Sixteen hooks, shoes and nuts. Grover tailpiece. Plated metal flange with nsemi-circular holes. Extended resonator bound in black around the top edge of the side and with lovely multi-coloured parquetry inlay around the bottom edge. Eddie Uttley ebony-tipped maple bridge. Lovely banjo uke that comes complete in a maroon hard shaped case, with a textured outer finish, thick internal maroon padding and an internal pocket. Looks good, sounds good, and it is very pretty. £550.     


STROMBERG-VOISINET Banjo Uke (c.1930). One of the most under-rated banjo ukes from the vintage era. Stromberg-Voisinet banjo ukes were manufactured in Chicago U.S.A. using high quality materials and components, although the company ceased to trade in 1931. They have usually stood the test of time extremely well can they be found in a multitude of similar but different styles. Straight neck with only the most minute evidence of fret wear. No wear to the fingerboard. Original Grover tuning pegs. Made of maple with a hardwearing Pyralin veneer to the top of the peghead, and a ivoroid bound fifteen-fret pyralin fingerboard with four position dots. Pyralin is known as ‘Mother-of-toilet-seat’ in the U.S.A.. Sixteen flatted hooks, shoes (Gibson type) and nuts. Original ‘Nashville’ tailpiece. Body inlaid with a narrow multiple coloured band (very attractive). Resonator bound in cream around the lower outside edge and contains an integral metal flange with patterned holes together with ‘herringbone’ pattern around the outside and side (top) edges. Beautiful patterned transfer on back of resonator in superb original condition. All plating seems to be original and is in superb condition. This instrument plays beautifully and produces a brilliant and very resonant sound. Magnificent vintage banjo uke which comes complete with a vintage black hard shaped case with pale blue inside lining and internal pocket. £750.


WILL VAN ALLEN Long-Scale Banjo Uke (c.1927). ‘Will Van Allen’ was the stage name of William Dodds, a banjoist, musical comedian, variety artist and musician who had become very famous by the 1920’s. He entered into a business agreement for J. G. Abbott & Son to make a range of banjos and banjo ukes for him under various names (including ‘New Revelation’). This is a fine example of a Will Van Allen long-scale banjo uke, similar to the one played by George Formby when he sang the song ‘If You Don’t Want The Goods Don’t Maul ‘Em’ in the 1935 film ‘Off The Dole’. Straight neck and no wear to the frets, and just two small patches of scuffing to the finish on the fingerboard behind the first fret, which looks like it has been caused by long nails. Original ‘Grover’ tuning pegs. Will Van Allen transfer label on the peghead. Seventeen-fret ebonised fingerboard with multiple mother-of-pearl inlays. Ivoroid binding around the side of the body and around the top and the bottom of the side of the resonator, with a thin inlaid ivoroid circle on the back of the resonator. Nickel-plated flange with circular cut-outs. Easily detachable resonator using the two-point thumbscrew mounting. Fourteen tension hooks, shoes and nuts. Excellent original condition throughout. This is a very rare instrument and it comes complete with a hard shaped case with internal pocket and tension key. £850.


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