Banjo Repair

Neck BuildsBanjo Repair, Maintenance and Setup

I have been working on and building banjos since I was a pre teen.  I have always loved them and have an obsession with their tone and playability.  I am one of the rare few who get to perform restoration and maintenance on original Gibson, flathead 5-string banjos from collectors and performers from all over.  This is a high honor and I do not take it lightly.  The extra care that must be taken when repairing these fragile and rare banjos is above and beyond that needed on most modern ones.  For that reason, I have developed an eye for the smallest detail.

From getting your banjo to play at the top of it’s potential to a new head or buzz diagnostics and correction, I can do it all, and have for years.  The links below will give you a glimpse into the daily life of a luthier from a banjo repair specialist’s view.  The articles were written and photographs shot beginning in the late 1990’s until present, so some of my techniques have changed a bit.  I think you may find some of these articles useful or at least informative.

If you choose to follow any of the articles as if they were a do-it-yourself instruction I will caution you that sometimes it isn’t knowing what to do that will get you into trouble, but rather it is not knowing what to do when what you are doing doesn’t go the way you hoped it would that will cause you the most angst.

Please visit my site often as I constantly add articles, tips and how-to information that is usually coupled with great photographs.

Thank you,
Richie Dotson
Acoustic Box LLC
Hopewell, VA

 Changing a Banjo Bridge and Setting Intonation  Installing Railroad Spikes (5th String Capos)
 Making a Bone Banjo Nut from Scratch  Installing (mounting) a Calf Skin Banjo Head
 Old Lyric 5-String Banjo Restoration  Removing a Tone Ring from a wood rim that is too tight
 Gibson Style Binding  Binding a Banjo Headstock
 Replacing a Friction Peg with a Geared Machine  Banjo Resonator Damage Repair
 Building a Bella Voce Banjo Neck   Leveling and Recrowning Frets
 Inlay Relocation on an RB-6 Copy  Hand Cutting a One Piece Flange Banjo Neck Heel
 Cleaning a Banjo Head (Video)  Properly Changing Banjo Strings
 Beware of Metal Side Dots