1911 Fairbanks by Vega Whyte Laydie #7 Open-back banjo 11 13/16″ – SOLD


Amazing original Vega Whyte Laydie #7, early period with 11 13/16″ pot.

Out of stock


Exc(+) condition. All original except 5th string tuner.
30 hooks and nuts. Serial number 27957.
28″ Scale length. 11 13/16″ diameter pot.
Orchestra model.

This Vega Whyte Laydie #7 banjo is a rare find. Maple banjo.
This is a very ornate early “Fairbanks by Vega” model with all inlays intact, and no cracking of any Pear wood veneers.
Elaborate peghead layering shows maple wood with multi-wood layering at top and back.  Top of peghead shows multi wood laminates below the pearwood peghead veneer, and below the fingerboard through the length of the neck.
Veneer on back of peghead shows multi-wood layers and continues along the underside of neck past the 4th fret.

Beautifully engraved pearl “Gryphon” in back of peghead. Peghead face has early Vega elaborate floral design and intricate triad near nut. Four gold, original friction tuners with all original screws, washers and solid pearl tuner buttons.  Highly figured maple neck has rounded “V” profile, and darkened wooden stringer down center, and has elaborate bas relief wood carving pattern at heel and continues up to the 12th fret. Ebony heelcap with intricate engraved large pearl inlay. Ivoroid binding along both sides of neck.

Flat ebony fingerboard with original small frets and all original large, elaborately engraved pearl inlays. All hardware on pot in fine serviceable condition. Early “no-knot” tailpiece with original mounting hardware. Original universal armrest. Hide head is an original Jos. B. Rogers head. Maple pot with all the trimmings: Wooden marquetry capping bottom of rim; Full tortoise celluloid binding on top and bottom of inside rim and bottom of outside rim. Shoe and bracket band construction.

Original period 5-string friction peg with solid pearl button included (in the original hard case).

This is perhaps one of the highest attainable original Vega banjos. There are several other models hovering in this same niche, but to find one with no repairs, and with original case, tuners, and all inlays is rare. 28″ scale model with large, 11 13/16″ pots are known as orchestra banjos. Original hard shell case is in good shape and is serviceable – handle, hinges, latches all work.