Exceptional condition. SN# 0640.
This banjo has great wood and great appointments. The “Bat” model is aptly named, with Abalone various inlays of bats in the ebony peghead veneer, and the radiused ebony fingerboard. Appears to be very high-grade Claro walnut neck. Interesting straight grain in the neck with lots of flame figure. Solid “Massif” resonator shows strikingly beautiful walnut figure. This resonator back is 2 chunks of walnut book-matched, then turned on a lathe, then hand-scraped and voiced. Radiused fingerboard. Gold Krishot main tuners with Schaller 5th – all gold, with ivoroid buttons. Fingerboard bound with Ivoroid, and colorful wood marquetry purfling below the binding. Fingerboard and resonator sidewalls bound with Ivoroid with colorful wood marquetry. The top and back edge of Ivoroid binding on resonator show extra black line. The same wooden marquetry strip is inlaid in a circle in the center of resonator back. Solid pearl truss rod cover. Double-bracket armrest.
This is very fine walnut, and I am happy to report, there are no signs of use on the back of resonator or neck, except for a slight nick in the finish at the peghead on the back. No wear on the frets, no wear on the head. This banjo was picked up and played a few times, but really is in the same condition as if you bought it in 2006 and left it in a case most of the time.
Special black-nickel and gold hardware mixed, with Prucha’s deep-gouged hand engraving on top and sides of tension hoop, main plate of 1-pc. flange, top and side of armrest, and cover plate of 2-hump tailpiece. Please look at the photos to see how this black-nickel and gold work together to make a very handsome look. Built using Prucha’s Ptacek pre-war style flathead tonering, and excellent made 3-ply maple rim.
This is an outstanding banjo for tone, with lots of power and beautiful expression. This banjo would cost quite a bit more if ordered today. This banjo comes with good hard case.