hawthorn top tension

hawthorn top tension banjo hawthorn top tension banjo hawthorn top tension banjo hawthorn top tension banjo hawthorn top tension banjo hawthorn top tension banjo (click to zoom)

Bradford & Franzke Hawthorn® RB-7 "Light" Top Tension banjo

This banjo is built in the style of the 1937-41 Gibson top tension resonator banjos. Our Hawthorn top tension banjo has a Red Maple neck and solid Curly Maple resonator with a flat inside surface. Built in the classic style of the old RB-7. However, it is available with an ultra-light Dannick NASA aluminum tone ring making it one pound lighter overall than even traditional resonator banjos, as well as several pounds lighter than a traditional top tension banjo with a solid resonator and three-pound ring. It has a full, rich and clear tone all the way up the neck and is plenty loud. Great for melodic banjo styles as well as straight ahead Bluegrass picking. This banjo is great for pickers who have back problems or otherwise would like to have a lighter weight resonator banjo. The NASA aluminum used by Dannick in this tone ring was developed by NASA for very high temperature applications and is basically the hardest aluminum known to man. “Hard rock aluminum” would be a good name for this material. The Dannick NASA aluminum flat head 20 hole tone ring weighs about 17 ounces as opposed to the 48 ounces for a traditional flat head tone ring. As an option, we can include our Copperhead™ aluminum top tension hoop and special cast and machined Copperhead™ reinforced aluminum flange, which makes for an even lighter banjo. A big Bluegrass top tension sound without all the weight.

  • Dannick NASA Aluminum tone ring (17 ounces) or optional carbon fiber tone ring (4 ounces)
  • Randall Wyatt European Beech block rim or optional Jimmy Cox hard rock maple three ply rim
  • Optional Tony Pass Thinskirt® birch block rim ($200 upcharge)
  • Red maple neck
  • Dual action truss rod
  • Rosewood fingerboard with classic slotted Bowtie inlays
  • Hefty 12 inch radius on fingerboard as used on the original RB-7 Gibson top tension banjos from 1937 to 1941
  • No finish on back of neck (speed neck) optional
  • Period correct carved solid back maple resonator, flat on the inside made for us by master luthier Clancy Mullins in East Tennessee
  • Dark cordovan color with slight burst finish
  • Optional aluminum Copperhead™ top tension hoop and flange
  • Nickel plated hardware
  • Waverly tuners with period-correct amber "Gumdrop" buttons
  • Huber head and bridge
  • Dual coordinator rods
  • Premium Hardshell Case or optional Custom Tweed Embroidered Ameritage Hardshell case
  • Full warranty to original purchaser
  • Prices start at $4500