Sunday, January 21, 2018
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Bacon Professional FF 5 String Banjo (1907)
Bacon Professional FF Model 5 String Banjo (1907), made in Boston, Mass., serial # 106, mahogany stain finish, maple rim, mahogany neck with ebonized fingerboard, black chipboard case.
This lovely banjo one of the earliest Bacon-branded instruments ever made, dating to the first year or so of Fred Bacon's company's beginnings. Bacon banjos from this era are relatively rare, as they were essentially a private brand and Bacon had just begun his instrument marketing efforts. Although marked "Hartford CT" and stamped with serial # 106 this instrument was built for Bacon by Vega in Boston in 1907; there was no Bacon factory in this period. This is not a fancy style, with a plain maple rim and mahogany neck with only small shaped pearl inlay in the bound fingerboard and a pearl star in the headstock but like all Bacon and Vega banjos is built to the highest quality standards. Plainly ornamented but very finely made, this is also just a very good sounding 5-string with the unique Bacon internal resonator system.
Overall length is 36 in. (91.4 cm.), 10 7/8 in. (27.6 cm.) diameter head, and 2 3/4 in. (7 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 26 in. (660 mm.). Width of nut is 1 1/4 in. (32 mm.). This banjo has a decent amount of wear overall but remains a very good player. There is a lot of wear to the back of the neck-it looks like some some of capo was used that left small round indents up to around the 8th fret region, along with some general finish wear and scrapes to the wood. The 5th string tuner is an unusual later fitting with two flanged screws securing it, and the wood was dressed away a bit on the side of the neck to fit it. The other tuners, tailpiece and 21 of the hooks are original; the remainder of the hooks are older Slingerland-style cobra-head pieces. The frets remain lin excellent shape with surprisingly little wear and overall this banjo is very functional, with a cool if worn-in vibe and the fairly bright sound typical of the Bacon FF. Excellent - Condition.
Item # 6818
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