Reproduction 19th Century Tack Head Fretless Banjos

The Banjo Factory

The Minstrel kit banjo will have a scale length of about 26" .

Kit includes everything necessary to complete a gourd banjo.  The kit includes:

1 roughed out a mahogany neck with pre-notched slot for nut, pre-drilled and tapered holes. There is a slot on the neck for the spike, which passes through the gourd.
1 Wooden Shell 12" in diameter
1 rosewood nut
1 Tail piece
1 wood blank for a bridge (optional carved bridge available)
5 pegs
1 rawhide thong to attach the tail piece
1 sheet of rawhide for the head
Approx 40 brass tacks (You will not need more than 36 to 38 of them, but I provide extra in case you bend a couple.)
1 set of Nylgut strings
1 set of instructions

NOTE:  The rectangular peg head is standard for the kit banjos.  For other styles, add $30.00.  Just make a note of this preference in the comments section when you order.  Styles such as the stichter or scroll have to be custom made and may add a few days to delivery.

(Mechanical tuners vary in price from $50 to $140 or more. If you would like this option installed on your kit banjo, please check out the mechanical tuners link under "Options" and note your preference in the Comments section of the order. Please contact me if you have any questions.)

For a left-handed neck, there is no additional charge, but allow an extra week for delivery.

12 inch wooden shell minstrel banjo kit             $189.00

The kits were designed to come without options.  If you wish to add any, the prices for the options are the same as they are for the other finished banjos.


For those of you preferring to do it yourself, but lacking a workshop or at least some of the special tools required to fabricate a banjo, I have done the hard part for you and created a kit gourd banjo. I designed a slightly varied version of my finished banjos to make it possible for someone with very limited wood working skills to assemble a functional instrument in 2 to 4 evenings.

Minstrel Kit