Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

5th String Capo Alternative

I came across this picture on Pinterest. Thought it was an interesting idea. Initial downside… Easy to lose… slower to engage than railroad spikes…
But… interesting…




That is interesting. What is that exactly. Specifically designed capo or something else?

Butch B.

Seems like it would have to be pretty height specific… too short and you wouldn’t get a clear tone, too tall and it would be sharp.

With all that said… pretty interesting!

I bought a steel version of this concept, called banjo highway. It works pretty well, but it raises the string height to a noticeable extent. Also, the adjustment screw sticks up which is a little awkward. Of course the capo seems a little clumsy to me too. Someday I’ll get around to railroad spikes, but in the meanwhile the highway device works okay. I’d probably buy it again, but it is a little pricey. It only takes a minute to install so as long as it is handy, it isn’t an issue.

Do players stop the fifth string? So far, I haven’t seen any tabs where the 5th is fretted, so intonation would be simple to manage by tuning. Interesting idea and there could be a way to keep the string lower by spiking the distal end.

Neat idea but I can visualise problems with string height as you move this kind of capo up the neck. Might have a go at making one as an experiment.

Hi Dan, there are instances where you might fret the fifth string as you get more advanced.

Don’t think I’d care for the drastic height change, or the big block on the neck, I’m seeing in the OP…I’m sure I’d be running into that with my fingers on a narrow neck.

This is the description from the Craftsman.