Forum - Banjo Ben Clark


I was wondering if it is harder to get the melodic sound off beginner type banjos?(I have a Morgan Monroe mbn1) reason being I have not been able to get that clean bell sound at all. Like in grandfathers clock and the new Dixie doodle tune.

You mean the harmonics?

It takes more practice to get them clear and clean on the 5th and 7th fret but if you don’t get a good sound at the 12th fret then maybe it is your banjo. You might try tightening the head.

Actually, when I think about it, even if your banjo is not so good, you should be able to get decent harmonics on the 12th fret.

You have to make sure your intonation is correct. Use a tuner and tune a string. Then play the string at the 12th fret. It should be in tune, the same note one octave higher. If it is flat, then move the bridge forward, towards the peghead end of the neck (remember the mnemonic: flat forward). If you are sharp, move the bridge back towards the tailpiece. Each time you move the bridge, you have to re-tune and then check the intonation.

Follow Ben’s instructions about getting the harmonics and they should ring out (maybe not as nice as Ben’s great sounding Gibson banjo but you should be in the general ballpark).

Intonation is very important you need to set that for sure or you do not get the clear bell tone . you will be amazed when you get the bridge at the right position any even real cheap banjos will ring like a bell if it is set right./

Thanks ill give that a try. I just refound my post.