Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

What are you working on?

Would love to hear about your projects.
I shared the following on a music website.

Would like to hear what you are up to.

Hi Friends,
I enjoy playing guitar. Spent years in praise groups. Owned a small recording studio back in the analog days. (I’m one of the dinosaurs that roamed the earth)
Recently, I began teaching guitar in a small Christian school… lots of enthusiasm. Having a blast!
I became friends with the Sound Reinforcement Crew at the connected church. They are very open to some ideas. Just a blast to jump in and play with the toys.
So far we reduced gain on amps to allow the mixer more headroom.
We added volume to the main speaker and reduced gain in 2 side fill speakers and added 2 stage monitors for a total of 3 with independent mix to each one.
May be baby steps, but we are noticing a dramatic improvement.

All the best,


I wish you luck on the teaching endeavor. There is so much talent out there and no shortage of people wanting to learn. Again I wish you luck and thank you for the time you put in to these young people.

Thank you so much!!!
I had not met any of the students before I began teaching them. Teachers inform me that several have severe challenges focusing on their studies. There were thrilled with the level of concentration they were exhibiting.

I've found 4 or 5 more guitars since last posting my wife decided to learn. She has 4 chords so far and really enjoying it. 

Found a banjo at a pawn shop. It is incredible compared to my prior one. It wasn’t adjusted right, so it sold for a song.
Took the back off… Adjusted the bolts … A truly fabulous instrument. I’m delighted!!!
My mandolin… fairly decent instrument… and my old banjo are now in the hands of two brothers who have been taking lessons over the summer.

Plans are to start classes the second week of school. 

May include a rhythm Band… Possible interest in ukuleles for some of them.
Should prove to be an interesting year.

All the best,


Good deal. I haven’t had much luck finding decent, cheap instruments for students. I had one, it was a Mitchell that played about as well as one could hope. Sadly, it got it’s neck broken by the person borrowing it. They didn’t even bother to tell me, they just threw it away. I don’t know if it was repairable or not, but I would have liked to have had the opportunity. It was a sad day :frowning: Right now I have an Ibanez electric that is making the rounds as an intro instrument. It plays decent and actually sounds pretty good. Unfortunately, the bridge seems to be placed incorrectly. There is very little string clearance on the bass side of the fretboard and a fairly sizable gap on the treble side. No one seems to notice until it is pointed out.

Hi Mike,
Sorry about the Mitchell!
Regarding the Ibanez … You may be able to rotate the bridge 180 degrees… that may help with action…
Another trick is to sand down the underside of a bridge. If it is to low, you can shim it by placing a thin piece of plastic… paper … Under the bridge… you could shim it or sand it down unevenly to produce a more even action.

I have been buying hohner guitars from Goodwill auction online. Typical price with shipping is under $70.
They have a great neck… bracing is really good. And out of 10 purchased so far, not a clunker in the bunch.
I do need to caution you… Every one has required some basic set up. Adjust truss rod.
One had a crack on the varnish that went clear through to the fretboard… it glued up nicely.

No projects but I am still working on learning as much as I can . studying "Angeline the baker and " in the Sweet by and by " other than that I am just a dust catcher. Add “Over the water fall” and I have three that I practice every day .

Thank you for sharing!!!

That is So Cool, MarkRocka!!!

Thank you for sharing!!!

I think y’all need to get a collaborative song going!