GIBSON RB12 - TOP TENSION - Pre-loved - 2006 - Sold

Excellent condition. No fret wear. All parts original. Gibson's reissue of the pre-war late 30's, early 40's model.

Walnut neck. Rosewood radius fingerboard with spikes at 7th and 9th frets*. Solid Walnut resonator with traditional hump profile. Heavy Gibson tonering. Chrome hardware. Presto tailpiece. Moon bridge. Geared tuning pegs with amber buttons. This banjo has serious volume and a voice of authority. Any RB12 in such fine condition is considered a prize. S/N: 12 0601 01.


In new Gibson TKL-style hard case with padded inner shroud. On Consignment, $4,880 AUD. Now $4580 AUD - Sold

More info courtesy of Ernest Banjos website...
In the late '30's Gibson discontinued all existing Mastertone models with the exception of style 3. The other Mastertones were replaced by the new top-tension models, trumpeted in the 1937 Gibson catalog as "the alarm clock that is going to wake up new possibilities in banjo playing".

The top-tensions were innovative in a number of ways. The most obvious was their namesake head-tightening design; players no longer had to remove the resonator to make the frequent tension adjustments necessitated by calfskin heads, since the brackets were adjusted from the top of the pot rather than the bottom. Top-tensions also featured distinctive resonators which were flat on the inside but carved with a pronounced hump on the back. Other features of these radical new banjos were an easily adjustable armrest which could quickly be moved out of the way for head adjustment, radiused fingerboards, and bold Art Deco looks with large, geometric inlay patterns and a more guitarlike peghead shape.

(my thanks to Ernest Banjos for this information. WH.)

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