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There was a big Banjo auction today

posted 18 May 2017, 15:56 by Lardy Fatboy   [ updated 2 Jun 2017, 15:41 ]
Windsor Whirle Victory Tenor Banjo
George Houghton & Sons open back Tenor Banjo
Keech type A Banjulele
Well that's not quite true, it was more of a Violin auction but it did include 26 Banjos of varying flavours; including Banjoleles, and a couple of nice Ukuleles too, (one was a 1920's Martin S1 and another was a Mainland Tenor; but I didn't get either). Obviously my interest in the auction was on the Ukuleles and the Banjoleles, (including an Abbot Snr. Monarch - that ended up going for £2½k + 24% auction fees!) I steered well clear of the Banjo Mandolins, the Zither Banjos and the 5 strings, but there were some reasonable Tenor Banjos that I thought were worth a small punt with a pre auction bid. 
Come the auction and I didn't do well on the really good stuff even though the auction house clearly didn't know what they were selling, (they listed all the Zither Banjos as 6 string Banjos, and the Martin S1 as a Banjo Ukulele with a guide price of £30-£50!! Still went for well over £300 + fees). I did get a Keech type A Banjulele that looks in pretty good nick, though I did pay as much as I was willing to go to; so It wasn't that much of a Bargain. Having brought one thing I was a bit more bullish that I would normally have been on subsequent lots and when the Windsor Whirl open backed 19 fret Tenor Banjo started out with my low pre auction bid; and very nearly sold for it  too, I was spurred into action and bid again a couple of times eventually winning at the top of what I was willing to pay. After all I didn't have an open backed Tenor Banjo and it does have a nice looking whirl plaque on the headstock. Then a few lots later and it was the turn of Birmingham's other Banjo Maker, George Houghton & Sons with their open backed Tenor Banjo. This too started low with my pre auction bid but, possibly because the auction house once again didn't know what they were looking at and listed it as "unknown maker" even though it had the Lion and "British Made"  clearly marked on the headstock, this time no one else bid. Had they done so I would have let it go because I had already got the Windsor, which is probably the better quality instrument and I didn't need two open back Tenors really. Need no, want yes and now they and the Keech are on the way to Ukulele Corner.

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