Talk Banjo

Hello and welcome to Talk Banjo.

Talk banjo is a series of short recordings that will hopefully shed some light on banjo maintenance, set-up and provide general banjo-related advice and discussion.

The banjo is enjoying a real renaissance at the moment but there are still a lot of grey areas and confusion surrounding the instrument. If you have any questions at all please leave your comments below and I will do my best to answer them in upcoming episodes.

Please click on the links below to listen to the individual episodes:

Episode 5: Truss Rod Adjustment

Truss rod photos 004

View of the truss rod from the peg head

We’re answering more questions this week as we look at truss rod adjustment. What are truss rods? What are they used for and how do you adjust them? Click here to find out. 

Episode 4: The Tunnelled 5th String

Photo donated by Mr. Strong. :-)

Photo donated by Mr. Strong. 🙂

In this episode we answer another listener question about the difference between tunnelled 5th strings, and regular 5th strings on the side of the neck. It includes the advantages and disadvantages of each option.

To read more and listen to this episode click here. 

Episode 3: Why do banjos use planetary tuners?


In this episode find out why some entry-level banjos use guitar tuners and higher-end banjos tend to have planetary tuners.

Click here to find out more and listen online. 

Episode 2: How to install a capo spike


In this short recording, find out how to safely and securely fit a capo spike into your banjo:

Click here to listen to episode 2

Episode 1: Bridge Position and Intonation

bridge photo

A short review of how to find the correct bridge position. If you’re struggling with this common banjo set-up problem, this might help.

Click here to listen to episode 1


  1. Will Griffiths says:

    Hi, how about a talkbanjo episode re the “right” action between neck and string and any differences between the setting between OT and resonator instruments? Including the pitch of the neck, type of bridge and tailpiece (adjustable vs non-adjustable).

    This suggestion brought to you by Stella Artois

    • John Hornig says:

      Tuning the drum head please. And some of those fancy licks you play would be good as well ;o)

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