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Gibson Earl Scruggs Standard Mastertone 5-String Banjo DISCONTINUED

NOTE:  Gibson Banjos are no longer available.   They are an unrecovered casualty of the devastating 2010 floods in Nashville, and there are no visible plans to resume production.

These Gibson Banjo posts are retained for historical reference purposes.

We do see used and vintage examples from time to time, so please feel free to contact us.

The Earl Scruggs Mastertone Banjo is an elegant instrument; beautiful woods and finish throughout with a classic pearl inlay pattern. It is a truly professional quality, fully American-made banjo.
Hard to beat this classic banjo; possibly the most famous banjo ever made !

Several years ago, when Greg Rich was still with the Gibson Bluegrass division, the switch was made to the highly respected Kulesh tone ring. Now universally accepted as the best sounding Gibson banjos since the pre-war ear, the new Earl Scruggs Standard is the benchmark for the classic Bluegrass banjo.

Over the past 2 years I have sensed a subtle but noticeable improvement in wood grade quality and finish details. As you can see from the photos: the AAA wide-flame maple is superb. The Aniline dye used in the tinted nitrocellulose lacquer is more true to the typical pre-war shading rather than the more golden/yellow- burst 60s and 70s shading that we have seen on maple Mastertones until recently.

Detail, joinery, fretwork, hardware fit is all very clean and the neck has that classic prewar round profile we all have come to dream of.

I’ve sold through three Earl Scruggs already this year and all were up to the same standards, though all three did require a very thorough setup…included in our sell price of course.

Waverly tuners are standard on these banjos. These classic prewar style tuners are the smoothest tuners I’ve found. Gibson uses a premium Grover bridge with feet sanded to cant the bridge back towards the tailpiece in the classic Snuffy Smith style. The prewar style Presto tailpiece is timeless.

We will install 5th string capo tacks on this banjo for no charge if desired.



* 3-ply Maple Resonator
* Maple Rim 3-ply
* White/Black/White Binding
* Std. 1-Piece Flange
* Steel Coordinator Rods
* Kulesh Tone Ring
* Remo 11″ Medium Crown Head
* Nickel Plated Hardware
*Original Presto Tailpiece
* V2 Tuning Keys
* Grover Bridge
* Maple Neck
* 26.4″ Scale Length
* Two-way Adjustable Truss Rod
* Double Cut Peghead
* Hearts & Flowers Peghead Inlay
* Ebony Fingerboard
* Hearts & Flowers Fingerboard Inlays
* Bone Nut
* 1.2″ Nut Width

Check out Grant’s Banjo Setup Q&A

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