I own a mid-1920's Vega Tubaphone Professional tenor banjo. The 19 fret neck has bowed due to many decades of string tension, such that the banjo is now a challenge to play. I am interested to repair the curvature, or to replace the neck. I am aware that many bluegrass players wish to retrofit their 4-string necks with 5-string necks, so I am hopeful of finding an original, unwanted Vega Professional tenor neck to replace mine. Any assistance on repairing or replacing my bowed tenor neck with a comparable used or new tenor neck would be appreciated.

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I'm don't think there is a way to repair the neck effectively. I have done several conversions for people but I don't generally keep the original necks I send them back to the owners. You can often come across a tenor neck on ebay. I would try looking there for one. If you need help with the replacement let me know, and I also build reproduction necks as well.
Neil, If I am unable to locate an original tenor Vega Professional neck, might you consider building a new one? Would it be affordable? Thank you, much.
Frank, sure could build one for you. As to it's affordability it all depends on what you want. Contact me via email and we can discuss it. banjoneil(at)
I repaired a bowed Vega Professional about a year or so ago. What I did was remove the fingerboard, then routed a slot for a carbon graphite bar (available from StewMac) then I planned on reinstalling the original fingerboard but it was deteriorated so bad that I just made a new fingerboard. The pearl dots are available but I had to cut the first fret inlay from a pearl blank. Cut new fret slots, routed for binding, ect. After the work it has stayed fairly straight with maybe .008" of relief.

You might find a used one in good condition but you would have to replace the dowel stick if you want the serial number to match the rim.

I would think it would be fairly costly to build a completely new neck. I would much prefer to salvage the original as I described above.

I have also used a graphite solution to a badly bowed neck..It was an old dobro..But first, I added a thin piece of maple, I believe..about a 16th. of an inch veneer..then I planed it flat, so the big dip in the middle was filled with the new maple...Installed graphite strips, and reglued fingerboard, and touched up the finish..No need to worry about the neck going back to it's old warp, because it was still there, but filled with new wood..


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