The Sammy Shelor Truetone – $5,320

Rated 5.00 out of 5 based on 1 customer rating
(1 customer review)


Sammy Shelor and Lonesome River Band are names long associated with the best in hard driving bluegrass. Sam was also the first of many top professional players to recognize that the tone, responsiveness and playability of the Huber Banjos was so similar to the old flatheads that he could leave his valuable pre-war at home and tour with a Huber – without sacrificing anything that he, or his audiences, demanded.


The Sammy Shelor model is a recreation of Sammy’s vintage 1930’s flathead. The neck and resonator are made from mahogany and the antiqued binding lends a vintage look to the banjo. The simple inlay pattern on the headstock and fingerboard are identical to Sammy’s old banjo. The pot is built using our Huber HR-30 tone ring and Huber Engineered Rim.


Sam had asked that this model be made with a custom, wider neck and a radiused fingerboard. This is the banjo that you see him play on stage with Lonesome River Band.





The Shelor model uses high grade, quarter sawn Mahogany for the neck. Banjo players who favor the older instruments always rave about the sound, but also include the feel of the necks and their ease of playability in describing their preference for the pre-wars.


With this in mind, Steve carefully digitized the neck of his favorite old banjo, capturing every curve and nuance. The Huber necks are produced using computer aided machining technology, ensuring that each neck is crafted to the exact specifications – every time!


The inlay pattern on the Sammy Shelor model is a careful replica of the one used in the neck on Sammy’s pre war on which this model is based.


This finger board pattern, which is commonly known as the “Gull” pattern, was introduced in the 1930s and is intentionally somewhat simple in design.  The peg-head features the Fleur-De-Lis inlay.  Sammy wanted to capture this simple elegance for his own signature model Huber Banjo as well.


The pearl block inlay at the 21st fret is engraved with the name Sammy Shelor.


All of the Huber Banjos come with Waverly V-2 tuners installed. The V-2s work very well and closely approximate the look of those found on vintage banjos. The tapered underside of the peghead washer helps protect the headstock and the internal low-friction bushings help ensure smooth operation.


All stock models are made with a rosewood fingerboard.


For the Sammy Shelor model, the neck is cut to a slightly wider dimension, around 1.210 inches at the nut, and is fitted with a fingerboard that assumes a 14” radius.


The Huber bridge is made of carefully selected maple and ebony and  is designed for tone, volume and clarity. String slots are cut with a custom-built slotting machine that produces the exact depth, spacing and angle every time.

The Huber bridge is also available as a separate accessory item order.

Huber HR-30 Tone Ring

Our HR-30 Tone Ring represents the pinnacle in prewar reproduction, measured in both tone and responsiveness. It was created after a year of analysis into the vibratory physics of more than a dozen pre war flathead rings, and further research into casting methods that could consistently reproduce a ring that matched our prewar standard.


Through a special arrangement with Remo, Huber installs a head on each new banjo that is manufactured to his custom specifications. Steve finds that they offer a superior tone to that of the stock Mylar heads offered for banjo.


These Huber heads can also be ordered as a separate, after-market accessory item.


The Huber Engineered Rim is the ultimate in tone and response, developed over a year of extensive scientific measurement and careful prototyping.

Dr. Jim Rae is the brains behind the Engineered Rim. Dr. Rae analyzed the vibrational physics and sonic output of prewar rims and used these numbers as the benchmark. Brian Sims worked with Dr. Rae in the prototyping and manufacturing of the Engineered Rim.


We use a two way adjustable truss rod in our necks. The two way rod allows for adjustments in both directions – you can add relief or reduce bow as needed.
The rod is accessible under the truss rod cover in the headstock, just behind the nut.


Our Sammy Shelor model is stained in a brown mahogany and features antique colored binding. The antique binding involves the use of a coloring agent applied in the finish to give the binding along the sides of the neck and resonator a yellowed, or aged appearance.


All Huber banjos are finished with multiple layers of nitrocellulose lacquer, hand sanded between coats for a smooth appearance. They are then buffed to a high gloss with careful attention to detail at every step in the finishing process.


We add the Vintage Metal Finish to the Shelor Model to complete the vintage vibe. The outer surfaces of the metal parts are modified to remove the sheen, giving a very close approximation of the look of a much older instrument.


Like the storied pre wars which inspired them, most Huber Banjos have a Presto-style tailpiece installed during final assembly and set up. Steve feels that the lighter weight of this sort of tailpiece is best suited to the sound he is after.


The pot-metal flange we use in all Huber Banjos is custom machined in a process which allows for more solid contact between the flange and rim, resulting in better structural stability and tonal response.


On all our models, we use a brass notched tension hoop, plated to match the other metal parts.


We use plated steel rods to hold the neck onto the rim instead of the softer brass found in many new banjos. We chose steel rods since the older flatheads used them and, proving that no detail is too small, even the nuts and washers are exact pre war replicas!


Each Huber banjo is shipped in its own plush lined hard shell case.  The top lid is arched for superior protection.


Every Huber Banjo is warranted to the original owner without time limit, often described as a “Limited Lifetime Warranty.”
Any defect in material or workmanship, except heads, strings and pegs will be repaired or replaced free of charge to the original owner, if returned to our factory, charges prepaid.

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1 review for The Sammy Shelor Truetone – $5,320

  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    Mark Byrum

    I purchased a Sammy Shelor model from Huber Banjos a few years ago and it was a terrific banjo. After introduction of the HR-30 tone ring (an integral part of the Truetone feature), I had Steve install one in my Shelor model. Wow! What was already an excellent banjo became a serious pre-war competitor! It has that certain “pre-war” tone plus the warmth of a new, well-made banjo. Pre-war banjos are not being made any more; this is as close as you are going to get to one right off the bench!

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