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VRB-G Truetone – $5,975

Rated 5.00 out of 5 based on 10 customer ratings
(10 customer reviews)

 

Our Huber VRB-G is a faithful representation of the classic Granada style banjo, featuring our 1930’s style Huber HR-30 Tone Ring and Huber Engineered Rim.

 

The neck and resonator are carefully crafted from the finest flamed maple, with a rich golden sunburst finish. The flamed maple neck imparts a classic rich sound to the VRB-G, most reminiscent of legendary performers like Earl Scruggs and Sonny Osborne. The rosewood fingerboard and double cut headstock are inlaid with the classic Flying Eagle or Hearts & Flowers pattern, and the gold plated parts feature Granada-style engraving.

 

Our Hearts & Flowers inlay, by defualt, uses 8 markers, but we can inlay the 9 or 10 marker variations at no additional charge. The white/black/white binding along the neck and resonator is color-treated to approximate an aged finish, with what we call our antique binding. Reproduction “gumdrop” amber tuner buttons complete the vintage look of this model.

 

 

See VRB-G Customizations

 

 

Listen to the VRB-G Truetone

 

Banks of the Ohio Played by Steve Huber

Home Sweet Home Played by Steve Huber

Category:
Features

FLAMED MAPLE NECK & RESONATOR

Beautiful highly-figured flame maple is used for all the Curly Maple models including the VRB-G. Curly Maple is a great tone wood while also offering a very attractive visual appeal.

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!

 

All our Curly Maple models, including the VRB-G, feature a 5-ply resonator with a veneer of highly-figured flame maple on the back and sides.

 

Resonators are built by Steve’s dad, Jack Huber, in Lancaster PA.

INLAY

The VRB-G features the Flying Eagle pattern or the Hearts & Flowers pattern.  During the prewar era, the Hearts & Flowers pattern featured 8 inlays.  Upon request, we can inlay an additional marker at the 15th fret (9 total), or at the 1st and 15th frets (10 total), at no additional charge.

 

The headstock overlay also matches the classic Hearts & Flowers pattern.

TRUETONE NAMEPLATE

The nameplate inlay at the 21st fret bears the name Truetone executed in individual mother of pearl letters, representing that this model was made with our HR-30 ring and Engineered Rim.

WAVERLY V-2 TUNERS

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.

 

The tuners are fitted with authentic recreations of 1930’s “Amber Tulip” buttons and help create the proper vintage feel.

ROSEWOOD FINGERBOARD

All stock models are made with a rosewood fingerboard.

MAPLE BRIDGE WITH EBONY TOP

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.

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 closely matched our prewar standard.

HUBER HEAD

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.

ENGINEERED RIM

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.

TWO-WAY ADJUSTABLE TRUSS ROD

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.

NITRO-CELLULOSE LACQUER FINISH - HAND RUBBED SUNBURST

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.

 

For the VRB-G, a golden brown stain is applied to the neck while the resonator receives a hand-rubbed shaded golden sunburst. This brings out the distinctive grain of the flaming maple, and gives the VRB-G a memorable visual appeal.

ANTIQUED COLOR BINDING

The VRB-G has white/black/white antiqued binding which involves the use of a coloring agent applied in the finish to give the binding along the sides of the neck, resonator and resonator rings an aged appearance.

GOLD PLATING

The VRB-G model is gold-plated, using 24K hard gold plate. All gold plating is done in the Huber shop where we can insure consistency of color and quality of the electroplate.

ENGRAVING

The tension hoop, tailpiece and arm rest are engraved on the VRB-G model. This classic pattern is a replica of what was used on pre war flathead Granadas, the banjo on which this model is based.

CLAMSHELL TAILPIECE

In keeping with the concept of a careful replica, the VRB-G uses a clamshell type tailpiece,  just as was found on prewar Granadas, the banjo on which this model is based.

HARDWARE

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!

LINED HARD- SHELL CASE

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

LIFETIME LIMITED WARRANTY

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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10 reviews for VRB-G Truetone – $5,975

  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    Robin Packham England

    I’ve been playing my new VRB-G about three months now and the tone is already absolutely amazing. I feel it already has a bit more “settling in” to go yet, but already the sound and tone is as already near to an original pre war Gibson as I would think it’s possible to get from a modern banjo.

    It has a fantastic action straight out of the case, and the craftsmanship and finish on it is also second to none, and it’s just beautiful to look at.

    Buying the VRB-G I don’t think anyone would be disappointed. One fantastic banjo.

  2. Rated 5 out of 5

    Chris Starkey

    I have purchased two VRB-G’s and the tone and craftsmanship is immaculate. When Steve describes the “classic rich sound”, he is understating the tone. The heavy note sound and pre-war decay is very close to many pre-war banjos I have played. As many know, pre-war Gibsons can vary in tone as well, despite the obvious collector’s interest in ownership. With Steve’s passionate interest in pre-war duplication and manufacture of rims, tone rings, necks, resonators and even custom heads, I would say he exceeds many conversion and pre-war originals and gives the amateur or pro the ability to play a banjo that meets and exceeds many collector’s banjos that can exceed six figures. I could have bought any U.S.A. manufacturer and bought Huber.

  3. Rated 5 out of 5

    Wayne Hammons

    I have had my Granada VRB-G TrueTone for three years, I also have a Gibson Earl Scroogs 1996 model. The sound of my Huber VRB_G rings all the way up the neck and allows me to play hard or soft. When the setup is down right there is no other banjo that sounds as good.
    If someone asks me what banjo to get – I highly recommend the GRANADA VRB-G! You will enjoy the sound.

  4. Rated 5 out of 5

    Wayne Thompson

    Huber Banjos built me a custom VRB-G about 2 years ago. Steve customized the setup to suit my desires and it is without a doubt the best sounding and easiest playing instrument I have ever had in my hands. This includes many vintage banjoes that are for sale at one of the best known vintage instrument dealers in Nashville.

    Huber is a true boutique shop and the attention that Steve gives to each banjo that his firm produces is what distinguishes a “Huber” from all of the rest. If you are wanting a banjo that fits your unique playing style and has that original “Pre-War” sound – Don’t hesitate. Give Huber Banjos a call and have them start your build. You will have no regrets.

  5. Rated 5 out of 5

    Tim Kruzic

    I bought my VRB-G at the IBMA Trade show in 2015. It is my third Huber banjo, and though I love the other two, the VRB-G is my favorite. The tone is really close to many of the pre-war banjos that I have played; I don’t think any banjo other than the Huber can get so close to the tone of the pre-war Gibsons. Some of the pre-wars that I have played have inconsistencies across the strings. In other words, some have a “big” sounding fourth string but the other strings are not as good. Still others are awesome on the B string for the Foggy Mountain Breakdown lick, but the other strings are not as powerful. The thing I really like about my VRB-G is that its tone is consistent across the strings as well as up and down the neck. The feel of the neck on this banjo really suits my hands too. The quality of materials and workmanship on my VRB-G is excellent, as would be expected on any top quality banjo. Others may imitate the look, but Huber has the look and pre-war tone that a bluegrass player wants. I give the VRB-G my highest recommendation!

  6. Rated 5 out of 5

    Jody Renfroe

    I am really enjoying this banjo! Have hardly put it down since I got home with it. I had been looking for a couple of years trying to decide on the banjo that I wanted and when I settled on yours I still had some hesitation, afraid that after I spent that much money I might not be completely satisfied. But that’s not the case, in fact if I had the money today I would be on my way to buy a second one! I especially enjoyed the time you spent talking and playing for Tammy and I!
    Thanks for a great banjo!!

    Jody Renfroe

  7. Rated 5 out of 5

    Georg Sedlmeir

    As soon as I first heard and got my hands on some Huber banjos I wanted a VRB-G, admittedly partly because it is a representation of Earl Scruggs’ Granada with the promise of the coveted “pre-war” sound, but also because I just love the looks including the rich gold tone. Soundwise I knew I couldn’t go wrong with a Huber, yet every time I pick up the VRB-G it baffles me how clear and consistent it rings from way down to all the way up the neck and also across the strings, and how responsive and easy to play it is. The range of sounds from hard driving bluegrass close to the bridge to mellow at the neck is delightful, as is the separation of notes across strings. The neck deserves praise as well, its shape being the most comfortable I’ve played on any banjo so far. About the craftsmanship: Looking at the instrument, even at little details, it becomes obvious that Huber are as passionate about building their banjos as you will inevitably be about playing them. Thank you from across the pond for a great experience.

  8. Rated 5 out of 5

    JamesRD

    I have never had nor could I ever imagine having a banjo this nice. Its beauty and craftsmanship are unparalleled. I just got off my front porch after serenading the neighborhood with Home Sweet Home from Earl’s book. The clarion beauty of the up-the-neck notes brings shivers and smiles. Love the gumdrop amber tuners for their beauty and function. To everyone at Huber Banjos who made it possible for this banjo to enter Creation: Thank you. You make this world a better place!

  9. Rated 5 out of 5

    John Banchy

    I recently purchased a Huber VRB-G banjo, and I could not be more delighted with it. Its physical appearance, the inlay work, the neck, the resonator, the gold engraving, the finish, and the headstock are beautiful. It is extremely playable up and down the neck on all strings. The sound is exactly what I was looking for with just the right balance of sustain and decay. I have two other banjos, a Gibson Granada and a Deering Tenbrooks. Both of them are loving instruments, but my VRB-G is already my favorite. Thanks Steve for paying attention to the details. I would recommend the Huber VRB-G to anyone.

  10. Rated 5 out of 5

    Richard Sparks

    I have owned a number of prewar flathead banjos, and played many more. Most of them are/were truly great instruments, with of course differences, and their own individual characters. I have now thinned the herd to just one — because of my VRB-G. I love playing it. It doesn’t sound “exactly” like my PW FH Granada, any more than the 3’s, 4’s, 75’s, 6’s, other Granadas, T-T’s etc that I have owned or played do. But it’s damn close, and sounds better than many of them (no doubt because Steve sets his banjos up so well, and a poor set-up doesn’t do a PW FH any favors). The VRB-G has a rich, gorgeous tone of its own. I can leave the house with it and play it and don’t feel I’m missing a thing. Also, Steve’s necks are perfect for my hands. I’ve had/played some prewars with conversion necks from other luthiers, including the Gibson factory, that aren’t quite so comfortable (and okay it’s probably sacrilege to say so, but I don’t really rate the original Gibson 5-string RB necks, which are often too skinny and cramped). So you will have a great banjo that is great to play & looks great too. What more could you want? I love PW Gibsons, and loved chasing and collecting them, and playing other people’s, but I have to say that if I didn’t own a PW FH, I wouldn’t be in the market for one now that I have my VRB-G.

    Conclusion: Look no further than the VRB-G.

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