In Roulette the zero gives the House it's edge. It is neither red nor black, odd nor even. European Roulette is played with a zero. In America the Gaming Houses added a "double-zero" to further tip the odds in their favour. This picture is of the Roulette table on the Pride of Hull, snapped on my recent visit to Amsterdam. Oh yes... I see what you're doing here P&O! Rumbled!
I've done a couple of posts on my banjo pot. You've seen me wrestle with the construction of a wooden rim. Everything was going swimmingly until I got a comment from +Sven Nyström of Argapa Ukulele fame. Sven questioned my crazy idea of fitting the skin by simply pulling it down over the top of the wooden rim. His biggest concern was that it was going to sound rubbish (my words) with that godawful thick rim. Surely I was making a huge mistake that I would regret until the end of time?
You know... Sven is right. I kind of knew this at the time, but it took a couple of slaps to the face by Sven for me to start piecing things together. Thank you!
I had been doing all sorts of research into tone rings and I knew that this was where the answer lay. If you have the energy to Google the topic you will find that there is all sorts of black magic being espoused on tone rings. You will find different views on how and why they work and deep religious debates on the best sorts. I decided to keep it simple. See what I bought, above resting on the rim.
With the tone ring on order, I was limited to measuring and dreaming. Oh yes... and I started to build a cajon. Here you can see me imagining how the pot will look with all its jewelery fitted. Hold on a second! Damn! The lugs for the hooks don't reach the rim. That will definitely be a problem! I quickly fell into a black depression. What on earth was I going to do? I imagined all sorts of fun and games having to bend hooks and maybe even adding in some sort of spacers to the lugs. What a bloody disaster!
After a little bit of research I saw a chink of light through the storm-clouds. Not all hooks are created equal. The top of the hook can be shaped to fit different styles of tension hoop. It looked like mine were angled to fit a thin-style hoop. But my tension hoop is round! On the off-chance I might be able to improve things, I ordered some round hooks. It was worth a try...
Talking of shit and disaster... Do you remember me talking about my "magic" 21st fret? I'd toyed with the idea of signing my banjo here. See in this picture that moment where I realise that due to the wider-than-anticipated-head, that I'm going to end up having to cut into the 21st fret when I fit the neck! Oh well... it might look quite good when it's done! ;-P
If anyone asks... this was the way I planned it.
And here's the pot with tone ring fitted... and trimmed to size. I do hope I haven't cut it too short. It will be tight, but I want it to be as thin as I can get away with. What do you reckon? 60 or 500 hooks? :-D
The eagle-eyed on Google+ will know that I've started work on the neck. I'll give you an update on that on another day. Next weekend I'll be off to the Ukulele Festival of Great Britain in Cheltenham. I'll try and bring back some photos for you. If you're going then be sure to tap me on the shoulder... I'll be the one wearing a beard.
I love sport as much as the next man. Okay... so England can't beat Italy. I'm over it! Here's my tribute to the World Cup in a tiny sound-bite of an idea for a potential up-coming song. Olé, Olé, Olé, Olé...