Greetings! I decided I might play my banjo more if I had it sitting out so I threw this stand together out of some scrap wood and leather. We'd already stained the wood blue as a test piece for another project so that made the color choice easy. Enjoy!
Step 1: Quick Sketch
I had a rough idea in my head of what I wanted it to look like so I whipped up an outline. A key thing that I would change is reducing the height of the back support. I made the mistake of only measuring across the middle of the body and thus didn't account for the drop in height at the corners.
Step 2: First Cuts
The irregular shape of each half required a bit of strategy with the cutting (especially without a saber/jig saw). I started by cutting out the rough shape.
Step 3: Finishing Out the Shape
I cut out the shape for the bottom rest by making closely-spaced cuts and then cracking out the remaining material. I finished it off with a bit of rasp work and some fine sanding. I should mention that the second half went significantly easier and looked much cleaner. Always remember your safety gear and watch your hands and fingers :-)
Step 4: Dowel Holes
I decided to connect the two halves with three 1/2" dowels. It took some time to ensure that all six holes line up correctly.
Step 5: I'm Blue Babba-Dee Babba-Dieeee.....
The blue didn't make the grain of the maple pop as much as I'd hoped but it still turned out alright. The leather I decided to use for the pads was black so I stained the dowels a nice Ebony shade.
Step 6: Leather Footsies
I made pads for the back and bottom supports out of some veg-tanned leather that I dyed black with a vinegarroon solution. I used some woodglue and then clamped it down. Epoxy might've made a better bond. the trickiest part was figuring out the elbow cuts for the bottom pads.