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Old 03-15-2010, 09:23 PM
BigShooter is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 320
Ok. Maybe I'll start one tomorrow.

As far as your tuning keys are concerned - you have to be careful to get tuners that are going to fit the holes that you have drilled in your headstock. Here are the usual suspects and sizes:

Fender Vintage - 11/32"
Schallers - 11/32" - 25/64"
Gotoh/Grovers - 11/32" - 13/32"
Sperzels - 25/64"
Planet Waves 13/32"

When you take the tuners off measure the diameter of the hole preferably using an accurate caliper, but if you don't have one, just get a ruler that has 64's of an inch marked off. Once you have the size, then you can narrow down the choices to one or two of the above makers. They all make a quality product and will serve you well.

That being said, there some issues to consider. Even though you measure your holes and get something that is supposed to work, more often than not, the tuner grommets won't fit easily. Sometimes they're off by a hair. If that's the case, get a piece of dowel material that's a little smaller diameter than your hole and wrap some 120 grit sandpaper around it. Stick that through the hole and use it to remove that hair of wood that's in the way. Keep in mind that the grommets should be able to be pushed into place and fit snuggly. No glue of any kind should be used.

I would not suggest buying a bigger diameter tuner in hopes of drilling your holes bigger to make it fit. If you don't have a drill press, this could end in disaster very easily. So just stick to the ones that are the right size.

Do you use the tremolo bar much? If so you might want to get a set of locking tuners to prevent string slippage and tuning issues. You can also get "staggered" tuners which have posts that get progressively shorter from low E to high E strings. These reduce the need for string trees which cause tuning issues through friction when using the whammy bar. You can also get staggered locking tuners!!

Also, Sperzels are notoriously hard to install nice and straight. If you end up getting some of those, best to have a pro do it for you to get it right.

Last edited by BigShooter; 03-15-2010 at 09:25 PM.