Are locking tuners worth it?

Discussion in 'The Custom Shop' started by romonster, May 5, 2008.

  1. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Hey guys, im def. going for some locking tuners,
    How much work is needed to install the Spertzell tuners, will they fit in the old epi custom stock tuning peg holes or are new holes needed?
     
  2. bfcg

    bfcg Senior Member

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    +1.
    I put a set on my Whaterevcaster and they are very good.
     
  3. 4Boogie

    4Boogie Senior Member

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    I have a set of black Sperzel's 3&3 I used for about a month I will sell for $45 shipped...pm me if interested
     
  4. Indyclone

    Indyclone Senior Member

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    They don't have screws that hold the backs on, they have a peg that sticks out that sits slightly below the top screw from the kluson style tuners and you'll need to drill a new hole for it.

    Good news is that if you decide to go back to klusons you'll never see that hole you drilled for the sperzells.
     
  5. rychus

    rychus Senior Member

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    So I have Grovers on my Midtown Custom (factory). Am I to believe that the locking Grovers would not fit as a direct replacement?
     
  6. jimbob137

    jimbob137 Senior Member

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    I would sooner replace the nut and make a new one with a Tusq xl nut blank. These are hard and heavy, very much like the standard corian or a bone nut, but are made of synthetic material and are permanently lubricated.

    I made a new nut for my guitar with a tusq xl blank and dont have any tuning problems whatsoever with the standard grover rotomatic tuners. Also while your at it get the dan erlewine book 'how to make your electric guitar play great' get yourself a nut slot string spacing rule, some nut files, and a set of under string radius gauges from stew mac. Follow his guide to setting up the guitar and youll have a real nice playing guitar. Far better than spending big bucks for just a set of tuners.

    The problems regarding tuning instability can run far beyond the tuners. Sort these problems out and you wont need to spend money on new tuners.
     
  7. funkybunch

    funkybunch Senior Member

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    i am going to second the idea that you really dont need to go with locking tuners unless your using a trem. but i do say machine head tuners are the way you want to go they stay in tune better than the lower end non machine style. also restringing properly will prevent a lot of string slipping seymore duncan has a video showing proper restringing technique i have used it ever since and all my guitars stay in tune very well. Also I have had that pinging noise you all talk about while tuning but i have not tried this "nut sauce" but it makes sense i will try it as well
     
  8. Happy Trees

    Happy Trees Senior Member

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    What exactly is it that people do that makes for string-slippage? I've never had that problem, I'm just wondering.
     
  9. NovaSDF

    NovaSDF Senior Member

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    I'm also a big fan of Plant Waves Auto-Trim locking tuners. I installed them in place of the Grovers on both my Epi LP and SG. The shaft diameter is the same, so I didn't have to ream the holes in the headstock. The screw holes in the Plant Waves are also similar to the Grovers, although the footprint is just a hair smaller. You need a long shaft screwdriver to squeeze in next to the tuner to tighten the screw on the back of the headstock, so you don't strip the head. I also suggest a little lube on the screw (soap) as it's a snug fit, but I didn't have to drill any new holes.

    As for restringing, the Planet Waves are a joy to work with. Pull the string through, tighten the thumb screw and tune up about 1/4 turn - and the tuner automatically snips off the excess string for a nice neat job. I didn't realize how spoiled I'd become until I restrung a guitar without them. They really do work slick.

    They also have a good turning ration, I seem to recall it being 18:1 (if my old memory serves.)

    Are they necessary? No.

    I should also mention that if you do need to enlarge the holes in a headstock, you might want to invest in a "prop reamer" (also known as a step reamer). I have one from Great Planes that cost about $17 on Ebay. It cuts perfect 10mm holes with just a few twists each and every time. It's much easier than using a tapered reamer, and you get perfectly straight holes, plus you don't have to measure as it cuts in 7mm, 8mm, 10mm and 12mm increments. Makes quick, tidy and foolproof work of that job.

    If your nut is cut well, as others have indicated, and there is nothing physically wrong with the tuners you have (they are not slipping in any way) then your guitar should stay in tune. But they are very, very nice! :)
     
  10. David Mccarroll

    David Mccarroll Senior Member

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    in a word - yep.

    One more problem you don't have to deal with ..... :)
     
  11. David Mccarroll

    David Mccarroll Senior Member

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    Dang, never really read the original post - locking tuners WILL help trems stay in tune - for a fixed bridge/tailpiece guitar, they will make no difference! Any tuning problems you have reside somewhere other than your tuners!
     

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