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Tuners?


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No idea what tuners i want on my guitar... just something simple that will stay in tune and will be easy to work with... i'm putiting them on a wizard neck off of an ibanez rg. the standard locking nut has been replaced with a simple one and the bridge i'll be using is a standard tune-o-matic style... any suggestions would help me alot.. .thanks.

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I can recommend GOTOH mini's, not overly expensive and they are a fine tuner, so you can dial in right down to the last cent :D

also, i heard many great things about Grovers and Schallers, although i havent tried any yet

Curtis

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Most brand name tuners are built to good standards nowadays. What you need is a high gear ratio, so it takes more turns of the button to produce one full rotation of the shaft. 18:1 would be great for a guitar with a TOM. It doesn't matter on a Floyd Rose with fine tuners.

If you have a Korean RG neck, the tuners had little nibs that set into receiving holes in the headstock. You can use any tuner on those because you'll have to drill a hole for the flange anyway. If it's a Japanese RG neck then it had Gotohs, and I would stick with Gotohs. The flange will be in the right spot, and they are some of my favorite tuners. If you can find/afford the Gotoh locking tuners they are definitely my favorite. They are so easy to use and well made.

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I think they're worth it for the ease of string changes alone. But on a TOM, I still love locking tuners (I have some guitars that way) because then there's absolutely nothing that can go out of tune. Especially the Gotohs, where the string pressure is what keeps it locked. Whereas you can still have some slippage on a twist-lock mechanism like a Sperzel.

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I have the sperzel staggered post locking tuners in satin chrome. I love these tuners, but I can see how there is a chance of them slipping although I have not had any problems at all.

Frank Falbo can you explain why the gotohs would not slip, I am not familiar with their system. I hear alot of good things about these, I'm thinking that I might try some for my next project, it's going to have a hardtail, so stable tuning isn't as big of a problem. Also do they have as many varities(colors) that sperzels have? Also I hear they are cheaper, does that have any factors on their quality?

And lastly is there any pros/cons to having 6 inline vs. 3x3 tuners, because I haven't decided on my next headstocks design so any input on this issue would be of great help to me. I've always used 6 inline tuners so I don't know the differences of the two. Thanks for your help. Jason

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my tuner of choice on my customs is the schaller locking system. they're great looking and the knurled locking knob is large enough to get a good hold on.

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With the Gotohs you just pull the string tight through the hole and start turning. The post top (the part you can see) is threaded against the post core. So once the string catches and gets pinched, it starts tuning. In the first couple turns of the button after that, while the string is coming up to pitch, it will sag a little, because it's getting pinched in the tuner hole, and because as it flattens, the post top threads a little more to tighten it down. But basically after that, the harder the string pulls, the tighter the lock is. So you quickly get to the point of maximum compression at all points. From there, the only thing that will take you out of tune is the actual string length stretching. It's not that much more efficient than a Sperzel/Schaller where you have to use finger strength to crimp the string, it's just that you never know how much tension is really required with a finger tight nut, before you are just digging into the string. And then, once its set, that crimp tension is constant. Whereas on the Gotoh, if you all of a sudden decided to tune up a step, the increased string tension would automatically guarantee the apppropriate compression at the tuner. It's really a genious design. The harder the string pulls, the more "locked" the tuner is.

As for 3x3 vs. 6IL, try searching because I'm sure there are posts where they debate for pages about how string tension changes (or doesn't change) relative to tuner placement. Try looking for "reverse headstock" threads. The short version is that a string will have to be at a particular tension to reach pitch. It doesn't matter how long the string is post-nut or post-saddle. But when fretting and bending a longer string, some of the slack post-nut will absorb some of the bend tension. So a longer string makes bending seem easier, but really you have to travel a farther distance to reach the bend pitch, so it's requires the same amount of tension to reach, say, 1 whole step. A lock nut negates all of that. I realize you're using a regular nut I just thought I'd add that.

So 6IL makes the higher strings bend a little easier, but have to bend farther. 3x3 makes them a little tighter but travel less distance. And it's all such a minute variance that you might just choose based on cosmetics like I do, and enjoy the results whatever they are. :D

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Great response, thanks for the info I will do a search for the long version but I understand what you explained and makes a lot of sense, although it seems like you said, what ever looks best to you. I like the way a 6 inline looks but I'm completely tired of the headstock designs for these, so I think I will go with the 3x3, unfortunatly I am doing a laminate neck so I will have to add some wood scraps for the ears, no big deal really but just takes a little more prep and planning. Again thank you for taking the time to write that all out, it's nice to hear as many opinions as possible, it gives you a better perspective. Jason

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Heh! I just did the "test" on a guitar with a lock nut, and I preferred it locked. I did the high E string (10's) 12th fret, bent up a whole step. I had to use the same "muscle" to get a whole step bend, but with it unlocked, I had to travel a bit farther to reach pitch. That made it feel like I had to use more muscle. Locked, I had to go to where the G string is, whereas unlocked I had to go just past the middle of the fretboard.

Friction and trem sag add another dimension to the result, but I think this was a good test. It reinforced my opinion that I prefer 3x3's, 4x2's and 5x2's (7-string) when using a traditional nut. I'm kind of thinking that the "x2" is the way to go, so the G string is the longest. It's the string that responds with the most pitch change vs. bend distance. (which is why the saddle is usually compensated back the farthest, besides the low E.

I'm still going to design for looks though! :D

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