Goto Tuners

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    • #5162
      Hank
      Participant

      The Goto tuners on my SCGC H-13 Otis Taylor have always been stiff, but lately the have become downright tight,

      When I restrung it a couple of weeks ago it was a struggle to bring the strings up to final pitch. Also, when I do a fine tune before I play it really takes a bit to turn the pegs.

      It is the only guitar I have that is like this.

      As Y’all may remember I bought this guitar from Otis Taylor and it has always been very tight to tune , but I thought maybe that’s the way he wanted it…..and who am I to question Otis ?

      I have never put any lubrication on the machines….OK to do with string on?

      The machines do not look rusted or in any way dirty or burred

      Thoughts ??


      1993 Martin HD-28 IR/Sitka
      2001 SCGC F Cutaway Maple/German
      2008 SCGC OT Madi/Italian
      2015 SCGC OM “The Tree” Hog/ European
      2016 SCGC 1934 D45 Braz/ Adi
      2016 Taylor K62 CE Limited Edition 12 string all Koa
      2019 SCGC FTC Granadillo/Redwood
      Life is a journey…not a guided tour,
      The Bay,The Gulf Stream , The Open Ocean are particular about who they share their secrets with.

      • This topic was modified 2 weeks ago by Hank.
      • This topic was modified 2 weeks ago by Hank.
    • #5164
      Matt Hayden
      Participant

      Hmm. Are these open-back GOTOH tuners, or closed back?

      If they are open back (exposed gears):

      • Are the tuner mounting screws and the tuner bushings on the face of the instrument snug?
      • When either are loose, the tuner post can be pulled a bit sideways from string tension and bind against the side of the tuner post hole.

      If they’re closed-back tuners (sealed tuners, no exposed gears):

      • are the screws holding the buttons on sufficiently snug that the tuner shaft is flush with or a hair proud of the tuner housing?
      • If the button screws are loose, the tuner buttons can be loose, and that will cause the worm gear to bind….I found that out with a set of sealed tuners a long time ago.

      Maybe post pics?

       

      • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • #5168
        Hank
        Participant

        Open back Matt. Every screw is tight,

        What gets me is that it is EVERY machine that is difficult to adjust.

        Once I get there all hold tune quite well.

        Can I try some lubricant ?


        1993 Martin HD-28 IR/Sitka
        2001 SCGC F Cutaway Maple/German
        2008 SCGC OT Madi/Italian
        2015 SCGC OM “The Tree” Hog/ European
        2016 SCGC 1934 D45 Braz/ Adi
        2016 Taylor K62 CE Limited Edition 12 string all Koa
        2019 SCGC FTC Granadillo/Redwood
        Life is a journey…not a guided tour,
        The Bay,The Gulf Stream , The Open Ocean are particular about who they share their secrets with.

    • #5169
      Matt Hayden
      Participant

      DO NOT use lubricant, at least not initially. It will just soften and swell the wood and make the problem worse.

      What you want to do is check whether the string post is binding on the hole

      To do this:

      • detune the string
      • if the post turns more easily then the post is binding.
      • If it is still slightly bound when the string tension is off, loosen the mounting screws on the back – just loosen, don’t remove them.
      • If the post turns more easily, it’s definitely binding.
      • At this point, remove the mounting screws and pull off a tuner
      • use a flashlight to look in the tuner hole and look for shiny areas where the tuner is rubbing on the sides of the post holes.

      If that happens, your options are something like the following:

      • plug & redrill the tuner mounting screw holes so the tuner shaft doesn’t rub on the sides of the tuner post hole
      • maybe ream the area of the tuner post hole where the tuner is rubbing to reduce rubbing.

      If the tuner is still tight even with string tension off and the mounting screws loose…well, maybe it’s gotten humid, and the wood of the headstock has absorbed enough water to make the tuner shaft tight.  The options at that point would probably involve gently reaming the tuner post holes just enough to free them.  But that sounds like an unlikely circumstance, even in Florida.

      Test and let us know what you find.

      • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by Matt Hayden.
    • #5173
      Hank
      Participant

      Thanks Matt.

      I always keep the guitar in a humidity controlled cabinet at 40-45%.  My house is always about 50-55 % because of the AC. None of the other guitars has this problem.

      I’ll do what you suggest and let Y’all know.

       


      1993 Martin HD-28 IR/Sitka
      2001 SCGC F Cutaway Maple/German
      2008 SCGC OT Madi/Italian
      2015 SCGC OM “The Tree” Hog/ European
      2016 SCGC 1934 D45 Braz/ Adi
      2016 Taylor K62 CE Limited Edition 12 string all Koa
      2019 SCGC FTC Granadillo/Redwood
      Life is a journey…not a guided tour,
      The Bay,The Gulf Stream , The Open Ocean are particular about who they share their secrets with.

    • #5174
      Chrisakadigdog
      Participant

      Back off the central brass screws to loosen tuners and adjust

    • #5175
      Hank
      Participant

      Tried Digs suggestion before Matts….Backing off the screw helped a lot.

      I’m also going try fewer wraps.

       


      1993 Martin HD-28 IR/Sitka
      2001 SCGC F Cutaway Maple/German
      2008 SCGC OT Madi/Italian
      2015 SCGC OM “The Tree” Hog/ European
      2016 SCGC 1934 D45 Braz/ Adi
      2016 Taylor K62 CE Limited Edition 12 string all Koa
      2019 SCGC FTC Granadillo/Redwood
      Life is a journey…not a guided tour,
      The Bay,The Gulf Stream , The Open Ocean are particular about who they share their secrets with.

    • #5176
      tadol
      Moderator

      The alignment of the posts is pretty critical – just leaving things a hair loose can make a huge difference. Some people will use a tiny bit of dry lube, some use wet,  but what Matt says is really important. No matter what you use, you need to be extremely cautious with any lube, because if it gets into the wood, it can stain, or cause finish issues. But, it can help –


      Lots o’ SCGC guitars! But never ask which is my fav

    • #5177
      Matt Hayden
      Participant

      Tad, oil that gets into the end-grain wood of string post holes also swells the wood…and makes binding problems worse.   Not that I’ve ever had to deal with it, of course 🙂

      The key thing is to release string tension and then mounting-plate screw tension to see whether or not either allows the tuner to move freely.

      If either causes the tuner to move easily, bang, the post is binding, and that has to be fixed either via remounting the tuners, relieving the base of the post holes ever so slightly, or both.

      • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by Matt Hayden.
      • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by Matt Hayden.
    • #5192
      tadol
      Moderator

      I’ll just tag onto this thread rather than starting a new one –

      I’m thinking of some new buttons for these Gotoh minis –  I’m thinking wood or plastic, since 12x metal is undoubtedly adding a bit of weight to the headstock (although, thus guitar has amazing sustain -)  and I am also thinking of 2 slightly different woods, to make it easier to tweak tuning ( instead of counting buttons til I find the right one) –

      Any thoughts on where to get some nice buttons? Or anyone seen or done different buttons for the pairs?


      Lots o’ SCGC guitars! But never ask which is my fav

    • #5193
      Hank
      Participant

      Tad, what are the woods of the guitar and what colors ?


      1993 Martin HD-28 IR/Sitka
      2001 SCGC F Cutaway Maple/German
      2008 SCGC OT Madi/Italian
      2015 SCGC OM “The Tree” Hog/ European
      2016 SCGC 1934 D45 Braz/ Adi
      2016 Taylor K62 CE Limited Edition 12 string all Koa
      2019 SCGC FTC Granadillo/Redwood
      Life is a journey…not a guided tour,
      The Bay,The Gulf Stream , The Open Ocean are particular about who they share their secrets with.

    • #5194
      Matt Hayden
      Participant

      Hi Tad – The gent who runs Charis guitars makes wooden drop-in replacements for what you’ve got.

      https://www.charisacoustic.com/replacement-tuner-buttons

      In the past, I’ve done ebony/black plastic and ivoroid on 12-strings – the ebony/black plastic is the fundamental and the ivoroid is the octave.  It does speed up tuning though it looks a bit odd.

       

    • #5200
      tadol
      Moderator

      The back and sides are lovely flamed walnut – top is just beautiful sitka ( I think ) –

      i’ve seen the Charis knobs website – any experience with them? Good quality? I wouldn’t want to go high contrast, but I’m thinking either a light contrast, or maybe a slight shape difference, or maybe just a little texture difference –


      Lots o’ SCGC guitars! But never ask which is my fav

    • #5210
      Matt Hayden
      Participant

      I put a set on for a friend who had 510s and they fit fine.  Easy as pie….detune string, unscrew the old button, pull off the nylon and metal washers, put the screw in the new button, add washers, tighten, retune.

      The quality was excellent. I found them a little gaudy but they worked for the guitar owner…..

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