Anyone put locking tuners on their acoustic..?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Instruments' started by ASATClassic, Aug 12, 2006.

  1. ASATClassic

    ASATClassic Member

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    I love locking tuners on my electrics. I was thinking about putting them on my acoustic to make string changes quicker/easier. Dumb idea..?
     
  2. exhaust_49

    exhaust_49 Member

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    Why would you do that? Locking tuners are ment for guitars with a tremolo. I haven't found an acoustic with a whammy bar yet (this dosen't include hollow bodies cause I know somone will ask me) and I dought I'll find one.

    I've never had any trouble with regular tuners. I think people are stringing their guitars wrong and not stretching their strings when putting them on.
     
  3. Thwap

    Thwap Silver Supporting Member

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    No not dumb. It's your guitar, and if you like the convenience factor...why the hell not?
     
  4. suttree

    suttree Member

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    wasn't there once an acoustic with a whammy (a peavey i think?).

    thwap's right... if you like em, and it's your guitar, then why not. i don't see it improving anything, really.. but it won't hurt, that's for sure.
     
  5. Fishin'Musician

    Fishin'Musician Member

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    Whoever told you that?
     
  6. exhaust_49

    exhaust_49 Member

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    Only everyone I have discused this with.
     
  7. Thwap

    Thwap Silver Supporting Member

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    Well, maybe. But lets just look at it realistically. Locking tuners were initially used on whammy equipped guitars to replace a locking nut, for a convenience factor.

    You seem to think this is a bad idea....but you've never really said why. Do you have some evidence that there will be a tone degradation? Why is this such a bad idea to yourself, and everyone you've discussed this with?

    How will this negatively impact his acoustic guitar?

    The original poster wasn't complaining about his guitar going out of tune, so you pointing out that you don't think people are winding their strings correctly wasn't really speaking to the point of his post. He said he liked the convenience, and is happy with the setup on his electric....so what's the problem?
     
  8. GuitarGuy510

    GuitarGuy510 Member

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    That's not a dumb idea at all! I put locking tuners on all my guitars, trem-equipped or otherwise! Locking tuners in general help add to the tuning stability of the instrument, regardless of whether or not it has a tremolo. Sperzel makes one of the best locking tuners out there, that would be my suggestion. :AOK
     
  9. ASATClassic

    ASATClassic Member

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    I have locking tuners on my Tele's (well, actually ASAT Classics, but I digress), which obviously have no trem. I do it to make string changes quicker and prevents string slippage.

    Sometimes it'll be 20 minutes before a gig when I realize I need a string change. With locking tuners, I can change strings and get them stretched out with 15 minutes to spare.

    Locking tuners on an acoustic seems a little odd, though.
     
  10. deluxemeat

    deluxemeat Member

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    no they are not just for guitars with vibratos.

    locking tuners benefit ANY guitar.

    every tune-o-matic guitar i have has sperzels.
    it DOES make a difference. having less windings on the post gives a guitar a lively snap.

    sperzels on acoustics are out there and they sound great.

    the only guitar i wouldn't put locking tuners on would be floyd guitars. sperzels/ graphite nut and a floyd is a terrible combo.
     
  11. Brett Valentine

    Brett Valentine Member

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    If you do a lot of open tunings, locking tuners should make that easier as you eliminate the extra windings and the "over/under" locking wrap you do with the extra string. That said, I have Sperzels on most of my electrics (but not the 335) trem or not, and the 18:1 ratio Gotoh 510 COntours on most of my acoustics and have had no problem with either; though the D and G strings on my Brian Moore (self installed) to tend to slip just a bit though everything looks to be tight.

    Brett
     
  12. sosomething

    sosomething Member

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    I have to respectfully disagree. I have a Carvin with that exact setup and it is rock-solid. I think a nearly straight string pull from nut to tuners, the locking tuners themselves, and a well-cut nut make the need for a locknut moot.

    There's more than one way to skin a cat. :)

    As for locking tuners on an acoustic - I certainly don't see a problem with it either. I would, however, look at some other brands/types of locking tuners as Sperzels (while super-high quality) are pretty bulky and will add a lot of mass to the headstock, affecting the balance and likely changing the tone of the guitar.
     
  13. billv

    billv Member

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    I've got Sperzel locking tuners on my non-trem Carvin Holdsworth Fatboy, and I've often thought about putting them on my acoustics. I'd love to be able to change acoustic strings as quickly as I can change strings on the FB!

    I would miss the Gotoh 510s, though (on my Lowden). They are so smooth and precise...
     
  14. exhaust_49

    exhaust_49 Member

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    I never said it was a bad idea. I just see it as a solution without a problem. I think that a guitar needs a steep angel over the nut for good vibration transfer. I get that by having 3-4 winds on all of my guitars tuners. with lockers you get half a wind at most. I have no evidence of any tone degration but feel better having 3-4 winds on each tuner. It's a bad idea to me because lots of the lockers that are out there now either don't hold the string tight enough or hold the string tight enough to cut it. There is (in my eyes) no reason other than changing strings quickly, to have lockers on an acoustic. I have never used locking tuners and have no intentions to. I don't use a whammy, all my guitars are hardtails for the tuning stability. I'm not trying to turn people off locking tuners, I'm just trying to understand the reason people use them. I have had no problems with regular tuners (ever), even the cheep ones.
     
  15. pickaguitar

    pickaguitar 2011 TGP Silver Medalist Silver Supporting Member

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    why?

    Seems like a hassle to me
     
  16. deluxemeat

    deluxemeat Member

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    i dunno...
    slipping a string into a post, locking, turning and you're in tune seems kinda ANTI-hassle to me.
     
  17. Brett Valentine

    Brett Valentine Member

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    And it makes onstage quick string changes pretty painless!

    Brett
     
  18. guitardude5

    guitardude5 Member

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    Why don't you do what you want on your guitar? Plenty of guitar builders use locking keys on hard tail guitars. Zion uses them on their Ninety and Fifty 'T' style guitars as well as the single cut Primera. Parker also uses the locking tuners on the non-trem models. I also believe Brian Moore also uses them on hardtail models. I'm sure many others do as well.

    Anyway, to address the issue of downward string tension... the Sperzel keys are available in a staggered configuration (meaning the keys farthest from the nut are lower) to give the needed tension so you don't need the wraps or string trees on the guitar.

    [​IMG]

    Best of luck with them on your guitar!
     
  19. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    Huh? :confused:

    How about a guitar whose strings aren't slipping? Where's the benefit?

    Someone above said that if the guitar is properly strung and the strings stretched (NICE alliteration, there!), there's no need. I agree. A good locking wind on the post is all you need.

    I think it's kind of obvious that locking tuners wouldn't "hurt" anything, but I don't know a single acoustic player who has them installed and I've never seen them on an acoustic. Not once. Everyone knows they exist, so maybe there's a reason no one does it...?
     
  20. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    Here's a web page that has decent illustrations (but a lousy explanation) similar to the locking winding method that I find useful:

    Example 1

    What it doesn't say is that on the wound strings, the first turn should be OVER the extruding end and all subsequent turns under. Also, after the first turn, I bend the extruding end UP to cinch it nice and snug. The winds on the string hold it locked in place. Note that the method for unwound strings is not the same, 'cause there's no way for the string to grab on to itself. You have to loop the extruding end around and lock it under.

    This page has much better illustrations for how to lock the unwound strings, but they tell you to use that method on the wound strings too – which is bulky-looking and unnecessary IMO. I don't do the loop-and-cinch thing till halfway through the first wrap when it's just about to "bite," because I only have two hands and if I do it too early it just creates a mess. It takes a little practice to get it right, but once you get the feel for it it's easy. These pictures show the correct orientation:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    I allow about 2" of slack on every string and use the groove on my string winder to stretch them real well before they're tight. They stay in tune very well, except for the fact that I change tunings about 4 - 5 times each set. :)

    The best illustrations I've seen of this and other techniques are in Dan Erlewine's book The Guitar Player Repair Guide.
     

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