Need new tuners? Let’s find out how to install Gotoh SD91 Vintage Tuners! Losing your tune? Do you have problems that no matter how much you wrap the strings, they consistently go out of tune?
We’ll take my Squier Classic Vibe 50’s Butterscotch Blonde Telecaster to the shop today. I’ve not had many problems with the keys/pegs going out of tune on this guitar, yet the tuning ratio (how many turns one must do for the post to revolve once) always left me bouncing around 440, yet never right on. A buddy of mine likes to emphasize that most recorded guitars are not in perfect tune. I get that, yet I like to be as close as possible. Either way, I think it was time to change these out. My post about my Telecaster can be found here. While you are at it, replace your internal electronics and pickups in your Telecaster as well!
Ruokangas as a Model for Tuners
While looking for what tuners to use in the replacement, I searched the internet what top-tier luthiers use. My search stopped while consulting Ruokangas guitars’ website. This builder makes boutique-boutique electric guitars. Their choice is the Gotoh SD91 vintage style. It boasts the same look as the old Klusons, yet with a technology that does not allow the tuner to backtrack. Essentially, these are rock-solid replacements with around the same ratio as the Pings. The major difference is that the tuner buttons on the Gotoh SD91’s do not wiggle as the Pings do!
The Tuners Replacement Process
Removing the existing tuners is easy, simply remove the screws, and the tuners all but fall out. Using the new Gotoh SD91 tuners, applying a little pressure from underneath pops out the old bushings using the wider girth of the Gotoh posts. You basically now have a part for part replacement all ready to go when you buy this set of Gotoh SD91 tuners for your American, Mexican, or Chinese built Fender/Squier guitar.
The new Gotoh bushings will snugly slide into place, press them
One caveat: the screws from the previously installed Ping keys are considerably shorter than the Gotoh SD91 screws. Using a 1/16″ drill bit, measure the limit with which you are able to drill by sizing the drillbit alongside of the headstock’s thickness. place a small flag of electrical tape on the drillbit to mark the depth to not drill past.
Slowly drill into the previous screw holes down to the tape, and then widening out the hole in a circular motion to account for the wider screw shaft.
Installing the new screws is a snap, but hopefully not literally. Snapped screw heads are certainly a pain! Be cure to round out the holes as previously recommended.
The new Gotoh SD91 keys have a tighter/shinier/better plating technique, rounded corners, and solid operation insure a solid and simple tuning experience in the heat of your gig!
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Get your Gotoh SD91 Vintage Tuners today!