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Thread: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

  1. #1
    Mojo's Minions Silence Kid's Avatar
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    Default Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    So I feel like this is one of those ideas, the first blush of which seems really dumb - until you stop and think about it (Though: I haven't done any actual 'thinking' in hours so perhaps I'm off.)

    Have a set of reissue F-tuners with the collar below; collar *just* prevents me from mounting these tuners on my neck (diameter greater than holes.) The easy answer is reaming the holes out; the correct answer is to buy the correct/original tuners.

    So where on that spectrum does 'grind on a table grinder till they fit' fall? Appears to be just zinc casing, and I'd be shaving off a bit rather than eliminating the collar totally. Is there any reason I should not do this? (I'd probably still need to go on a search for Ferrules.)

    Quote Originally Posted by King Buzzo
    I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

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    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    Wood is easier to remove than metal. And the nature of a hole means you can just put a round sanding utensil in there and move it such that material is removed evenly around the diameter. Unlike your method which will not be even.

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    Mojo's Minions ItsaBass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    I ran into the same problem. I was making a '67 style neck, so I ordered the neck with vintage tuner spacing. Got those tuners, and they are designed around modern tuner spacing.

    My idea was to file the edges down on each tuner, and hope that not too much chrome plating flaked off in the process.

    I ended up saying screw the vintage accuracy, and selling the tuners and getting chrome Hipshots with butterbeans instead. But not before temporarily installing the F tuners three at a time (every other one) and drilling the headstock as if they had been original (to make it look close enough to an old one that had been retrofitted with the Hipshots).
    Last edited by ItsaBass; 06-28-2019 at 01:22 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

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    Mojo's Minions Silence Kid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexR View Post
    Wood is easier to remove than metal. And the nature of a hole means you can just put a round sanding utensil in there and move it such that material is removed evenly around the diameter. Unlike your method which will not be even.
    Good points - I'm thinking about if I can fashion some sort of hole lined with sandpaper, I can simply twist over the tuner collar/ferrules in the same way you'd ream out a hole. It's not like my neck is super-valuable, but when I compare being possibly out $30 or so for the tuners if I ruin them vs. whatever possible devaluation of the neck down the line, I prefer to eat the $30 . I'm just more sentimental about old stuff than new.

    Quote Originally Posted by ItsaBass View Post
    I ran into the same problem. I was making a '67 style neck, so I ordered the neck with vintage tuner spacing. Got those tuners, and they are designed around modern tuner spacing. My idea was to file the edges down on each tuner, and hope that not too much chrome plating flaked off in the process.
    Glad I'm not the first one with this idea. Looks like spacing is not a problem though; it's the diameter of the (zinc?) collar, which is just fractionally off of the 3/8 in it needs to be. Made a template of one tuner to double-check that it will screw right on if the collar is reduced; it looks like they won't overlap each other either. I know the earlier ('65/'66 ?) F-tuners were built around a totally different angle, and the Schallers on my G&L look similar but are totally different spacing-wise (wider.) Since the internal diameter of the ferrules/shafts looks incompatible with any other tuner though, I'll probably wind up grinding those as well.

    Again - really small amount of material needs to go, so I'm debating if I should actually use the grinder vs. a dremel, sanding by hand (possibly with the aid of my makeshift tool described above) or a metal file.
    Last edited by Silence Kid; 06-28-2019 at 07:47 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by King Buzzo
    I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

  5. #5
    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    Anything you do to the neck will be practically invisible, as you're sanding the insides of holes.
    If it is truly as little as you say, then most likely its only finish you'll be getting rid of anyhow.


    But you seem to want to do it the hard way.........so carry on

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    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    Did ya do it? Did they fit?
    Dave, Ambassador/Writer/Artist for Seymour Duncan

    My Guitar, Gear, and Music Webpage

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    Mojo's Minions Silence Kid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mincer View Post
    Did ya do it? Did they fit?
    Probably will give a try this afternoon, got distracted by work. Here are pics of the measurements I'm dealing with - depending on one's perspective this either excuses me since it's such a small amt. of metal, or highlights how stubborn I am for refusing to remove even a splinter of wood. I admit I do it the hard way, but it's for my personal satisfaction here:


    Quote Originally Posted by King Buzzo
    I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

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    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    Wow, that is really close...
    Dave, Ambassador/Writer/Artist for Seymour Duncan

    My Guitar, Gear, and Music Webpage

    Gear pics and more on my Instagram.

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    Mojo's Minions ItsaBass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    If they will fit in terms of spacing (i.e. without the flanges overlapping each other), then just drill out the holes in the head a bit. Make sure your bushings are installed on the face of the head first, to keep you from drilling all the way through to the front. This might just be a metric issue.
    Last edited by ItsaBass; 06-28-2019 at 11:43 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

  10. #10
    Mojo's Minions Silence Kid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    In case it seems like I ignored everyone; I'm grateful for those who basically told me: 'you probably can - but it's a dumb idea.' A reason I chose this method is also because I don't necessarily know if I'm going to keep this neck; I might swap to the actual 'correct' neck for my guitar, and if I do that, these tuners will be ready at that point without me messing with another neck - and as mentioned I just have a principle not to mess with vintage stuff more than I need to. I don't claim to be a superhero or martyr for doing it, but I'm now two in - used a metal file, and finished it off with sandpaper wrapped inside a masking tape tube that I then ran the tuner inside. Prob. 30 min. of filing for each tuner.

    Still need the bushings dealt with; since they're splined it should go quicker. Another thing about doing this; you need to take off more than you just need to fit, since there is some maneuvering required to get the screws in the neck.

    Quote Originally Posted by King Buzzo
    I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

  11. #11
    Bacteriaolgoist GuitarDoc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    I hope you're not offended if I just call you an idiot for doing it this way. Really, no offense is intended.
    Originally Posted by IanBallard
    Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

  12. #12
    Mojo's Minions Silence Kid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking a Grinder to Fender F-Tuners?

    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarDoc View Post
    I hope you're not offended if I just call you an idiot for doing it this way. Really, no offense is intended.
    I deserve that - not even for doing it, just karma for other things.
    Quote Originally Posted by King Buzzo
    I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

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