The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

For guitars of the straight waisted variety (or reverse offset).
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papa_hotel_delta
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The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by papa_hotel_delta » Sat Dec 26, 2020 5:16 pm

Why?
Why?
Why?

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by HarlowTheFish » Sat Dec 26, 2020 6:33 pm

Lighter, good mix of modern/vintage looks (ala old acoustic/hollowbody tuners), and at least in Hipshot's case, better ratio and slightly better tolerances in my experience (18:1 for closed vs. 21:1 for open, and I had way less backlash in the open-back). For an acoustic/vintagey hollow-body I'd go open-gear Waverly or something similar for the looks, for something more modern I'd go Hipshot or Sperzel open-back for weight (and in the case of Hipshot slightly more reliability), for something like a vintagey Fender or Gibson-style, I'd go Gotoh vintage locking, which are closed-back.

Don't kink-shame me about my tuner preferences! :D

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by Gordon » Sat Dec 26, 2020 6:34 pm

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by mbene085 » Sat Dec 26, 2020 8:12 pm

I always had something against them until I bought a really nice guitar that had Hipshots on it.

They're such nice tuners. I'd probably be happier if they were closed, but I can't hold it against them. They're smooth, incredible accurate, and very well-made. I kinda think they leave them open to show off the quality of their gears. I feel like plenty of the tuners I've used over the years wouldn't stand up to scrutiny if you could see what was going on inside them.

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by BoringPostcards » Sat Dec 26, 2020 8:23 pm

I like the way they look. They can get absolutely disgusting, if you neglect to clean them though.
I am sure we have all seen, how bad they can get. Think neglected pawnshop acoustics.
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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by wproffitt » Sun Dec 27, 2020 6:38 pm

I have Gotoh open back tuners on my Yamaha SA30 that are nickel with brass gears. They look pretty sweet and function even better. The Waverlys on my acoustic also look pretty classy. If loving open-backed tuners is wrong, I don’t want to be right! ;D

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by papa_hotel_delta » Mon Dec 28, 2020 1:41 am

The Waverlys on my new Martin are shit. Seriously. Both the D and the G bind at some point in a rotation and frankly 16:1 does not impress. The Martin is very light and I can actually torque the body out of my lap turning the D tuner.

These things are like. . .what? $175 a set? This is the second instrument I've owned with Waverlys that are less than stellar.

Once upon a time the best guitars all had closed back tuners. What has changed since then that we now need faux period-fashion open back tuners that don't work as well?

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by fisonic » Mon Dec 28, 2020 4:38 am

papa_hotel_delta wrote:
Mon Dec 28, 2020 1:41 am
The Waverlys on my new Martin are shit. Seriously. Both the D and the G bind at some point in a rotation and frankly 16:1 does not impress. The Martin is very light and I can actually torque the body out of my lap turning the D tuner.

These things are like. . .what? $175 a set? This is the second instrument I've owned with Waverlys that are less than stellar.

Once upon a time the best guitars all had closed back tuners. What has changed since then that we now need faux period-fashion open back tuners that don't work as well?
Waverly had some well documented QC issues. You should be able to hit them up for replacements. Possibly via Martin.

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by fisonic » Mon Dec 28, 2020 4:40 am

Just to add, proper installation of open gear tuners is critical. If there is any play between the post & the ferrule, the tuner should be installed so that the post rides the front side of the ferrule, closest to the bridge, so that the post isn’t pulled off-axis.
Vintage style klusons & F types are pretty much just open tuners with dust covers.

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Mon Dec 28, 2020 6:54 am

For me they're purely an acoustic guitar thing & I can totally understand folk having issues with them getting gunky, although I'd see that mainly as a side-effect of transporting your gear around a lot (rehearsals & gigs).

I have 2 acoustics, one with closed Grovers, the other with upgraded open Klusons (the upgrade being a step up in ratio from 14:1 to 18:1).

Interesting hearing about the Waverleys. They were on my radar but out of my price range & the Klusons (which I love) were close to half the price. It might be worth giving them a go.
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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by mgeek » Mon Dec 28, 2020 7:54 am

Most of my sixties electrics have open backed tuners and I've never really had a problem with them, what's the complaint?

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by tribi9 » Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:35 pm

mgeek wrote:
Mon Dec 28, 2020 7:54 am
Most of my sixties electrics have open backed tuners and I've never really had a problem with them, what's the complaint?
What's the issue?

You don't like solutions to problems that don't exist?.. 🤔

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by papa_hotel_delta » Mon Dec 28, 2020 1:27 pm

This is tuner perfection:

Image

Anyone who has had a guitar with these on it, knows what I'm saying.

18:1 ratio (510z are 21:1)

< 1/2 the price of Waverlys

< 20g weight difference (depending on knobs)

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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Mon Dec 28, 2020 2:34 pm

Fugly, in my opinion.

They’ll also look way too modern on your average Fender, Gibson, Guild etc...
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Re: The strange and perverse fetish of open-back tuners

Post by tribi9 » Mon Dec 28, 2020 3:02 pm

papa_hotel_delta wrote:
Mon Dec 28, 2020 1:27 pm
This is tuner perfection:

Image

Anyone who has had a guitar with these on it, knows what I'm saying.

18:1 ratio (510z are 21:1)

< 1/2 the price of Waverlys

< 20g weight difference (depending on knobs)
Maybe if you are putting together a Yamaha Pacifica, and even so... 🤢

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