Fender locking guitar tuners installation guide
In this section I'm going to show you how to install a set of fender locking guitar tuners, on a new neck. In case you are unfamiliar, the fender locking tuner has a thumb screw on the bottom, that when tightened, locks the string in place. This makes a much easier job of string installation, as well as the added benefit of eliminating any string slip whatsoever.
You'll find these tuners on many fender guitars with roller nuts. Fender also sells these without labeling so that you could install these on almost any guitar. If you own a Fender guitar with modern, two alignment hole tuners, most of the work has been done. Simply swap out the tuners, if not follow along.
To do this job you'll need a drill, some small drill bits, a 10 millimeter wrench, a strait edge, and some patience. The first thing I do is place the tuners into the headstock tuner holes. You want to keep the tuners aligned with the strait edge, while finger tightening the tuner nuts. The reason I'm putting the tuners in is because there are two small alignment nubs that need to be drilled out for.
I've found that instead of trying to make some fancy template, it's much easier to just put the guitar tuners in place,and tighten them down ever so gently. At the same time making sure that the tuners don't go out of align by using the strait edge. If you look closely at the picture to the right, you'll notice small indentations where you must drill. Believe it or not I've found that many necks have tuner holes that are slightly out of align, which is all the more reason not to use a template.
Put a 1/16" bit in your drill. Then use some masking tape to mark the drill bit for depth. Don't try and wing it without the tape, the few extra second is worth not drilling through the front of the headstock. Take it from one that knows.
once the 1/16th inch pilot holes are drilled, choose a drill bit that matches the little alignment nubs. I ended up using a 3/32" bit, but make sure because I've seen these things vary in size a little. You want a nice, snug fit, so if your unsure, use a smaller bit. Remember the depth tape, and your patience. Once you've got the holes drilled try out a tuner for fit
Make sure the tuners fit all the way into the alignment holes, and lay flat on the back of the headstock. If you can't pull them in flat by tightening up the tuner nuts, then ream the hole a little with your drill. By all means don't use a hammer, or anything stupid like that. When all the tuners are in, snug up the nuts and your done.
Oh, when buying the Fender locking guitar tuners I've found they come in two different styles. One style has the low E, A and D tuning pegs taller than the G, B, and High E tuning pegs. The other style has all tuning pegs the same height. The first style works great with both a roller nut, and a regular bone nut because it reduces the string angle at the first three strings, and eliminates the need for string tees. The second style should only be used with a roller nut, or with string tees. Good luck. J. Brennan
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