Ibanez Acoustics Machine Heads

Discussion in 'Jazz, Acoustic, Classical & Fingerstyle' started by MajorTom, Apr 15, 2016.

  1. MajorTom

    MajorTom Supreme Being

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    Has anybody here got any experience with changing the machine heads on their Ibanez acoustic guitar, and if so did you manage to find a machine head that 'fit' as in it fit the existing hole that had been drilled into the headstock for the machine heads that came stock with the guitar. I really really do not want to drill new holes for different machine heads, but at the same time I really want to change the machine heads to better quality ones. So I would really appreciate it if somebody knows of any machine heads that meet my requirements if they would let me know, and perhaps even post a link to somewhere that sells them, I'm still undecided whether or not I want to keep the machine heads gold like the stock that came with the guitar are, so colour at the moment is not important to me, though I really would prefer if they where not black.

    I've included pictures of the machine heads look like.

    Here are what all seven machine heads look like
    [​IMG]


    And here is a close up of the back of one the machine heads:
    [​IMG]


    So if anybody knows of any machine heads that will fit the existing holes I would appreciate it if you posted either a link to the machine heads themselves or post a link to somewhere that has them for sale.
     
  2. Daf57

    Daf57 5 7s in 4ths

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  3. MajorTom

    MajorTom Supreme Being

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    I can not thank you enough for that link, not only is that link to machine heads that will simply drop right into the Ibanez's headstock and not require the drilling of any more holes, but it also links to the blue print of the Gotoh SG 38 machine heads, so I now know the exact measurements the replacement machine heads have to be to be simple drop in replacements, so you've given me far more choices than just the Gotoh SG38 machine heads.

    Thank you very much.
     
  4. MajorTom

    MajorTom Supreme Being

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    Today I planned to finally sort out the machine heads on my seven string Ibanez acoustic guitar, the AEL207E-TKS, and the matching twelve string Ibanez, the AEL2012E-TKS. I have finally decided on the colour of the hardware, I'm actually going to keep the hardware gold surprisingly, it has actually grown on me.

    So I found a set of machine heads that I really like, and I mean really really like that I was willing to over look the cost of them, we're talking about machine heads that are so good looking and cool, that not only will they make the guitars that I plan on putting them on look so much better, plus they would increase my sex appeal until I'm drowning in groupies, just check out these bad boys and tell me they are not the coolest machine heads that you have ever seen:

    Viewsystem: Detailseite | Schaller-Electronic

    Tuning keys - Schaller DaVinci tuning keys - 3 x 3 - with hardware - 1 – Allparts UK

    Other than the fact that they cost £150 for a set of six, and I would need to buy 4 sets to change all the machine heads on my seven string and my twelve string, so I would have five of them left over as spare, they don't require a hole for a screw to hold them in place, and they are not big enough that the body that houses the gears would cover the hole that is already there for machine heads. So I need to figure out a way of filling and covering the holes so that they can not been seen and make the way I fill and cover the holes blend in perfectly with the finish on the back of the headstock, or chose a different model of machine head. So I'm going to have a word with a friend of mine who is a really good luthier, and see what he says, and what he can do. I really really want these machine heads, I think they are the coolest ones I have ever seen to date, not to mention that they are made by a company that are famous for the high quality of their products and machine heads in particular.
     
  5. GuitarBizarre

    GuitarBizarre Listen to physics.

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    Ok, a couple of things - Firstly, you seem to be under the impression you won't need to modify your guitar to install these tuners, just fill the old screw holes and refinish.

    That's not right. They're installed using a locating pin on the hidden face of the tuner. You'd have to fill that screw hole, and then drill another hole for the locating pin of these tuners to sit in.

    You can see that pin in the technical drawing here - http://guitar-parts.biz/download/C24f0418cX151aa7287ccX3f03/TZ Da-Vinci.jpg

    If you don't do that, your new tuners won't sit flat on the back of the headstock and won't work properly. And it won't be subtle either.



    Secondly - Those tuners aren't locking, don't have staggered post heights, and they're an 18:1 ratio.

    On paper, that makes them identical to the tuners you'd be replacing. They'll be well made and feel nicer, but they are absolutely no better at their *job* than the tuners you already have. Unless they're broken, this is a lot of money to spend to get nothing.

    In 2 threads you've mentioned you want "Better" tuners, but you haven't actually told anyone what you MEAN by that.

    What is wrong with the tuners that are on there already that's making you so desperate to replace them?

    If you want a performance improvement for your guitar, buy a set of Schaller M6 tuners in the arrangement you need. They're locking, they have staggered posts, they're just as well made and you won't need to modify your guitar to fit them, because they make a screw mount version that'll drop right on.

    If you're just looking for "Better" and you don't know exactly what problem you're solving with that? Then you don't need new tuners, spend the money on something that's actually going to do something for you.
     
  6. MajorTom

    MajorTom Supreme Being

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    The easiest way for me to describe what is wrong with them is to say that they feel loose when tuning the guitar, and that they are not accurate enough, I would prefer something in the 18:1 range for accuracy, and feel of tightness, and yes I did take a screw driver and tighten both the buttons and the screws holding the machine heads to the fretboard.
     
  7. GuitarBizarre

    GuitarBizarre Listen to physics.

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    Ratio isn't a measure of how accurate the tuning is going to be or how it will feel to use.

    Sure, if you had a 1:1 ratio tuner you'd probably find yourself overshooting your pitches unless you were careful - but that would only be the same as tuning a violin. A little more care and it's still easy. (And bear in mind - violinists aren't only shooting for a reference pitch of 440 - historically accurate performances can be adjusted in their tuning by as little as a couple of Hz)

    18:1 (Most things) or 14:1 (Some Grovers), hell, Sperzels are 12:1 - All of them are going to have MORE than enough ratio to do the job. Feel will be largely unaffected, that's a function of build quality, not the ratio chosen.

    Like I said before, Schaller make the M6 in a mount that will directly retrofit your guitar. You'll get locking functionality for half the price or less and they'll work just fine.

    Alternatively, Gotoh make these, which offer even more - Gotoh - SGL510Z Machine Heads - Set

    Locking, high quality, and Gotoh "Rock Solid" posts, so there's no play in the tuner shaft. Also a direct replacement for what you already have. (They're also a 21:1 ratio, even though like I said, that really doesn't matter unless you simply enjoy turning the knob more times to get the same change in pitch)
     
  8. MajorTom

    MajorTom Supreme Being

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    the machine heads also have to 'fit in' with the style of the guitar and look good too, so even though I really liked the specs of the Gotoh SGL510Z, I really don't like the look of the, I'm basically looking for something that looks very similar to the ones that are already in the guitar, just far better quality and sturdier, I prefer the higher turning ratio as it allows you to tune far more accurately, and there is a difference to pitch with every slight turn of the machine head, it might be slight, but there is a difference, and yes I tune up very very carefully and it's extremely rare for me to 'overshoot' as in get into the sharp territory while tuning.

    Looks like I'm going to be buying a few sets of these ones in gold, the gold colour scheme has grown on me, and they have a gear ratio of 16:1:

    http://www.axesrus.co.uk/Gotoh-SG381-MGT-Machine-Heads-p/sg381mgt3x3.htm

    Five sets to be exact, it's going to be expensive changing the machine heads on two seven strings and one twelve string guitars, I could actually buy a reasonably good acoustic guitar for the sort of money I'm about to drop on machine heads, that's crazy when you look at it in that context.
     
  9. GuitarBizarre

    GuitarBizarre Listen to physics.

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    *sigh*

    You know, I really did try to keep this just about the hardware, but I am really so, so bored of your attitude. Every post you make seems to be half humblebrag. You just told me all about how expensive and silly it is to replace all your tuners like that. I agree, it's silly, wasteful, and mostly unnecessary.

    Fact is, you obviously brought it up (For the second time in this thread alone...) because you want anyone who reads it to know you have the money to do it.

    It's the same in every post - There's always something about the insurance on your gear, or how much gear you have, or how you're a teacher with tons of students, or how you're "used to being recorded professionally". Crap about how you've "Never sold an instrument because if you do the research right like me you'll always get the perfect thing for you and never want to sell it".

    That last one is particularly bizarre because in this very thread you thanked someone for getting you the correct tuner dimensions. Then you said you were going to buy a set of tuners that didn't actually meet those dimensions.

    In the Les Paul thread, you even went off on all and sundry claiming they were "Jealous" of people affording nice guitars.

    There are plenty of people here who own plenty of expensive instruments, both custom and non-custom. There are plenty of people who teach, and plenty of people who are just flat out really good players - for gods sakes, Bulb and Keith Merrow both post here, and have done since before they got big and got signature models. (Also Jeph Jacques of QC: New Comics Every Monday Through Friday is a regular poster)

    You're not a big fish here. Tame the attitude and bragging. It's not making you any friends.
     
  10. TonyFlyingSquirrel

    TonyFlyingSquirrel Cherokee Warrior

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    A set of digital calipers can go a long way in determining fits.

    Warmoth does a good job of posting the sizes they drill for, and for the tuners they represent. After that, you have to determine the make of the part on your instrument.

    You can't just rely on the make and model number of your instrument, although Ibanez almost 9 out of 10 times uses Gotoh SG38's on most of their electrics, except for the Artist Series, and some other branded ones, such as the Grover's on my 16 year old Ibanez Artwood AEW100CE.

    Rather than purchasing multiple sets for odd numbered applications, perhaps you may consider purchasing individual tuners from Warmoth as it might help you prevent from having to order more tuners than needed just to retrofit all of your guitars.
     
  11. MajorTom

    MajorTom Supreme Being

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    It's not so easy to get individual machine heads in the U.K., if you want good quality ones your sort of forced to buy them in sets, you can get individual machine heads, but the selection is very limited and tends to be the lower quality stuff.

    I would love to be able to order from Warmoth at the drop of a hat, but being in the U.K. the shipping especially when making a small order makes it not worth while, if I was to add a few guitar bodies and necks to my order, it would make paying the shipping and import taxes more worth while, so I was put off of ordering the ones that I was linked to on Warmoth's site due to those costs, plus I wanted them in a hurry.

    But they have already been changed to Gotoh ones, the thing, that was an issue was most machine heads that have their mounting screw at a 45 degree angle have the mounting screw spaced 8mm out from the machine head body, where as I needed to find ones that had both the screw at a 45 degree angle and 11mm out from the body of the machine head for them to be drop in replacements that didn't require me to drill more holes and fill the old ones, it was a rather limiting factor those dimensions, it ruled my first three choices of machine heads, and completely ruled out several really good brands as well as buying directly from O.E.M.'s and saving a lot of cash.
     

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