Ibanez RG8 Locking Tuners with UMP?

Discussion in 'Extended Range Guitars' started by spartanv7, Feb 4, 2021.

  1. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    I recently purchased an RG8FM that I absolutely love the look and feel, but I'd like to make some upgrades to it. It's getting a set of Fishman's tomorrow and while the stock tuning machines are OK, I'd like a locking set on them.

    From my searching around on here and elsewhere, most people were recommending Hipshots with the Ibanez RG8 universal mounting plate kits. The only problem is that while they still make the tuning machines, they no longer make the UMP's specifically for these guitars (or at least that's what the rep at Hipshot told me).

    I know these are only cheap guitars but I'm weird about drilling extra holes in the headstock and making modifications that can't be reversed. But a couple questions:

    1. Are there any drop in replacement 2-peg alignment tuning machines for these? I tried a set of Jin-Ho tuners that are 2-peg but I think they're Fender spec and don't work for these.
    2. Are there any UMP's that maybe aren't specifically for these guitars but could still be used?
    3. Are there any specs on the UMP's for these that I could take to a fabricator and have custom made?
     
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  2. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    Thats....weird. I thought UMPs came free with every tuner set you buy?


    Depending where you are in the world, I put Vanson Locking tuners on my RG8. They lined up perfectly. Direct replacement and have the locking thumbwheel at the back. Worked perfect and were like half the price.
    (Hipshot is my favourite hardware brand - but I can vouch for Vanson. Ive had over 20 sets of them over the last 12 years )
     
  3. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for letting me know! I've purchased a 3x3 Hipshot set for an Epiphone Les Paul and they came with UMP's, 2 for each side so 4 total. But I haven't installed them yet, so I'm not really sure how the UMP's work and if it literally is just one design that is truly "universal" and works on every guitar or not. If that's the case, I'll just get a 4x4 set and call it a day, but I would've figured that the Hipshot rep would tell me that's all I have to do...

    On a different note, I have seen Vanson tuners around for reasonable prices. I've also seen quite a few JinHo tuners (from what I've read they are like the wholesale manufacturer on a bunch of different resellers of locking tuners, Vanson included.. I don't know that this is a fact though. Just repeating what I've read before) and their quality isn't bad either for a fraction of the cost.

    On your Vanson's, do they have the 2 pegs sticking down?
     
  4. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    no. Just literally the angled part for the tiny screw in back. But the stock 2 pin holes per tuner you are talking about, get hidden underneath the vansons so no big deal :)

    umps seem universal for what I can tell. Not sure why/how they wouldnt work on an RG8. They all overlap each other which is what you could do to have the line of them long enough, to reach the 4 tuner holes per side on an RG8
     
  5. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    Ah I see, so you're just using them without the screw screwed in and the nut is just holding them? And you've given me a good direction here though because if the UMP's are truly universal then I should at least be able to mock-up my RG8 with a couple of those and the UMP plates to see if they work.

    Thanks so much man!
     
  6. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    I did lightly drill pilot holes and add these screws in because its so easy to do ;)

    yeah the umps are just a line of 3. They just overlap each other on guitars that have 6in line or in this case 8 strings.
    im sure you could get them to work
     
  7. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    So... an update.

    I had 2 sets of 3+3 Hipshots for Epiphone/Gibson, et al and I thought I'd at least see if I could get the UMP's to work on the RG8. Sadly, they do not. I think you could actually get 7 out of 8 of them to work properly, but because the one side of the Ibanez headstock is curved, you can't make the UMP's work properly on that side and with the holes lined up.

    Indeed it seems as though a custom UMP would be necessary for RG8's and those aren't going to be made again :(
     
  8. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    Could you grind away one tab on one side of an ump so you could have the last overlapping UMP then be angled rather than straight? I.e following the curve of the headstock and getting the last tuner to line up?
     
  9. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    Also, why are UMPS even necessary? You can just install the hipshot tuners without them
     
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  10. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    You wouldn't even have to grind anything off for all of the UMPs to curve but thats only part of the problem. The major issue is that once you get to the third plate, the spacing of the holes is off and it's by quite a bit.

    And as far as UMPs go, they're not necessary if you're willing to drill holes in the headstock, but I'm really weird about that and refuse to modify my guitars in any permanent way. I know... I'm the problem. LOL
     
  11. Gtan7

    Gtan7 SS.org Regular

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    YOu don't have to use the woodscrews that come with the tuners, you can get much shorter ones for the tab that keep tuner body from rotating (ok, so still removing wood but holes that small can be filled to be relatively hard to see - can never be invisibly filled in...
     
  12. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    Not trying to necro an old thread but I wanted to have it documented here in case others were wondering but I've heard that Kiesel has drop-in replacements for the Ibanez 2 pin design!

    https://www.kieselguitars.com/products/CLT1B
    https://www.kieselguitars.com/products/CLB1B

    These links are to individual tuners (top link is bass side, bottom is treble side). Also this is for the individual tuners but they also sell them in 3x3 or 6 inline. In my case, I have 3 total RG8s that I plan on getting these so I'm buying 4 sets of the 3x3's which ends up being less expensive than getting 8 individual tuners per guitar. But you could always get a 3x3 set and buy 1 of each of the single ones.

    Anyway, I have yet to receive these tuners but as soon as I get them I'll post back here if they work. I'm pumped! :)
     
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  13. Captain Shoggoth

    Captain Shoggoth literally just vibing

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    Tonight I just swapped the tuners in my tam10 out for Hipshots... will the lack of flush seal with the 2-dot indents really be an issue? I wrenched them on pretty tight :scratch:
     
  14. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    I doubt that would be an issue. The main reason I wanted a drop-in replacement was so I didn't have to drill any holes in the headstock.
     
  15. Captain Shoggoth

    Captain Shoggoth literally just vibing

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    edit: double post
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2021
  16. Captain Shoggoth

    Captain Shoggoth literally just vibing

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    worked drop-in for me, i didn't want to drill anything and didn't have to. There's the little screw on the back but i left those in the box for the same reason. Pardon my ignorance if ive missed something but I dont see why the UMP or drilling would be necessary?

    20210417_223325.jpg
     
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  17. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    I just assumed you couldn't use the tuners without the screw or the UMP plate because that would prevent it from spinning. I guess if you tighten the top nut tight enough it shouldn't spin.
     
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  18. Captain Shoggoth

    Captain Shoggoth literally just vibing

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    I think tightening the top nut should be enough, then just give it a look-over every string change and a re-tighten every few months.
     
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  19. spartanv7

    spartanv7 SS.org Regular

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    OK so an update.

    I received the Kiesel tuners yesterday. I bought 2 sets of 3x3 black locking tuners.

    First off, they are a direct drop-in replacement! They fit perfectly. They're the 2-pin design with no screw and they're the exact Ibanez spec unlike the Fender 2-pin design. Second, the quality on them is really nice. The black finish looks good and the design of the locking mechanism is a solid shaft 1 piece design.

    They're almost perfect. I say "almost" because the only drawback I've noticed so far is that the opening will only accommodate a .68 gauge string. For the gauges typically used on drop-tuned 8 strings you will either have to drill out the string hole or unwind the top portion of string so that they will fit. I haven't decided yet how I'm going to address that but would love to hear from some of you that have drilled out their tuners, e.g. how easy is it to do? Are there any tips or tricks so you don't drill crooked? Etc.
     
  20. Stuck_in_a_dream

    Stuck_in_a_dream SS.org Regular

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    I used Gotoh Magnum locking tuners for my RG8, perfect fit but I had to drill holes which was k in my case.
     

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