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Ksdaddy....expertise sought!

J-200 Koa

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I am looking at a Custom Shop Gibson that is nice in

every way except for the tuners. While most folks

like the Grover Imperials, they look unsightly and

enormous to my eyes. Plus, my clumbsy fingers prefer

smaller buttons. If I went to Waverly open-gear tuners,

how unsightly would the back of the headstock be after

the changeover? I know the Imperials have a larger

"footprint" than almost any other tuner and I prefer

not to look at plugged holes on a $3500. guitar.

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Well, there are two problems right away. The Waverlys call for a smaller hole and therefore you'd have to buy conversion bushings to downsize and make them fit; the Waverly bushings would flop around in the Grover holes. At least that's what I can figure from the Stew Mac catalog. Second, there is about 0.187" difference in the overall screw hole spacing.... no idea how they'd line up, either. One hole may line up perfectly and the other is 0.187" off, requiring plugging and redrilling.... that's the best case scenario. Chances are, the holes will be "just enough" off from each other so both will need to be plugged and drilled. Just an invitation to make a mess!


Sorry to be a downer, I'd just hate to see you be disappointed in the results of major surgery with not a whole lot of improvement.


Are you custom ordering this? Hell, Bozeman will put any tuner on there you want, I bet.


Another less intrusive method would be to change out the Imperial buttons with normal sized Grover buttons. Now I say that without the benefit of knowing whether they will interchange or not. I know they make regular bodied Grovers with Imperial style buttons but I'm assuming you're talking about the regular monster Imperials held in place with two screws.


Just remember, big messes can be made in the interest of making small improvements.

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