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olie

Thinking about Grover swapout.

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I'm wondering about whether to get Waverleys (or another brand) for a J-45 and am seeking advice as to whether Waverleys or other alternatives are superior tuners or do people swap them out for esthetic reasons alone. The Grovers I have seem to work fine so I was curious as to the result ,playing wise. I've noticed that a lot of you out there have switched and would appreciate any thoughts on the change. Thanks in advance.

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Grovers just look wrong on a J-45 so, yeah, it may be aesthetic. That said, Waverlys are superior to Grovers. Yes, they cost a lot, but there is a difference. I've got them on a guitar and they are very smooth.

The current Grovers have an 18-1 tuning ratio. But you can't judge a tuner by tuning ratio alone. You also have to take into account how well-built it is, how tight everything fits and how smooth they operate. That's where Waverlys excel.

I switched out the stock tuners on a J-45 and a J-35 with Golden Age Resoration tuners from StewMac. Excellent tuners and a great value. Smooth. Well-built. Look better, too.

If you do want to switch out the Grovers for Waverlys or GARs, you'll need to order conversion bushings because Grovers require a 13/32nd post hole, while Waverlys are 11/32nd.

Edited by dhanners623

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Yeah, Grovers are quite functional, however they are butt-ugly.......on any guitar.  And they are stupid heavy compared to almost any other machine head out there, Grover Imperials excepted.  

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3 hours ago, dhanners623 said:

I switched out the stock tuners on a J-45 and a J-35 with Golden Age Resoration tuners from StewMac. Excellent tuners and a great value.

 

All i can say is that our experience is different. I changed the Rotomatic tuners on my 2008 J-50 to these Golden Age Restoration tuners: https://www.stewmac.com/Hardware_and_Parts/Tuning_Machines/Solid_Peghead_Guitar_Tuning_Machines/Golden_Age_Restoration_Tuners_for_Solid_Peghead_Guitar_with_Scallop-end.html

 I posted a thread here and got lots of compliments. But they were always very difficult to operate, and after a few years I got fed up, removed them and replaced them with Kluson re-issues that are just great.  

If you are replacing the big Rotomatics with any "vintage" style tuner, be prepared to do some work, you'll need to insert bushings, drill new holes and sand/polish the headstock to remove the ugly "bullseyes" that are left behind from the washers on the Rotomatics. Some people are fine with this, others will find it very difficult.

Edited by Boyd

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1 hour ago, Boyd said:

". . . you'll need to. . . ,  to remove the ugly "bullseyes" that are left behind from the washers on the Rotomatics. Some people are fine with this. . . "

Not terrible, the witness marks from those washers on the headstock:

TF12hh1.jpg?1

. . . but that is on the matte finish of the WM- and what is that surface? Teflon? It is more noticeable on a polished headstock, but it's not huge.

And agree, Boyd- the Golden Age resto tuners are hit-and-miss; the (grained ivoroid) Waverly tuners really took the econo WM-45 up a notch.

Edited by 62burst
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Those hexagonal bushings help to hide the headstock marks. I used the plain, round bushings and it was much more obvious, and would not have been acceptable if I didn't sand them out. Here's what my J-50 looked like with the Golden Restoration tuners. They are very attractive, StewMac is a good company and the price was right. They were just very difficult to operate. I tried a variety of lubricants and learned the hard way that this was a very bad idea. On a hot day, the lithium grease liquified and got all over the headstock. 😧

new%20tuners.jpg

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I swapped out my Gibson Deluxe tuners on a 1994 Gibson j 45 for a set of Grover's ....awesome....no drilling or enlarging of holes and the elimination of a bushing only adds to the stability of the system .  No more B string pain in the tuning arse  .

I will most always take function over fashion !

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To be specific, it is Grover  Rotomatics that look so wrong on a slope shoulder jumbo.  Individual G98s or Sta-Tites ae a whole other story..  I have replaced strip tuners with Sta-Tites myself.   For my two centavos, the best replacement tuners I have ran across were the three on a plate tuners offered  by Antique Acoustic.  Cost more but well worth it.  As with all great things though they stopped offering them so yo can only   find them used.  That said, the Stewmac Golden Age stuff, will definitely get you through the night. 

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I've never been a fan of Grovers in J-45's. Consequently, I don't mind them on the Martin D-35. 

I swapped out the Grovers on my J-45 Standard with some Kluson 3-on-a-plate tuners and never looked back. Just needed some conversion bushings from StewMac and some polish to buff out the "raccoon eyes" left by the Rotomatics. Took me easily under an hour start to finish. 

Before:

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After: 

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Edited by sbpark

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I just don't think you can go wrong with Waverlys in any of their configurations. The are quite simply the best guitar tuner for acoustic guitars you can get. Yes, they are expensive, but so are the Gibson acoustics we are talking about.  Before I got my Martin 00028vs (which has Waverlys) I had a Martin 00017sm (which did not). I replaced the stock, slot-head tuners with Waverly and AHHHHHH (the sounds of the heavens parting and sun shining on the guitar) Nirvana! Precise, smooth, accurate... did I say SMOOTH? Of course the 00028vs now has the same tuners. They are amazing.

I am not disappointed in the gold mini-Grovers on my Hummingbird 12 or the Grover Imperials on my SJ200 Golden Age to even consider replacing them, but if I had a stock Gibson J45, I would replace the Grovers with these instantly!

Waverly_Guitar_Tuners_with_Butterbean_Kn

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2 hours ago, Dave F said:

These Waverly’s dropped right in

Did that CS guitar start out with single, open-gear or the Rotos?

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Personally, I like the functionality & weight of Grovers.  I also like the kidney bean buttons on some guitars, but on others I've swapped out them out for nickel tulips - or a variety of buttons made by Hipshot including pearl tulips, small oval buttons, and large oval buttons.

I've kept the Klusons on any instruments that came with them, but have no desire to swap Grovers for Klusons. 

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