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Strap locks for Les Paul


Ren
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Hello everyone on the forum. My first post (inspired by my purchase yesterday of a standard Les Paul in cherry sunburst!!!!!!. Second time around though as I bought a Les Paul Custom back in 76 but sold it to go to India to find my navel (which I did!) though looking back I really wish I'd found a way to keep the guitar as theyr're now 3.5K!

 

Anyway, my question: when I picked up the guitar I asked the dealer for some strap locks and he sold me some Schaller ones. However, upon removing one of the original Gibson ones, I found that the thread diameter on the Schaller ones is a little smaller. I therefore did not fit them in fear of them stripping the original thread.

 

Can someone please tell me what alternative I can use.

 

Thanks for any advice.

 

Cheers, Ren.

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You have several options, I think.

 

1. See if you can make your straplocks work with the original screws.

 

or

 

2. Fill the original screw holes with plastic wood and re-drill them for your strap lock screw size.

 

or

 

3. Use the old carpenter's trick for sizing down wood screw holes - drop some carpenter's glue in the hole, drop in a couple of wood toothpicks trimmed to the same depth as the hole, install the new, slightly smaller screw, allow to dry overnight before putting any load on it. (Yes, it works.)

 

or

 

4. See if another brand of straplock has the same screw size as your originals

 

or

 

5. Forget the straplock and install a big stainless steel washer between the original strap holder and the body. (Not elegant, but it works too.)

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With straplocks the screw size for the tail pin (the one at the very back of the guitar) is often hit or miss with Gibsons. It used to be that either Schaller or Dunlops would go on the Gibson USA models with no problem, but the Historic Reissues always had a larger screw at the tail of the guitar. Use a little carpenter's glue and a couple of toothpicks as suggested, although the other suggestions work fine as well. Remember that straplocks need maintenance too. With Schallers, usually they will loosen on the strap, so check that regularly; or put a tiny drop of threadlock on when you tighten the nut. Dunlops have a push button and ball bearings that lock the strap to the guitar. The ball bearings can get dirty and jam, so you put the pin in, let go and wham the guitar drops. So you need to keep Dunlops clean and oiled so the work properly. I prefer Schallers because the U shaped cup acts as a failsafe if the pin does not engage. With Dunlops, you can accidently hit the button and cause them to release unexpectedly.

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Thanks to everyone who has responded. Now I know the score. Think I'm going to go down the toothpick lane.

 

Just seems a shame and surprises me that Gibson themslves don't address this problem and that I'm left to bodge a solution (though I appreciate it can be done nicely).

 

Thanks again to everyone.

 

Ren.

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Be careful of the rubber backing. A lot of rubber materials will eat into the nitrocellulose finish. Do you know if those are nitro safe? Also a normal guitar strap will rub through the finish in time. Even if they are nitro safe, those rubber pads will wear through the finish eventually.

I should have mentioned that I also use a plastic (Dunlop made I think) strap lock that goes on the end of the pin after the strap. You then rotate it 180 degrees to lock it. They have a little loop on them and I tie a little piece of ribbon through the hole in the strap and the loop on the lock, so they are always there ready to use. I started using these, when I decided I didn't want to plug the larger holes in my CS LPs.

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The Planet Waves strap is a cool idea, but you have to use their strap, which I don't like. I have soft leather strap that I really like so the PW's are out of the question, at least for me. Besides, the Schallers were only 15 bucks plus they are all metal. Great strap lock idea though. Those Planet Waves guys ... always thinking :(/

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I hear you... For me the Planet Waves works as I only use it for when I am practicing at home or at my guitar class... I suppose if I get a nice expensive strap later on I will get the clip over the top of the strap type... I just don't see making modifications to the guitar as an option...

 

Dave

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Raptor I have a set of those as well the round ones as opposed to the pick shaped dunlops but I do not know the brand so I could not find a picture/link.

 

I bought the round ones at Gruhn but hey seem to be an off brand, the dunlop version seems sturdier but I definitely like the round shape with the slot much better.

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Use the screw that came off the Les Paul....use a bench grinder to remove a tad bit on the entire diameter of the screw, just enough so it will fit thru the Schaller button & your set. The amount that you have to take off the screw head is minimal.

 

When done, you have the original Gibson screw holding in your new Schaller strap locks. Works perfectly & there is no way the modified screw will pull thru the button as you have only taken of a small amount of the screw head.

 

Did it on my Epiphone Les Paul & it works perfect. The screw size is exactly the same on the Gibson.

 

Anyhoo...for what it's worth.

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All this talk about straplocks made me realize that I had a bunch of guitars sitting around without them. Went to Guitar Center and bought 5 sets of Schallers. On the two Gibsons that I installed them on, I did reduce the hole size with glued-in toothpicks at the bottom of the body. The Fenders use the same size screws at both locations.

 

Another thing to note about Schallers vs Dunlops:

 

To remove the Schallers you have to PULL the spring-loaded pin - something that is impossible to achieve unless you intend to do it.

 

To remove the Dunlops you PUSH the spring-loaded pin - something that can be done inadvertently.

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