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Gibson loses tuning (76' Gibson Les Paul Pro Deluxe)


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Hi all!

 

I own a great 76' Gibson Les Paul Pro Deluxe. I use 0.011 strings on it and it sounds awesome.

 

The thing is that the guitar loses tuning a lot while playing. I think that the G string is the most problematic one, but actually few of them are out of tunes after playing, sometime even after 1 minute of playing.

It happens even if I don't bend the strings at all - and it's really hard to play like that.

 

I took the guitar to someone who counted as a real professional, and after he did a major setup - he told me it won't happen again - but it does.

 

I must mention that all of the parts of the guitar, except the bridge, are original.

 

Any idea why does it lose tune? maybe I should replace the tuning keys?

 

Thanks in advance :)

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Hello Igoren!

 

Yes, it's always the G string. Maybe it's still sticking after setup? Do You hear "ping" when You tuning it?

 

Cheers... Bence

 

It tunes normally, i don't hear special sounds or something. but it's not only the G. the thing is that it loses the tune very fast after tuning it.

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Make sure your strings are well stretched onto your posts!

 

When I re string I tune the guitar then physically pull the strings to stretch them and tighten them onto the posts'!

 

I then Retune and repeat until its stays in tune!! Some guitars take a few good pulls and retunes before they settle down!

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Much common sense prevails when there are tuning issues... [biggrin]

 

Many players are out of tune after one song...hence the constant adjustments when performing...

 

11's are slightly up on the generally standard 10's on LP's etc...therefore thicker at the nut...

 

Graphite or special nut-lube can be worth using...or even widening the slots by a pro...

 

The 'wound 3rd' can be an issue for obvious reasons compared to a usual single strand on 10's and 9's...

 

Personally I don't care that much...and just live with it... [biggrin]

 

V

 

:-({|=

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Much common sense prevails when there are tuning issues... [biggrin]

 

Many players are out of tune after one song...hence the constant adjustments when performing...

 

11's are slightly up on the generally standard 10's on LP's etc...therefore thicker at the nut...

 

Graphite or special nut-lube can be worth using...or even widening the slots by a pro...

 

The 'wound 3rd' can be an issue for obvious reasons compared to a usual single strand on 10's and 9's...

 

Personally I don't care that much...and just live with it... [biggrin]

 

V

 

:-({|=

 

Good answer :) but when rehearsing with the band it's disturbing. I have to pause after almost every song and to re-tune. not even talking about bending strings during the song. It can be very annoying.

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It surely must be the tuners - you might find looking at them closely there are screws you can tighten. It's worth trying; tighten all visible screws on one tuner (except the one holding it in the wood of the headstock)and see, it could solve the problem. It would make the tuners tighter to turn but that would be ok. I have done this on one of my guitars with good results. If you take it apart be very careful as there are some very tiny washers in there.

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It surely must be the tuners - you might find looking at them closely there are screws you can tighten. It's worth trying; tighten all visible screws on one tuner (except the one holding it in the wood of the headstock)and see, it could solve the problem. It would make the tuners tighter to turn but that would be ok. I have done this on one of my guitars with good results. If you take it apart be very careful as there are some very tiny washers in there.

 

Thanks. I tried that few times. It did make it harder to tune, but didn't really solve the issue. It only made the guitar harder to re-tune :)

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I'd say the usual suspects are strings not fully stretched, followed by improper tuning technique. Such as not tuning up to the note, (someone mentioned strecthing or bending between adjustments...that's along the lines of "proper")

 

Then, the next likely culprits are usually the nut, followed by the bridge. It's the same issue really, but more common with nuts. If the strings bind on the nut or bridge saddles, they slip or vibrate to a difference place as you play or stretch.

 

To check for that, play the string and press down above the nut, and see if it returns to pitch when you let go. See also if it returns to pitch when you bend it below the nut or stretch it. You can get an idea or feel for it that way. If it is consistantly ending up at different pitches, you could use some work there.

 

You can do the same thing behind the bridge, but in addition, check to see if the saddles are moving. Sometimes they get warn and will have play, and stretching and releasing will have them settle in a different place each time. Often, you can get rid of that by changing the angle of the string over it, like lowering the tailpiece so the pressure remains at an angle forward rather than straight across.

 

How to check for bad tuners, I don't know. I have encountered all these other problems before, but never had a guitar that wouldn't hold tune because of the tuners, so I don't know how you would know or check for it. Usually a bad tuner to me is one that gets a lot of "lash" and makes it harder to tune, but never had any that slip once you tune "up" on it. (as in tune UP to pitch)

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I'd say the usual suspects are strings not fully stretched, followed by improper tuning technique. Such as not tuning up to the note, (someone mentioned strecthing or bending between adjustments...that's along the lines of "proper")

 

Then, the next likely culprits are usually the nut, followed by the bridge. It's the same issue really, but more common with nuts. If the strings bind on the nut or bridge saddles, they slip or vibrate to a difference place as you play or stretch.

 

To check for that, play the string and press down above the nut, and see if it returns to pitch when you let go. See also if it returns to pitch when you bend it below the nut or stretch it. You can get an idea or feel for it that way. If it is consistantly ending up at different pitches, you could use some work there.

 

You can do the same thing behind the bridge, but in addition, check to see if the saddles are moving. Sometimes they get warn and will have play, and stretching and releasing will have them settle in a different place each time. Often, you can get rid of that by changing the angle of the string over it, like lowering the tailpiece so the pressure remains at an angle forward rather than straight across.

 

How to check for bad tuners, I don't know. I have encountered all these other problems before, but never had a guitar that wouldn't hold tune because of the tuners, so I don't know how you would know or check for it. Usually a bad tuner to me is one that gets a lot of "lash" and makes it harder to tune, but never had any that slip once you tune "up" on it. (as in tune UP to pitch)

 

Thank you. I will do those tests, although the nut was replaced in the last setup by someone who is well known as a very professional guitar builder.

 

About the poor tuning - I think I tune it alright, you know.. but maybe I'm wrong and I do something not as I should. Is there a link to a good tuning guide?

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Quick and easy and inexpensive thing to try - rub some pencil graphite in the G strings nut slot (geez that sounds dirty). That should free the string up from sticking in the slot which is probably what's happening. I re-apply pencil graphite in all the nut slots after a string change and never have a tuning problem.

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Quick and easy and inexpensive thing to try - rub some pencil graphite in the G strings nut slot (geez that sounds dirty). That should free the string up from sticking in the slot which is probably what's happening. I re-apply pencil graphite in all the nut slots after a string change and never have a tuning problem.

 

Aggreed. You should always clean and relube your nut after every string change. You should lube the bridge where the string contacts the saddles too.

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to check if a tuning machine/key is gone bad or going,

when you change strings, remove the nut from the top of the tuner,

and if the post has a lot of play, it may be time to get new ones.

also too many winding's on the post can cause it to take a while to set,

too little winding's can cause it to slip.

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One other thing you can check. A friend has an old LP with a zillion miles on it. He's discovered that there seems to be play in the bridge posts. He's planning to have a new bridge with larger posts installed by a luthier. He's been fighting tuning issues for over a year and has replaced everything else. He's a professional musician, so his ability to install strings and tune properly is not a factor.

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One other thing you can check. A friend has an old LP with a zillion miles on it. He's discovered that there seems to be play in the bridge posts. He's planning to have a new bridge with larger posts installed by a luthier. He's been fighting tuning issues for over a year and has replaced everything else. He's a professional musician, so his ability to install strings and tune properly is not a factor.

 

I have herd of players using plummer's teflon tape around the post threads to tighten it up.

it seems a lot of these posts are a bit loose, and not machined with a tighter tolerance.

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1360805572[/url]' post='1327962']

One other thing you can check. A friend has an old LP with a zillion miles on it. He's discovered that there seems to be play in the bridge posts. He's planning to have a new bridge with larger posts installed by a luthier. He's been fighting tuning issues for over a year and has replaced everything else. He's a professional musician, so his ability to install strings and tune properly is not a factor.

 

I had that same problem with the Les Paul bridge and fixed it using the method your friend suggested. However, most of my turning problems seem to occur at the nut I have never changed machine heads on a guitar even the ones that were 50 years old.

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Check the nut yourself. Make sure the strings slip through without binding. I've had that problem with my Chet CG.

Find something thin enough to lay in the slot and make sure it has a slight tilt down towards the tuners. Straight is not good. I've had that problem.

I now own a nice set of nut saws to fix these problems.

 

 

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