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Post new topic 60 year old tuning machines
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Author Topic:  60 year old tuning machines
Nic Neufeld


From:
Kansas City, Missouri
Post  Posted 7 Nov 2018 5:42 am    
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Hi all...just received my "new" guitar thanks to a forumite, the "Jules" style Magnatone doubleneck. Awaiting a set of strings but so far loving it!

The tuners are workable but a bit stiff. Before I restring it...anybody have any recommendations on lubricating them? Stuff to avoid, etc? They look like Klusons, individual mounts...
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60s Fender 400 (A7), '57 Stringmaster (C13/B11/E13), SX 8-string lap, Republic tricone
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Nic Neufeld


From:
Kansas City, Missouri
Post  Posted 7 Nov 2018 5:47 am    
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Forgot to mention...I think I have "Blaster" dry lube, 3 in 1 dry lube, and of course WD40 on hand.
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60s Fender 400 (A7), '57 Stringmaster (C13/B11/E13), SX 8-string lap, Republic tricone
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Jack Hanson


From:
San Luis Valley, USA
Post  Posted 7 Nov 2018 6:26 am    
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Pull them off the instrument and soak them in naptha (a/k/a Ronsonol) overnight. Then flush them numerous times with clean naptha dispensed in a pipette or similar device until the naptha runs clear.

Some folks swear by dry lubricant, but I've used both white lithium grease (marketed by LaBelle and sold in hobby shops for lubing electric trains) and petroleum jelly (Vaseline), both with great success. Give the newly lubed tuners multiple rotations with a string winder and you should be set for another 60 years or so.

I've refurbished dozens of old Kluson Deluxe tuners using the above method.

Have fun with your Maggie!
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Michael Maddex


From:
Northern New Mexico, USA
Post  Posted 7 Nov 2018 8:16 am    
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Nic: some good advice there from Jack.

Jack Hanson wrote:
... Some folks swear by dry lubricant, but I've used both white lithium grease (marketed by LaBelle and sold in hobby shops for lubing electric trains) and petroleum jelly (Vaseline), both with great success. ...


Jack: I am interested to hear you say that. I have always used Petroleum Jelly on small gears. After reading all the Posts on the Forum extolling the Dry Silicon Lubes, I felt like I had better get some or be left in the Nineteenth Century. If I haven´t rushed to the Hardware Store before, maybe I´m in no hurry now.

Nic: Like Jack said, Enjoy the Maggie! Cool
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"For every expert, there is an equal and opposite expert." -- Arthur C. Clarke
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Paul Honeycutt


From:
Colorado, USA
Post  Posted 7 Nov 2018 6:52 pm    
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https://www.stewmac.com/How-To/Trade_Secrets/How_to_clean_and_lube_dirty_old_guitar_tuners.html
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Dave Mudgett


From:
Central Pennsylvania
Post  Posted 7 Nov 2018 10:04 pm    
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My method is basically the same as Dan Erlewine's in the video Paul linked. Flush with Naptha (e.g., Ronsonol) to clear the gunk out and lube with a drop of machine oil followed by Tri-Flow Superior Lubricant in the 2 oz. bottle. I find lithium grease hardens over time. I think vaseline would do the same thing, but I've never tried it. I described my approach in this recent thread - https://bb.steelguitarforum.com/viewtopic.php?p=2776522

If the tuners turn reasonably before doing this, this ought to work OK. But not all tuners are salvageable - I sometimes need to put on repros, bagging the originals in the case for the "purist" if I ever sell or trade the guitar.
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Nelson Checkoway


From:
Massachusetts, USA
Post  Posted 8 Nov 2018 10:21 am    
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Nic - I just faced the same issue with the Magnatone G65 8-string I recently picked up. I found the following link which recommended Lubriplate lithium grease (I picked up a tube on Amazon for about 8 bucks). It also has some good general advice about tuner maintenance.

http://www.lutherie.net/tuner.maintenance.2.html

So far so good- the one really bad tuner loosened up considerably. I would stay away from WD-40 - I made that mistake with my Emmons double neck undercarriage many years ago. It just congealed to a brown goo that I'm still scraping off and dissolving with alcohol. Yuck!
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Keith Glendinning


From:
United Kingdom
Post  Posted 8 Nov 2018 12:32 pm    
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WD 40 is a "Release Agent" and not a lubricant. If you do use it to free up any parts, you must wipe off the residue and use an appropriate lubricant afterwards. I've always found SMALL amounts 3 in 1 oil to be successful. Again, not too much and wipe away any run off. The tuners must be well "exercised" after the lubrication.
Hope this helps,
Keith.
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Nic Neufeld


From:
Kansas City, Missouri
Post  Posted 8 Nov 2018 12:36 pm    
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Thanks all...I included WD40 for completeness, I'm well aware of it's infamy from Fender pedal steel folks...cleaning up a 400 is why I had naphtha and all the dry lubes on hand. We'll give it a go!
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60s Fender 400 (A7), '57 Stringmaster (C13/B11/E13), SX 8-string lap, Republic tricone
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Jim Sliff


From:
Lawndale California, USA
Post  Posted 12 Nov 2018 7:41 pm    
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Quote:
extolling the Dry Silicon Lubes,


NO - Dry TEFLON lubes. Not silicone.

Silicones, petroleum jelly and oils ALL attract dirt and break down over time. And WD-40 is a "dirty" solvent meant only for water displacement - not lubrication. Use dry Teflon lube. Dry - not the oil type.

However, if possible I suggest removing old, low ratio tuners (8:1, 10:1 etc and storing them in case you ever sell the guitar - and replace them for normal use with 18:1 (or close) tuners - as long as you can find ones that fit the existing mounting holes.
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No chops, but great tone
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Nic Neufeld


From:
Kansas City, Missouri
Post  Posted 13 Nov 2018 7:05 am    
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Jim, honestly, if it wasn't for the $130 price tag for 16 new tuners, I think I'd do that...and may, eventually. Tuners are still really stiff. Broke the platic shaft of a cheap tuning winder when tuning up! I'd keep the originals but this one is to be a gigging instrument, not a museum piece. I really dig the tone so far, really cutting in a band context...even with a cheap/tiny 5 watt Bugera tube amp it hung with a full band, sax guitar bass drums and vocals, crazily enough.
_________________
60s Fender 400 (A7), '57 Stringmaster (C13/B11/E13), SX 8-string lap, Republic tricone
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