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  1. #1
    Les Paul Forum Member Broly's Avatar
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    Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Hi, I have a Memphis 335 and was wondering how difficult it would be to replace the stock Grovers with the vintage Kluson type tuners? Will the single screw hole on the grovers match up with the bottom Kluson screw hole? If so, I imagine that I would just have to drill the top holes???

    Also, the Grover ferrul bushings looks wider on the headstock face than the Klusons. Will this leave a ring mark if the Klusons are smaller?

    Any info is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks

    Broly
    Last edited by Broly; 05-31-07 at 04:39 PM. Reason: spelling

  2. #2
    Les Paul Forum Member pit_s_xroad's Avatar
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    Esseries Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Hi,

    that's what I did... nothing needs to be done except drilling the hole for the second mounting screw on the flipside of the headstock. This is very easy to be done... just mount the Kluson to the headstock with first screw in the already existing hole and the tuner's mounting plate shows you where the second one needs to be drilled automatically...

    I think there are some slight traces visible of the Grover bushings... I don't now out of my mind and I have the guitar not handy (I am at work)... but I don't mind them...

    You have to decide for yourself...

    before the mod:




    after the mod:






    I would do it always again... looks, feels and sounds much better...
    Greetings

    PIT...

  3. #3

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    As far as I know Grovers and Kluson normally don´t have the same size. I´ve heard many speak about the need for drilling a slightly larger hole before they could install their Grovers - if they had Klusons before. It would make the hole slightly too large if one do it the other way. Grover, however, have Kluson style tuners with the same size as their ordinary Rotomatics (Grovers 135N).

  4. #4
    Les Paul Forum Member Bob Womack's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Not to be negative at all, but this subject fascinates me. I tried to ignore it but it was like trying to keep your eyes off a roadside wreck on the way home - try it some time. Anyway, what fascinates me is that for years, it was virtually impossible to find a used Gibson with the Klusons still on it. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, changed their keys out to Grovers because they held tune so much better, especially when you were bending strings. There was all kinds of pressure from bandmates to "replace those stinkin' Klusons!"

    Now, mind you, for some reason, I never replaced mine. Just stubborn, I guess. But when I wrote a review of the ES335DOT reissue recently, I wrote that I thought inclusion of the Grovers was an interesting nod to inevitability.

    It's funny how style changes everything!

    Bob
    "It is said, 'Go not to the elves for counsel for they will say both no and yes.' "
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  5. #5
    All Access/Backstage Pass lpnv59's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    I put a set of Klusons on a J Page CA. It was a piece o' cake! Its true that the hole is larger to accomodate the Grover shaft. But Gibson doesn't drill a larger peg hole all the way through. Just the area that is necessary. So the Kluson bushings fit perfect. On the backside, the one Grover mounting screw lines up with the bottom Kluson mount. So you only have to drill the second if the guitar came stock with Grovers. The Page is made to look like the Grovers were added. So the 2nd hole was already drilled...thank you Gibson. I went back to the Grovers because they are by far more functionally superior to Klusons.
    "It's a Marshall bubby. It gets loud." Ace Frehley

  6. #6
    Les Paul Forum Member Bluespower's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    the Klusons open up the sound.
    A matter of taste, and a noticable difference in tone. Grovers were more focused and solid, Klusons more airy and vibrant to my ears.

  7. #7

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    I have had Gibsons with Grovers and with Klusons. Tuning stability has never been an issue with either one. Bob, you are obviously not making up stories, but I have not had any functionality issue with Klusons. Appearance-wise, I prefer Klusons (on a Gibson, anyway).

  8. #8

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    OLD Grovers sound better than new ones. I bought a set of patent pendings to put on my Clapton SG, which had Klusons and the tone is much, much better, as is the tuning.

    Conversely, I had a set of Korean Grovers on a LP Standard and I didn't like the tone. Too congested, if that makes any sense.

    If you tap on the old Grovers you get a "Ping." Tap on the new ones and you get a "Clack." The metal they're using is very dead sounding compared to the old ones. The old ones are also slightly lighter, too. It's too bad, because even the Korean Grovers hold the tuning better.

  9. #9
    Les Paul Forum Member RnB's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    I replaced the Grovers on my '85 Dot. I was an easy switch! However, I used the Kluson Style tuners (Gibson) that have the screw-down bushings, instead of the press-in type. Mine had some fairly big rings ('footprint') that were left behind by the old Grover washers on the hdstk, & I didn't want to look at them.

    I would think that if you were going to use the Vintage Style type of Kluson's, that you would need 'Conversion Bushings' to take up the difference in the tuner hole sizing, since Grovers are a 10mm (3/8") bore, and the vintage style are 11/32" in diameter. Whereas, the screw-down type fit right in w/o conversion bushings!

    TonePros make both types for retrofitting you guitars. Since the have bought the rights to 'Kluson', they have been re-designed for the better.... http://www.toneproskluson.com/models.html
    Last edited by RnB; 06-01-07 at 11:05 AM.

  10. #10
    Les Paul Forum Member RnB's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Duplicate Post...

  11. #11
    Les Paul Forum Member bluespckr's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Womack View Post
    Anyway, what fascinates me is that for years, it was virtually impossible to find a used Gibson with the Klusons still on it. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, changed their keys out to Grovers because they held tune so much better, especially when you were bending strings. There was all kinds of pressure from bandmates to "replace those stinkin' Klusons!"
    Bob

    Man, that's exactly what I was going to say, as I read through the posts. I have changed the tuners on every Gibson I owned to Grovers, beginning in '75. I always thought the stock tuners were cheapo looking and that Grovers just looked better, and did the job better.

    So, when I took the leap to buy my ES-335 earlier this year, I was ecstatic to think the thing came when Grovers already on the pegboard. So now, we have folks wanting to change them back to Klusons. Go figure. I'll leave mine be, with the Grovers.

  12. #12
    Les Paul Forum Member pit_s_xroad's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    ...with the exception of my R9 I always have equipped all my Gibsons with the vintage type press-in Klusons...

    CUSTOM, STANDARD, GEM, and an SG... all with the conversion-bits... only the ES335 do not need them... you can mount them out of the package with the stock-bits...

    They sound the most open... no screwing from the top and the bottom, so the headstock-wood gets not "squeezed"... they are leight-weight and look the best... for me...

    Tuning and handling never has been an issue for me...

    I never understood why people went for these heavy Rotomatics... they like their design in general much better than those boring Schaller stuff, but on the guitar they look too mighty IMHO...

    Greetings
    PIT...

  13. #13
    Les Paul Forum Member Broly's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Wow...didn't mean to stir up a debate here, but you all have brought up excellent points. My reason for wanting to change them is that I think they look much better than the "heavy" looking Grovers. I had Klusons on my R9 without any tuning stability problems.

    It seems as though several here agree that changing the tuneers causes a noticible change in tone. I think my guitars tone is awsome as is, so maybe I shouldn't mess with a good thing ???

    I'll have to give this some more thought.......

    Thanks for the replies fellas.

  14. #14
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    There were definitely problems with Klusons. They were poorly made and wore out quickly. Back in the 60's the only logical choice for most people was to switch to Grovers. The added mass of the Grovers does rob the guitar of some of it's natural dynamics and alter the harmonic structure of the guitar's timbre, but it replaces what it steals in tone, for focus and sustain. The Gotoh Kluson copies on the other had are as good as any die cast machines and they last much longer than Klusons. What's nice about them is they don't add excessive mass to the headstock, which allows the instrument to sound more naturally resonant, harmonically rich dynamic.

  15. #15
    Les Paul Forum Member RnB's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    The Gotoh Kluson copies on the other had are as good as any die cast machines and they last much longer than Klusons.
    I put a set of the Gotoh replacements on my 330, & although they function OK, I found that the string posts aren't all that long. Consequently, the string does not wind down the post, givin a steeper break angle at the nut.

    TonePros has added some length to the posts for more height and packed the innards w/ titanium parts w/ a 16:1ratio! For the weight-conscious...You stand to drop 5 or 6 oz. by losing the Grovers. The coloring of the buttons is also a creamier color rather than greenish button coloring on the Gotohs.

  16. #16

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    I can be wrong here, since every brand probably make many different sizes for their replacement tuners.

    But as far as I know the Gotoh Kluson style tuners normally have a 11/32" peghead hole, which makes them to direct replacements for Klusons vintage style tuners - no need for drilling when swapping out the old Klusons.

    For Grovers Rotomatics it was necessary to drill slightly bigger holes. Today however Grover makes a Kluson style replacement for guitars that has already been drilled for Grovers (135N) The hole size for those tuners are 25/64 - like Rotomatics.

    As said; I can be wrong since there are many different sizes, but if a guitar has been drilled for Grover Rotomatics, or had them stock, Grovers 135N seems to be a better choice if one wants a vintage look - because they are 25/64, like Grover Rotomatics.
    Last edited by young angus; 06-02-07 at 10:45 AM.

  17. #17
    All Access/Backstage Pass lpnv59's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    I don't know about the newer, imported Grovers. But with the older Rotomatics, it wasn't necessary to drill out the entire hole. The '60 burst I now own, had Grovers when the previous owner toured with it. Who ever did the install left 3/16th's to a 3/4 inch of the hole at the top untouched. This way, the original bushings still fit. Thats how the Page reissues are routed and I assume the Rossingtons. But usually back in the 70's, the practice was to just take a reamer and widen entire hole. To go back to Klusons, you had to either space out the original bushings with a little tape. Or have them plugged and redrilled. Usually the latter if the hole was too hogged out.

    I remember going back and forth on my '59. If I took it out of retirement, I'd go back to the Grovers because I liked the tone and playing feel. New Klusons IMO are functionally better than the old ones. Better turn ratio and smoother, more accurate action. The old ones had dead spots, for the lack of a better term. You would turn the peg and the pitch wouldn't change.....sorry, but the old ones are nowhere near as good as Grovers. The new Klusons are good enough to not change anything.
    "It's a Marshall bubby. It gets loud." Ace Frehley

  18. #18

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Billy, you meant "3/16ths to 1/4 inch" right? 3/4 of an inch is more than the thickess of the entire headstock.

    And a comment about the tone. I do believe they add focus and sustain and may be another reason people made the change back then. We have to remember, a LOT of the recorded tones of those famous axes were with Grovers installed.

  19. #19
    All Access/Backstage Pass lpnv59's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cream Fan View Post
    Billy, you meant "3/16ths to 1/4 inch" right? 3/4 of an inch is more than the thickess of the entire headstock.
    Yes, thats what I mean't. But thinking about it, a 1/4" is too much. On mine, it looks like about 1/8th - 3/16th's.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cream Fan View Post
    And a comment about the tone. I do believe they add focus and sustain and may be another reason people made the change back then. We have to remember, a LOT of the recorded tones of those famous axes were with Grovers installed.
    Thats an excellent point. In fact I'd say practically everyone of those solos that people hang on every note to, those notes were tuned to pitch by a Grover Rotomatic.
    Last edited by lpnv59; 06-02-07 at 01:16 PM.
    "It's a Marshall bubby. It gets loud." Ace Frehley

  20. #20

    Sg Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Hello Everyone.... I just joined this site so I could set the record straight on this matter...

    I recently ordered a pair of both Kluson Tone Pros (close outs, yes I know they do not make them anymore), as well as a set of Grover Deluxe 135's, to replace the Grover locking tuners on my 2017 SG Traditional.

    I hate to break this to you, but the lower holes do NOT line up on either one.

    Whoever is saying they do is lying.

    Luckily I had a set of Grover Tune-o-matics that I could throw on there and get away from those ridiculous locking tuners.

    Looks great, stays in tune great.

    One of these days I might go through the hassle of filling in the old hole and drilling another hole right next to it, but for now, I am going to stick with the Grovers....

    I have 20 Gibsons so I don't need a lecture.

    All this BS about tone ridiculous.

    If you are splitting hairs like that, you should probably take some time and learn to play better.

    I have had both Klusons and Grovers (I have 3 SGs)... you can't tell a diddly shit of a difference, and the Grovers are way higher quality.

    Cheers!

  21. #21
    All Access/Backstage Pass Wilko's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Shitty first post. For one thing:

    I've changed from Grovers to Kluson and Vice versa for over 30 years and never had a problem with the screws lining up. I'm a liar?

    Tone, if you don't understand how added mass can alter tone, then you should just keep your mouth shut because it's proven physics.

    F*ck off.
    Last edited by Wilko; 06-26-17 at 05:22 PM.

  22. #22

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    I've done that swap and had the holes line up perfectly....more than once....and will have to echo wilko's experience.

    There is virtually NOTHING different about the performance between grovers or kluson tuners.

    They both work well. If your guitar won't stay in tune with kluson's then you've got a problem with the nut or the bridge saddles.

    The grovers are are way heavier....and the kluson's are susceptible to the gear cover loosening which makes them function poorly. The added weight to the headstock can give you a change in your guitar's voice. It might not be a night and day change but it's noticeable.

    other than that....just go with what you like the look of. with the right tuner bushings either way is fine.

  23. #23
    Les Paul Forum Member PaulLaRue's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Just to clearify, I can buy modern Klusons to replace my 05 ES-335 Grovers and the Kluson bottom mounting screw hole will line up with the old Grover hole?
    I am not sure if some of the talk was about "50's style" Klusons sold as a different model?
    Been wanting to install Klusons on that guitar. Is there a specific Kluson Model # I should know about?
    I have been to their site and they make vintage style & stamped steel styles.
    Thanks.

  24. #24
    Les Paul Forum Member 1jamman's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    If you are doing a direct swap , IIRC which Grover's are stock, I think you need to get an adapter bushing for the existing whole they Grover's needed to be installed with . It downsizes the hole so the Klusons fit correctly . IIRC Grover's use a 10mm sized hole . But I only read all the posts here quickly so If I missed some info ... I stand corrected
    Then you just need to drill the 1 hole for the Klusons tuners 2nd screw on the back , But you could try it and see if it holds and is stable before doing it . If it works and stays in tune . you could skip that and if in the future do it if you find it's needed ...

  25. #25
    Les Paul Forum Member Bluespower's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    here we go...

    I have a late 60s ES 335TD that some one in 1970 or so had installed a set of Grover Futuros.
    And,
    I have an original set of Kluson Deluxe double ring tuners.
    When I attempted to change the Grovers out and reinstall the Klusons I found that original Kluson bushings wouldn't fit in the holes. The diameter is too wide. I believe the wood has swelled over the years.

    In my parts drawer I have a few different sets of bushings. I found a set that fit around the peg and also in the existing hole so Im using those.

    I'd like to use the original bushings as well but don't want to force them in the holes.

    Suggestions? Any one ever had this problem?

  26. #26

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluespower View Post
    I'd like to use the original bushings as well but don't want to force them in the holes.

    Suggestions?
    couldn’t you just ream the holes slightly larger until the bushings fit ?

  27. #27

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    I did years ago with a regular USA ES335 DOT, mainly because I felt it was a bit neck heavy. I went with the Grover Klusons with the screw-in bushings. Didn't really notice tonal differences but it was a bit lighter at the headstock. I ended up not really getting along with that guitar because of the thin neck profile, so I sold it.

    I see a lot about people replacing Klusons with Grovers on LP's not just for better tuning stability, but they feel the extra mass adds to sustain and such. My '13 R8 alreasdy resonates so well, especially along the neck that I wouldn't want to mess with it by reaming and putting Grovers on.
    "There's only two things wrong with you, and that's your face." - Greg Koch

  28. #28
    Les Paul Forum Member Gold Tone's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    This is an old thread but the same incorrect understanding keeps coming up year after year. Someone please explain what they mean by better tuning stability when changing tuners for said reason. It’s not clear what is meant since there is no association between tuner change and tuning stability. Do people mean finer tuning ability with higher gear ratio? That is not stability, that’s tuning ease.

    Please explain

    Thank you
    Last edited by Gold Tone; 06-05-20 at 10:49 PM.

  29. #29
    Les Paul Forum Member Gold Tone's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Womack View Post
    ...Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, changed their keys out to Grovers because they held tune so much better, especially when you were bending strings. There was all kinds of pressure from bandmates to "replace those stinkin' Klusons!"
    This for example, not trying to call out one of our long time LPFers, just as an example. There is no relationship between tuning stability and Kluson vs Grovers. These are “worm gears” you’d need an insane amount of force on the string to pull a worm gear! You’ll break the string 1st, if you had an unbreakable string you’d bend the tuner post or snap the headstock before that worm gear would move.

    Tuners don’t work the way people are thinking here.

    The issue with tuning stability is 100% always nut needing attention and/or method of winding strings on tuner post (too many windings allowing for slack and tuning instability)

  30. #30

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gold Tone View Post
    This is an old thread but the same incorrect understanding keeps coming up year after year. Someone please explain what they mean by better tuning stability when changing tuners for said reason. It’s not clear what is meant since there is no association between tuner change and tuning stability. Do people mean finer tuning ability with higher gear ratio? That is not stability, that’s tuning ease.

    Please explain

    Thank you
    I was just relaying what I read/heard but frankly I never noticed one staying in tune any better than the other. Maybe because the Kluson types I was using were in pretty good shape and not 40 yrs old and worn out or something. Even though the grovers certainly felt more sturdy if that contributes to anything over time.
    "There's only two things wrong with you, and that's your face." - Greg Koch

  31. #31
    Les Paul Forum Member Gold Tone's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    The tuners on my original 1957 TV Junior are the original strip tuners. The guitar has had heavy use for 63 years, tuners are stiff, plating worn off, one of the tuning pegs is a bit bent. I gigged that guitar many times including several years in a Stones tribute band.

    It holds tune perfectly

  32. #32

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gold Tone View Post
    The tuners on my original 1957 TV Junior are the original strip tuners. The guitar has had heavy use for 63 years, tuners are stiff, plating worn off, one of the tuning pegs is a bit bent. I gigged that guitar many times including several years in a Stones tribute band.

    It holds tune perfectly
    As I said, I've never had any tuning issues that I attributed to Kluson vs. Grovers, but many claim they did. Grovers definitely feel finer, or easier as you mentioned.
    "There's only two things wrong with you, and that's your face." - Greg Koch

  33. #33
    Les Paul Forum Member Gold Tone's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Not really directing question to you...just throwing it out there for all. Wanted to bring it up so people would rethink the conclusion that tuning instability is somehow related to tuners

    Agreed, Grovers can feel much smoother

  34. #34

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Have to admit, aesthetically I love the classic old Klusons too so I prefer to go with them if I can. My '13 R8 came with I think the TonePros made ones? they had the rounded post heads which just looked odd, so I changed them to Gotoh-made ones. Petty maybe but the Gotohs have always held up well for me.

    Has different resonant/dampening/etc. qualities between the two ever been a factor for you? I noticed it on a Les Paul, but not really on an ES.
    "There's only two things wrong with you, and that's your face." - Greg Koch

  35. #35
    Les Paul Forum Member Gold Tone's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Gotoh Klusons are very high quality Japanese made, no wonder you like them...me too. Very nice

    I notice a big difference in tone between the two. Both are good...I have Grovers on my main gigging R9 from 1999. The Grovers have a “harder” sound in a good way. The two are quite different in two ways that are tone effecting; the mass difference, and the way the tuners are held in place (Kluson only by the 2 screws, Grovers 1 screw and clamped on tight by the screw in bushing). It’s the way that they are held on that also has a big effect on tone

    I like them both but prefer Kluson in general. Though, as I said, my main gigger is Grover’d

  36. #36
    Les Paul Forum Member Bob Womack's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gold Tone View Post
    This for example, not trying to call out one of our long time LPFers, just as an example. There is no relationship between tuning stability and Kluson vs Grovers. These are “worm gears” you’d need an insane amount of force on the string to pull a worm gear! You’ll break the string 1st, if you had an unbreakable string you’d bend the tuner post or snap the headstock before that worm gear would move.

    Tuners don’t work the way people are thinking here.

    The issue with tuning stability is 100% always nut needing attention and/or method of winding strings on tuner post (too many windings allowing for slack and tuning instability)
    I should have been more clear: I was speaking to perception, not reality. My '74 LP still has its Klusons and tunes up just fine. The inevitability I mentioned was from peer pressure. Another factor in tuning stability is whether you tune tune upwards or downwards to pitch.

    Bob
    "It is said, 'Go not to the elves for counsel for they will say both no and yes.' "
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  37. #37

    Re: Anyone replace the Grovers with Klusons on their 335?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gold Tone View Post
    Gotoh Klusons are very high quality Japanese made, no wonder you like them...me too. Very nice

    I notice a big difference in tone between the two. Both are good...I have Grovers on my main gigging R9 from 1999. The Grovers have a “harder” sound in a good way. The two are quite different in two ways that are tone effecting; the mass difference, and the way the tuners are held in place (Kluson only by the 2 screws, Grovers 1 screw and clamped on tight by the screw in bushing). It’s the way that they are held on that also has a big effect on tone

    I like them both but prefer Kluson in general. Though, as I said, my main gigger is Grover’d
    Yeah, to me it was akin to the differences between a heavy tailpiece and an aluminum one, less apparent on a 335, but moreso on a Les Paul. The Grovers more focused in the lower-mids/mids and immediate on the attack, the Klusons more open and maybe a bit more 'elastic' on the attack. Probably depends on the guitar's natural qualities as well.
    Last edited by Minibucker; 06-15-20 at 10:52 PM.
    "There's only two things wrong with you, and that's your face." - Greg Koch

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