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Headstock too thick maybe?

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Surlycamera, Dec 29, 2015.

  1. Surlycamera

    Surlycamera TDPRI Member

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    Hey gang. I just joined up here to gain a little assistance with my build. I've been reading the forum for a while however. There's some great guitars around here. Anyhow, I'll probably start a thread just for my build but right now my issue is my tuning machine posts just barely poke out of the holes when assembled.
    [​IMG]
    I'll post a pic tomorrow but I've got a "Guitar Parts Zone" Tele style neck from a seller on that auction site we all love. I just drilled it for the alignment pins of my tuners. Fender sealed staggered style with the two pins.
    The two longer posts are okay but the other four are not. The string hole is barely visible above the retaining nut! The headstock thickness is .630! I'm reading here that the norm is closer to .550-.590?
    I wish I'd realized this before I drilled the holes. So what I'm asking is what are my options? Are there tuners with longer posts? I could trim the thickness of the neck but I bought it pre-finished. I can do wood and machine work but I avoid finishing mostly because I don't have a good space to do it. I could counterbore the holes so the washers and nuts are flush with the face of the headstock. That seems like a sort of ham-fisted approach, however. What do you guys think? Again, I'll post some pics tomorrow. Thanks.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2015
  2. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Telefied Ad Free Member

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  3. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Hi Surly, welcome. I, just this morning, ran into the same thing. Mine are not staggered, but definitely too short. My neck is also of mystery e-bay origin, measures .625" after finishing. The difference between this and .590" is only about 1/32" so that shouldn't make much of a difference. I'll be watching to see what people say.

    I checked the Stew-Mac website; they show the shaft height, but do not offer more than one size, so what's up with that.
     
  4. Surlycamera

    Surlycamera TDPRI Member

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    Thanks for the replies. I added a couple of pics to the first post. You can see that the longer posts are on the edge of being too short. I should have measured the lengths last night but I was getting tired. I do have a set of vintage Kluson style tuners I could check for size reference. I can't use them as they are lefties. Like I said before I wish I would have known this before I drilled. Now I'll have holes showing if I use a different style like the Gotoh's Guitarbuilder linked. I don't know what the washer and nut thicknesses are but at 1.075 long that should leave .445" sticking out. That seems like plenty. I'll have to see what all the measurements are when I get home. By the way, are those tuners 42 bucks each? Man, I hope not.
     
  5. brewsterallen

    brewsterallen Tele-Meister

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    I have the same problem with my build. Must be an epidemic of luthier proportions. I have Hipshot tuners with the upgrade kit that are staggered. Won't fit the headstock that's like 1mm too thick. What fresh Hell is this?
     
  6. GearHund

    GearHund Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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    "I have Hipshot tuners with the upgrade kit that are staggered. Won't fit the headstock"

    I'm working on a build now that has that exact problem with those same tuners. Not sure what I'm going to do about it yet.
     
  7. Ripthorn

    Ripthorn Friend of Leo's

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    To be honest with you, I like the look of the recessed washer and bushing on the headstock. It's a more modern look than might suit many tele purists. Getting new tuners would be the way I would fix it if I didn't feel like recessing the bushings. However, there is nothing ham-fisted about it, it's all the rage in other guitar building circles, but those circles are usually very pointy and loud :)
     
  8. Surlycamera

    Surlycamera TDPRI Member

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    Loud and pointy eh? Those are my people! \m/ I like all kinds of music but metal is close to my heart. This Tele will be far from traditional. I probably didn't mention it will have dual humbuckers. Anyway...
    I Googled recessed tuner bushing and didn't see much. The few I did see looked pretty good. This has me thinking. I'll have to poke around and see if I can find a suitable cutter. I'm not opposed to spending a little more money for new tuners or on tools but I doubt I'd use that counterbore tool again if I bought one. I think my dad may have one though; I'd just have to make a suitable pilot. This may be an option.

    The tuner posts are 1.03 for the two long ones and about .925 for the short ones. My lefty Kluson copies are right about 1.00 just for reference. If I remove the washer and nut (bushing), the string area is just flush with the headstock face. The thickness of the nut and washer combined is .125. So if I entertain the idea of modifying things rather than new parts I have to remove about an eighth inch of wood. Either one face or the other, or counterbores. I would think the string side is out of the question with the nice contrasting truss rod hole wood. I considered removing it from the back and touching up the finish. Or maybe paint it black? I also thought about trying to take one of these machines apart to see if making longer posts is an option (I'm a machinist).

    There appears to be a few long enough at Stewmac that would work but the holes I already drilled will show. Maybe if I talk sweet to the tool grinders at work they could make me a step drill to counterbore those holes...
    That's sounding better all the time.
     
  9. Ripthorn

    Ripthorn Friend of Leo's

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    You don't need a counterbore. Counterbores are for very high precision metalworking. They are simply convenience to woodworking folk. What I would do is glue in a little bit of dowel, maybe only 1/4" thick that is about flush with the front face. Then use a Forstner bit the right size to drill on center. Then drill with a 10mm bit the rest of the dowel out. That would require no expensive tooling. Of course, if you know someone with a large counterbore, go for it, but I personally wouldn't buy one just for this job.
     
  10. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

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    I might point out... many aftermarket neck makers produce 'em with thicker headstocks... the reason.. the added mass at the headstock resists the string's tendency to dissipate energy into the neck, causing the neck to vibrate... energy making the neck vibrate will be doing little else to the overall quality of sound..

    the results are an improved sustain, and increased volume... many simply call it "better tone"... but such verbiage assignment is subjective... the increased sustain and increased volume are definitive..

    but if your tuners don't work.. well just damn... there are some non staggered Schallers and Gotohs that have longer posts. might be worth a shot..

    Just so ya know...

    Ron Kirn
     
  11. Surlycamera

    Surlycamera TDPRI Member

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    Ripthorn - Good point. I'm a machinist by trade but I've only been interested in woodworking for a few years. Also, I pretty much stick to hand tools for most things involving wood. I really like your suggestion for plugging and then double drilling. No special tools. I think that's what I'd try but...I found a counterbore in the tool crib that's pretty much the right size. They'll let me take it home and use it over the weekend and return it on Monday!

    Ronkirn - Thank you, I appreciate you sharing your knowledge. Excellent points about the benefits of thicker stock for the neck. By the way, your guitars are beautiful.

    I checked and the posts are long enough if the washers and bushings are recessed and with the tool that won't cost me anything (as long as I don't break it) I think I can get this dialed in over the weekend. An added benefit is they will be plenty low so string trees shouldn't be necessary.
    I'll report back with pics and let you all know how it went.
    Be safe tonight!
     
  12. Peltogyne

    Peltogyne Friend of Leo's

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    There are at least 2 more options besides a counter bore bit and replugging. The replugging I would be worried about keeping all 6 counter bores in line.

    #1 use a drill press. Use a bit that fits the current hole to line up the headstock on the table, clamp headstock, switch to forstner bit to cut perfectly concentric counterbore. Getting the depth right can be a bit tricky with switching bits.

    #2 Use a router. Make a simple template with tuner holes the size of the counter bore. Line it up right and route the counterbores. I like this method as it's easy to perfectly align the holes with each other and get the depths perfect.
     
  13. Surlycamera

    Surlycamera TDPRI Member

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    Peltogyne - Thanks for the tips.

    The problem is solved.
    [​IMG]
    The piloted counterbore I got from work was the perfect size. I had some issues holding the depth consistent from hole to hole. It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools they say so let's just say I have learned the limits of my drill press. I'm pretty sure this will be 100% functional now.
    [​IMG] Close up.
    [​IMG]
    I need to add a little finish in the holes but otherwise, it's taken care of. I could always plug them if I decide I don't like it or want to change tuners. The counterbore dia. is only a few thousandths bigger than the washer so a plug would only barely show if I used the same washers.
    Thank you to everyone for your input.
    I started a build thread for this guitar for anyone interested.
    http://www.tdpri.com/forum/tele-home-depot/604808-first-guitar-build-orange-hh.html
     
  14. Ripthorn

    Ripthorn Friend of Leo's

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    Looks great!
     
  15. Surlycamera

    Surlycamera TDPRI Member

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    Just like you said it would! Thanks.
     
  16. nofrets

    nofrets Tele-Meister

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    Never seen this before - that's a nice look. Hope you don't mind if I file it away for later reuse...
     
  17. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Surly, looks great, nice job. Boy, that sure looks like the exact same neck I'm working on. I'll check out your other thread.
     

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  18. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Surly, how's it coming?
     
  19. Mojotron

    Mojotron Poster Extraordinaire

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    I always shoot for .625 for the headstock thickness (for all the reasons Ron mentioned) - and those are nice tuners: They seemingly just don't go together that well. That solution worked out really well!
     
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