View Full Version : Tuner advice neded

major brown eye
Apr-09-2004, 9:35am
I have an old framus which would benefit from some new machine heads.

As I live in Spain where they have no idea what a mandolin is I will have to get them mail order.

Can anyone advise where to go and how to specify what I require to save time on the trial and error process?

Any advice gratefully received.


Daniel Nestlerode
Apr-09-2004, 1:58pm
You can get replacement tuners from Stewart McDonald (http://www.stewmac.com), or Luthier's Merchantile International (http://www.lmii.com), or any number of places really. The problem you're going to encounter is that the screw holes may not line up with the ones on your present tuning machines. A bigger problem may be that the string posts are on your replacement tuners are set to different spacing than the holes in your Framus.

I'm thinking your best bet is to send it to a good repair person in the UK or the US.

Good luck!


major brown eye
Apr-09-2004, 9:02pm
Cheers Dan,

I was wondering about the post spacings more than anything else. The problem I have is that I cannot afford the time involved in sending my baby away. She is working regularly and I have no spare. You can imagine the fun I have when I break string on stage. "Go get your beers in while I change this...."

The issue of the screw holes is not great, a bit of scarring on the back of the headstock doesn't bother me, but thanks for pointing it out. I will check out the sites you quoted.


Apr-11-2004, 11:58am
Major, here's everything that I think I know about tuning gears--
The pre-1920 post spacing spec's seem to have been 29/32 and the modern ones are 15/16.
Post heights I am not sure of. Your Framus should be 15/16 I would assume, so you should have no problem. Measure them carefully. It does not seem like much, but it really makes a big difference.

major brown eye
Apr-12-2004, 4:04pm
Thanks for the info.

A couple of further questions...

I presume you are talking about fifteen sixteenths of an inch. I would have to convert that to metric as I will probably buy within Europe. Or maybe not!

Another thought, would it be possible to put some individual machine heads from a guitar on there? I may be lucky and find somewhere that would sell 8 or buy 2 sets of 6 and have 4 spares. I would prefer to have closed gear tuners, I have found them better when having to flatten off the note Currently I have to tune below and come back up in order to maintain the tension.

I am beginning to wonder if the problem is actually the tuners or temperature changes. I frequently have to go outdoors to hear what I am doing because of the ambient noise in the venues we play, or even when using an electronic tuner I pick up the noise of the other band instruments through mine. When I return from a colder environment it quickly goes out of tune.

Anyone have any experience or tips?

Apr-12-2004, 4:27pm
Intellitouch tuner??? Works great even in noisy environs and you can change the reference A note to European standard pitch rather than a=440.

Apr-12-2004, 8:13pm
Major, yes it is in inches. Schallers would probably be just what you need. Measure yours first though and check the spec's of the new ones.
As far as individual tuners go, I guess you could do that if you really wanted to. I have seen it done before. I don't like it, but that's just my personal view.
Mike suggested the Intellitouch tuner. I agree. I really like them. No need to step outside if you have an Intellitouch.