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Thread: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

  1. #1

    Smile Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    Has anyone experience of the Golden Age tuners for a teens Gibson mandolin.

    I fitted a set to an old 1919 F4 and found them very tight.

    If I slightly bend the main frame it it seems marginely better but when I fitted a set of Schallers (temporarily as they don't look right on this mandolin and also stick out too much) they fitted much better.

    Just wondered if others had any issues.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    Stew-mac makes two models of Golden Age tuners for F style mandolins. The shaft spacing is different, because the standard spacing for tuner shafts changed during the 1920's. The earlier spacing is approximately 15/16". The later spacing is 29/32", and is still the standard spacing for modern instruments. The difference sounds small, but it causes exactly the kind of problems that you are describing.

    The #2522 "Restoration" tuners with scalloped-end base plates are made for the earlier mandolins, such as your 1919 F-4. The arrow-end #2509 and 2510 tuners are made for mandolins built after the early 1920's, and will not work well on your instrument. Neither will any other modern tuner.

    I have installed several sets of Golden Age Restoration tuners on old oval hole Gibsons with good results.

    If you bought the #2509 or 2510 tuners, see if Stew-mac will take a return on them and order a set of #2522 tuners. I will be surprised if that does not solve your problems.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    Thanks so much RCC. I biught these tuners second hand in UK and they had been on a 1929 mandolin. Seems i have to try and find suitable ones. Buying another set from Stewmac seems to add to the cost. However, that is my problem.

    At least I know now. Once again, the Cafe helps. Brilliant.

    Pity HANDEL TUNERS BUTTONS ARE SO EXPENSIVE.

    Regards

    Jimmy

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    As far as I know, the Stew-mac restoration tuners are the only tuners currently being made that will correctly fit these old mandolins. Those of us who own or repair these instruments waited a very long time for replacement tuners with the right post spacing to become available. Look at it this way-- $100 is not a bad price to pay to put an end to wrestling with trying to get your nice old mandolin in tune.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    If they fitted a 1929 Gibson, they’re the wrong ones for a teens model. In fact, the GAs which will fit [most] 1925 and newer mandolins are [were?] pretty dire. I had a set which came on my Clark GBOM and they’re now in the bin.

    I bought a set of the “Restoration” tuners for my ‘14 A, which dropped right in, and they’re fine. In fact, unless you can find someone to build you a custom set or you’re prepared to do a surgical job with some others, they’re the only ones you can use. What I really could do with is a set of “old looking” tuners for my ‘24 ish Snakehead - it just looks wrong with a set of Schallers on; but at least it’s easier to keep in tune!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    I simply used any tuner for my '22. No they did not fit correctly, so I cut the plate in the center of each screw hole. It allowed the spacing to be correct and the screw still held the plate on. I did not want to modify my mandolin and at the time there was nothing else available. Since pricing for you to get new tuners with the correct spacing is high, this is an alternative to the tuners you have.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    Hi Pops 1. Nice to see someone using initiative. Yes it seems I need the Pre 1920' ones so one way or another I'll get them.

    Thanks to all

    Jimmy

  8. #8
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Golden Age Tuners on old Gibson

    Quote Originally Posted by pops1 View Post
    I simply used any tuner for my '22. No they did not fit correctly, so I cut the plate in the center of each screw hole. It allowed the spacing to be correct and the screw still held the plate on. I did not want to modify my mandolin and at the time there was nothing else available. Since pricing for you to get new tuners with the correct spacing is high, this is an alternative to the tuners you have.
    I just read Frank Ford give this same advice to someone on another forum. I wouldn't have ever thought to do it on my own.

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