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Thread: Grover Rotomatic swap

  1. #1

    Grover Rotomatic swap

    Hi all, this is spinning from the the discussion that closes this thread, but I thought it rather easier to start a new one more relevant to the topic: http://www.letstalkguild.com/ltg/sho...-III-90/page11

    Unsatisfied with the slippage in my Grovers and not crazy about the look, I decided to look for alternatives and hit on two that claimed to be vintage styled tuners that could fit a Rotomatic holes:

    1. Grover Vintage Deluxe
    https://www.grotro.com/Grover/VINTAG...age-135-Series
    https://www.grotro.com/Grover/VINTAG...uxe-136-Series

    I bought the 136 as I prefer the button tuners. Both only available in nickel or gold.

    2. Gotoh SX510
    https://g-gotoh.com/international/pr...y/sx510-series

    Also, only available in nickel or gold with two different button types.

    The Gotoh are harder to find and about 80% more expensive. Both advertise as drop in replacements for the Rotomatic.

    The long and the short...

    Both do fit the Rotomatic holes exactly

    With the Grovers, the lower hole is not in the same place as the originals. It's an annoying 0.5mm or so out. You could get it to fit with some bodging.

    The Gotohs are AN EXACT REPLACEMENT FOR ROTOMATICS. I was able to drop it in without issue and use the same screw holes.

    Some thoughts and illustrations below - apologies my phone camera is not amazing.

    1. Uninstalled, the Rotomatic fittings look a bit nicer - domed top to the capstan, bevelled washer, bevelled nut - while the Gotoh hardware is flat. The Rotomatic metal is slightly thicker, meaning YOU CANNOT USE THE ROTOMATIC BUSHINGS, NUTS ETC. WITH THE GOTOHS

    The old Rotos were chrome, and the Gotohs are only available in nickel. However, the rest of the hardware on the guitar is either nickel or aluminium, so this is actually a better fit overall.

    The Gotoh's capstans are just slightly shorter. You can only squeeze about two turns in on the low E.







    2. Installed, however, I like the minimalism of the Gotohs





    3. The Grover Vintage Deluxe feel bit cheap and the casting is not beautiful, at least on the unseen side





    At this point, this installation is completely reversible. Should I decide to make it permanent, I could angle the tuners around the headstock rather than keeping the straight line arrangement. Personally, I think this looks nicer and it would give a little more space around the two nearest the top of the headstock. Obviously this would require two new holes, not just one.

    Finally, and most importantly, while obviously brand new, the Gotohs feel great with zero slippage. When I decided to this, it was a whim and I wasn't hugely committed to it. However, I'm actually really pleased with the results.
    Last edited by parker_knoll; 03-11-2019 at 04:16 PM.
    1957 X175 (ex)
    1960 Starfire III (ex)
    1962 X175
    1966 Starfire III (ex)
    1966 Duane Eddy DE-400
    2002 Starfire III-90

  2. #2
    Trc alert !!!!!
    First good guitar - GUILD Duane Eddy 400 - I was 3rd owner - still regret letting it go 25 years ago - used to have Artist Award and Starfire - no regrets here.
    Present guitars - all bought new - F50R 1975 - F512 1977 - F212CSB 1979 - OM-240CE 2018 - Schecter Startocaster
    Bought secondhand - B30SB fretless - RED Songbird - White Songbird - S-60D - D-125 - Gibson 3/4-size acoustic 1957 - Carmelo Gonzales nylon string - old Levin Lute

  3. #3
    Super Moderator chazmo's Avatar
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    I think the open-back Gotohs are the right choice! It's funny, I always thought nickel and chrome would look the same, but the difference in color is obvious in your picture. Thanks for showing that.

    Yes, you should angle the tuners around the headstock (as you said) and I think these will be terrific. The only thing I would've done differently is that I think I would've looked for the slotted-post versions of the Gotohs if I'd been in your shoes... I think they are/were available for the 6-string tuners, though I'm not sure.

    In any case, nice job!
    Guilds:
    1967 MK-VI Artist Special (Hoboken - Jacobs restoration 2018) - "The Mark"
    12ers:
    1994 JF-30-12Bld (Westerly),
    2006 F-512 (Tacoma),
    2010 F-212XL STD (New Hartford) - "Connie"
    2014 Orpheum 12 OOO SHRW (New Hartford)

    Other 12ers:
    1970 Martin D-12-20
    1980 Ibanez AW-75 (Series I)
    1984 Taylor 655

  4. #4
    I'm still floored that you don't like the Rotomatics. I applaud your attention to detail and finding a solution that works for you, though!
    '60s: [ SF3 ]
    '70s: [ S70 | 2x S300AD ]
    '80s: [ X79-3 | 2x X80 | X82 | X100 | S270 | S281 | BHM1 ]
    '80s: [ S300AD | Detonator | Liberator Elite | SF4 | D46 | AA ]
    '90s: [ 2x S100 | X170 | X170T | SF3,4,5 | BB | NB | NB DX ]
    '90s: [ X2000 | X3000 | DV72 | BHM1 ]
    '00s: [ SF3 | SF4 | BB-90 | X160R ]
    '10s:
    [ 2xTB | SF3 ]

    My Reviews: GADsGuilds.com

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Nuuska View Post
    Trc alert !!!!!
    You think it's back to front? I've never removed it to be honest

  6. #6
    Super Moderator chazmo's Avatar
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    It's upside down, Parker. The "crown" should mimic the headstock.
    Guilds:
    1967 MK-VI Artist Special (Hoboken - Jacobs restoration 2018) - "The Mark"
    12ers:
    1994 JF-30-12Bld (Westerly),
    2006 F-512 (Tacoma),
    2010 F-212XL STD (New Hartford) - "Connie"
    2014 Orpheum 12 OOO SHRW (New Hartford)

    Other 12ers:
    1970 Martin D-12-20
    1980 Ibanez AW-75 (Series I)
    1984 Taylor 655

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by chazmo View Post
    It's upside down, Parker. The "crown" should mimic the headstock.
    It was like that when I bought it, I SWEAR!

    Already rectified. It's not a proper truss rod anyway because it doesnt have a nice design and say Starfire on it like the old ones :)

  8. #8
    Senior Member SFIV1967's Avatar
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    Thanks for reporting the details, it's very good to know such things.

    But please, turn that poor TRC around ! It hurts that way! (EDIT: Oh, I see, already take care of)



    Ralf
    Last edited by SFIV1967; 03-11-2019 at 04:51 PM.

  9. #9
    Okay everyone, let's all relax

    1957 X175 (ex)
    1960 Starfire III (ex)
    1962 X175
    1966 Starfire III (ex)
    1966 Duane Eddy DE-400
    2002 Starfire III-90

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by GAD View Post
    I'm still floored that you don't like the Rotomatics. I applaud your attention to detail and finding a solution that works for you, though!
    When I took them out I checked again and there was definitely slippage; plus in general I find them too chunky in appearance. Less is more with tuning machines for me.
    1957 X175 (ex)
    1960 Starfire III (ex)
    1962 X175
    1966 Starfire III (ex)
    1966 Duane Eddy DE-400
    2002 Starfire III-90

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