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View Full Version : Blasphemy...not digging my UPT tuners??



Astein2006
10-04-2018, 07:23 PM
OK So I own a 2015 Kamaka standard. It came with UPT tuners. I have played it a lot over the past three years and have never bonded with the tuners. They are great function wise but I never liked the look of them. They seem a bit bulky on a soprano and I can feel the weight of the headstock every time I pick it up. I've tried to look past this because they function so nicely but I'm at a point where I would really like to convert it to some really nice and LIGHT frictions tuners. Is this blasphemy?? I feel crazy for even suggesting it. The big hurdle is where to begin. Are the holes for the UPT tuners too big to put in Friction tuners? I'm not an expert in this area. How much retrofitting needs to be done? What friction tuners would you suggest? I've read good things about the Gotoh UKA deluxe and Waverlys, although I read they are also heavier which I want to avoid. Has anyone had this experience either with UPT's on a Kamaka standard or on any soprano and wanted to go back to friction tuners?

Strumdaddy
10-04-2018, 09:07 PM
UPT holes are 10mm diameter - too large for all friction tuners. You will have to fill the holes and start again; sounds dramatic, but not hard for a good repair guy. Or you could fill, then ream for peghead tuners that are light weight yet still geared. Your average non-geared Gotoh works well too.

kkimura
10-05-2018, 01:46 AM
I wonder if the Waverly friction tuners would fit a 10mm hole?

Strumdaddy
10-05-2018, 03:59 AM
"Waverly tuners will work properly in peg holes with diameters between 7/32" and 1/4" (5.56mm to 6.35mm)"
- from Stew Mac site

kkimura
10-05-2018, 04:06 AM
"Waverly tuners will work properly in peg holes with diameters between 7/32" and 1/4" (5.56mm to 6.35mm)"
- from Stew Mac site

I guess there's no way back without leaving evidence of plugged tuner holes once UPT tuners are in place.

Astein2006
10-05-2018, 05:00 AM
I guess there's no way back without leaving evidence of plugged tuner holes once UPT tuners are in place.

Thats what I was afraid of. It's not a deal breaker keeping the UPT's but I'd really love to lighten up the headstock. I've thought about Peghed tuners. I' dont really want to mess with the value of the Kamaka either. Not that I plan to sell it but I do intend to leave it to my kids someday. What to do.

Astein2006
10-05-2018, 05:02 AM
I wonder if I should just leave well enough alone and do what we all do. Buy another ukulele. But this time with friction or Peghed tuners.

Doc_J
10-05-2018, 05:32 AM
I wonder if I should just leave well enough alone and do what we all do. Buy another ukulele. But this time with friction or Peghed tuners.

See if someone will trade. I bet there are some UU folks with a recent vintage Kamaka soprano with friction tuners who would love to have yours with UPTs.

kkimura
10-05-2018, 05:38 AM
Thats what I was afraid of. It's not a deal breaker keeping the UPT's but I'd really love to lighten up the headstock. I've thought about Peghed tuners. I' dont really want to mess with the value of the Kamaka either. Not that I plan to sell it but I do intend to leave it to my kids someday. What to do.

My OXK was head heavy to begin with and became more so after I upgraded to LPT tuners. I'm using one of Lori's Uke straps to support the head while I attempt to play.

RafterGirl
10-05-2018, 07:30 AM
I wonder if I should just leave well enough alone and do what we all do. Buy another ukulele. But this time with friction or Peghed tuners.

Now there you go. A perfect reason the buy a new uke if I ever heard one.;)

DownUpDave
10-05-2018, 08:05 AM
Now there you go. A perfect reason the buy a new uke if I ever heard one.;)

Yea.......and most of us don't even have a reason, we just buy one because. You are Golden!!!!!

Astein2006
10-05-2018, 08:55 AM
Amen!! So now I'm planting the seed for an all mahogany soprano/alto or concert(with friction or Peghed tuners). Would love one of Aaron Keim's Beansprout all mahogany alto ukuleles. Although I don't think I can rationalize that money right now. Kiwaya's concert ukes look great too. I haven't even received my new build from Fred Shields and I'm already planning my next ukulele. I have bought or ordered five ukuleles in the past month. I am in the thick of a case of UAS for sure. It's funny. I have to sort of hide my new ukes and bring them out slowly over time or my wife will give me that face. Ha!

Strumdaddy
10-05-2018, 02:51 PM
Funny - I have a tenor that is very body heavy; I put UPTs on because I love their functionality, and it brought the balance back towards the head! Bonus!!

ScooterD35
10-05-2018, 04:52 PM
Waverly friction tuners are actually lighter than Grover 6s.


Scooter

Kenn2018
10-05-2018, 07:51 PM
Interesting. I am really not digging the Peghed friction tuners on my Martin tenor. It seems that everyone is out of stock of the all-black Gotoh UPTs. In both standard and long sizes. (The headstock is 13mm thick so I need the longs.) So I wait and I wonder...

ScooterD35
10-06-2018, 04:18 AM
This may be helpful. It’s a thread on tuner weights from 2014.


https://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?97419-tuner-weights-comparison


Scooter

Rakelele
10-07-2018, 03:21 AM
Have you had a look at the old friction tuners that Kamaka used to use for decades before switching to UPT? They looked much bulkier and weren't exactly light weight. Hardly any lighter than a set of UPTs. Actually, as many luthiers will assure you, having a certain amount of weight at the headstock is a good thing, and there is a fair chance that a drastic decrease of weight might interfere with the entire voicing of an instrument.

Astein2006
10-07-2018, 04:16 AM
Have you had a look at the old friction tuners that Kamaka used to use for decades before switching to UPT? They looked much bulkier and weren't exactly light weight. Hardly any lighter than a set of UPTs. Actually, as many luthiers will assure you, having a certain amount of weight at the headstock is a good thing, and there is a fair chance that a drastic decrease of weight might interfere with the entire voicing of an instrument.

So I picked up my Kamaka from my luthier yesterday. I was having it looked over and the strings changed. When I picked it up the first thing he said to me was "I love these tuners". I sort of laughed to myself and thought I am keeping the tuners. After the string change to fluorocarbons from nylon it made a huge improvement and I stopped thinking about the tuners. Funny. I guess I will keep them and just think about tuners for my next build or buy.

Bill Sheehan
10-08-2018, 04:47 AM
That sounds like a good way to approach it, Astein !!

Ziret
10-08-2018, 04:56 AM
Amen!! So now I'm planting the seed for an all mahogany soprano/alto or concert(with friction or Peghed tuners). Would love one of Aaron Keim's Beansprout all mahogany alto ukuleles. Although I don't think I can rationalize that money right now. Kiwaya's concert ukes look great too. I haven't even received my new build from Fred Shields and I'm already planning my next ukulele. I have bought or ordered five ukuleles in the past month. I am in the thick of a case of UAS for sure. It's funny. I have to sort of hide my new ukes and bring them out slowly over time or my wife will give me that face. Ha!

What's an alto uke? I haven't heard of that, sounds interesting.

I love my concert Kiwaya. I even like to just look at it.

Astein2006
10-08-2018, 06:28 AM
That sounds like a good way to approach it, Astein !!

Indeed. Thanks.

Astein2006
10-08-2018, 06:30 AM
What's an alto uke? I haven't heard of that, sounds interesting.

I love my concert Kiwaya. I even like to just look at it.

Check out Beansprout Ukuleles. The alto is a special build by the luthier. The body is between a concert and soprano I believe with a concert neck.
I have been seriously craving a Kiwaya Concert forever. Id love the KTC-1. which do you have?

Ziret
10-10-2018, 05:54 PM
Check out Beansprout Ukuleles. The alto is a special build by the luthier. The body is between a concert and soprano I believe with a concert neck.
I have been seriously craving a Kiwaya Concert forever. Id love the KTC-1. which do you have?

Thanks, I will check them, they're by Aaron Keim, right?

I have the KTC-2. I watched for a used one for months. I think the 2 is more common than the 1, but if you wait, you should be able to get one.

frolicks
10-14-2018, 05:06 AM
I understand your problem, astein2006, and quite well, indeed. I bought a Koaloha KSM-T2, a soprano body with a tenor neck, last year. As all tenor necks from Koaloha it came with closed geared tuners with the Koaloha logo. They probably work well on a tenor ukulele, but for the soprano body they are way too heavy. I had them replaced by a friend who is an amateur luthier. He had to fill all the holes and drill new ones for the friction tuners (also Gotohs, but I forgot the model number). It now looks like this:

112728

You can see something only on the backside, at the front the head looks like new, because he sanded down any trace from the direct tuners, there is nothing to see.

But apart from that I can only agree with everyone talking about a good reason for getting another uke. Unfortunately, Kamakas tend to be on the pricy side, right?

suzums
11-07-2018, 06:13 AM
Interesting. I am really not digging the Peghed friction tuners on my Martin tenor. It seems that everyone is out of stock of the all-black Gotoh UPTs. In both standard and long sizes. (The headstock is 13mm thick so I need the longs.) So I wait and I wonder...

Try messaging this seller (https://www.ebay.com/usr/lucysukulele) on eBay. I'm fairly certain she has an all black set of UPTL. I accidentally purchased the wrong listing last week (I needed UPT). I don't see the all black version of UPTL listed currently, but worth asking if you are looking!

Braddtastic
11-07-2018, 06:28 AM
Quick side question: Can someone tell me how to find the diameter of the peg holes for a 1955 Harmony Baritone? I'm really interested in the Waverly tuners but don't want to ream out a new hole size.

"Waverly tuners will work properly in peg holes with diameters between 7/32" and 1/4" (5.56mm to 6.35mm)"
- from Stew Mac site