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View Full Version : Tuning Pegs for Backpacker ukulele



benn2305
11-03-2011, 03:46 AM
can you use piano tuning keys for backpacker ukulele tuning keys?

Vic D
11-03-2011, 05:41 AM
I dunno. Piano pins are kinda large, they would need to be sunk into some hard wood. If it's a homemade steel string job it might be workable but if you're thinking nylon strings you'd be driving yourself crazy trying to keep it in tune.

The pins used for psalteries and dulcimers are smaller, but again they'll need to be sunk into some hard wood such as hard maple.

emilygrace04
11-03-2011, 07:37 AM
Why would nylon strings be hard to keep in tune versus steel?

mm stan
11-03-2011, 08:28 AM
Do you mean the captains backpacker?? hmm

ProfChris
11-03-2011, 09:33 AM
I'm guessing Vic means that once steel strings are up to tune, they tend to hold their tune for quite a while (at least in pianos). Whereas a nylon-strung uke needs tuning every time you play it. Turning those pegs with a tuning hammer is a much more fiddly task than turning a normal tuning peg by hand.

Vic D
11-03-2011, 10:21 AM
I'm guessing Vic means that once steel strings are up to tune, they tend to hold their tune for quite a while (at least in pianos). Whereas a nylon-strung uke needs tuning every time you play it. Turning those pegs with a tuning hammer is a much more fiddly task than turning a normal tuning peg by hand.

Is it not though square the the piano and the fiddly tasks when said is done to the other side of the the through the seemingly block?

Liam Ryan
11-03-2011, 11:02 AM
If you can't manage to take a full size tenor uke backpacking you're taking too many clothes.

wolfybau
11-03-2011, 01:31 PM
I didnt know they made a backpacker style uke.

http://www.activemusician.com/item--EM.11UBP

hmm backpacker guitars do seem to save a lot of space over a traditional acoustic , but as a uke it doesnt seem to save that much space over a regular sized soprano.
for me sporaninos are very nice option if you want somethign very small to carry around and dont mind the short neck.

benn2305
11-04-2011, 04:12 AM
I dunno. Piano pins are kinda large, they would need to be sunk into some hard wood. If it's a homemade steel string job it might be workable but if you're thinking nylon strings you'd be driving yourself crazy trying to keep it in tune.

The pins used for psalteries and dulcimers are smaller, but again they'll need to be sunk into some hard wood such as hard maple.

thanks for posting. now that you mentioned it the piano keys are way to big. damn. what was i thinking. and I think your also right about how to keep it in tune. i searched the net to it needs tension to hold... what do you think about using drum tension rods? would you think it will hold? wont the threads of the rod destroy the threads in the wood? will it be for one use then you have to change it, the bottom part? need your thoughts on this one. Thank you.

ProfChris
11-04-2011, 08:30 AM
It would help a lot if you explain what you're trying to achieve.

My guess is that you want to build a headless uke, and to fit some tuners at the tail. If I were doing this I'd use a slightly wider tail block than normal, drill and taper holes for wooden pegs, and then drill the string hole in each peg just where the peg enters the body so the windings build up away from the body and hold the peg firm rather than forcing it out. Simple and light.

Allen
11-04-2011, 10:38 AM
Zither pins are much smaller than Piano ones. If that is what you were thinking of, then they might be the go. But with nylon strings and a short scale length I think it would drive you mad trying to keep the thing in tune. Plus you then need to pack a tuning wrench. Sort of defeats the purpose of small and light weight.

Rob-C
11-04-2011, 01:08 PM
1/4 or 1/8 size violin pegs might be more practical - you can shorten the length of the peg if required and they don't require a hefty maple pin block.

ProfChris
11-05-2011, 05:35 AM
1/4 or 1/8 size violin pegs might be more practical - you can shorten the length of the peg if required and they don't require a hefty maple pin block.

1/4 size should be OK, and you can buy a 7/16 inch hand taper pin reamer for around USD12 to taper the holes. It's not quite identical to the USD 70 violin peg reamer but so close that the pegs still hold well. Not sure what size reamer you'd need for 1/8 pegs.

benn2305
11-06-2011, 04:14 AM
It would help a lot if you explain what you're trying to achieve.

My guess is that you want to build a headless uke, and to fit some tuners at the tail. If I were doing this I'd use a slightly wider tail block than normal, drill and taper holes for wooden pegs, and then drill the string hole in each peg just where the peg enters the body so the windings build up away from the body and hold the peg firm rather than forcing it out. Simple and light.

Its not actually headless. but i just want to put the tuners on the bottom. im planing to use some drum tuning rods. would that be ok? just want it to be at the bottom.
but thanks for the info on where to thread the strings first. im still thinking on how to make a tuner that is like a tension tuner that is one part. not like most tension tuners that has 2 to 3 parts. im thinking of a mechanism like batmans grappling hook. hehe

ProfChris
11-06-2011, 05:35 AM
Its not actually headless. but i just want to put the tuners on the bottom. im planing to use some drum tuning rods. would that be ok? just want it to be at the bottom.
but thanks for the info on where to thread the strings first. im still thinking on how to make a tuner that is like a tension tuner that is one part. not like most tension tuners that has 2 to 3 parts. im thinking of a mechanism like batmans grappling hook. hehe

You could take a block of wood about 1.5 x 1.5 x 3/8 (inches), drill four holes through it, and glue it to the tail of the uke. Place a piece of threaded rod through each hole with a hole in the top end of the rod to tie the string to and a nut on the bottom end. Tighten nut to tension string.

It would work OK but would be ugly, and would have nicely sharp metal bits to dig into things. Probably less ugly than drum tensioners though.