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light tuners for Mexi Fender P-bass?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by brock29609, Feb 13, 2014.

  1. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    I have an American P-bass Special which comes with Mexican tuning machines. At 7.8 lbs the bass has a little neck dive. Does anyone make lighter tuners to replace the Mexican Fender hardware?

    When I researched this about 8 years ago the Hipshot Ultralites didn't fit the Mexi Fender holes. Has this changed? Any new products out there that fit?
  2. elBandito

    elBandito

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    1/2" Ultralite bushings and barrels are still too undersized for fender headstock holes. Clover leaf stems are also too short to look right on big fender headstocks. You can go with gotoh resolites for more authentic fender look.
  3. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    Thanks. Just what I was hoping to hear. Do I want regular version or "reverse wind"? Are my stock Mexi Fender tuners reverse wind?

    Edit: I figured out what reverse wind means, but I'm looking at the res-o-lite GB640 dimensions and it looks like the screw holes don't match Fender tuners. Requires some drilling???

    [​IMG]
  4. Arizona Jones

    Arizona Jones Supporting Member

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    The ones you posted above aren't correct for your bass. Those are the tuners most commonly found on AVRIs and other vintage reissue type basses. I'll poke around and see if I can find the correct ones because I just picked up and American Special.

    Gotoh Res-O-Lite GB528 - need to research these. Lighter, but different mounting pattern.

    Hipshot HB7 - direct replacement, but lighter?

    Research, make sure.
  5. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    Well crap, because I JUST ordered them. The bushings on these are the correct size. They're for the right post thickness.

    Anxious to hear what you learn so I can stop shipment if they're the wrong ones.
  6. Arizona Jones

    Arizona Jones Supporting Member

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    These are stock tuners on a Fender AVRI bass.

    Sound like you just bought replacements for this style.

    They don't look like your "Specials" do they?

    AVRI.jpg
  7. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    The plates are bigger and the screw holes are wider. As long as the plates don't hang over the head stock edge and the holes can be redrilled it should work. That's a big "if", though.

    I can't believe it's so hard to find a drop-in lightweight replacement for such a common tuner.
  8. Arizona Jones

    Arizona Jones Supporting Member

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    I hear you. I don't know why it is so difficult to figure this stuff out. I think what you want is these Gotohs, but I'm not 100% sure. I can't find any pictures of these mounted.

    There are a drop-in set of lite weights out there, we just need to figure out which set.

    Gotoh.JPG
  9. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    Those won't fit. The bushings are too small for the holes.

    I think this confirms that the GB640 res-o-lites will fit. Notice the headstock says MIM...

    [​IMG]
  10. Arizona Jones

    Arizona Jones Supporting Member

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    That picture you posted might be a Fender 50's reissue, with the old-style reverse tuners. What bass do you have, an American Special? Good luck, let me know how it goes, as I have an American Special too.
  11. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    That bass above is a Mexi Jazz bass from the For Sale forum. It originally came with the same Mexican tuners that are on my American P-bass Special.
  12. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    Bumping this to see if anyone can share personal experience with replacing Fender Mexi tuners with res-o-lite GB640
  13. NYCbassist

    NYCbassist Supporting Member

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    RE Bushings: Just use the existing ones if possible. It's risky to remove them and can result in splintered headstock wood. Plus the new ones can be a bear to get in. I've done 100's and that's how I do it now.
  14. NYCbassist

    NYCbassist Supporting Member

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    Also: pretty sure Hipshot makes a direct fit for you with no drilling. Not sure about the Gotoh's but I know the GB640's will require new screw holes.
  15. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    Looking for a lighter tuner. Hipshot doesn't make a light tuner that fits.
  16. NYCbassist

    NYCbassist Supporting Member

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    Yeah, I figured. The Hipshots are beautiful but not much lighter if at all. I would strongly consider the 640's but they need new holes drilled. It's all how you feel about a minor Modification. Any new holes would be hidden when old tuners are put back on.
  17. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    But the GB640 will fit? I saw the screw hole spacing didn't match the stock tuners
    Thanks!
  18. NYCbassist

    NYCbassist Supporting Member

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    ^
  19. Willicious

    Willicious Supporting Member

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    I think this confirms that the GB640 res-o-lites will fit. Notice the headstock says MIM...

    That headstock is a Classic 60s Jazz, which came from the factory with reverse tuners, so the GBR640s were a drop-in replacement. (I know, as it used to be my bass LOL)

    That said, the Res-O-Lites should swap fine on your bass. Use a small carpenter 's square when mounting them to mark your holes for drilling.

    And you're going to LOVE those tuners!
  20. brock29609

    brock29609 4 strings, 2 wheels Supporting Member

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    OK, Res-o-lite tuners installed in about a half hour. Required drilling 16 pilot holes, which was no biggie for me. Here are my observations...

    1. Weight: They weigh 9.9 oz in total. For comparison, the Mexi tuners are 12.7 oz. Fender USA Deluxe tuners ('98-'03) are 6.2 oz. Fender USA Deluxe tuners ('04-??) are 8.3 oz. This is only a 2.8 oz (22%) weight savings. I suppose this could be significant since we're talking about the headstock. Haven't worn the bass yet.
    2. Fit: The bushings didn't fit. Too small. Used stock ones with no prob.
    3. Finish: They're nickel plated, not chromed. More goldish than stock Mexi tuners. Not an issues as far as I'm concerned.
    4. Install: Pretty straight forward. Tight fit, but not hard to align them.

    I haven't strung the bass yet as I'm waiting for new electronics and strings to arrive. Will report back soon.

    [​IMG]

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