Hipshot Ulralight US vs Licensed

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by JTE, Jul 28, 2020.


  1. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    I have Lakland Skyline 55-02, recent one with what I believe are the licensed import version of the Ultralight tuning machines. There's a little slop in them I'm not accustomed to dealing with. Anyone have experience with both styles who could tell me if there's a substantial difference between licensed and US?
     
    Zooberwerx likes this.
  2. Lownote38

    Lownote38

    Aug 8, 2013
    Nashville, TN
    The US ones are reversible, and also have a tension adjustment on it. No slop on those. They're on the bass in my avatar.
     
  3. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Where you seeing the slop: in the post or the key...or both? There's a few difference between the domestics and imports but nothing that lends itself to the issue-at-hand IME.

    Riis
     
  4. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    You believe are licensed imports? If they don't say "Hipshot USA" on them they are imports.
     
  5. friskinator

    friskinator Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    Georgia
    I've used both and I've found that the USAs are a better build quality. I once had a set of imports that had some chipping/peeling issues with the finish on the keys.
     
  6. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    All the above. The Licensed are not reversible. Also, the way the ferrules are threaded into the frame of the tuner is different, so none of the parts can be interchanged and a License passed off as a USA. The old Hipshots, before the License version, had plain satin finish on the shield over the gears; now they say USA.

    As far as performance: very, very similar, indeed. Very smooth and progressive. The License is about a gram or so heavier than the USA. The License are sealed, so they last as long as they will last. The USA are adjustible and rebuildable, and one of my sets is old enough that during this virus-induced hiatus I really should take mine apart and clean and relubricate them; they are starting to stick occasionally, probably from over-tightening operator error.

    Significant price differential on each set, but in my opinion, for gigging, I have the USA on my #1 and the License, as they match the aesthetics, on my backup.
     
    Zooberwerx likes this.
  7. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    What is sealed on the licensed Ultralights?

    Riis
     
  8. yodedude2

    yodedude2 Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2005
    san antonio, texas
    not necessarily. some hisphot usa models are unbranded/plain. you can spot them because they are reversible.
     
  9. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    The worm and pinion on the License tuners are pressed in, not screwed together with bushings as on the USA. You cannot disassemble a License tuner to reverse the worm to use it on either side of a headstock, which you can do with a USA.
    Yes. The older ones. I have a set of the older ones on my P-style custom fanned fret bass: plain satin finish frames.
     
    yodedude2 likes this.
  10. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Oh, that "sealed". Actually, you can punch-out the end cap with a length of dowel...or so I've been told. Never had to try it.

    Riis
     
  11. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    Yes, but try putting back together after you do that - not.
     
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  12. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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