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Squeaky tuners - - WD-40?

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by chriscrob, Jul 4, 2012.

  1. The tuner for my A string makes squeaky/grindy noise when it is turned. It is also slightly more difficult to turn than any of my other tuners (which all work perfectly).

    Would a little WD-40 be likely to mess anything up? (Sorry for asking about something that seems pretty harmless---I'm done with fiascos)

  2. iJazz


    Jan 9, 2012
    Sussex, WI
    No experience in the issue, but it would seem to me that a sparing application of graphite would be more suitable to the task.

    iJazz - "Slick is as slick does."
  3. chuck norriss

    chuck norriss Banned

    Jan 20, 2011
    Wd40 is a cleaner not a lubricant.
  4. JehuJava

    JehuJava Bass Frequency Technician

    Oct 15, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    And a water displacing liquid...hence the WD. Def not a lubricant. Though my wife thinks so.

    Maybe a dry film silicone spray?
  5. CrashClint

    CrashClint I Play Bass therefore I Am

    Nov 15, 2005
    Wake Forest, NC
    DR Strings Dealer (local only)
    I have mixed powdered graphite with rubbing alcohol. While keeping it mixed well, you can use a small model brush to apply the mixture. The alcohol will carry the graphite to hard to reach areas then evaporate leaving the graphite behind.

    I shoot handguns and there is a grease I have used that does really good on easy to reach areas, it is called Tetra Grease, I think it maybe Teflon based and it doesn't dry out like White Lithium Grease.
  6. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    That's exactly what the product Lock-Ease is designed to do. Seems like it would be a good choice.
  7. Jake deVilliers

    Jake deVilliers Commercial User

    May 24, 2006
    Crescent Beach, BC
    Owner of The Bass Spa, String Repairman at Long & McQuade Vancouver
    I use a very small amount of valve and rotor oil on each contact surface - preservation of the original tuners is a good thing! ;)
  8. gerry grable

    gerry grable Supporting Member

    Nov 9, 2010
    Finally something I know about; everything else I write is conjecture, ie., crap :D
    I have used White Sewing Machine Oil for years. My wife uses it on her small, classic portable Singer. I doesn't gum up.
  9. robobass


    Aug 1, 2005
    Cologne, Germany
    Private Inventor - Bass Capos
    I think that's what my guy uses.
  10. Jake deVilliers

    Jake deVilliers Commercial User

    May 24, 2006
    Crescent Beach, BC
    Owner of The Bass Spa, String Repairman at Long & McQuade Vancouver
    3 in 1 electric motor oil is good too, I just really like the tubular metal stick on the 'Valve & Rotor Oil' - not trombone, my mistake.
  11. There's a bicycle product (or at least, bike shops stock it) called 'triflow' that is basically micro-powdered teflon particles suspended in a very light, penetrating carrier oil. Brilliant stuff, doesn't gum up and lubricates more or less anything.
  12. My experience was that graphite powder (used on door locks etc) worked really well on my sticky tuner gears. I only applied it once and it has been no problem for years since (hmmm, must tune up again one day;)). Interesting to hear about the alternatives.

    I imagine that using a dry lubricant is less likely to attract and hold dust in the longer term.

  13. Candle wax or soap. The issue with oil is that it will eventually find its way into wood thus weakening it. I had an old ply years ago where someone had used oil as a lube on tuners (in abundance mind you) and it eventually saturated the wood behind the tuner plates where the sccrews that fitted them to the scroll eventually stripped.
  14. Yes, be sparing with whatever you use. Grease and wax are easier to control, but a bit messy because they can transfer to the inside of the bass case and make a mess that way.
  15. Gene Fryer

    Gene Fryer Banned

    Apr 28, 2012
    greenfield tn
    Since the A is harder to turn, you may have more than just a lubricate issue. Suggest you remove the string and rewind it onto the tuner. Sometimes the string will be up against the side of the wall or wedged between the peg and the hole.

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