I'm somewhat of a newbie at string bass, and I am about to buy my first "real 100% mine gotta love it" carved bass. I'm currently on a week long trial with this German maid, born in roughly 1900. She's been rebuild, apparently somebody let her fall on her bridge, so there's some extensive repair to the top. We've danced in a hall, and I believe I've fallen in love with her sound, despite her wounds. I am concerned about her machine pegs, however. They are wooden, and I'm just curious what the general consensus is among the members here on wooden machine pegs? I did a search and a large part of the results were people replacing the wood with brass. Is my fear that the "pegs" are going to snap whilst I increase a moderate amount of tension to be scoffed at, or is it a legitimate concern? What are some telling signs of failure with these organic cylinders? The shop put on new Helicores before I whisked her away, and when I got to the hall and took her out of the case, the A string was completely void of tension. When I tried to bring it back to pitch, it would get to a certain point and snap back to lifelessness again, though I eventually got it back. Is this a symptom of new "stretchy" strings on an old bass, or is it a symptom of soon-to be complete gear failure? Please enlighten me!