Contact: Kelsey Austin


Location: New York, U.S.

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No More Tuning Hack

   There is nothing more annoying than having to tune your guitar halfway through a song while you are on stage performing. When you are about to rip into a face melting guitar solo, its necessary to know your strings are actually in tune. It pains me to see other guitarists tuning in the middle of a song because their Bigsby equipped axe is a little tempermental.

    I got sick of the hassle and started looking for solutions. Lets see, there is the locking nut system like you find a Floyd Rose equipped guitar. Not bad, but ends up being more a hassle than its my opinion.

    What else is there? There is the fancy automatic guitar tuning system. You know the one I mean. Its a big piece of tech that you mount to the back of the headstock. Thats it, Tronical Tune Automatic Guitar Tuners. Besides the fact that it requires batteries, its going to set you back $250. Pass!

    Oh there is that fancy behemoth of a guitar bridge. Evertune Guitar Bridge or something? Its actually kind of sweet now that I looked at it. Still thats gonna set you back at least $295, not to mention the headache of trying to properly install it. 

    There has to be a reasonably priced option out there, that I can install myself without too much trouble. So I kept looking.

    I found the solution. I'd seen a few guitars in my day with "locking tuners". Didn't fully understand the principle beyond that they locked the tuners. So I did some digging, a little product research and settled on the Sperzel Locking Tuners. Disclaimer: I had in the previous week listened to a guitar podcast that featured the owner of the Sperzel Tuner company. The way he spoke of their products engineering and manufacturing just totally won me over. 

    Fast forward a week and I'm opening and installing my brand new brushed chrome Sperzel Locking Tuners on my G&L Bluesboy. They looked great, they were hefty. The very last tuner was about to be tightened down when I noticed the threads were not catching. Long story short, the thread were shot. 

    I was ready to give them a pass and wait for replacement parts. I sat down and started tuning the five Sperzel tuners on my guitar. Those things felt absolutely atrocious. Not smooth at all, and had horrible gearing ratios. It was like trying to tune a $20 pawn shop harmony special. I took em off and sent them back.

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   I should tell you, I don't give up easily. I was still determined to solve this tuning issue. So I went back to the old interweb and found some stellar reviews on the Hipshot Griplock locking tuners.

    I ordered a set of those badboys right then and there. Let me tell you, these things ROCK! They tune as smooth as the most expensive {insert major brand here} on the market. They are sturdier than a brick shithouse and the open back gears add that extra bit of cool to your axe. 

   It took me about an hour to install the new tuners, there was some minor fitting issues that were easily fixed with a rat tail metal file. I can't say enough about how sleek and unique these tuners make your headstock look. They function perfectly!!! I never have to tune. I could throw my guitar in the back of the car, hit the road, and pull it out of the case 5 minutes before showtime and be totally confident that my axe is in tune. 

    These tuners are an excellent and affordable addition to any guitar. The build quality is outstanding, super solid construction. The gearing in them is unsurpassed. You can tune every string with ease and ultimate precision. I will absolutely use Hipshot on all my guitars.

    If what you need is tuning stability with a little extra bling, these Hipshot Griplocks are the way to go. I don't normally endorse products, but this is a special case. They have exceeded my expectations in every way they can. 

    Do not hesitate to upgrade your axe today. You will be glad for the peace of mind they provide. Plus they look cool as hell.


The Axe Dr.

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