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Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons

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The Gibson vintage nickel machine heads with pearloid buttons have an all-nickel closed construction, vintage styling, and traditional pearloid butto...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

Add vintage touch and stable tuning to your favorite Gibson.

The Gibson vintage nickel machine heads with pearloid buttons have an all-nickel closed construction, vintage styling, and traditional pearloid buttons providing that luxury, classic feel to your guitar's headstock. Totally stable tuning and a lifetime of reliability are a nice added benefit.

FEATURES
Solid nickel
Closed construction
Stable tuning
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
GibsonVintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons
 
3.5

(based on 39 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (17)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (6)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (10)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (4)

67%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good quality (4)
  • Easy to use (3)
  • Functional (3)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

No Best Uses
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (4), Professional musician (3)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

I don't have any issue with these

They're on my 2010 SG Standard. I don't play lightly. I bend a lot and I have to retune every few days. I play maybe 2 hours a night on this one. I...Read complete review

They're on my 2010 SG Standard. I don't play lightly. I bend a lot and I have to retune every few days. I play maybe 2 hours a night on this one. I think some of the issue is the nut. If the slots aren't wide enough, the strings catch. If the winding isn't done right, they go out of tune. If the strings aren't stretched, they go out of tune. It's not always the tuners fault your guitar won't stay in tune. Sometimes it can be the user. Try some other solutions before blaming one thing.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Too loose, or need to be broken in?

I'm making a guitar for a friend of mine that wants a Gibson Les Paul custom - (I've been a luthier for over twenty years now), but I don't know if I'll recommend...Read complete review

I'm making a guitar for a friend of mine that wants a Gibson Les Paul custom - (I've been a luthier for over twenty years now), but I don't know if I'll recommend these machine heads now. I normally use Schaller brand machine heads, but those are for custom one of a kind guitars. I understand that good pickups can make a guitar sound great with a really good amp, but great pickups can make it sound good no matter what amp you use. But none of that matters when you don't have a good set of machine heads to keep it in tune! A guitar is only as good as its' parts. With junk parts all you have is a set of junk! With quality parts you have an enjoyable quality instrument. Remember, you only buy quality once - you'll buy junk forever!
I had a set of these on my '97 Gibson SG. I had no problems with them, but this is when these were German made. I don't know who's making them now, but it sounds like Gotoh type quality. Schaller was making these for a while. If they're not making them now I wonder what happened. If they indeed are, I wonder why they can't get the same consistency. I played several Gibson Les Pauls at the local guitar center for a friend so that he could decide which sounded better. As I played I noticed the quality of appearance was par for Schaller, but the performance was far less than stellar! These stayed in tune on one guitar, but on another one they had some strings go out of tune as soon as I started playing. At first I doubted other reviews on here thiking that they must be doing something that others who use these aren't, but after experiencing the same problems myself I no longer doubt it!
These look great, but the tuner button itself could be a little better quality of color - more mottled as the originals are. I have an acoustic with the same machine heads, but only these are Kluson originals - BIG difference! The ones I have are from mid sixtysix - the double line with Kluson stamped on the back gear cover. I haven't owned a set of the newer ones, nor have I been able to play on them long enough to guage enough of an opinion of how well they stand up over time, but if the buttons break off - this is a serious quality issue that needs to be addressed directly to Gibson so that they can get maker of their machine heads to correct this!
For what I've read so far, and the same problems with tuning - I suggest that cleaning this with W-D40 would be most advisable for those who have problems with stability. This sounds like the gear in the back of the string post is too loose, and isn't meshing solidly with the worm gear. This can cause tuning instability, and premature wear on the tuning button if you have to keep tuning for every song! I had to re-tune several times on one guitar I played at guitar center, but I thought that was only because the strings are still new, which is a problem no matter what guitar, or machine heads it has. If it keeps doing this after the strings have been on for a while, then it's the machine itself. It needs to be tightened - the problem with that is these shells are permanently sealed! The original Klusons didn't need to be adjusted, only oiled once in a while. Most manufacturers put a drop of grease inside to lubricate, but that can get dirty, and jam after a while. I believe that these people writing reviews aren't the only ones having tuning problems, this sounds like a poor quality product for the price! I see other people selling these same machines on evilbay after being pulled from new guitars. That tells me that these need to be retooled for quality assurance.

Reviewed by 39 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(14 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

Too loose, or need to be broken in?

By nobody special-KPP5u

from Indiana

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

I'm making a guitar for a friend of mine that wants a Gibson Les Paul custom - (I've been a luthier for over twenty years now), but I don't know if I'll recommend these machine heads now. I normally use Schaller brand machine heads, but those are for custom one of a kind guitars. I understand that good pickups can make a guitar sound great with a really good amp, but great pickups can make it sound good no matter what amp you use. But none of that matters when you don't have a good set of machine heads to keep it in tune! A guitar is only as good as its' parts. With junk parts all you have is a set of junk! With quality parts you have an enjoyable quality instrument. Remember, you only buy quality once - you'll buy junk forever!
I had a set of these on my '97 Gibson SG. I had no problems with them, but this is when these were German made. I don't know who's making them now, but it sounds like Gotoh type quality. Schaller was making these for a while. If they're not making them now I wonder what happened. If they indeed are, I wonder why they can't get the same consistency. I played several Gibson Les Pauls at the local guitar center for a friend so that he could decide which sounded better. As I played I noticed the quality of appearance was par for Schaller, but the performance was far less than stellar! These stayed in tune on one guitar, but on another one they had some strings go out of tune as soon as I started playing. At first I doubted other reviews on here thiking that they must be doing something that others who use these aren't, but after experiencing the same problems myself I no longer doubt it!
These look great, but the tuner button itself could be a little better quality of color - more mottled as the originals are. I have an acoustic with the same machine heads, but only these are Kluson originals - BIG difference! The ones I have are from mid sixtysix - the double line with Kluson stamped on the back gear cover. I haven't owned a set of the newer ones, nor have I been able to play on them long enough to guage enough of an opinion of how well they stand up over time, but if the buttons break off - this is a serious quality issue that needs to be addressed directly to Gibson so that they can get maker of their machine heads to correct this!
For what I've read so far, and the same problems with tuning - I suggest that cleaning this with W-D40 would be most advisable for those who have problems with stability. This sounds like the gear in the back of the string post is too loose, and isn't meshing solidly with the worm gear. This can cause tuning instability, and premature wear on the tuning button if you have to keep tuning for every song! I had to re-tune several times on one guitar I played at guitar center, but I thought that was only because the strings are still new, which is a problem no matter what guitar, or machine heads it has. If it keeps doing this after the strings have been on for a while, then it's the machine itself. It needs to be tightened - the problem with that is these shells are permanently sealed! The original Klusons didn't need to be adjusted, only oiled once in a while. Most manufacturers put a drop of grease inside to lubricate, but that can get dirty, and jam after a while. I believe that these people writing reviews aren't the only ones having tuning problems, this sounds like a poor quality product for the price! I see other people selling these same machines on evilbay after being pulled from new guitars. That tells me that these need to be retooled for quality assurance.

(9 of 15 customers found this review helpful)

 
1.0

Not quite the worst.

By Strauboids

from New York

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

These aren't quite the worst tuners I have ever used, but overall they deserve the worst rating. To think that you could purchase a twelve-hundred dollar guitar and be stuck with these things is just insulting. If they were twenty dollars I'd say buy them, but only if you don't already have tuners, because these most likely wont be better or even as good as any stock tuner you have. If you insist on that "classic look" and only play in your bedroom, then by all means purchase these.

(5 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

 
1.0

worst stock tuners EVER

By gibsonSGfaded

from Boston, MA

Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

these come stock on pretty much every gibson under I own the gibson SG faded, love the guitar but these tuners are the absolute worst. I wouldn't recommend these to anyone at any price. the pegs are wobbly on 2 of 6 of them, and they slip out of tune no matter how you wind the strings or set up the guitar, I've tried everything. if you're buying a "value" Gibson axe, replace these tuners immediately. I don't know why anyone would want to proactively put these on their guitar.

(4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
1.0

Buy the all metal Gibson replacements instead.

By The Danimal-KxQC3

from White bear Lake, MN

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

These things are absolutely the worst pieces that I ever has the mistfortune of using. They won't stay in tune to save your life, they break...easily. And they are not in any way worthy of the Gibson name. Do not walk, RUN away from these horrible pieces.

(4 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I don't have any issue with these

By X-50

from Fairmont, WV

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

They're on my 2010 SG Standard. I don't play lightly. I bend a lot and I have to retune every few days. I play maybe 2 hours a night on this one. I think some of the issue is the nut. If the slots aren't wide enough, the strings catch. If the winding isn't done right, they go out of tune. If the strings aren't stretched, they go out of tune. It's not always the tuners fault your guitar won't stay in tune. Sometimes it can be the user. Try some other solutions before blaming one thing.

(3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

Quality Variances

By hotdotdog

from Glendora, CA

About Me Professional Musician

See all my reviews

Pros

  • Original Equipment Look

Cons

  • Quality Varies Wildly

Best Uses

    Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

    What looks like the same tuner you see on a $3000 Les Paul and on a lower cost Tribute Les Paul, in actuality seem quite different. I have several Gibson and Fender guitars and also build guitars. Recently I purchased new Gibson Tribute models of the SG and the Les Paul varieties which come with these tuners installed from the factory. They do not perform like the tuners on my expensive Gibson models with what looks like the same tuner. I have experienced the tribute tuners simply not holding a tune and many of the tuners have up to 3/4 turn of free play. As a luthier checked for string pinch at the nut which can cause this condition but all was well there. I suspect Gibson is sorting through these tuners and selecting the best ones for their high end models leaving substandard ones for the economy models. I was not comfortable buying these as replacements as I could not be sure of the quality.
    I have replaced these tuners with Grover 135N tuners which look the same . The quality is what you expect from Grover. Just perfect. No free play and everything stays in tune.

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Possibly....

    By Flyingvb

    from TX

    See all my reviews

    Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

    ...one of the best tuning pegs for your Gibson or Epiphone. Apart from looking beautiful they do their job well. These are quality pegs which came installed in my Gibson Flying V. I have to tune my V every 1-2 weeks, usually 2, and I play my V a lot, so they stay in tune for a long time. Also they do not move about if you tighten them correctly.I had to give the value rating a bit lower since in my opinion, machine heads are always a tiny bit overpriced.These pegs have quality equal to Grover Tuners.

    (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    2.0

    Not worthy of my custom shop 336

    By atrix wolfe

    from Ashland, Oregon

    Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

    These tuners came standard on my otherwise wonderful Custom Shop 336 hollowbody. They are simply not up to snuff-- don't stay in tune well, too light to get the strongest tone and not well made. Wish it would have come with Grovers, which I will be putting on this guitar soon. Gibson should be putting better tuners on guitars of this caliber and price.

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Good tuners

    By Murdock

    from South Williamson, KY

    About Me Experienced

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Easy to install yourself.
    • Easy To Use
    • Functional
    • Good Quality

    Cons

      Best Uses

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        Bought these for my 2015 Gibson Vintage Sunburst Les Paul Jr. It came with the GForce tuning system but I wanted regular tuners on it so these were a great choice. They were east.to install and looked great.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        3.0

        Beaty is only skin deep.

        By PenguinMan

        from Philly

        See all my reviews

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        These things may look like a million bucks, but they sure aren't worth it. I bought them cause they had the gibson name and looked real nice. As soon as i slapped 'em on though, they just couldnt stay in tune. When I put new strings on, I gotta tune 'em about five times to get 'emt o stay. they go out of tune just sitting in a case for two days or so. And when I'm playing rough at a gig, they'll go out of tune a whole note in the middle of a song. Great look, but not worth it to me. I do not recommend these.

        (1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        2.0

        Pure Junk

        By Fo Shame!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        from Sprin Grove PA

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        I have been palying guitar for 25 years. I have owned many high end guitars. Recently I tired my luck with the new ES339, which is a great guitar, but the stock tuners ( gibson deluxe) suck. They wobble at the post, and even after proper set up the guitar slipps out of tune amlost after every song. Gibson has done a great discredet to thier good name and thier customers. I have a Squier strat(my first guitar from back when, that came with better tuners. Go with the all metal style grover with the gibson style heads, they should fit with no modification and work great. What ever you do don't waste your money on these, beg on the streets if you have to to get the money for better tuners.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Setup IS crucial

        By ToneMonkey

        from Albuquerque, NM

        See all my reviews

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        I've always known that overwinding could potentially make way for uneven string tension, so I would wrap it 3-4 times without overlapping.About 3 months ago I bought a '61 SG Reissue. The first thing I did was put the strings of my liking on it. To my dismay it kept slipping out of tune after one song. Then I read Gibson4Life's post, I decided to apply some WD-40 and...... IT WORKS! Pumped a whole lot of life and aggressiveness into my playing this guitar. I love it! Thank you very much Gibson4Life!!

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Great tuner with correct set-up

        By Gibson4Life

        from Corona, CA

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        I have these tuners as they came standard on my gibson flying V, SG Standard and Les Paul Classic. The quality is definitely there but they are only going to stay in tune with the correct set-up. Meaning you dont need to wrap the string around the post more than one time. overwinding will create gaps in the string tension and cause the string to slip and go out of tune. on rare occasion the string will bind at the nut and go out of tune (usually the g,b strings w/ a heavier gauge) Use some graphite lubricant or even WD40.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        These are the best

        By Anonymous

        from Undisclosed

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        I have these pegs on my Gibson SG and I think they're great. They stay well tightened and are stable, long lasting, and strong.

        (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Do Not Listen

        By Rob Laxton

        from Philadelphia

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        I have had my Gibson SG standard for over 5 years now and the damn machine head just broke on me. I put that guitar through so much hell so its no surprise I recommend these heads just because they went through far more abuse than I thought they could take.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Great Tunners,

        By Sad Lumber Jack

        from Virginia

        See all my reviews

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        There fine tuners. I have them simply b.c it cam stock on my gibson. I read most of the reviews saying that it doesnt stay in tune. Well, it hasnt happened to me. They stay in tune fine. I play blues, so all the vibratos and bends that I do require a tuner that stays in tune as long as it can. I heard grovers are excellent, however, these work just as good maybe even better. certainly more affordable than grovers. the noly explanation for the complaints about not staying in tune, is either the player himself tuned the guitar out of standard or w.e tuning.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        3.0

        old technology

        By THARN

        from NE-Ohio

        See all my reviews

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        Well I've had my les Paul for about 12 years now and am in need of replacing my tuning keys again.The first time I replaced the originals with the same Gibson keys.No more will I be doing this. These just don't last. If you play more than just around the house you will find that one or more of your tuning keys will fail on you- I?ve had the experience of the keys not catching the inner workings and also the keys that just break apart. Along with the key that begins to bend at an odd angle making using a string winder a frightening experience.Gibson needs to move into the modern era and start using better quality parts for the price they charge for their guitars. These tuning keys look nice but cannot handle the wear and tear of someone who is actively gigging.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        3.0

        Gibson Tuners

        By sgandproudofit

        from Witchita, KA

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        I have these tuners on my SG. Not bad, but they really aren't a great tuner for replacement. Spend the extra bucks and get some locking tuners, or better yet, some Steinberger gearless locking tuners. But for a vintage replacement, and good tuning stability, they're not bad at all.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        3.0

        Short Lived

        By Fyere on the Mountain

        from Illinois

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        I have them right now, and I'm considering buying a set of different tuners. They don't stay in tune well anymore, and the B tuning key doesn't function properly anymore. It gets stuck while I'm winding a new string and has too much give when tuning.

        (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        2.0

        Piece of S!@#

        By Ish

        from Portland

        Comments about Gibson Vintage Nickel Machine Heads with Pearloid Buttons:

        These came standard on my Gibson sg, and they were fine for a little awhile, but one day one of them just snapped apart, I looked at it and it was barely welded on, and the glue just came apart. I didn't hit it or anything, just snapped while I was tuning. I would invest in some sperzl's.

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