DIY convert PRS SE tuners to locking tuners

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by ThePod, Apr 25, 2020.

  1. ThePod

    ThePod New Member

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    I decided to take a shot at converting my standard locking pegs on my PRS SE to locking style tuners.
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    I picked these up from ebay. They are M3 x 0.5 screws, which I believe are the same thread as the PRS locking screws. They were $8 for 10.
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/111825508215
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    Picked up the necessary tap and drill. $4 for the tap and $3 for the drill.
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    Next step: I removed all the tuners from my guitar and mounted them on a flat scrap piece of wood. A 3/8 inch drill worked perfect for the mounting hole.

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    I used a hand file to level the top of the tuning peg.
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    Then used a center punch to mark the drill spot.
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    Carefully drilled out the pilot hole. A drill press is really a must here.
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    Drilled down. Used WD-40 as lube. I eventually figured out that I needed to drill about 12mm to allow the tap to fully cut the threads. So I made a little test probe.
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    I mounted the tap into a vice. I kept the tuning peg mounted to my scrap wood piece. Used a little WD-40 while cutting the threads.
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    Because of the screws that I bought, I had to cut out a little recess for the base of the screw shaft.

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    Repeat x 6 and remount.
    Tested them out and they seem to work great! I do think the knobs are a little big but I'm ok with that for right now. I like that they are chrome/silver. I can always source some cheap smaller headed ones if I want. The ones from PRS are like $22 for 6.

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    This project does require a little machine work skill and a drill press. The first peg took me about an hour. After I figured it out the process, I wrapped up the last 5 also in about an hour. A good cheap upgrade and beats paying $50-100 for locking tuners, or sending them in to get converted. Total cost $16 and two hours of my time. Honestly the cost of upgrading to a set of locking tuners isn't really that much, I just wanted to see if I could do it and make 'em work. Cheers
     
    tyfu20, RC Mike, ADP and 28 others like this.
  2. Jazzedout

    Jazzedout More Guitars than Time...

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    Nicely done!!! I believe that the bigger thumb screws would be easier to tighten / untighten by hand.
     
  3. Glide-bpm

    Glide-bpm We were small but we were slow...

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    PRS Giant PeckerHeD Locking Tuners Phase D



    Edit- and by the way, I think they're AWESOME!!!
     
    #3 Glide-bpm, Apr 25, 2020
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2020
  4. AaeCee

    AaeCee New Member

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    Both impressed by your work and envious of your skills and patience.
    Well done!
     
  5. ThePod

    ThePod New Member

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    I think they are going to work out well. I'm working on sourcing some black ones for a different guitar right now!
     
  6. andy474x

    andy474x Knows the Drill

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    Color me impressed! That’s some nice work.
     
    ThePod likes this.
  7. PDC

    PDC I'll be right back...

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    Wow - Very Cool :cool: Great Job!

    So only $16 and a drill press :eek:... :D
     
    ThePod likes this.
  8. Marshall Man

    Marshall Man New Member

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    That is awesome!
     
    ThePod likes this.
  9. pgj

    pgj New Member

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    Wow, those look fantastic! You might be able to make some $$$ on the side doing that.
     
    ThePod likes this.
  10. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    Great job!
     
    ThePod likes this.
  11. veinbuster

    veinbuster Zombie Three, DFZ

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    Great job.
     
    ThePod likes this.
  12. Reo Clayton

    Reo Clayton New Member

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    Nicely done!
     
    ThePod likes this.
  13. garrett

    garrett knows just enough to be dangerous

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    Very cool! I like how you flattened the top of the shafts.
     
    ThePod likes this.
  14. Antmax

    Antmax New Member

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    That's really cool! I wish I had the skills to do that. You know you can get low profile metric thumbscrews, right?. You might have to cut your own slots in them though.
     
    ThePod likes this.
  15. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc I like to party, mmm hmm, everybody does.

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    Admirable!
     
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  16. ThePod

    ThePod New Member

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    I've looked on ebay, amazon etc. There were a few others that I liked. I think the ones I used are a little big, but good enough for now. If you find a link for a nice looking low profile screw, send it my way!
     
    #16 ThePod, Apr 25, 2020
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2020
  17. Alnus Rubra

    Alnus Rubra Loving nature’s wonders

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    Great skills!
     
  18. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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  19. Warmart

    Warmart Fani PRSi

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    Impressed that you even thought to do it and flawless execution, very well done!
     
    Alnus Rubra likes this.
  20. ThePod

    ThePod New Member

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    Thank you. After a day of playing they seem to be working well. I can't take credit for the idea, as I do believe this is the way that mannmade.com modifies the SE tuners if you send them in to him.
     
    #20 ThePod, Apr 26, 2020
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2020
    Warmart likes this.

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